Tips For Working Women Ready to Start a Family
Many women are passionate about their careers but also want to start a family. For those who plan to be working mothers and still want to further their career while being a good mom, the idea of doing both can be overwhelming. However, everyone’s journey in starting a family is done differently, and there are plenty of tips that can help make the transition into motherhood easier, even as a career-driven woman.
Prepare Your Finances
It’s no secret that babies are expensive. Among hospital bills, buying baby items, the time off work, and all the years raising them, you’re looking at a large added expense in your finances for a long time. When you’re ready to start a family, take the time to look at your budget and make changes that will help you to afford your new bundle of joy. You might consider:
- Adding more to your savings account each month to help with costs associated with time off from work.
- Cutting down on unnecessary expenses to create more room in your finances.
- Adjusting your spending to allow for more payment on medical bills.
- Making a plan each month for baby items to purchase to break up costs.
- Creating an extra emergency savings account for extenuating circumstances.
Every household is different, but most couples will need to make some adjustments regardless of their income bracket.
How to Tell Your Boss
There’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to telling your employer you are pregnant. Some bosses will be thrilled for you while others may feel differently. However, it’s important to understand your rights at your place of work. Legally, there is no deadline on when to tell your boss. Many make their decision based on necessity in terms of needing time off for appointments, morning sickness, or making plans for maternity leave. Some need to tell their bosses as soon as possible if they have a hazardous job. Under the Pregnancy Discrimination Act, your employer cannot discriminate against you in terms of pay, promotions, or employability. Tell your boss in your own time and when you’re most comfortable.
Get Your Body Ready
If you’re ready to start a family, you might consider getting ready for your pregnancy by getting your body ready before you’re even pregnant. Many of the tips that can help you have a healthy pregnancy can also help you to prepare your body for pregnancy. This doesn’t mean you have to quit eating sushi and drinking wine right now, but it can help to start weaning yourself off of these things. For instance, drinking coffee throughout the day is the lifeblood of many hardworking career women. When you’re pregnant, you’ll have to cut back to one cup or zero cups a day, depending on your doctor’s recommendation. It’ll also help to get a lot of sleep and start eating healthier.
Ignore the Negativity
There will be people who will tell you that you should stay at home with your kids. There will be people who say you should work to be a good example for your kids. Some will tell you to breastfeed, others will tell you it’s too hard. The truth is that there is not one way to parent, and both working moms and stay at home moms can be present, loving, and driven. Many working moms say that these opinions lead to even more guilt. However, it’s important to practice ignoring the negativity. Whether you decide to go back to work or you decide to stay home, your choice is yours and there’s no shame in either decision.
Have a Baby When You’re Ready
It’s not uncommon for women to decide to wait to have kids, especially if they want some time to create a stable career first. Waiting to have kids is completely okay, as is having them earlier in life. Really, you should have a baby when you’re ready without societal norms dictating your timeline. However, it is important to be aware of the things that can affect your fertility. The things that can make conception more difficult include some STD’s, being over or underweight, smoking, or age, among others.
This means you should work to be in good health when you try to conceive, and you should know the facts about age and conception and how these apply to you. Though age is a big factor for women trying to conceive, there are options to help, and some women have no issues getting pregnant despite their age. Some women decide to freeze their eggs, other women wait and end up using a surrogate, and some undergo successful fertility treatment. Adoption is always a wonderful option as well. Though your age shouldn’t pressure you, it’s still helpful to know how your age will affect your fertility if you want to have your own kids.
If you’re a working woman who is ready to start a family, it can be difficult to plan for your world to begin revolving around a different epicenter. Though your new family will be life altering, just know that there’s plenty of room in your life for many passions, including your family, your career, and anything else you’d like to add.
This guest post was authored by Brooke Faulkner
Brooke Faulkner is a writer, mom and adventurer in the Pacific Northwest. She spends her days pondering what makes a good leader. And then dreaming up ways to teach these virtues to her sons, without getting groans and eye rolls in response.