Finding out you’re pregnant can stir up a lot of emotions. Joy, fear, confusion, worry, or excitement, to name a few. Having a baby is a big responsibility and brings challenges with it, but it can also be an amazing experience to raise and nurture a child. But what do you do when you want the baby, but you don’t want to be in a relationship with the father? It can seem like you’re trapped in the relationship once a baby is in the picture, but that’s not the case. Keep reading for some best practices on how to navigate this situation, and then call Embrace at (316) 945-9400 to set up a free consultation on your options today.
Focus on What’s Best for You and Your Child
One of the most important things to remember is that while he is the father of your baby, you’re the one that’s pregnant. As a mother, you’ll be responsible for your child’s well-being and making sure they are cared for, but you also need to make sure you’re supported as well. If you don’t feel like the father is willing or able to provide the support that you or your baby will require, then staying in a relationship with him probably isn’t the best idea. Still on the fence? These 20 questions might help you determine if it’s healthy to stick it out.
Deciding His Involvement
The next step is going to be figuring out what level of involvement you want the father to have in the pregnancy, birth, and raising of your child. Every relationship is different and has unique circumstances, but here are some things to consider:
- Will his involvement in your pregnancy and what comes after be an asset to you, or will it be a source of stress?
- Will his involvement in the child’s life be beneficial in their development and upbringing, or will it complicate things?
- Is co-parenting an option? Can you see the father being able/willing to have a healthy influence and relationship with your child?
- What are your state’s laws around parental rights and how will that impact your decision?
Finding a Support Base
Just because you’ve decided you don’t want a relationship with the father doesn’t mean that you’ll be raising your child alone. Being a single parent can be challenging, but with a support base in place, it can be rewarding as well. Start with having honest conversations with your close friends and family. Let them know what you have decided and be transparent about the help and support you are going to need. Getting involved in a single mothers support group is another option, as well as talking with a counselor or your doctor about what to expect and getting their advice on your situation.
The most important thing to remember is that you always have options, whether you feel like it or not. At Embrace, our door is always open to answer any questions you might have and process through all of your options with you. Call (316) 945-9400 to schedule your free appointment today. We’re here to support you every step of the way.
Having the Conversation
Once you’ve thought through what you want the father’s involvement to look like, it’s time for the hardest part: having the conversation with him. It’s best to preface it by setting up a time to talk beforehand and not having a spur of the moment decision to talk. Think through what you want to say to him and try to think about what his reaction might be so you can be prepared for how to respond. The most important thing to convey in your talk with him is that you’re making the decision that you think will be best for you and your child.
There’s no way to tell what his reaction will be, but being surprised or upset are two of the most common. It’s important to let him process and listen to what he has to say, but if at any point it becomes clear you won’t be able to talk about this in a rational manner, it’s best to ask to revisit the conversation in a few days when the initial emotional shock has worn off and you can discuss the matter with clear heads.
After you’ve both had some time to process, it’s time to have another conversation about what the father’s involvement will look like. Again, this decision is based solely on what is best for you and your child. No matter what you decide, you’ll need to establish some healthy boundaries and hold each other accountable to keeping them. Be sure to listen to his point of view and what his wishes are, and express yours to him as well.
Take your time. This isn’t a decision to rush into and if you ever need someone to talk to, we are here for you. At Embrace, we offer free consultations for pregnancy and parenting options, provide resources to help you on this new journey, and above all, are here to listen and provide you with the support and love you need. Give us a call at (316) 945-9400 today to schedule your free consultation.