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Important Discussions to Have Before Pregnancy

by Alison Wood | June 21, 2013 12:00 AM
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Finally, you and your spouse have decided that now it the right time to try to conceive a baby. You start spying the new layettes at the shopping mall, the stroller and car seats on display and of course tying to pick out the perfect nursery decor theme online. All these thoughts make the anticipation build and you can almost feel that small, warm bundle of love in your arms. But wait! There are a few things you need to discuss with your partner before conceiving a little one. It's much more profitable to discuss them now to avoid conflict at a later time.

Baby names.
Take a few moments and jot down some baby names you would desire to use on your next bundle. Ask your spouse to do the same. See what the results are and if you can agree on at least one name. Try to be open and considerate and you will most likely receive the same attitude. Don't be too quick to smash down your spouse's choice of names.

The bread-winner.
Better sit down and decide now if you or your spouse will stay home with the baby or if both of you will continue to work outside the home. Decisions as important and life-changing as this need to be thought out long before baby arrives. Calculate the cost as well as the definite positives of having one parent stay at home with the baby full-time. Doctors, psychologists and religious leaders agree that a child tends to thrive and have an overall happier countenance when he or she has a mom or dad that stays at home with him or her full-time.

Religion.
Do you and your spouse have different beliefs when it comes to religion and God? These can cause major anxiety and stress if not addressed beforehand. Discuss topics like:

Again, the more calm and considerate you are in discussing these sensitive topics, the more likely your spouse is to discuss these in an even temperament.

A budget plan.
Now that there will be a new person in your family unit, there will also be added expenditures. You may need to cut out some leisure activities to make sure that your little one is well-funded. Baby costs will included needed diapers, formula (if not breast-fed), check-ups, new clothes. New shoes and an education. These needs all require money. Ask yourself and your spouse if you are willing to sacrifice a few things in life in order to provide for your new bambino.

Relatives.
Some grandparents, aunts and uncles are deeply involved in their grandchildren's and niece's life. Is this what you, as s couple, desire for your child as well? Are you ok with your baby spending the night at grandma's once in a while? What about a day trip with Auntie? Are there certain members of the family you want to have limited access to your child? How will you deal with that specific family member? Less family stress and arguments can be avoided if these issues are resolved beforehand.

Diaper changes.
It's inevitable. Poop will come. When it comes, who changes the baby? Will it always be the wife or will the hubby help out as well? Do you half the responsibility? Whatever the case, your baby will need to be changed—over, and over and over again.

Hospital or home-birth.
Some people prefer less medical intervention as well as a calm and soothing experience when it comes to child-birth. Others prefer all that medical science has to offer. Does your spouse have any preferences? Be open to both ideas as your opinion may change as you research your options.

Breast-feed or bottle-feed.
Do you cringe at the idea of an infant sucking on your breasts? Or do you daydream about the bond and connection you imagine you will have doing a breast-feeding session? Either way, it is important to talk with your spouse about your desires and ask about his. Before making your choice, educate yourself on all the pros and cons of breastfeeding versus bottle-feeding. You may be surprised at what you find!

Before you try to conceive, take time to discuss these and any other pertinent issues with your spouse at a relaxed time. Make sure it is just you and your spouse and you do not make life-changing decisions based on peer pressure from friends or family. In the end, the decision is going to affect you, your spouse and your baby more than anyone else.

Alison Wood is a stay-at-home mom of six and freelance writer and blogger. She enjoys raising her six children and desires to share her experiences to help other mothers.

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