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How do you know it is the "right" time to have a baby?

(26 Posts)
malterserslover Mon 28-Jan-13 10:16:44

A little bit background first - I am 29 (30 this year....eeek!) and my boyfriend is the same age. We have been together for 7 years, have our own house, both have very good jobs. For the past year we have been having the "baby" conversation quite regularly.

We are both on the same page that we definitely want kids and definitely more than one. About 12 months ago I was VERY broody, he was a bit more on the fence in that he knew he was going to have a big year at work so felt that maybe the baby should be a 2013 project. I changed jobs half way through the year and having a new work challenge pushed the baby out of my mind. Over Christmas he started talking about having the baby again and I do really want it but somehow making that decision to start trying feels enormous and in fact quite petrifying!!

So my question is, how do you know it is the "right" time to have a baby? How did you make that decision? Is it normal to feel a bit anxious/petrified/worry about the future?

Dannilion Mon 28-Jan-13 10:25:46

I think for the majority of people there never is a 'right' time. There will always be a better job/promotion, holiday, nicer house etc you can aim for.

Sounds to me like you both are in a great position to raise a child smile

TwitchyTail Mon 28-Jan-13 10:26:48

For us, it was a combination of just wanting a baby smile and it being a good time in practical terms - married a couple of years, both had steady jobs, I had completed my professional exams, we had a home and savings, etc. I was (am) 29, and wanted to get started sooner rather than later.

It wasn't the perfect time, but then I don't think there ever is. Leaving it later would have meant a bit more maternity pay and I would have been more comfortable in my job, but no-one knows before they start trying how long it will take.

I would advise looking into the big practical issues like making sure you qualify for necessary maternity pay, checking childcare costs are feasible, that sort of thing. Don't aim for perfection as it will never happen. And then trust your instincts and go for it.

csmm Mon 28-Jan-13 10:27:52


This might sound like a cliche, but there's never really a 'right' time. It will change your life, but you adapt. If you think about it too much you might end up scaring yourself off! And kids can be the most rewarding thing in your life.

Hope this helps smile

Dannilion Mon 28-Jan-13 10:29:05

Oh, and very normal to feel anxious! I'm 30 weeks pregnant and it has only recently dawned on me that I'm going to have a real, human baby. It's terrifying.

ThreeWheelsGood Mon 28-Jan-13 10:32:04

You can keep postponing and holding off for the perfect job/salary/house etc, but what if those things don't materialise before you're, say, 50?! I think there's no right time as such, but there are wrong times, like if you aren't ready.

Weissdorn Mon 28-Jan-13 10:32:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

I think when your youngest is old enough to deny it loudly when you attempt to blame your farts on them, you know it's time to have another. <pats 11 week bump>

babyradio Mon 28-Jan-13 10:34:54

My mum told me years ago if you wait for "the right time" it might never come. Sounds like you've got all the basics.

I got pregnant by accident, I'm a few years younger than you and my boyfriend lives on the other side of the world (as did I until last month) so perhaps I'm not the best person to offer advice about when the right time may or may not be. Or, you could take the advice from this that if I'm doing it even though all my circumstances are 'wrong', you will be absolutely fine too.

And you're still allowed to be petrified even if it's the right decision! smile

ThreeWheelsGood Mon 28-Jan-13 10:42:20

Bear in mind that you'll likely not get pregnant instantly, and when you do you'll have 8 months to get your head round it! It's normal to be scared, my baby is 3 months old and I'm still getting used to the concept wink

malterserslover Mon 28-Jan-13 10:53:42

Thank you for all your replies. We are both very fond of children and love spending time with nieces/nephews and our friends' babies. My mum keeps saying that "we need a little accident" but in reality that is very unlikely to happen given that I am on the pill and after 7 years on it, I am pretty damn good at remembering it wink ..... I also know that in reality that even if I come off the pill now, it is likely to be a little while just to get my body back into a normal/natural state so we would have some time to get used to the idea. And you never know how long it will take to get pregnant.

I love reading all of your comments about having a little one to cuddle or one on the way... enjoy!

ArtemisTheHunter Mon 28-Jan-13 12:25:50

Hi there

I don't want to dampen anyone's spirits but bear in mind it could take longer to conceive than you might think. For me the "right time" (if there is such a thing) would have been 4 years ago, having met my partner two years earlier. I was 35 and felt the clock ticking but he took another year to be fully persuaded. Three years down the line, one miscarriage and a lot of tests later I have finally conceived again via IVF but it has involved a lot of heartache and after a frightening bleeding episode I very much don't feel out of the woods yet. My experience is not typical, and hopefully you'll be one of those people who fall pregnant first month of trying, but all I'm saying is you can agonise for years about whether you are making the right choice but nature doesn't care about what you think! Best of luck to you whatever you decide. You sound like you'll make lovely parents smile

plonko Mon 28-Jan-13 12:32:32

Last Christmas we just made the decision, being engaged and having lived together for quite awhile, it seemed inevitable that we would have kids at some stage anyway. The only thing we felt we were lacking was a mortgage! So decided not to get more pills once my prescription ended in April last year.

We got a positive result in June, expecting it to take about 6 months so we were completely shocked by how fast it all happened! I had a decent job and was heading for a promotion, but dp had just started a new job that after 2 months was clearly a dead end. So there's been a few money niggles and probably could have done without all the job drama but it's sorted now, and our baby's due in a month. Oh, I'm 26 and DPs 27, so I guess we're a couple of years 'behind' you but I have no doubt that this is absolutely a good time for us. It's given dp great motivation to do well at work and I feel energetic enough to cope with any changes we have to deal with.

Good luck with your decision!

EMS23 Mon 28-Jan-13 12:36:30

FWIW, from what you've written, it sounds like this is your 'right time'. Chuck the pills (well, replace them with folic acid ones) and see what happens!

orangetickle Mon 28-Jan-13 12:39:21

The older you get, the more of a change a baby will be to your life (since the longer you'll have lived a certain way), and so the more intimidating it'll be.

Just do it. There's never a perfect time.

In addition, if you do struggle to conceive (which is unlikely and not something to worry about), you want to know as soon as possible when you're young, rather than not finding out until later.

Mosman Mon 28-Jan-13 12:49:12

It's one of those things you have to just feel the fear and do it anyway, jump in the waters great (most of the time !)

rrreow Mon 28-Jan-13 13:22:11

For me the 'right time' was when we moved out of rented accommodation (the contract actually said 'no children'! Although I don't think it would've stopped us had we wanted to at that time) and into our own house. Money didn't really come into it (we are secure, but we don't earn much). Babies aren't very expensive (well, as expensive as you make them when it comes to buying prams etc!).

I am of the opinion that when you are finding lots of 'practical reasons' (valid!) to not have kids, it might be a way of telling yourself you're not completely emotionally ready?

It's absolutely great having a child and being a mother though (I still work nearly full time - I like combining the two, definitely makes me feel more sane & balanced). I think that even if you conceive at a 'wrong time', once you actually have the baby you won't regret it.

weeblueberry Mon 28-Jan-13 13:30:52

I agree there's never going to be a perfect time. We are going to find things tough finanially when the baby is born (and when I'm on maternity leave) and it' certainly taken it out of my body far more than I thought it would.

But frankly if you'd said to me a year ago 'you're going to be so poor you'll be scraping by each month, your body will go to hell and probably never recover, it will affect your work as much as you claim it won't, you'll be exhausted about 20 hours a day and when the baby is born you won't have time for your hobbies or money to spend on anything other than essentials'..............I'd still have got pregnant in a second. wink

worsestershiresauce Mon 28-Jan-13 13:34:14

The right time is when both you and your DH are on the same page about it. Sounds like you're there then grin !

ZolaPowered Mon 28-Jan-13 13:39:00

We were never sure when the 'right time' would be until we realised that we definitely saw ourselves with kids in the future. We were 32 at the time and wanted 2 kids and realised that by 40 we saw ourselves with school age kids and somehow that made it easier to make the decision to actually start trying.

DS1 is now 19 months and DC2 is due at end of Feb. Despite saying when I was in my early twenties that I never wanted kids, I absolutely love being a mummy and seeing my gorgeous son growing up and learning. It really is amazing.

I think it is such a big decision to start trying but it does sound like you are both as ready as you'll ever be and that worked for us!

Msbluesky32 Mon 28-Jan-13 13:39:33

We have been together for four years and started talking about it about a year and a half ago and steadily we grew to want it more and more. For us I think it is (in part) a need/desire to demonstrate our commitment and love for each other and to produce a lovely little person from that is really something amazing smile. I cant think of anyone I would rather more be the father of my children than DP - I konw he will be a great dad. That's not to say that we dont have a few wobbles of doubt every now and then. I am 30 weeks this week and some days I do think 'oh my word, this is big - did we do the right thing?'. Its such a life-changing step that I agree with some of the posts on here - you will never feel 100% 'ready' in the sense that you wake and and think ''right, today I feel ready lets start trying''. I think the more you talk about it with your partner the more it should become clearer as to whether now is the right time for you both. I wish you the best of luck.

plannedshock Mon 28-Jan-13 14:56:55

We knew because we always had a reason NOT to, wanted to move, better car, another holiday, then it happened that one day we didn't have a reason not to have a baby anymore. So I guess we ran out of excuses.

HazleNutt Mon 28-Jan-13 15:08:48

what planned said - one day I could not find a reason not to any more.

sundaesundae Mon 28-Jan-13 15:11:14

Feel the fear and do it anyway! we decided we had better have a little go as people were telling us how long it had taken them to fall, we fell the first month going.

I get very freaked out thinking about how things are going to change and whether we've done the right thing, but at over 32 weeks I guess t is a bit late for that! smile

You'll be fine, start taking folic acid and don't renew your prescription for pills, scariest bit is just letting it go and seeing what happens.

Dogsmom Mon 28-Jan-13 16:15:41

We started trying when I was 34, I hadn't been on the pill for years and fully expected to get pregnant the first time. It took 3 years.
There was nothing wrong with either of us medically it just wasn't happening.

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