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While you may never feel fully ready for kids (a totally normal feeling when facing the unknown), even if you want them- there are some surefire signs that you likely aren’t ready for a baby.
Let’s take a look at 12 signs you’re not ready to become a parent.
1. You’re not ready to change your lifestyle
Children require a lot of attention and energy, and having a child is going to change your life dramatically. If you’re not ready to make a major change in how you live, like cutting back on social activities or dining out, then parenting might not be right for you at this time.
However, once you have kids- you might be surprised that you don’t mind making these changes as much as you thought you would. This is because your priorities totally change, too.
2. You aren’t ready for extra responsibility
Having a baby means that you have added responsibility in your life. You’re no longer responsible just for yourself- you now have another human being under your care that needs you to provide safety, nurture, and guidance (constantly when their babies and toddlers). If this prospect seems overwhelming or daunting to you, then it’s probably not the right time to become a parent.
Try watching your friend’s kids for an extended weekend if you want to get a feel for the extra responsibility and see what you think.
3. You can’t afford it
Babies really don’t have to cost that much if you budget wisely and think frugally. But if you can’t afford to take time off work or worry about how you will afford your living expenses, adding a baby to the mix isn’t the best idea.
4. You’re worried about regretting kids
It’s perfectly normal to have moments of doubt before having a child. But if you feel like the thought of having kids is making you anxious or that you might regret it down the line, then it’s an indication that this isn’t the right decision for you at this time.
Take some time to think about what you really want and if parenting is something that you’ll be happy with down the line.
5. You’re not mentally prepared for children
Mental health is an important factor when it comes to deciding if you’re ready for kids or not. If you’re dealing with depression, anxiety, or other mental health issues, it’s important to address them before having a baby.
It’s also important to take time for self-care and make sure that you’re emotionally ready for the rigors of parenting. If you feel like you’re not in a good headspace right, then it’s probably not the best time to take on raising a baby.
6. You have health concerns
Finally, if you have any health concerns that could be exacerbated by pregnancy or parenting, then it’s important to discuss them with your doctor before making a decision.
7. You don’t have a support network
While it’s totally possible, parenting without a community around you is tough no matter how you slice it. Having a strong support network is essential for helping you handle parenting stress and ensuring your child’s emotional well-being. If you don’t have access to family or friends who can offer help (or a partner that will be involved), it might be a good idea to wait before having kids.
8. You have no patience for babies and children
If you find yourself cringing at the sight of a baby or you dread spending time with children- it’s a sign that you may not be ready for parenthood. Parenthood requires immense patience and an ability to handle unpredictable situations. If this doesn’t sound appealing to you, parenting might not be right for your lifestyle right now or ever.
9. You’re tired enough with your current lifestyle
Raising children is exhausting, so if you’re already exhausted with your current lifestyle, adding a baby to the mix will only worsen it. Unless you are in a place where you can devote more energy and resources to parenting, then it might not be the right time for a new addition to your family.
10. Your relationship is rocky
Finally, if your relationship is anything less than stable, it’s not the right time to have a baby. Having children in an unstable or unhealthy relationship can create stressful and damaging environments for you and your child. It’ll likely also lead to a breakup due to the added stress.
11. You feel pressured to have children
If your family or friends are pushing you to have kids, it’s important to take a step back and consider why you want to become a parent. If the only reason is that others expect it of you, then it may not be the best decision.
Becoming a parent should be something that comes from within, not because of external pressure.
12. You want a child to feel fulfilled
Sometimes, people think having children will make them feel complete or fulfilled, but this isn’t always true. Instead of having kids to fill a void in your life, focus on finding other ways to feel happy and fulfilled — like finding a hobby or reigniting an old passion.
Do What Feels Right for You
Making the decision to have a baby is an extremely personal one and should never be taken lightly. If any of these signs resonate with you, now might not be the right time for you to become a parent. It’s ok to wait until you’re ready and when the time is right for you to take on this responsibility.
On the other hand, if you’re gut is telling you it’s right, but you’re worried about what the future holds. Take these signs with a grain of salt and simply plan for your little family’s needs. Good luck!
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