For some reasons, many couples choose to have their first child before getting married and living together as a family. The cost of a wedding and even the high rate of divorce are putting many couples away from the institution of marriage.
But sadly many single mothers are not in this situation by choice. Some reasons why women end up being solo moms include;
- Fear of commitment: These are women who do not want to be under the control of a man.
- Running away from a turbulent relationship while pregnant.
- Some women just wanted to explore parental rights or have a feel of parenthood.
- Loss of partner while pregnant or with a child.
10 Things That Can Happen When Moms Have Their First Child Before Marriage
Having a baby before marriage is not something one should be ashamed of. Although it comes with more responsibilities, you should know about some things you may have to face or deal with when your baby comes before marriage.
- You will embrace marriage and not feel trapped by it: Since she has lived with her partner before marriage and has had a baby, she wouldn’t think that she is getting married just to have kids and this will make their commitment stronger and unbreakable.
- You can choose to let your child have your surname: A child born outside of marriage can automatically take the mother’s surname unless the mom specifically registered the fathers’ name at birth.
- You may not have enough income to take care of the child: A larger percentage of single moms struggle financially and they tend to work full time just to earn more. And by so doing spend lesser time with the child and this can cause them their relationship with the child. And are often threatened or feel insecure about losing their jobs if they should stay away from work to tend to the child especially when the baby is sick.
- The baby may likely be eligible for support: Moms who have their first kid before marriage may be likely supported by the government(in some countries) and the child’s father. As long as they are not yet married, the father of the child is obliged to pay child support to the mom.
- You may get questioned by family and friends: If a baby arrives before wedding preparations are made, It is natural for some family members and friends to hope and assume that a wedding invitation is on its way. And if they feel it’s delaying, they’ll start questioning and lecturing you on the importance of marriage forgetting that an unhappy marriage can also be damaging for a child just as a divided home can damage a child.
- You do not have rights to partners properties: A woman who lives with a partner she is not married to does not have same rights as a woman who is legally married as she will not be regarded as the man’s next of kin and will have no rights to his properties if the man dies. She may even be forced to leave the home they shared.
- The child may face negative comments from people: At every point in life, there are always people who feel that judging others is their right. Most of these people do not acknowledge that they have made their mistakes too but they feel justified and satisfied by commenting on other people’s life situations. Having a child before marriage might be one’s choice or an inevitable situation one was forced into. And these people might continuously remind the child that he/she was born before the parents made a commitment and if you think there’s need to defend your decisions, you should remind everyone who criticizes your child that you’re doing your best for yourself and child.
- You may need to ask for help: As a mom with child and yet to get married, you do not have to take the responsibility of caring for the child alone. You can seek support from family members or support groups.
- Your child may have a less stable upbringing: If for some reasons the child will have to stay alone with you as her mom or stay separated from both parents in her early years of life, she may likely have behavioral issues and suffer from a complex family situation. And if not addressed properly may cause the child to suffer from emotional problems making her upbringing to be complicated and less stable than you thought it would be.
- Parenthood might become your priority over a wedding: When planning for a wedding, and a child appears before the wedding could take place, the couple may decide to put the wedding off or on hold and consider parenthood as a current priority. When the child’s financial demands gradually start to appear, they may probably start saving money towards expenses like fees and with time she might forfeit her wedding for child’s education.