Divorcing While Expecting

Divorcing While Expecting | Baby Chick

Divorcing While Expecting

What’s more stressful than getting a divorce?… Getting a divorce when you’re pregnant. When you’re pregnant and trying to figure out and settle on what you’re going to do with your home, how assets will be divided, and who will keep the dog, things only become more stressful, exhausting and emotional. If you have firmly decided that you are absolutely moving forward with the divorce because it’s what’s best for you and your child (or children), you’ll need some help. Yes, it will be tough; yes, you’ll have added stress when your hormones are already all over the place, but you can and will make it. If you’re divorcing while expecting, here are some tips that can help you get through.

1. Feel Your Feelings

It’s important to let women know that it’s not only okay, but that you should allow yourself to feel sad, disappointed, upset and hurt when you’re going through such a devastating life change. The only way to grow from it all is to feel your feelings. Let yourself experience those emotions and have them move through you instead of bottling them up and having them hold on to you. There are too many women that hold on to the bitterness and pain of divorce and it doesn’t help them eventually become happy, find peace and recognize the beauty with this new chapter in their lives.

2. Don’t Rush into Another Relationship

You may feel that being in a new relationship is the best thing for you because you will have constant support. I can image that being “single” while pregnant is scary, however, I have been told by one mom that she really regrets rushing into a relationship while she and her husband were getting a divorce (while she was pregnant). She told me that she never gave herself the time to grieve her marriage and mentally process the divorce before her baby came. It affected her new relationship as time passed and it only brought more drama and turmoil during the end of her pregnancy, her birth, and the first months of parenting. Before getting into another relationship, she recommends focusing on you and the baby and reflecting on what happened in your marriage so that you don’t repeat the pattern in your next relationship.

3. Try to Communicate

I know… the last thing you want to do is communicate with your soon-to-be ex-husband. That’s a reason why you’re getting a divorce. But you have to keep trying to communicate because you will soon have a little reason that will  forever connect the two of you together; your child. If communicating with him is something that is close to impossible, I recommend seeking out a good therapist or counselor that specializes in helping couples during divorce and helping parents co-parent. A counselor can help both of you learn better communication skills and they can help you work through the emotions of a divorce while pregnant so that you can hopefully build a stable co-parenting relationship for your child.

4. Plan Ahead

Once you have worked on your communication, come to an agreement about child support and visitation. It’s better to figure that out sooner rather than later. If you don’t incorporate these terms into your divorce decree, you’ll have to go back to court at a later time to have these settled. It’s painful to go through it, but save yourself from further emotional and financial pain by getting these established ahead of time. Which brings me to my next point…

5. Get Legal Advice & Understand the Laws in Your State

Find an attorney that you can trust (one that specializes in divorce) so that you can turn to him or her for advise. He or she can help you better understand what you should prepare for and what you can expect. Something that you need to look into are the laws in your state regarding pregnancy during divorce. Your attorney can help with this. Some states will not allow you to file for divorce if you’re pregnant; you will have to wait until after your baby is born to file. Other states won’t finalize your divorce until after you deliver your baby. Whatever the case is, the timing of your divorce could have long-term ramifications on your ex’s parental rights and responsibilities so be sure to discuss all of this with your attorney.

6. Build Your “Village”

I know that I’ve said this before, but it’s vital that you start building your “village”. These are the people that you can turn to when days get tough. Pregnancy can be hard on it’s own so think of the people who are in your life that can lift you up and help you when you need a hand and are feeling down. This could be family, friends, neighbors, church members, doulas, support groups, etc. Just remember that you do not have to do this alone.

7. Take Care of YOU

During tough times and major life changing events (like divorce) it can be difficult to be kind to yourself and take care of you. So many people find themselves not eating enough or eating too much, not exercising, not getting enough sleep, not finding ways to heal, etc. when they are experiencing a break up. But you are pregnant. You must remember that there is life growing inside of you. Not only is self-care helping you during this transition, it is helping your child start a happy and healthy life. Make an effort to continue to take care of yourself and do the things that bring you joy.

8. Co-Parenting

Hopefully your ex will want to be (because he should be) involved in your child’s life. I get that it can be tough to continue a relationship with your ex (even when it’s only a co-parenting relationship), but ultimately, if it’s in the best interest of your child, you must find a way to make it work. Prepare yourself ahead of time for these growing pains and see a family therapist, sign up for a co-parenting class, and read some books on co-parenting.

9. Know That You’re Not Alone

Because you are going through an incredibly difficult life changing event while pregnant, this puts you at risk for postpartum mood and anxiety disorders. It is completely normal to feel sad and upset at this time. However, if you recognize that these feelings are continuing or worsening and you’re having a harder time finding things that bring you joy, or you begin to have thoughts about hurting yourself or your baby, you must say something. Many women feel that they will be judged and labeled as a bad mother, but you are not. This is treatable and you can be helped. Speaking up is taking care of you and your baby. I recommend speaking with your OB or midwife. He or she can help you find a therapist so that you can get some help and not feel alone.

10. Learn to Ask for and Accept Help

I don’t know what it is about women, but we feel that we need to do everything on our own. (Myself included.) We know that we are capable of doing it all (because we can) and we don’t want to burden anybody else. I recognize that this is silly, but this is especially silly if you are going through a divorce while pregnant. We have to learn that it’s okay to ask for help and accept help when offered. Let people assist you when preparing for baby; let them bring you freezer meals or help you clean your house. Whatever it may be, you will be incredibly happy later on that you asked or accepted their help.

Getting a divorce during pregnancy is tough enough, but always know that you are not alone and that you will get through this. Give yourself grace, give yourself time to grieve, and focus on you and the new life that you will soon be bringing into the world.

About the Author /

Nina is The Baby Chick® & CEO of Baby Chick®. She is a baby planner, birth doula, postpartum doula, childbirth educator, newborn care specialist, and a mother. With over eight years of experience, she has supported hundreds of families during their pregnancies, births, and postpartum journeys.

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Remember what it was like when you were home with Remember what it was like when you were home with a newborn? Remember how you felt? Tired. Sore. Swollen. Engorged. So happy to finally meet your baby but also completely exhausted. You wished you had more help. You wished you could take a break. You wished you could only focus on staring at your baby and snuggling them and not have to worry about preparing food, chores, etc.⁠
Even though things may be more difficult now to offer help, still try to be the friend you wished you had when your babies were newborns to your friends and loved ones. ❤️ Things you can do:⁠
- Drop off a meal at their door⁠
- Drop off some of your favorite postpartum recovery items or breastfeeding products you loved⁠
- Go grocery shopping for them and leave it at the door⁠
- Send them a meal delivery service gift card⁠
- Bake her some lactation cookies (if she is breastfeeding)⁠
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- Drop off diapers and wipes⁠
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- Pay for a few hours for a postpartum doula or a night nanny to help her out⁠
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You're My Baby Forever, But My Newborn for Now⁠ You're My Baby Forever, But My Newborn for Now⁠ 💕⁠
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If you are there now or about to enter this stage, it’s a yummy, delicious, snuggly stage. But for me, it has always been one of the harder ones, every time I go through it. So I see and feel you, mama! It’s physically, emotionally, and mentally exhausting. Hold tight, though, because it doesn’t last forever.⁠
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Daddy Chronicles: Breastfeeding 💙⁠ by @chroni Daddy Chronicles: Breastfeeding 💙⁠
by @chroniclesofdaddy⁠
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I've been asked so many questions by men about fatherhood. So I figured I'd drop some knowledge on my fellow Dads and soon-to-be-Dads. Here's what it looks like for the first few weeks or months after your child is born. Yup. If mom breastfeeds they pretty much are tucked like this and at times you'll wonder "what is there for me to do?" Here are my top 5 tips for any Dad after your child is born.⁠
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1️⃣ For night feedings. When mom wakes up in the middle of the night, you get up and ask if she needs any help or water. The truth is most of the time she will say no but just the fact that you offered will go far.⁠
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2️⃣ Ask mom if she can pump and then pick 1 feeding that you will always do. Mom will take on almost everything and will burn herself out if you let her. At times you may have to force her to rest without worrying about the baby. This is an easy way to do that without a fight.⁠
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3️⃣ Don't put a time limit on how long mom breastfeeds the baby. It's not just about feeding your child it's about them bonding as well. I know everyone has a different length of time they will breastfeed and as a Dad, it's hard to fully understand. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT try and rush this process. It's not our place and it's not safe. You will open yourself up to a fight you can't win.⁠
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4️⃣ Be patient. I know as a Dad the first few weeks we are equally excited and yet not as important. Your time will come faster than you know. Babies grow fast and the stronger and bigger they get the more Daddy Time will be coming your way.⁠
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5️⃣ Paternity leave! If you have it TAKE IT. The early stages of a child's life are not just for moms to enjoy. I know as men making the money especially after having a baby it's hard, but trust me. You can always make money but there are no instant replays in life. It doesn't make you more of a man to not take the leave. It's equally as important that you as a Dad get to be a part of the early development of your child. ⁠
If someone needs this info tag them ❤️⁠
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Absolutely love these tips from @chroniclesofdaddy. 🙌
7 Postpartum Yoga Poses That Strengthen Your Body 7 Postpartum Yoga Poses That Strengthen Your Body After Baby 🧘‍♀️⁠
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The postpartum period, or period of recovery that takes place after a mother gives birth, is an important time for mothers to take care of themselves. 🥰 Typically, if you’re less than 6 weeks postpartum you don’t want to put any pressure on your core muscles. Also, your body’s levels of relaxin, the hormone that loosens joints to prepare for childbirth, is elevated for 3-6 months after childbirth, and longer if you are breastfeeding. All this means is: take these postpartum yoga poses slowly and stretch yourself gently. No gymnastics here or pushing beyond what is comfortable.⁠
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Remember, every mama’s body is different, so listen to how you feel and seek advice from a medical professional if you have questions about how and when to begin your personal exercise plan. Note: Try to do the following yoga poses in the order they are listed. {Click 🔗 in bio to see the 7 yoga poses to strengthen your body after baby!⁠}⁠
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Article by: @kristen_vhmiddleton⁠
📷 taken by: @allisonermon_photography