Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Reader question: Why do I want a baby so badly?

Q: hi haley. i am 17 years old. i have wanted a baby soo bad for about 2 years and i don't really understand why. it is like an overwhelming feeling that has been occurring ever since i left my boyfriend, who was really horrible to me. ever since then, ironically, is when i've wanted one. i have talked to my parents about this and they are extremely worried but i know that i could take care of a baby because i have a job and have even started to work on a plan that can allow me to go to school(college) and care for a child. i am thinking about adopting because i can't depend on any guy my age haha. anyways i am struggling with this, what do i do? i know this doesn't have to do with relationships but i feel like you could help me with this, thank you. 


A: Danielle, I'm glad you've asked this question, as I feel that this affinity towards motherhood is something that strikes a lot of women at some point in their lives. In addition to that, your question in particular absolutely DOES have something to do with relationships, and I'll tell you why.

As I've stated, women are naturally inflicted by feelings of desire towards being a mother, as that is a byproduct of our instinct/general trait of nurture. However, your feelings are likely amplified because you have been very hurt at a very young age. You are probably left with the feeling that you just want to be loved without getting heartbreak in return. Yes, a baby will do that, but there is so much more to a child than just sharing love...

The key fact that most non-mothers don't realize is that when you have a child, you no longer have "your own life". The focus is now on your child. It becomes about THEIR life, not yours. Everything you have ever wanted to do in life now takes an extra consideration. Travel will become nearly impossible for a while, both financially and time-wise. Your social life will seem nonexistent at times. And me, is not too doable. What sort of plan do you have regarding school? Are you going to school online? No matter what it is, you're still going to have to enlist the help of a babysitter if you want to focus and do well. Forget about going to a university, unless you REALLY have some help behind you.

Finally, with adoption. I was adopted, and my parents were married, in their 30s, and with a combined income of over $80,000 (if not more? IDK, it was the 80s :P). Guess how long it took for them to find my birth-mom? TWO years. Sweetheart, the adoption process is nooo walk in the park. The odds of a single, 17-year-old girl with an entry-level salary finding a match is too minuscule to even comprehend. 

I could go on and on, but I'm not a mom--I just KNOW a lot of moms. Talk to any YOUNG mom in particular, and they will have countless stories for you. Yes, children are beautiful, children are blessings, and children are one of the greatest things in life. But unfortunately, you just aren't ready to experience that if you think it will be easy. Really think about your goals and dreams and really think about how much your ex's cruelty impacted you. I think it's best if you move on from those experiences, take the knowledge of them with you, and enjoy your life for now, Danielle.

I wish you the best of happiness and please feel free to e-mail me more anytime.

Best of luck,

--Dr. O.

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