Pregnant and in college

Shaleena - posted on 09/18/2013 ( 3 moms have responded )

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Well, I'm 19 and in my second year of college at a very well known university. I found out about 2 weeks ago that I was 7 weeks pregnant and initially I was in shock and disbelief. The father of my child and boyfriend for almost 3 years is excited about having the baby but for the longest I didn't know if I wanted to keep it. But I made the choice that it's not the baby's fault that we made careless decisions to not use any form of contraception and I'm hoping that it turns out for the better. My boyfriend does not want me to drop out of school, but 1). The baby is due at the end of April, which is 3 or 4 weeks away from finals and I'm just worried that I will not be able to make it back to school to take the tests and 2.) with me not dropping out of school, that would mean that I would be at least an hour away from the baby in the fall of 2014.
I know right now I'm not really thinking of this as a big deal because pretty much it still hasn't caught on that there is something growing inside of me, but by that time, I'm pretty sure that leaving my baby behind will be one of the hardest things that I will have to do and honestly, I'm scared.
If you could give me ANY advice on how I should go about this situation and start to look on the bright side if it that would be great. I've been looking at success stories of women who had their children at a young age and was actually given a little hope.
I will take advice from anyone.
Thank you.

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Amanda - posted on 09/19/2013

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Congratulations! School and baby will be tricky but you are making the right choice for you and for baby by trying to stay and Finnish up school. I would talk to your adviser and see what options you have for finals and i would let your teachers know as soon as you can ( wait till you get passed 14 weeks just to be safe is a suggestion) and treat it like you are telling your employer. Remember that you have rights and to report any discrimination and that there is nothing wrong with reasonable accommodations. Also check out what options your campus has for moms after the baby is born. A lot of schools have to make accommodations for teachers that are nursing ( YAY FOR BOOBIES GIVE IT A SHOT) or have on campus child care that may be reduced cost since you are a students so you can still have access to your baby during the day. You will get stressed and it will be hard and sometimes you will wonder what you have done. But remember lots of moms have walked the path you are going down now and want to help. ASK FOR HELP! You can do this !

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Do not drop out of school.

Yes, it is hard to leave your baby, BUT women do it every day in order to go to work. College is no different. You can leave the baby to go to a low paying hourly job, or you can leave the baby to go to class, then move on to a gratifying and fulfilling career. Even if you decide to be a sahm, your education is important, and you will need a career to fall back on in case your relationship doesn't work out.

Speak with your teachers about scheduling finals. Sometimes they can make arrangements for you to take them early or you can file for an "incomplete" and take finals at the end of the following semester. Most doctors recommend 6 weeks of maternity leave, however, you are still allowed to drive, and many women work from home during those weeks, so if you cannot reschedule, getting to class to take a final 3 to 4 weeks after birth should not be a problem.

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Jillian - posted on 09/18/2013

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Well first, CONGRATULATIONS. You are very young indeed but I've witnessed woman a lot younger have babies and become very successful in their careers. However, having a baby is a HUGE deal. I am a first time mom myself, mid-twenties and I have a less then a week old 5 month old (born in April 2013) I have been with my boyfriend for 6 years. You must have a strong bond and very mature relationship to even begin to raise a child. It is not a myth and having a baby is very very expensive. Luckily, we have an amazing baby so far. I am able to stay home with her for her first year, she has always slept through the night, e.t.c. But not all babies are the same.
It is normal to be scared, I was. You will be fine. Just know having a baby won't make life or your relationship any easier. Finish school, if not for you especially for your soon to be bundle of joy. My best advice will be......don't plan ANYTHING. Don't expect certain things, don't plan your labor a certain way because everything happens unexpectedly. I would know.
Best of luck to you. You will be great. God bless.

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