Things To Think About Before Baby Arrives

January 20, 2010

Deciding to have a baby is a huge thing. It is also one of those decisions that has several other decisions attached to it. Of course, once you become pregnant, than the biggest decision is dealt with and you can think about all of the other things that follow.

What's In A Name?  Baby Naming

Like naming your baby. In some cultures the job is not so easy, while in others, you can just pick a name and go with it. Family involvement and tradition often play a big part in the naming of a child. One side of the family thinks it is important to name the baby after a certain person, and the other side of the family feels exactly the same way. In some cultures there are ceremonies that surround the naming of the baby and there can be no end of dialogue on the matter of how it will happen and when. If possible, it is important to get this sort of thing decided upon before pregnancy, because once you're pregnant, the last thing you want to deal with is a family feud.

What Do We Believe?  Religion and Baby

Then there's the question of religion-which may not be a question at all. For some couples it is a no-brainer. They are both of the same faith (or no faith at all) and the issue is a moot point. However, what about those couples who have interfaith marriages? Making a decision about religious upbringing should begin with a discussion about values. Consider what is most important to you as a couple as well as what isn't really important at all. Open discussions lay the groundwork for joint parenting in the future. Religion can be a funny thing. If it isn't important before the baby is born, it may become important afterward. Leave the door open for a change of mind and heart in the future. Leave room to explore the issue of religion after the baby is born.

Breast Or Bottle? Feeding Your Baby

How will you feed your baby? Breast or bottle? This is a very personal issue and one that can be quite inflammatory if discussed with someone of a different opinion. Discuss this with your partner and know how you both feel about it, making your decision firm. That way pressure from outside won't be a driving force toward a disagreement or being swayed away from your decision. If the decision is to nurse the baby, then take the steps to be properly educated and prepared. Some women experience difficulty at the beginning and end up quitting before they really get started. Being aware of the potential problems and understanding the implications and challenges that may come up help keep the decision to breastfeed strong. Attending some La Leche League meetings before having your baby is a great way to find out what breastfeeding is really like.

Do We Cut Or Not? Circumcision?

As with religion, circumcision can be a religious/cultural decision and often the decision is made automatically-if it's a boy. Sometimes a couple decides to circumcise because the father is circumcised. Circumcision is surgery and it is something that needs to be decided long before the baby is born. The delivery room is not the place to make a decision. You're exhausted and the last thing you want to think about is what to do about the matter. Many parents opt against it because they don't see the sense. It's surgery and it has some risks. Others have discovered that it is beneficial to reducing certain diseases. Do the research and make an educated decision, one that you and your partner are able to embrace.

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