June 22nd, 2007
Posted By:
Categories: Advice

If you are in an unplanned pregnancy and are still involved with your baby’s father, you may be considering marriage. Marrying for the right reasons is beautiful, but marrying for the wrong reasons is not.

Marriage may seem like a perfect answer. You’d have someone there to assist you in parenting responsibilities, both financial as well as emotional. You’d have help with daily parenting duties. You may feel more accepted by friends, family, and society if you get married. Your family may even be pushing you towards marriage or pushing your baby’s father to marry you because it’s the “proper” thing to do.

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But getting married just because you are pregnant is not a good idea and not a good reason for two people to get married. Trust me, I got married in my first unplanned pregnancy because I felt it was the best thing to do. I felt that by getting married I could acceptably parent Noah. I wouldn’t be shunned because I was a single mother and it would be easier to parent him because I had the support from his dad. I learned that getting married just because you are pregnant, doesn’t work. Four years later, I was divorced.

An unplanned pregnancy can sometimes put stress on an existing marriage. Marrying because of an unplanned pregnancy will undeniably add stress from the get go. The strain and stress of disagreements in a marriage can be hard on the baby as well. You also may feel that marriage may guarantee that your child would have an involved father, but it doesn’t necessarily guarantee that.

If you were already considering marriage or had marriage to your child’s father planned in your future then it may work, but don’t let sharing a child be your sole reason for getting married.

As I re-read this post, I sound very anti-marriage. I’m not. I think marriage is wonderful and I’m happy that I got it right the second time around. I just don’t want to see anyone make the same mistakes I did the first time. If you really want to parent, don’t think marriage is the only way to successfully do that.

5 Responses to “Getting Married because you are Pregnant”

  1. I did this, too, when I was pregnant at seventeen. At the time … 1969 … it seemed like a good idea, but rather than solve any problems it created a whole bunch of new ones. The marriage lasted 6.5 years.
    Thirty-eight years later, it all looks like a tidy puzzle, but at the time my life was a total unhappy mess. Thankfully, that mess also brought my second child, so there were redeeming circumstances, but I couldn’t know that then.
    Often life is a process that we don’t fully appreciate until much later, and decisions are made with one goal in mind, when another completely different outcome results.
    We do the best we can, when we can.

  2. Coley S. says:

    but rather than solve any problems it created a whole bunch of new ones.

    That statement is profound!

    When I forced myself into that marriage I thought I could force myself to be in love too. Now, ten years later, I didn’t know love could be like this!

    It’s like the Rascal Flatts song, “The Broken Road,” I had to walk that road to get to this point of the journey in my life.

  3. Jan Baker says:

    The marriage I began at age 16 and pregnant lasted 16 years. No solution is carefree – some work out better than others. Each different path that we take in life does present its own challenges.

    I would not recommend that someone marry if they do not want to. However, if it seems the only route to being able to parent their baby, it could make sense. Placing a baby for adoption has much more serious consequences than a divorce.

  4. Coley S. says:

    Placing a baby for adoption has much more serious consequences than a divorce.
    Agreed!

  5. Great blog! And so true. Marriage itself is huge adjustment. If we have enough love for our partner, we manage the adjustment but it still takes years. Nobody falls into a perfect marriage!

    Adjusting to a marriage to someone you don’t truly love while adjusting to a pregnancy and parenthood is just more than should be asked of anyone.

    True, if it is the only way to parent your child then you may feel it worth the sacrifice (and rightly so) but pregnancy is no reason to feel pressured to marry.

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