Even considering adoption can throw your world for a loop. There are two very different outcomes based on your decision, and each one will shape the rest of your life. Hate to break it to you, but you will never be the same after this journey, whether you parent or place. So it’s important to remember that taking care of yourself is just as important as caring for that unborn baby. Here are my top five self-care tips as you go through this process.

  1. Take time to care for yourself, literally. Take a long bath. Get a pedicure or manicure if you can. Meditate, try yoga (prenatal yoga is awesome), or frequently go for walks. Your mental health is important, and doing these things can help you find clarity and peace during the storm you may be enduring. Keep your appearance tidy – you will feel SO much better when you take care of yourself!

  2. Get involved in counseling and/or therapy, both one-on-one and group. Whether you choose to parent or place, it is always a good idea to have someone keeping an eye on your emotional and mental state. Honestly, I felt a little psychotic during my unplanned pregnancy, and thanks to an amazing counselor I was able to plan for possibility of experiencing PPD (postpartum depression) or PPP (postpartum psychosis). It is also a great way to meet friends who “get” you. They are, literally, going through the same thing you are. Two of my best friends in the entire world were other pregnant girls I met in a support group seven years ago.

  3. Really analyze your life, and remove yourself from toxic relationships. This is easier said than done, but doing this during your pregnancy will help you continue to heal after your pregnancy. Remember that your baby doesn’t deserve to be born into a toxic environment, and you have the power to change that, whether you place or parent. Doing so early on is much easier than when you are caring for a baby or going through the grieving process. You are worth it!

  4. Let yourself have fun. If you already have children, spend time with them and be silly. If this is your first pregnancy, or you do not have children, spend time with your friends. Give yourself an element of normalcy. Let yourself laugh, and let your baby hear you laugh.

  5. Please, please, please avoid things that are bad for you. Alcohol, tobacco, drugs, narcotics… I know it can be hard when you just want to escape. I know! Momma, it is so tempting and even easy to make an unhealthy decision in the moment, but understand that it can affect your baby. If you feel like you need help overcoming an addiction, please seek help for it.

You are so important. This decision is hard. You deserve happiness. Take care of yourself, because you are worth it.

Pregnant and considering adoption? You don’t need to do it alone. Click here to connect with a caring, compassionate adoption professional who can help you figure out what’s best for you and your baby. All consultations and counseling are absolutely free.