Hey Solo Sister | Stories from Single Mothers & Unwed Mothers | Heysolosister.com
Hear stories from single mothers and unwed mothers in Singapore to find out how they made their decisions after pregnancy on issues like housing, employment, health and logistics.
unwed mothers, single mothers, single parents, single mum, unplanned pregnancies, wedlock baby, Singapore, support, housing, employment, job, health, logistic
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Chapter 3: 9 Months in the Making

You’ve finally made the decision to keep your baby. Congratulations, solo sister! The months ahead, as you prepare to welcome your baby into the world, is going to be busy and full of difficulty. But take heart and be brave. Now that you’ve started down this road, the important thing is to keep moving forward. In preparation for the arrival of your child, there are a few arrangements you’d have to make within the few months of your pregnancy.

 

Looking for specific information? Quick jump to:

Housing Arrangements

 

Getting a house in Singapore as an unwed mother is not easy. Mums have to meet a very specific set of criterion and even then, the price of an HDB unit can be challenging for a sole income-earner.

Source: Artidote | Illustration: Henn Kim

Finding Shelter: Christabel

 

Christabel’s first attempt at getting a (rental) flat was rejected because she did not fall within the income bracket. She was told that she exceeded the income level to rent a flat. Her second attempt at getting a (resale) flat was highly challenging because her income alone could hardly afford a unit that typically two people would purchase together. And again, her applications for higher loans were rejected because her “income was too high”. It was through months of petitioning, of hard work, of rejections from HDB that, finally, Christabel was able to settle down in a flat with her daughter and her mother. Safe to say, the entire process was frustrating and tedious for a person who was merely trying to put a roof over her head.

Find out more about the housing options available to you and hopefully, you’ll have an easier time finding a suitable home for you and your child.

Employment

 

As the main and, sometimes, only caretaker of your child, finding a job that both pays the bills and allows some flexibility in your schedule is essential.

Source: Artidote | Artwork: Igor Piwowarczyk

Full-time worker and mum: Jaxe

 

In this time and age, it is not common to see blatant discrimination of unwed mothers at work. Yet, Jaxe feels inevitably penalized because of the restrictions she faces being the sole caretaker of her daughter. While her colleagues can stay for longer hours in the office, she has to leave to pick her daughter from school. While her colleagues can jump at opportunities, Jaxe has to take a moment to think about how each decision she makes might potentially affect her daughter. Not that she’s complaining. The restrictions are simply something she has to learn to work around.

Check out these tips for greater employment opportunities.

Health Considerations

 

You may experience various forms of physical discomfort or changes at different stages of your pregnancy and beyond, be sure to give your body the attention and care it deserves. You can refer to reliable organisations such as aLife for articles on pregnancy, but always consult a doctor in person for a detailed review.

Relevant Personel

KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital

If you need a doctor or have any queries, call +65 6294 4050.

Contactable during: Mondays to Fridays, 8am – 6pm | Saturday, 8.30am-1pm | Sunday, 9am- 12pm

For visits:

  1. Less than 22 weeks, go to O&G 24-hour Clinic, Basement 1
  2. After 22 weeks OR nearing delivery, go to Delivery Suite, Triage Room, Level 2

Family Life Society

Counselling services: +65 6382 0688 (Mondays – Fridays, 10am – 5pm)

Learn more for yourself.

Peter Chew Clinic, Gleneagles Medical Centre

If you have any queries, call +65 64726828.

For emergency, call +65 65330088.

Contactable during: Mondays to Fridays, 9am – 6pm | Wednesday & Friday, 9am – 1pm

Babes Pregnancy Crisis

For teenagers only

Hotline: 1800-TEENMOM (24-hour) OR +65 8111 3535.

Association of Women Action and Research (AWARE)

Counselling services: 1-800 774 59 35 (Mondays to Fridays, 3pm – 9pm)

Check out the range of support services they provide.

To track your child’s development as he grows in your belly and receive health tips throughout your pregnancy, sign up for a BabyCenter newsletter.

Health Concerns

Pregnancy Symptoms

Below is a non-exhaustive list of symptoms that most pregnant women encounter but you are strongly encouraged to visit your doctor for a more accurate health review.

 

(Source of data: KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital)

Staying Healthy During Pregnancy

Here are a list of things you can do to ensure your body is receiving the best treatment as your baby grows inside of you.

 

(Source of data: KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital)

Read to learn more.

Eating right is also important for the health of both yourself and your child. Learn to plan your diet and eat well by finding out more.

Regular Pregnancy Check-ups

During different stages of your pregnancy, you may be required to have different check-ups for a detailed assessment of your body condition.

 

(Source of data: KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital)

Logistical Preparations

 

Before your baby arrives, there are a few things that you’d need to prepare in advance. For example, essentials like milk powder and diapers are ‘must-have’s. In your free time, go baby shopping! Make sure your baby is warmly welcomed into the world.

Source: Artidote | Illustration: Guy Billout

A Bundle Of Surprises: Cindy

 

Young and unprepared, Cindy wasn’t quite expecting her baby to require so much attention. Though small, the baby was loud and fussy and his crying threw Cindy into a frenzy. To Cindy, her frustration wasn’t in the crying but from her helplessness. She didn’t know what he wanted. She didn’t know how to help him. Thus, she took to Google and started doing her research. Although it would’ve been better had she prepared beforehand, the old saying still holds: better late than never.

Get ready for your kicking, smiling, crying, happy, noisy baby. Perhaps you could start from here.