I Had a Baby Out of Wedlock When I Was 23 and I Have Zero Regrets

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Have you ever wondered what your past self would feel like if they woke up one day and saw themselves in the future?

I’m definitely sure past-me would have had an aneurysm to see her future self as a single mum. I honestly never pictured myself having kids at all, but I guess the universe knows exactly what you need — and I was gifted with a beautiful baby.

However, my whole journey to where I am today was kinda rocky. I didn’t know I was pregnant until I was in my second trimester (16 weeks). I was way too caught up with college and my part time job that I didn’t notice my body going through any changes at all.

When I finally realised I was pregnant, I was in shock.

I was really scared and confused. I never expected to be going through this. Plus, I had my internship coming up, so I really didn’t want to screw up my chances of getting a placement.

I confided to my friends about it, and they gave me the courage and support I needed to keep thriving. They assured me that everything would be okay.

I did manage to get a job and even though it wasn’t what I wanted, I was just thankful with what I had.

Arya draped in my grandma's shawl while walking them to the MRT.
Arya draped in my grandma’s shawl while walking them to the MRT.

Once getting an internship placement was off the list, I knew the time had come for me to tell my parents. I was freaking out. I was prepared for the worst. But to my surprise my mum, stepdad and my sister were all super supportive, in fact they were rather excited that a baby would soon be born.

I was judged by people around me

[Me and my lil baby, before his first roadtrip.]
Me and my lil baby, before his first roadtrip.
Obviously, I was judged by other members of the family, as they were not happy that my baby would be born out of wedlock. I even got stares from many people when I took public transport.

They all would rather stare at my finger looking for a ring or discuss if I was married or not before even offering me a seat.

Being pregnant before getting married is not easy especially in Malaysia. I believe it is not something that is seen or even discussed. I had days where I would feel demotivated and lost, but I knew this was all worth it.

All I repeated inside my head was, this would all be worth it once I finally get to hold my baby. I knew things would get better once my little baby was born.

I cut out my baby daddy from our life

And I was right. So many things changed for me when my little boy was born. I dropped so many bad habits and I eventually let go of many toxic people; including the baby daddy.

Due to personal reasons that I rather not discuss, I walked away from my relationship with my baby’s dad and I made a decision that he was not allowed to be a part of my baby’s life.

[Arya and me having our morning snuggles.]
Arya and me having our morning snuggles.
It was not an easy decision. I know a lot of people will say that a baby needs both parents. But I want my baby to know how important it is to walk away from a toxic relationship.

I want my baby to understand that he should not be forced to stay in a relationship if he’s not happy no matter what. I think that’s a really important lesson to teach young children. I have an amazing family who loves me and my baby very much — at the end of the day the ones who really love you will always stick by you.

This pregnancy journey has taught me a lot about what love really means.

My sister is the one who gives me physical and mental support. She helps me take care of the baby when I’m at work, and even when I’m home she’s always there to lend a helping hand.

[Arya and my sister going shopping.]
Arya and my sister going shopping.
My parents live in the UK and due to the current situation, they can’t come visit, but I’m so thankful that they managed to come down last year and stay till I gave birth. They video call us as often as possible and we always stay in touch, I know I can count on them no matter what.

My grandparents didn’t take the news well in the beginning, but now they’re in love with their great grandson. They love him so much and they try to visit as often as possible. Plus I’m blessed with amazing friends who check in on me and I’m really happy my baby is surrounded by so much love and positivity.

17-year-old me v.s. 24-year-old me

So if ever seventeen year-old me travels to the future and finds out that twenty four year-old me would be a single mum she might freak out at first — but she’ll understand that the universe gifted her with the best love she could ever get.

Arya loves playing with bottles
Arya loves playing with bottles

I do not regret having my baby at all, I was not prepared for this and I’m still learning everyday on how to be the best possible version of myself for my little baby. But this baby has brought me so much joy and I love him so very much.

For more stories like this, read: A Mother’s Dilemma: Should I Stay Home and Care for The Baby or Go Back to Work? and  I Am a Wife but Also (Sort Of) Single with a Baby. Here’s How I Cope.

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