Support is really important when you are pregnant. Let your partner, family member or friend know how you are feeling so they can support you effectively. There are also a range of pregnancy support organisations throughout New Zealand.
Working and finances
Your rights as a worker are important, especially when you are pregnant. This pamphlet discusses these very rights which every pregnant working mother should be aware of.
If you are currently working, you will also be entitled to parental leave (conditions apply). The Employment NZ website will guide you with how much leave you are entitled too, how to apply for leave and the amount you will receive. Click here to apply for Paid Parental Leave for you or your partner.
Family violence is NEVER OK, whether it is physical, emotional or sexual.
Everyone in a family needs to feel safe and have relationships that are supportive, nurturing and trusting. Family violence is when a family member is abusive towards others. As well as physical assault, it includes sexual violence, emotional abuse and controlling behaviour. It can be very unsafe and frightening for those involved.
If you are scared for your safety or the safety of someone else, call 111. If you are experiencing violence, tell someone – a friend, family member, workmate, teacher, employer or health professional, or a family violence prevention service.
Women’s Refuge offers free advice, emergency accommodation and confidential advocacy services to women and children. You can phone them any time of the day or night on 0800 REFUGE.
For more information and help, phone the Are You Ok Information Line on 0800 456 450. Help is available seven days a week, from 9am to 11pm, with an after-hours message redirecting callers in the case of an emergency. Their website is another comprehensive source of information.
Multiple pregnancy (having more than one baby)
Congratulations if you have found out that you are expecting multiples (more than one baby). How exciting! If you don't know what to expect, you are not alone. Even the most prepared and experienced parent may not know exactly how to raise multiples, but the NZ Multiple Birth Association can help you! Their mission is to address the special and unique needs of families experiencing a multiple birth, by providing information and support to multiple birth clubs and members. The Association give a great overview of maternity care during multiple pregnancy which you will find useful.
It is important that you have a lead maternity carer for your multiple pregnancy as your care will be much different to if you were only carrying one baby. If you are having problems finding a specialist, your local Hospital must provide care - your GP can refer you to the required service. You can also contact the Ministry of Health to find a local LMC by calling 0800 MUM 2 BE (0800 686 223).
Miscarriages and stillbirths
Losing your baby is one of the one of the most difficult experiences that a parent will ever endure, and very often, it's something for which you are totally unprepared. Every year in New Zealand, over 700 babies die between 20 weeks gestation, and 12 months of age. In excess of 10,000 die as a result of an early loss prior to 20 weeks gestation. It's normal to feel shock, grief, depression, guilt, anger, and a sense of failure and vulnerabilty when you lose a pregnancy. The days, weeks, and even months following a loss can be incredibly difficult and painful - even more so if this wasn't your first pregnancy loss, or if you carefully planned this pregnancy and thought you'd done everything "right."
SANDS New Zealand is a voluntary, parent-run, non-profit organisation set up to support parents and families who have experienced the death of a baby. SANDS provide awareness, understanding and support for those dealing with the death of a baby at any stage in pregnancy, birth or as a newborn, and due to medical termination or other forms of reproductive loss. If you would like to talk with someone, attend a support meeting and meet other bereaved parents and families, you will be able to find a list on the SANDS support group page.