Dossier: Planning a family

Am I ready for a child?

There’s not really a right or wrong time to have a baby. However, if you’re thinking about starting a family but aren’t sure if it’s the right time, you may want to consider the following:

  • Am I prepared to reorganise my life and put my personal wishes on hold for the time being?
  • How much time do I have to fall pregnant? It may not be a question you want to address, but the biological facts mean you have to: on average, women up to the age of 35 have the best chances of falling pregnant. Older women can, of course, still conceive, but the probability of fertilisation in any given cycle falls sharply.  
  • Can I combine work and family life? If you’d like to have a professional career as well as being a mother, it’s a good idea to wait with starting a family until you’ve finished your education and gathered initial work experience.
  • Is our relationship stable? Is my partner ready for all the far-reaching changes that a child will bring? Do we agree on the fundamental aspects of parenting?
  • Do we have enough money for a child? If you’re short of money, there's a range of benefits and support you may be eligible for. For example, you can request a reduction on your health insurance premiums. Here you’ll find a list of the authorities responsible in each canton. In addition, twelve Swiss cantons offer supplementary benefits for families under certain conditions. These include, for example, allowances for young children and integration.
  • Is our home big enough? Are you able to child-proof your home? Is the area where we live suitable for children?
  • Can I rely on support from family and friends? Do you have access to parents, siblings or friends in case of emergencies or difficult times? Stiftung Mutterhilfe (foundation supporting mothers) is one body that provides support in emergencies. It's there for expectant mothers, fathers and their partners in cases of psychological or financial need.