Preglimony: Financial support paid to a pregnant woman by the father of the unborn child. Coined from pregnant and alimony.
Alimony came into English in the 1650s from Latin alimonia, meaning “nourishment.” (The same root also gave us “alimentary.”) Preglimonyappears to have been coined by Shari Motro, a law professor at the University of Richmond who has been using the word since 2010 in scholarly articles and op-ed columns like the one published in the New York Times on July 7:
Former spouses are often required to pay alimony; former cohabiting partners may have to pay palimony; why not ask men who conceive with a woman to whom they are not married to pay “preglimony”? Alternatively, we might simply encourage preglimony through the tax code, by allowing pregnancy-support payments to be deductible (which is how alimony is treated). – “Responsibility Begins at Conception”
The need may be evident, but preglimony doesn’t roll off the tongue as smoothly as the earlier X-imony coinage, palimony, does. Palimony made headlines in 1977, when divorce lawyer Marvin Mitchelson used it to describe the demand of his client, Michelle Triola Marvin, who sued the actor Lee Marvin for spousal support although the pair had never legally married. (With all those Marvins, it really could have been marvinomy.) But the OED cites a much earlier first usage, in 1927, when the word meant “alimony paid to a former spouse with whom one remains on friendly terms.” As late as 1961, the Newport (Rhode Island) Daily News observed that “[d]ivorces are getting so friendly … that alimony should be called ‘palimony’.” Both senses are “chiefly North American.”
See also gal-imony (“Celeb Women Who Pay in the Divorce”—ABC News, April 17, 2009) and man-imony (man-word alert!), “in which [non-celeb] women are court-ordered to pay alimony to their husbands.” The man-imony “rising trend” was covered by Anderson Cooper in “a daytime exclusive” earlier this year.