Confirm That You Are Pregnant:
First, if you are not 100% sure that you are pregnant, it's a good idea that you take a pregnancy test to find out for sure.
After you have confirmed an unplanned pregnancy, you can begin thinking about what you want to do. You may or may not wish to have children, and even if you want to have a baby, you may not be feeling ready at this time. Know that it is normal to be feeling a wide range of emotions. Regardless of your age (women or teens), when confronted with an unplanned pregnancy, it's a difficult decision -- perhaps the toughest decision you'll ever make. Try to find pregnancy support.
You basically have three pregnancy options to choose from:
You can decide to continue with the pregnancy and raise the child.
- You can opt to continue with the pregnancy with the plan to place the baby for adoption.
- You can choose to end the pregnancy.
When deciding between these three pregnancy options, it is helpful to seek unbiased pregnancy support. The best way to make an informed decision about your unplanned pregnancy -- one that you will feel the most comfortable with -- is to have reliable information.
Keeping the Baby:
Being a parent can be a difficult job; you will need to have patience and be able to handle sorrow, pain and conflict. Yet, parenthood also brings along tremendous happiness, pride, joy and rewards. Parents must foster and nurture their children, and help guide them to reach their potential in life. The more you understand the expectations of a parent’s role, the more prepared you will be.
- More Information: Choosing Parenthood
Placing the Baby for Adoption:
Adoption is the legal act of permanently placing a baby with parents who will raise the child as their own. The decision whether or not to place a child for adoption is not an easy one. Many see this as an act of great courage and much love as you are allowing the opportunity for your baby to have a fulfilling life that you realize you may not be capable of providing right now.
Keep in mind that adoption is permanent. The adoptive parents will care for your baby and once placed, the baby will become a legal member of that family; the adoptive parents will have complete control over all decisions pertaining to the baby. It may help to know that a birth parent choose to be very involved in selecting an adoptive family for the baby, or you can decide to be completely uninvolved.
- More Information: Adoption
Choosing to End the Pregnancy:
An abortion is either a medical or surgical procedure, performed by a licensed physician, to end a pregnancy. The decision to end a pregnancy is very personal. According to Planned Parenthood, more than one-third of all U.S. women will have an abortion by the time they are 45 years old, and nearly 1.3 million women choose abortion to end their pregnancy each year. Most people do not realize that abortion naturally occurs in approximately 15–40% of all established pregnancies (known as a spontaneous abortion or miscarriage).
Abortion has been around for hundreds of years. Now, due to the landmark 1973 U.S. Supreme Court decision in Roe v. Wade, abortion is legal throughout the entire United States and is one of the safest of all available medical procedures. You may have more available abortion options the earlier you are in a pregnancy.
- More Information: Abortion
Deciding What to Do:
Making this decision may feel overwhelming. Rest assured: There is no right or wrong choice. When it comes down to it, you are the only one who can decide which pregnancy option is the most right one for you.
In addition to seeking pregnancy support, to reach a decision that you will feel okay about, it is important to do a lot of self-exploration. You may wish to think about personal issues like:
- What are my plans for the future?
- What is going on presently in my life?
- What is best for me in the long run?
- What may be best for the baby?
- Can I realistically afford to raise a child?
- What are my spiritual and moral beliefs?
Reflecting on Your Pregnancy Options:
When considering your unplanned pregnancy options, think about each of the choices thoroughly, honestly, and realistically. Take into account the following questions:
- How would each option affect my everyday life?
- Is there a choice(s) that I could live with?
- Are any of the options(s) simply impossible for me?
- What would each choice mean to the people in my life that I am closest to?