It’s not unusual for a woman facing an unplanned pregnancy to be uncertain of what to do. Unplanned pregnancies are quite common. In the United States alone, about 50% of pregnancies are unplanned. Moreover, an unplanned pregnancy doesn’t necessarily mean unwanted. It could just be a surprise.
But if you feel you’re not ready, and unsure of what to do, remember it’s normal to feel that way. Some women know what to do, and others don’t. And that’s all right; an unplanned pregnancy can bring up feelings of confusion and ambivalence about the whole thing. It can be scary, knowing something is growing inside of you.
First of all, don’t go into panic mode. No person in history has ever calmed down when somebody tells them to calm down. But in this instance, you really have to calm down. If you feel yourself getting carried away by negative thoughts and you find yourself imagining all the terrible things could happen, take a few deep breaths and try to look at the situation dispassionately.
Women, alone or with their partner, deal with parenting and pregnancy every day. So, there’s a good chance someone out there is also facing, or has faced, the same problem. Reach out and try to get ahold of someone you trust. There will always be others who could help you sort everything out. There are also organizations you could reach out to and help you decide on what to do, like afth.org.
Get Confirmation Of Your Pregnancy
It’s not uncommon for some women to assume they’re pregnant even before they’ve actually taken a test. Missing a period may be a sign, but a missed period can mean many things. If you want, you can go to a women’s center for a confidential and accurate pregnancy test. Pregnancy tests which you could get at a drugstore are accurate 99 out of 100 times, so that’s also an option.
Get Yourself Checked
After confirming your pregnancy, get an ultrasound examination and make sure your pregnancy is healthy and the fetus is developing safely and correctly in your uterus. The examination could also provide an estimate of how far along you are in your pregnancy, including an estimate of your due date. Having this information could help you plan and make preparations about the choices open to you.
Know Your Options
If you aren’t sure whether you’re ready to be a parent, there are different options for you. Each of the choices has its advantages and disadvantages, so you need to consider them carefully. Do your research if need be. You need to have all the information you need to make an informed decision.
At this stage, it’s all right if you’re feeling emotional. That’s normal. Remember, a health professional could guide you in making a choice. But ultimately, the decision is yours alone, and the ‘right’ decision is what’s best for you right now. Before making a decision, there are several things you have to keep in mind.
First, don’t be rash. Give yourself a little time before deciding anything—just a little, though, because some of your choices depend on how many weeks you are in your pregnancy. Explore all possibilities and evaluate each option. And don’t be too hard on yourself. There will be times when you’ll feel differently about the choices and the decision that you’ll have to make. Don’t forget to look after your emotional and physical well-being.
Here are your possible choices:
Parenting: This is a common choice, but if you feel you’re not prepared, then you’re not prepared. You might get overwhelmed because it seems as if you’re feeling all sorts of emotion, and they’re all in conflict with one another.
And if parenting is the one you do decide on, make sure that you receive prenatal care. Your GP can examine you and give you recommendations about the care you require during your pregnancy and options about the birth. Your GP can also refer you to other medical professionals about antenatal care.
Adoption Placement: Some agencies work with birth mothers in providing care as well as living costs during pregnancy. If you decide to go this route, remember that you have a choice on the amount of contact you want with the child after the adoption process.
Abortion: After undergoing the procedure, you might experience side effects like cramping and bleeding. This is normal. You should have follow-up check-ups to deal with these side effects. It’s also common for an ultrasound to be performed after, to make sure that the procedure is complete.
Even in unwanted pregnancies, women could still deal with emotional side effects. If you think you’re experiencing anxiety or depression, talk to a social worker or a mental health provider.
An unplanned pregnancy can be nerve-wracking, especially an unwanted one. Even so, you shouldn’t let yourself be carried away by negative emotions. Reach out to somebody you trust. Each woman reacts to this type of situation differently, depending on the circumstances.
Moreover, it’s important you know what your options are, and the implications of each of those choices. Whatever your decision may be, see to it you have some kind of support. Remember, the right decision is what’s best for you right now.