Facing an Unplanned Pregnancy
What Should Teens Know About an Unplanned Pregnancy?
Every young woman grows up hearing about unplanned teenage pregnancy stories. But, now that you’re the one holding an at-home test, you’re probably thinking to yourself, “What in the world am I going to do now?”
We know that you’re scared right now, and you’re probably feeling like you don’t have anyone you can open up to — especially if the people you normally depend on for tough situations are your parents. But finding help for an unplanned teenage pregnancy is easier than you think. In fact, we plan to offer just that.
To help you make the right decision for you and your baby, we’ve created a guide to everything you should know about an unwanted teenage pregnancy. If you have any questions while you are reading through this information, please don’t forget that you can always reach out to an adoption agency for free, unbiased advice on all your options — not just adoption. You’re not as alone as you think you are, and there will always be someone ready to listen.
Before we get into the facts you should know as a teenager, we’re going to start by going over your adolescent pregnancy options, along with a list of resources you can reach out to for help.
What are My Unplanned Teenage Pregnancy Options?
No matter how old you are, you will always have three unplanned pregnancy options available: parenting, abortion, or adoption. And, just like any other woman, no one can tell you what the right decision is. This is your body and your future, and even if you haven’t turned 18 yet, it’s not anyone’s job to tell you what choice you should make.
If you haven’t had a chance to dive into any research yet, here is what you should know about each of your teen pregnancy options:
When many women find out that they’re facing an unplanned pregnancy, their first thought might be, “Am I ready to be a mother?” You might be asking yourself the same question — even if you’re a teenager. But, as you’ve probably heard before, being a parent is one of the hardest jobs out there. And any challenges you may face due to an unexpected teen pregnancy can be exacerbated because you are still so young, and you might not have the resources to care for a baby at your age.
That’s not to say that becoming a mom when you’re a teenager is impossible. In fact, many teenagers make incredible mothers. But before you choose this option, you should ask yourself some big questions to make sure that it’s right for you. For example:
- Are you okay with postponing your educational goals, such as college, to raise your child?
- Can you afford to raise a child right now?
- Will the baby’s father be involved and help you raise the baby? Are you ready to share that lifelong connection with him?
- Are you okay with missing out on memorable high school and college experiences?
- Do you want to become a mom?
It’s okay if your answer to all of these questions is no. You are not obligated to become a parent just because you’re facing an unintended teen pregnancy, and you still have two more options to consider.
Your second option for an unplanned pregnancy is abortion. Many women, even teenagers, often see this as a “quick fix” to their problems. But it might not be as easy as you’re expecting.
For example, many states have restrictions on abortion. This can pose a significant problem if you’re still a minor, as many states require parental permission before you can obtain the procedure. You should also consider the fact that abortion is considered one of your early unplanned and teenage pregnancy options. After 12 weeks, it will be harder to find a professional who will perform the procedure, and many states have legal restrictions on abortions after about 24 weeks. And, while it may not be as experience as parenting, that doesn’t mean it’s necessarily cheap, either. The procedure itself can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars, depending on how far along you are.
If you’re considering this option, we strongly urge you to talk to your doctor or a clinic like Planned Parenthood to find out which options you have for an unintended teenage pregnancy.
Last but not least, you have the option of making an adoption plan for your baby. If you’re looking for an option that still allows you to pursue your goals for the future, but doesn’t come with the finality of an abortion, this might be the best option for you.
If you choose adoption as your teen pregnancy option, you are in charge every step of the way. You’ll be able to:
- Find the perfect adoptive family
- Decide how much contact you want before and after the birth
- Decide what you want your hospital stay to look like
- And more
Depending on your unique situation, you might even be able to receive financial assistance throughout your pregnancy. And, while no one can say that choosing adoption for your baby will be easy, you will have a trained adoption professional right by your side to walk you through each step of the process.
Who Can I Reach Out to for Unplanned Teenage Pregnancy Help?
Adoption agencies are the best places to reach out to for help unplanned teenage pregnancy help. There, you’ll be able to talk to a trained professional who can offer free, unbiased information on all of your options — not just adoption. They’ll walk you through everything you need to know, so that you can make the right decision for yourself and your baby with confidence.
There are a ton of different types of agencies you can choose from. But if you’re looking for an adoption center that has all the comprehensive information you need in one place, it’s a good idea to speak with a national adoption agency. This type of adoption agency works with prospective birth parents across the country, and many of them have decades of experience — especially when it comes to an unplanned teenage pregnancy.
A few options that you might consider are:
Don’t forget that you can also talk to:
- Family you know will support you
- Friends you know you can trust
- The birth father (if he is supportive, involved or you feel safe doing so)
- An online or in-person unplanned pregnancy support group
No matter who you talk to, make sure that information is unbiased. You shouldn’t feel pressured in any way to choose one unplanned teenage pregnancy option over the other. And if you do, don’t hesitate to look somewhere else.
How Will an Unplanned Pregnancy Affect Me and My Future?
Going through an unplanned pregnancy will never be easy. But there are certain challenges specific to teens and unplanned pregnancies:
- Emotional challenges of unintended teen pregnancies: An unplanned pregnancy, no matter how old you are, will always be an emotional journey. But as a teenager, you’ll have to deal with these feelings along with normal growing pains that come with being in high school. This unexpected news can also put a strain on all your relationships, especially that with the birth father and potentially your family.
- Your future goals: You’ll also have to consider what your goals are for the future. If you choose to raise your baby, it can delay your educational and career goals. You will most likely have to wait until your baby is old enough or until you’re at a place where you feel like you can confidently focus on your studies and raising a child before you can get back on track.
- Physical limitations: A pregnancy will also put a strain on your body. You might find that you have to sit out when it comes to hanging out with friends, or you might miss other important events due to your pregnancy. Before you decide what to do with an unplanned teenage pregnancy, it might be helpful to think of what you want your future to look like.
“I’m 16 and Pregnant. What are My Options?”
Facing an unplanned pregnancy while you’re underage can be overwhelming. But even if you’re in this situation, you still have the right to choose any of your options. However, because you’re still a minor, you might have to involve your parents in your decision.
If you haven’t turned 18 yet, it’s a good idea to reach out to an adoption professional or an adoption professional to learn more about unplanned teenage pregnancy laws in your state.
How Many Teenage Pregnancies are Unplanned?
When most people think of the phrase “unplanned pregnancy,” they envision a young woman, probably still pursuing her high school career or about to graduate. And while this is certainly true, an unplanned pregnancy can happen to any woman, no matter what stage she’s at in her life.
You might be surprised to know that U.S. teen unplanned pregnancy stats show that have been steadily declining for the last few decades. As of 2018, the United States has a teenage birth rate of about 17.4 births to 1,000 women who are between the ages of 15 and 19, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Much of this can be attributed due to increased contraceptive use and decreased sexual activity. That’s not to say that that isn’t a significant number, however, as the United States still has the highest unplanned teen pregnancy rate of any developed nation.
Another factor to consider is that not all teen pregnancies are unplanned. There are many young women who, for a number of reasons, are actively trying to conceive.
Where Can I Find Unplanned Teenage Pregnancy Stories?
When you’re facing an adolescent unplanned pregnancy, it can be helpful to read stories from other young women who have been in your shoes. Through reading their stories, you might have a better idea of your options as you try to figure out what to do in your own situation.
You might be able to easily find a few of them through a quick google search. But if you haven’t had a chance to look, here are some unplanned teenage pregnancy articles from a few sites that you might think about reading:
- Pregnancy Birth & Beyond
- Adoptions with Love Blog
- Michelle’s Adoption Story
- Angelica’s Story
- Randi’s Story
Finding yourself unexpectedly pregnant as a teenager is a difficult place to be in. If you’re looking for someone to talk to, then we’d be more than happy to connect you to the right person. Please fill out our free information form to be connected to an adoption professional today.
Ready to get started? Contact an adoption agency now to get free information.