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I Don’t Want to Have Kids Because Mental Illness Runs in My Family

Family. Sometimes it feels like a loaded word. While family can be a joy and blessing, they can also make life more difficult. Maybe you get along with your family, and maybe you don’t. Sometimes we end up more like our family than we want, whether by their influence or simply genetics. Sometimes something like mental illness can run in a family and you’re afraid of passing it on to your kids one day. So, what do you do when you’re in this situation and find yourself unexpectedly pregnant?

Are you pregnant but don’t want to have kids because mental illness runs in your family? Figuring out what to do in this circumstance can be stressful. When it’s a family matter, sometimes their support can be hard to come by. Our caring pregnancy consultants at Avenue Women’s Center would love to walk with you as you determine your next steps.

Contact us today to receive compassionate care!

What’s Next?

Finding yourself pregnant while mental illness runs in your family can be stressful. You might be wishing this had never happened to you. Perhaps your childhood was impacted by mental illness, you can’t imagine putting your own child through something like that. Maybe you’re considering abortion because of this fear. It’s important to take a step back from responding out from this place and consider a different perspective.

The Flipside

Depending on your situation, it’s always possible that your worst fear won’t take place. If you struggle with mental illness yourself, are there healthy ways you’ve learned to manage your wellbeing that you can model? Being honest and open with potential future children and showing what it looks like to take care of your mental health can be rewarding and an amazing opportunity for growth.

Considering Your Options

After taking the time to review possible positive outcomes, it’s important to review your pregnancy options: abortion, adoption, and parenting. Each is its own journey with its own set of difficulties. For you, it may be important to consider how each option might impact your own mental health now and in the future. Talking with a therapist, healthcare provider, or pregnancy consultant can help you determine accurate information about your pregnancy and your options.

Mental Health Strategies

Remember, despite how rough the journey has been, you’ve made it this far! Wherever you’re at in your pregnancy decision right now, it’s important to consider these strategies for your mental health:

  • Healthy coping: what relaxes you and what helps you have a positive outlook on life?
  • Therapy: having somebody to talk to who can also treat your mental illness can be beneficial for quality of life.
  • Solid support: having a network of trusted friends and family rally around you now and in the future can help mental health as well as your pregnancy decision.
  • No shame: you shouldn’t feel shame for mental illness. Don’t let it stop you from living by your values and chasing your dreams.

Deciding whether or not to have kids due to mental illness in the family can be a difficult choice to make. If this hits close to home, you may feel isolated and alone in this journey, but you don’t have to be. Our compassionate and nonjudgmental consultants would like nothing more than to sit with you and hear your story. While we can’t make this decision for you, we can be here for you along the way.

Call, chat, email, or text us today to get some support for the journey.

The information provided here is general in nature.  It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center.  If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention.  Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.