A million thoughts may have raced through your head after your girlfriend delivered this shocking news: She’s pregnant. It’s a word you might not have envisioned you’d ever hear her say. But now that it has been spoken, what are you going to do? An unexpected pregnancy can be overwhelming. There may be a lot of concerns weighing heavily on your mind. How you can help your girlfriend during this time? Which option will you choose – parenting, adoption, or abortion? First, try to take a deep breath. There may be a lot to process right now. But what steps can you take to be there for your girlfriend? Here are three things to remember if your girlfriend is facing an unexpected pregnancy.
Are you wondering what to do after learning your girlfriend is pregnant? Avenue Women’s Center has been helping people navigate the challenges of an unexpected pregnancy since 1981. We can provide you and your partner with a nonjudgmental environment to discuss your options. During your appointment, you both can receive information and support to begin taking the next steps in a pregnancy decision. We offer a comfortable space to share your feelings. Our free limited medical services and private options consultation will assist you in making an unexpected pregnancy plan.
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One: An Unexpected Pregnancy Can Inspire Changes
This may be a challenging time for you and your girlfriend. New things may be happening around you that are related to the pregnancy. Some of these changes may be small. Your girlfriend suddenly has unique cravings for certain foods. Or, she no longer has the same appetite that she used to. These physical changes are usually normal, and they’re likely related to the pregnancy.
Other changes could be a little bigger. Your relationship may feel different than it was before. The announcement of a pregnancy can be a major step in a couple’s relationship. Have your expectations for each other changed? Are there certain things you need from one another that you didn’t before?
Through this new experience, it can be important to be patient with one another. You and your girlfriend may be getting to know each other in a different way. Perhaps you’re beginning to see one another in a different light. This can take time to adjust to.
But try to take things one at a time. You may want to begin by listening and clearly communicating what you need from one another. Knowing what the other person wants ahead of time can help you avoid misunderstandings and work better as a team.
Two: Being Supportive During an Unexpected Pregnancy
What role does your girlfriend need you to play in her pregnancy plan? How much she needs from you at a given moment can vary. It may depend on her mood or the level of your relationship.
There may be moments where she just needs to talk. Maybe she’s feeling confused or anxious about her choices of abortion, adoption, and parenting. Try to resist the temptation to jump in and offer what you may feel is an easy solution. It’s normal to want to help her when you see her struggling. And there may be situations where she does look to you for answers.
But it’s usually a good idea to wait until you’re sure she’s finished telling you about her feelings. If you immediately suggest she do what you think is the right answer, this can lead to frustrations. She may feel like you’re not paying attention to what she’s saying. And you may become annoyed because you’re only trying to help.
Small gestures like offering a glass of water or tissue after she’s done speaking can be helpful. This can show her that you’re there for her and willing to listen as she airs out her emotions. When she’s done talking, you may want to ask questions instead of giving direct answers. That way, it might feel more like you’re working to find an answer together.
If you and your girlfriend need help communicating with each other, consider contacting an unbiased third party. Perhaps you’ll want to speak with a counselor, a spiritual leader, or a pregnancy consultant.
Three: Learning About the Pregnancy and Your Options
Your girlfriend will likely need to reflect and gather information about her choices. This is something you can potentially do together. Working with her on this can help your girlfriend feel less alone. It can also make talking about the pregnancy less stressful by ensuring you’re both on the same page.
What resources might you need if you choose to parent? Is there more you want to know about adoption? Have you learned more about the bodily changes she may be going through? What about potential risks – such as a miscarriage or an ectopic pregnancy?
Even if you’re both considering abortion, an ultrasound may be necessary. An ultrasound exam can provide you with relevant information about her health. This can potentially impact how you both move forward with the pregnancy.
Processing all this new information can be difficult. But you and your girlfriend do not have to go through this journey alone. There are resources available to offer both of you guidance and support.
An unexpected pregnancy can cause some couples to worry about what this means for their relationship. Avenue Women’s Center is here to partner with you as you plan out the road ahead. We understand that gathering reliable information can be difficult. That’s why we’ll meet with you and your partner to help you understand your options. Each of our centers throughout the Chicagoland area is dedicated to helping you access the resources you both need.
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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.