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Unexpectedly Pregnant: “My Boyfriend Has No Idea What I’m Going Through”

Imagine that you and your boyfriend are facing an unexpected pregnancy.  You’ve just received confirmation of your positive result on a home pregnancy test after missing your period, and you’re already beginning to experience symptoms, like nausea.  Your boyfriend knows, but your family doesn’t.  You’re terrified of how your parents may react, dreading this conversation, wondering if your best option is to have an abortion and move on as though this never happened.

Of course, for many people, situations like these are not hypothetical.  Maybe you and your significant other are confronting a similar reality.  Although your boyfriend may be very involved, you and he are not necessarily coping with the same set of circumstances.  There are aspects of this situation that only you can fully experience as someone carrying an unexpected pregnancy.

The unique roles our bodies play during pregnancy are what they are.  But it can still be frustrating when your partner struggles to grasp what you’re going through.  Avenue Women’s Center exists to navigate this pregnancy journey by your side.  We see you for the holistic person you are, a unique individual who’s part of a relationship network (like a romantic relationship, a family, and/or a community).  We’re available to become a part of your support system, while helping you strengthen connections with other sources of care in your life.

Avenue is a limited medical clinic that’s been serving persons walking through circumstances like yours since 1981.  Learn more about our no-cost, confidential early pregnancy services!

The One-of-a-Kind Hurdles in Your Path

Here are some of the unique challenges you may be facing if you’re unexpectedly pregnant.

  • Physical stress due to pregnancy. Your body is rapidly adapting to support this pregnancy, which is a major undertaking.  This often results in uncomfortable physical symptoms, some of which may occur early on in the pregnancy.  Your body and mind are closely linked, so hormonal changes may impact your mood as well.  All in all, whether or not you carry this pregnancy to term, you’ll need to be uniquely mindful of your own health and wellness with each step you take.
  • Pressure to make a pregnancy decision. Because the pregnancy is in your body, you’re responsible for choosing a pregnancy option (abortion, adoption, or parenting).  You’ll also cope with the outcome in a more personal way than anyone else.  Autonomy is yours, which may feel empowering.  But it may also feel like a lot of pressure, especially if you’re undecided.
  • Unique social pressures. Historically, women have often been unjustly blamed for unintended pregnancy outcomes.  An argument could be made that these biases still exist today.  Many women face harsher criticism from family members, acquaintances, and broader culture than their equally accountable partners when an unexpected pregnancy comes to light.  Almost certainly, you’re being met with more stigma than your partner, shaped by centuries of injustice spanning many cultures.

Approaching One Another With Your Different Points of View

Maybe you’re frustrated that your boyfriend can’t fully understand all the challenges you’re coping with, at least not through personal experience.  You may be feeling particularly aggravated or discouraged if he isn’t even trying to empathize.  Perhaps he’s pressuring you to make a pregnancy decision without being sensitive to your needs.  It’s really important to set clear boundaries with your boyfriend if that’s the case.  You’re bearing the challenges mentioned above, and the outcome is in your hands- not his.

It’s also possible that your boyfriend supports your autonomy, but he’s unconscious of your one-of-a-kind hurdles.  That may stem from pride or just a lack of awareness.  Creating an honest and respectful dialogue will likely help both of you understand one another with greater insight, and probably greater compassion too.   Calmly explain where you’re coming from and what your present needs are.  Offer him the same opportunity and respond non-defensively.  Keep in mind that he’s dealing with unique struggles of his own.

You and your boyfriend have an opportunity to move forward as a team, and maybe even deepen your relationship, by creating bonds of empathy in the middle of your difficult circumstances.  Perhaps your combined perspectives and mutual support will help clarify your best path forward and strengthen you to jump over the obstacles in your way.  But remember this: you’re strong and capable of carrying on with your own best outcome- no matter how your boyfriend is responding to you or this pregnancy. 

Reach out to Avenue Women’s Center!  We provide reliable information on pregnancy options and resources, together with caring support, to equip you for the days ahead with hope.  Our no-cost early pregnancy services are presented with great compassion and neutral, easy-to-understand language.

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.