For many women and men, participating in a faith community is an important aspect of their religion or spiritual practice. Faith communities are generally made up of individuals with similar spiritual beliefs who express their faith together. Does this sound like a group you’re a part of? If so, your faith community may be a vital source of support to you through challenging seasons of life. Or, maybe not. The way other members of this community relate to you (and vice-versa) probably matters to you either way.
Maybe you’re facing an unexpected pregnancy right now, and wondering how your faith community would respond if they knew. A healthy community can be a powerful source of spiritual, emotional, and practical care when coping with difficult circumstances. But maybe you’re expecting a mixed or negative reaction- and that can be so challenging to navigate. Know that it’s possible to find community support and spiritual refreshment no matter where this pregnancy journey leads.
Avenue Women’s Center is an early pregnancy center with six limited medical clinics in Chicagoland, Illinois. We’re committed to meeting the practical needs of women through free services like lab-quality pregnancy tests and limited medical ultrasounds. We also recognize that an unexpected pregnancy affects the whole woman- including her spiritual, emotional, social, and mental health. Our services are customized to meet the unique needs of each individual who visits a center or connects with us virtually.
Contact us today to schedule an appointment! We’d love to hear your story, and help you access the support you need to move forward with confidence.
Building a Healthy Support System
If you’d like the support of your faith community, but don’t feel comfortable sharing your pregnancy news with a group, consider confiding in someone you trust who’s part of the community. Speaking with a caring friend or family member may be a good first step. While you’re processing your circumstances and what comes next, it may be helpful to receive encouragement from at least one community member who has a strong track record of compassion and good judgment. Just be sure to communicate any wishes for privacy to the people you do inform. You may decide to seek support from someone outside your faith community too, like a friend, mentor, counselor, or pregnancy consultant. Encouragement and a neutral perspective could shed light on your next steps and equip you to navigate this pregnancy alongside the people in your life.
Coping with the Responses of Others
Many religions uphold qualities like kindness and compassion. But faith communities are composed of people with flaws- as well as varying backgrounds, personalities, and belief systems. You may receive different responses to your pregnancy news, and some of those reactions may cause emotional hurt or frustration. Sharing something personal with any kind of community group can feel intimidating. And yet, reaching out to your faith community is an idea that may be worth exploring. That’s because a stronger support system could equip you to make a pregnancy decision with greater clarity and confidence. Remember that other people’s words and attitudes reflect on their character- not yours. And surround yourself with kind people who build you up. If this is something that’s missing in your life, if you’re unsure how to manage this pregnancy alongside others, or if you’d simply benefit from added encouragement, reach out to Avenue Women’s Center!
At Avenue, we understand that an unexpected pregnancy is bound to affect many areas of your life the moment you step out of the clinic. So, in addition to offering no-cost services, our expert staff is available to help you access resources and create a strong base of support. It is possible to connect with a healthy group of supporters who can help you thrive in the middle of this unexpected pregnancy.
Schedule an appointment at Avenue Women’s Center or just walk in! We’re here to listen.
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.