Are you a teen and found out your are pregnant?
Are you a parent of a teen who is pregnant?

I Think I’m Pregnant

Are you experiencing a teen pregnancy? When it comes to pregnancy, there are three legal options: abortion, adoption, and parenting.  

We all have our own values about which option we would choose. Ultimately, the choice of what to do with a pregnancy is always up to the expectant parent. 

Signs of Pregnancy 

Pregnancy can affect different people in different ways. Below we’ve listed some of the more common signs of a pregnancy.  

All of these signs can also happen right before someone gets their period (PMS). 

  • Missed period (sometimes spotting or a period that isn’t normal for that person)

  • Nausea (wanting to throw up)

  • Swollen or tender breasts

  • Feeling tired

  • Mood changes

  • Sensitivity to tastes and smells.

  • Peeing a lot

  • Change in appetite (food cravings or loss of appetite)

  • Weight changes (in the early stages it can be a gain or a loss)

People can feel many different emotions when they find out about a pregnancy including happy, overwhelmed, nervous, scared, alone, angry, confused, denial, and/or excited. 

It’s common for both people involved in the pregnancy to feel all of these emotions in the same day or even all at once. Anyone who becomes pregnant may have these feelings no matter their age. 

Options for My Pregnancy

1. Parenting 

Whether someone is parenting by themselves, with a partner or support from their family, it’s important to think about how they can provide a positive environment for the baby as it grows. Babies need safety, food, clothing, diapers, toys, day-care etc.  Social assistance is available to help with the cost of these things, but it may mean living on a tight budget.  The biggest and most important thing a baby needs to be happy and healthy is love. This is something we can all provide no matter our age. 

It’s also important for parents to think about how they can take care of them self. It can be stressful raising a baby. Making time for yourself to do something you enjoy is still important because stress levels can affect both a parent’s and baby’s health and wellbeing. Finding people that you trust and can talk with can also make a big difference. This could be a friend, a family member, a pregnancy counselor or a parenting group.  Parenting programs, supports and resources including parenting friendly schools are available. 

2. Adoption 

If someone is considering adoption or just wants to learn more about it looks like, they’ll need to contact an adoption agency. This can be done at any point during a pregnancy or soon after birth. An adoption agency will work with the birth parents to choose adoptive parents for the baby. There will also be an opportunity to meet with the adoptive parents before moving forward with the adoption. An extended family adoption is also an option. This is where the guardianship is given to a family member of the birth parents. 

Hand in Hand Pregnancy offers open adoption meaning you can still have contact with your child as they grow up.  Please visit the “open adoption” section on our website for more information. 

3. Abortion 

Even though abortion is legal it’s important to talk about this option before choosing it. Pregnancy Centers offer free counseling regarding all of your options, and they’re there to help you. At Hand in Hand Pregnancy, we also offer free pregnancy counseling. Contact us today by calling, texting or emailing us.   

Take Time to Think

Different issues will influence you and affect the amount of time needed to make your decision. The following questions may help you work out what the best decision at this time in your life is. 

Your Relationships: 

  • Do you have support from family or a partner?

  • Can you work things out through the tough times?

Your Responsibilities: 

  • What does being a parent mean to you? 

  • Who can you call on to offer you support emotionally and financially?

Future Plans: 

  • How will this decision affect your plans for the future?

  • Where do you see yourself in 1-, 2- and 5-years’ time?

  • If you are considering having a termination, it is best to have this as early as possible, but it is important to take the time to make the best decision for you.

It’s Your Right to Have: 

  • confidential care

  • safe, non-judgmental care

  • respect, whatever choice you make.

If you need advice or someone to talk to, please contact Hand in Hand Pregnancy and Adoption and talk to a pregnancy counselor today. 

Is your teen pregnant?
For parents of pregnant teens.

Most teenagers who become pregnant decide to continue the pregnancy. It’s important to connect them with early prenatal care and to encourage a healthy lifestyle—a well-balanced diet, daily exercise, and staying away from tobacco, alcohol, and drugs.

If the teen decides to have and raise the baby, she may need help identifying a strong support system. Teens and young girls who have babies can certainly achieve their personal life goals and raise healthy successful children, but often it’ll be considerably more challenging.

Facts About Teen Parents:

  • Less than 40% of teenage girls who have a child before age 18 earn a high school diploma by age 22.

  • Nearly 2/3 of teenage mothers receive public assistance, and their chances of living in poverty increase as they enter adulthood. Most teen moms receive no child support from their child’s father.

  • The challenges of teen parenting may last through generations. Children of teen mothers are more likely to perform poorly in school, repeat a grade, or drop out. The daughters of teen mothers are more likely to repeat the cycle and become teen mothers themselves.

Teen Pregnancy: Helping Your Teen Cope

Teenage pregnancy can have a huge impact on a teen’s life. Help your child understand the options, health risks and challenges ahead. Pregnancy can be one of the most difficult experiences a teenager may face. Understand how to help your teen address the challenges ahead. 

Provide Support

Teenage pregnancy can be a crisis for your teen and your family. Common reactions might include anger, guilt and denial. Your teen might also experience anxiety, fear, shock and depression. Ask what your teen is feeling and talk about what’s ahead. Your teen needs your love, guidance and support now more than ever. 

Discuss the Options

A pregnant teen has a couple of options to consider: 

  • Parent the baby.  Many pregnant teens parent their babies. Some choose to marry their partners and raise the baby together. Others rely on family support to raise the baby. Although completing school and getting a good job can be challenging, it can be accomplished with hard work and help. If your teen plans to keep the baby, discuss the challenges and responsibilities involved.

  • Place for adoption.  Some pregnant teens choose to make an adoption plan. If your teen is considering adoption, explore the different types available. Also, discuss the emotional impact on everyone involved.

In addition to talking to you, encourage your teen to discuss the options with your teen’s partner, health care provider or a specialist in pregnancy counseling. Talking to a psychologist or social worker also might be helpful. 

What will it be like to put up my baby for adoption?

Promote Proper Prenatal Care

Teens during pregnancy appear to be at increased risk of high blood pressure, anemia, premature birth, having low birth weight babies and experiencing postpartum depression.

Encourage Your Teen To: 

  • Get prenatal care. During pregnancy, regular prenatal visits can help your teen’s health care provider monitor your teen’s health and the baby’s health. Teens might need specialized prenatal care.

  • Get tested for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). If your teen has an STI, treatment is essential.

  • Eat a healthy diet. During pregnancy, your teen will need more folic acid, calcium, iron and other essential nutrients. A daily prenatal vitamin can help fill any gaps.

  • Stay physically active. Regular physical activity can help ease discomfort and boost your teen’s energy level. Encourage your teen to get a health care provider’s OK before starting or continuing an exercise program, especially if your teen has an underlying medical condition.

  • Gain weight wisely. Gaining the right amount of weight can support the baby’s health — and make it easier for your teen to lose weight after delivery.

  • Avoid risky substances. Alcohol, tobacco and any illegal drugs are off-limits during pregnancy. Even use of supplements and prescription and over-the-counter medications deserve caution.

  • Take childbirth classes. These classes can help prepare your teen for pregnancy, childbirth, breast-feeding and being a parent.

 If your teen lacks the money or transportation to obtain prenatal care — or needs help finishing school — a counselor or social worker might be able to help. 

Prepare for the Future

Teenage pregnancy often has a negative impact on a teen’s future. Teen mothers are less likely to graduate from high school and to attend college, are more likely to live in poverty, and are at risk of domestic violence. 

Children of teen parents also are more likely to have health and learning impairment conditions and are more likely to be neglected or abused. Girls born to teen parents are more likely to experience teenage pregnancy themselves. 

If your teen decides to continue the pregnancy, address these challenges head-on. Discuss goals and how your teen might go about achieving them as a parent. Look for programs to help pregnant teens remain in school or complete coursework from home. Encourage your teen to take parenting classes and help your teen prepare to financially support and raise a child.  Discuss the option of adoption and contact an adoption agency where your teen can get free counseling and support from a professional pregnancy counselor. 

Remember, your love and support can help your teen deal with pregnancy and the challenges ahead. 

If you need someone to talk to – contact Hand in Hand Pregnancy and Adoption and speak with a trained pregnancy counselor. Find out more about our Pregnancy Counselors here.

Are you pregnant and considering adoption? Would you like to see some potential adoptive family profiles? Click this link to find out more!

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