Unplanned Pregnancy FAQs
Q: Where do I start in deciding how to respond to my unplanned pregnancy?
A: We get it……you saw those lines pop up on the pregnancy test and they were not exactly what you wanted to see at this time in your life. So many different emotions you are dealing with right now, excitement, worry or despair. Before you make any decisions with your unplanned pregnancy, you deserve to get as much information as possible so that you can make an informed choice. You don’t have to go through this alone. We are here to help you get answers and find hope in a low-pressure, non-judgmental environment, which we know can be hard to find. We will take time to talk with you about your options, and all our services are free of charge. Before you can really know what to do, you will need to know for sure that you’re actually pregnant and how far along you are. Even if you have pregnancy symptoms or have taken a home test, our tests are medical quality, often more accurate than home tests. Our tests are free and always confidential.
After a positive pregnancy test, we can provide you with a free limited obstetric ultrasound to determine the status and estimated gestational age of your pregnancy. This information may help you in your decision-making process. Statistics show that 1 in 4 early pregnancies ends in natural miscarriage. By confirming a viable pregnancy through ultrasound, you might be able to avoid unnecessary risky procedures and costs that you may not need.
You may also need to have an STD/STI test before making your final decision. Having an abortion or a childbirth with an undiagnosed STD/STI can cause harm to you and your unborn child. We can test you for chlamydia and gonorrhea here at the PCC and provide treatment if needed at no charge.
Q: I need to make a decision asap, right?!
A: Give yourself time!! You may feel that you just need to get this taken care of quickly. However, you usually have more time than you think, which means you can take the time to ensure you’re making the best choice for you. Don’t settle for low-quality care by going to a facility that sees you as a number and pressures you into making a decision they can profit from and then hurry on to the next patient. You deserve much better than that. We do not profit from any decision you might make here at the PCC.
Q: What options are there with pregnancy?
A: There are basically three options available to you with an unplanned pregnancy; abortion, adoption and parenting. Did you know that most women are not fully informed about abortion before having the procedure? It is wise for you to know about the different procedures and the possible risks involved with each life-changing decision.
The most common methods are the abortion pill (medical abortion) and an in-clinic surgical procedure. An in-clinic surgical procedure is typically administered during a pregnancy’s first or second trimester. The abortion pill is taken orally and is approved by the FDA for only the first 10 weeks of pregnancy. Both options can pose emotional and physical risks to the mother, and it is vital to learn all the facts before scheduling an abortion. Give yourself the time you need to make a confident decision.
Q: What risks and side effects are possible with abortion?
A: Like any medical procedure, abortion has side effects and risks. For instance, medical abortion (the abortion pill) can result in severe bleeding and cramping. Because surgical abortion is more invasive, there is more potential for damage to your uterus or cervix, Infection and bleeding are common side effects.
Another consideration if this is not your first abortion, you might want to consider that having more than one abortion carries increased health risks and fertility implications. Everybody responds to abortion differently. Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you would like help in dealing with a past abortion, or if you’d like to talk it over with someone who has firsthand experience with having had an abortion.
Q: What should I know about adoption?
A: If abortion or parenting will not work for you, then adoption is your third option with an unplanned pregnancy. There are an estimated two million families in the United States waiting to adopt, and many are right here in Illinois.
After verifying your pregnancy, your next step would be to create an adoption plan with an adoption agency. This plan will outline how many contacts you want with your future child, the adoptive family, and any additional terms. Open adoption allows you to be in control of your child’s future, even meeting the adoptive family. Closed adoption would mean little or no contact between you and the adoptive family. If you’re worried about expenses from your pregnancy care, the adoptive family can typically cover these for you.
If you’re interested in learning more about adoption, we can connect you to an adoption agency that specializes in answering these questions.
Q: What do I need to consider about parenting?
A: Parenting is also an option. If your main concern about parenting is financial, know there are many programs that can help you. Most states have medical assistance programs, such as Medicaid, for low-income women and families. Your insurance company may also help cover expenses related to parenting.
If you qualify for state assistance the WIC program can equip you with early prenatal care, education, and support. They have free workshops, mentorship, support groups, and resources to ensure you always have what you need to parent effectively. We also offer parenting classes here at the PCC, as well as help with supplies for mom and baby. Our Dads Matter classes for men who are willing to be involved in a partner’s pregnancy are also free of charge and offer greatly needed resources for men.
If you have concerns or questions about parenting and want to discuss community resources and referrals, schedule a time to talk with us.
Q: I still feel unsure about my unplanned pregnancy. Is that normal?
A: It’s okay if you’re still unsure about which pregnancy option you’ll pick.
Take it one step at a time and schedule a free and confidential appointment with us. We’ll confirm your pregnancy with testing and an ultrasound and provide even more specific details on your options based on the results. You don’t have to do this alone. These may be hard decisions for you but getting help sorting all the information out can be a great help. Contact us today and let’s talk!