Handling family issues and unplanned pregnancy

An unplanned pregnancy can be scary and intimidating, especially when you’re young. A lot of people worry about their family’s reaction to the news and may be tempted to keep the pregnancy a secret for fear of being judged or punished. While breaking the news of your pregnancy to your family can seem like the worst thing to do, remember that you can get through this. Here are ways to handle family and an unplanned pregnancy.

Telling the father of your child

How  you disclose the pregnancy to the father of your child will depend on the relationship you have with them. If you’re in a healthy and stable relationship, you may find it easy to talk to them about the pregnancy. Feel free to talk about how you feel and listen to how they feel.

It’s not unusual to receive a negative or mixed response at first, so give them time to adjust to the unexpected news. This doesn’t mean that you should tolerate any disrespect or insensitivity from them, Choma.

If you have already decided what you want to do, let them know and ask them if they want to be part of the process. Remember whatever you decide should be largely based on what you want for yourself and your future. Don’t allow yourself to be pressured into making any decisions you are not ready to make with your body.

If you don’t have a close relationship with the father or if he is abusive, you may want to get the support of a family member to help you disclose the pregnancy, or contact FAMSA for assistance, guidance and counselling.

Telling your family

Telling your parents or guardian about your unplanned pregnancy can be the hardest thing to do, especially when you’re still in school. It’s normal to feel scared and alone, but remember that while they may be upset at the news, your parents love you and truly want the best for you. Don’t hide the pregnancy, tell them even if it scares you.

Your parents may have ideas on what you should do, but your decision is important. Keep in mind that you’ll have to live with any decision you make about your pregnancy, even if it’s unplanned. Whether you choose to keep the pregnancy or terminate it, that should be an option you fully understand and want.

If you decide to tell your friends and other family members about your pregnancy, make sure that you prepare yourself. They may need time to adjust to the news and may ask insensitive questions or make ignorant comments. Whatever their reaction, what’s more important is what you want for yourself and your future. Everyone else will eventually come to terms with the decision that makes you happy.

Telling the father’s family

You and your partner may discuss telling their family about your pregnancy. Remember, there’s no pressure to do this and it’s completely up to you to decide whether or not you’d like to let them know. They could be an extended support system to lean on during your pregnancy, so don’t write them off immediately. There may also be some cultural considerations to make before telling them, which is why it’s a good idea to talk to your family and get guidance from them.

Telling your loved ones about your unplanned pregnancy won’t be easy and you may get different reactions. It’s okay to feel scared and alone, which is why you need all the support you can get. Whatever you decide to do, make sure it’s the best decision for you, your circumstances and beliefs, Choma.

Remember if you or a friend need advice or help, you can contact me here on Ask Choma, send me a Facebook Messagea Twitter DM, or a WhatsApp Message (071 172 3657).