Getting pregnant in school probably wasn't part of your plan for your life. Maybe you thought it could never happen to you and now you're uncertain about what to do.
Being pregnant in school can be hard, but it's not impossible and it isn't the end of your life. Here are five steps you can take and things you can do to make it easier and help you process your decision constructively.
1. Get a pregnancy test
The first thing to do if you think you're pregnant is to make sure via a pregnancy test. We offer free clinical pregnancy testing and will always keep your visit and results confidential.
Remember, you can have symptoms of pregnancy without actually being pregnant. However, if your period is abnormally late and you are having pregnancy symptoms, it's important to find out for certain.
Schedule your appointment today and we'll not only provide the testing for free but can also help you process the next steps. Take a deep breath, slow down, and take a pregnancy test before doing anything else.
2. Get an ultrasound
After a positive pregnancy test, the next step is to get an ultrasound. This is important for many reasons.
First, an ultrasound will reveal precisely how far along you are in the pregnancy.
Second, an ultrasound will confirm that the pregnancy is in the right location. Ectopic pregnancies are pregnancies that are located outside of the uterus. While rare (1%-2% of pregnancies are ectopic), they are not viable and can be life-threatening so it's important to make sure the pregnancy is in the right location.
Third, an ultrasound will determine whether or not the fetus has a heartbeat. If there is no heartbeat, the pregnancy will most likely end on its own.
The Open Arms Pregnancy Clinic offers free ultrasound exams for the purpose of confirming a viable pregnancy. Gathering this information is an important step before choosing your path forward.
3. Tell a friend
While this decision is yours to make, you shouldn't make it alone. Confiding in a friend can help relieve some of the stress of your situation and help you process everything more clearly.
If you can, it may be helpful to confide in your parents. They may be disappointed initially, but they may also become an important part of your support system moving forward.
If you need help telling your parents or a friend, you can schedule a time to meet with one of our case managers who can help you map out the conversation and what you want to say. Preparing for this conversation will help you enter into it with more confidence, especially if you've thought ahead about some of their possible questions or concerns.
4. Know your options
As you process what to do in your unplanned pregnancy, it's important to clearly understand all of your options (parenting, adoption, abortion) and the ramifications of those options. The Open Arms Pregnancy Clinic specializes in helping people like you who are facing pregnancy-related decisions. This is especially important if you feel conflicted about the best choice or want someone to help you talk it through. You don't have to navigate this alone. We are here to help.
5. Make a plan
Now that you've taken the above steps to gather as much information as is helpful, it's time to put together a plan and you'll want to have a strong support system as you move forward.
If you need help making a plan, or want to continue exploring your options, our case managers and nurses are here for you. We know an unintended pregnancy can be an overwhelming situation and we want to help take some of the pressure off. Please schedule your free appointment today.