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Teenage pregnancy tends to come as a huge shock, whether it is you, your girlfriend, or your daughter who is pregnant. Teenage pregnancy comes with dilemmas unique to being a teen and being pregnant. What are the dilemmas you are likely to struggle with if you are a pregnant teen, and where can you turn for help?

Pregnant what now?

Teenagers who unexpectedly have three basic options, which you will already be very aware of. They are carrying the pregnancy to term and then parenting, placing the baby for adoption, and terminating the pregnancy. When you realize you are pregnant, you might need some time to let the news sink in and think about your feelings. If you decide that you want to parent, it helps to immediately start planning a new future. There are many resources available for pregnant teens and young mothers, but the road ahead is not going to be easy. Good preparation helps enormously where will you live, will you continue your education? Will your parents be supportive, and how about your boyfriend, if you have one?

Pregnant teens who decide they are not ready or able to parent still have to face another hard choice is adoption the best option, or do you think abortion is the right thing to do in your situation? Both are hard choices, and you may wish to discuss the pros and cons of all the choices available to you with parents, a therapist, your boyfriend and friends. If your choice is mainly motivated by fears about the future and money matters, you might want to figure out if more help is available than you may think. The decision to terminate a pregnancy should be made as soon as possible, ideally in the first trimester, but adoption or parenting leave more space and you may have your whole pregnancy to decide.

Telling your parents

When you are a pregnant teen, telling your parents must be the most scary thing there is. Don't fall into the temptation of hiding your pregnancy and do tell your parents if they are remotely good and compassionate parents even if you decide to opt for an abortion. If the very thought of informing your parents you got pregnant terrifies you, you might feel easier having a friend, your boyfriend if you have one, or someone else present. You may want to talk to a counselor, like the school counselor, before taking this step.

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