Just what you feared: A “positive” result on your pregnancy test. But you think to yourself, “That’s not very positive.” You also think, “What am I going to tell my parents?” and “What I am going to tell my boyfriend?” The next thought may be, “What am I going to do now?” The negative feelings may be overwhelming. You feel like there is no hope. You can’t see past tomorrow. Abortion may cross your mind. But there are other options. There are other places to get help if you are a pregnant teen.
1) Pregnancy Resource Centers
A Pregnancy Resource Center, also known as a Crisis Pregnancy Center, focuses on the pregnant teen as well as their unborn child. Some of their services may include: free pregnancy tests, parenting classes, pre-natal development classes, counseling, life coaching, and free supplies such as diapers, baby wipes, etc. These centers give you full information on what to expect in labor and delivery and beyond. These centers respect you as a person and will be there for you regardless of wheat you decide to do. They may even provide post-abortion counselling, if needed. Some centers have programs for dads as well. These centers perform these services free of charge. Click here for more information.
2) Maternity Homes
A maternity home is a place a pregnant teen can go if they are at risk for homelessness or if they need a place to stay far away from their community where they will be loved, supported, cared for, and not judged. Maternity Homes, also known as Maternity Housing, may provide such things as: housing, support, pregnancy resources, addiction counseling, and spiritual counseling. Click here for more information.
3) Mentoring and support services:
There are many resources for teen moms including:
Young Lives, a division of Young Life, is a faith-based ministry dedicated to supporting teen moms and giving them direction in this difficult time of life. They are not connected to any one church and you do not need to be a Christian to participate in their services.
According to the TOPS website,
“TOPS is an Arizona non-profit organization that provides healthy pregnancy, childbirth, and parenting education and support to families of all ages …”
4) Extended family
Have you ever thought about reaching out to a distant relative for help? A grandma, a grandpa, an aunt, uncle, cousin or even older sibling may offer help, guidance, and advice that you never dreamt of. Perhaps they went through a similar circumstance when they were your age. Perhaps they have experience on how to navigate these troubled waters. They may be able to take you in for a few months till you deliver. They may even be willing to adopt your child, should you choose to go down that road.
Lastly and perhaps, most controversial, have you considered… the father’s family? I know, I know, I know: there are many cases where you cannot or would not ever think of reaching out to that side of the family. But if you do have a good relationship with your boyfriend and if his family are good, upstanding citizens, what do you have to lose? After all, they may be able to provide a place for you to stay during tough times and may even care for your child on a short-term or long-term basis. This may also ensure that the father stays actively involved in his child’s life; the child is also his responsibility. His family is also extended family.
In any event, there are places to go when a teen has a crisis pregnancy. Think outside of the box! There is hope. There is not only one choice… there are a myriad of choices. Choose one that is right for you AND your baby.
Are you considering placing a child for adoption? Not sure what to do next? First, know that you are not alone. Visit Adoption.org or call 1-800-ADOPT-98 to speak to one of our Options Counselors to get compassionate, nonjudgmental support. We are here to assist you in any way we can.