You may be experiencing an unexpected pregnancy and may be trying decide how to proceed. The thought of telling your parents or a trusted adult about your unexpected pregnancy may make you feel overwhelmed or scared. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you prepare to tell your parents.
1.) Give them a heads up
It may be helpful to let your parents know ahead of time that you would like to set a time to talk to them about something serious. This helps sets the tone for the conversation because they will know you want to talk about something important. It also allows everyone to come prepared for a serious conversation so they don’t feel ambushed. Pick a time that will work best for everyone and when everyone is likely to be in a good mood. For example, a casual Saturday morning may be better than Monday evening after work or school.
2.) Consider the setting
Think about where you will feel most comfortable. Will you feel better in a familiar environment such as the kitchen table or living room, or would you prefer to talk in a more neutral setting such as a coffee shop? Choosing a place where you feel comfortable may help relieve any stress you are feeling about telling your parents.
3.) Practice with a friend
You may find it helpful to practice with a friend how you want to tell your parents. While you cannot predict for sure how they will respond, practicing what you want to say may help you feel more comfortable and confident in what you want to say when the time comes to actually tell them. Practicing may also help you remember what you wanted to tell them if you are worried about forgetting what you want to say.
4.) Anticipate potential questions
Take a moment to think about what questions your parents might ask you. They may ask you specific questions about the situation and your plan or their questions may be more broad. Thinking about questions they may have may help you feel prepared and confident.
5.) Consider your options
You may have already made a decision about the outcome of your pregnancy. Or you may be undecided about how you are going to proceed with your pregnancy. Either way, it may be helpful to schedule an appointment with your local pregnancy resource center so they can make sure you have all the resources you need for the situation you are in. Having an appointment scheduled may also show your parents that you are taking charge of your situation.
6.) Clarify your parent’s role
When you tell your parents, clearly state what role you would like them to play in your unexpected pregnancy. Do you want their opinion? Or do you not want their opinion? Do you only want support? Or do you want their recommendations? Do you want their thoughts on all your options? Letting them know what type of support you would like may help them understand the role you want them to play.
7.) Agree that you may come back to the conversation at a later time
A decision does not need to be made in the heat of the moment. Your parents may be surprised that you are pregnant and may want to share their immediate opinion. It may be helpful to tell your parents that you would like to continue this conversation at another time when emotions have subsided.
8.) Schedule an appointment
Talking with a professional about your situation with your parents present may help relieve some of their concerns. Scheduling an appointment with your local pregnancy resource center will allow you and your parents to discuss all of your options and resources in a confidential, nonjudgmental environment.
9.) It is your decision
It is important to remember that while everyone may have their own opinion, it is your decision on how you would like to proceed with your unexpected pregnancy. No one can force you to choose abortion, adoption, or parenting. That decision in only up to you.
In the end, your parents want what’s best for you. While their response may not be what you expected, keep in mind that no matter what they have your best interests in mind.