I’m Pregnant. Now What?

By Holly M. Duncan
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When your daughter breaks the news that she's pregnant, try not to overreact. Your initial response will have a significant impact on your future relationship.

“I’m pregnant—what do I do now?!”

Take your time. If you’re pregnant and it wasn’t quite planned, take a deep breath and try not to panic. Even though you’re not the first person this has happened to (and won’t be the last), the fact that it’s your life makes it a big deal, right? Just don’t rush into a decision.

You can’t change what has happened, but you can carefully consider your next step. You may feel pressure to make a quick decision. Instead, give yourself some time. Where you go from here will have a significant impact on your life. You have options, so make an informed decision.

Related article: She’s pregnant. Now what?

Share the news

Revealing your unplanned pregnancy to those closest to you can be difficult. But it’s important to let them know so you won’t have to deal with everything alone. Family members and friends may react in different ways, but open and honest communication is vital. Those who have been through a similar situation can often provide valuable support, so make a list of people you need to tell about your pregnancy.

Timing is important

When is the best time to break the news? How will you tell them – in person? In a handwritten note? Will you go alone or take someone with you? Where will you tell them—at the kitchen table? In your living room? At someone else’s home?

Think through the details in advance. Plan to tell your family when everyone has time to sit down and talk without interruption. If possible, avoid starting the discussion late at night or early in the morning when everyone is leaving for work or school. It may take some time for your family to process this news.

Prepare yourself for their reactions

You may think you know how your family will respond, but you also might be surprised. It probably took you some time for the reality to sink in, so give them time, too. If they react with judgmental or condemning words, remind them that this is a difficult time for you and you need their support. If they try to pressure you into making a quick decision about parenting, adoption of abortion, ask them to give you time to carefully consider all your options.

Stand strong if others are pressuring you. This is your decision – one that you will live with for the rest of your life. You owe it to yourself to get the facts. No one can force you into a decision, so carefully consider all your options. Ask God to give you strength and wisdom during this challenging time. Seek His help. He cares about you and your future.

Ask yourself:

  • “Who in my life genuinely cares about me?”
  • “How do I really feel about each of my options – abortion, adoption, parenting?”
  • “How did I feel about each option before I found out I was pregnant?”
  • “How will my choice affect my health? My body? My future?”
  • “How will I feel about my decision one year from now? Ten years from now?”

It is normal to be nervous about how your family might react to the news of your unplanned pregnancy. If you are concerned for your safety or think someone might try to harm you, you should seek a safe environment. Surround yourself with people you trust – those who love you and care about your well-being.

Where you go from here matters. You can come through this a stronger woman. You owe it to yourself to take time and get the facts. This is your life, your pregnancy and your future.

You can do it.

Face it together

Many people will offer advice, but it’s important to seek the wisdom and counsel of those who understand the unique dynamics of an unplanned pregnancy. Contact your local pregnancy medical clinic or pregnancy resource center for confidential and compassionate care.

What you are going through is not easy. There are no simple answers. Face this situation together. Talk with each other openly and honestly, but also respect each other’s need for time and space. A family crisis has the ability to drive family members apart or draw them together

It’s not easy – but it’s possible.


If you need further guidance and encouragement, Focus on the Family has a staff of licensed, professional Christian counselors available to talk with you at no charge. Just call 800-A-FAMILY (232-6459) 

Copyright © 2009, 2012 Focus on the Family. All rights reserved.

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