Supporting a friend facing an unplanned pregnancy can be tough. We’re here to support you through that process, helping you understand your own thoughts and feelings and to know the best ways to help your friend as well.
The most important thing you can do is to be there for your friend. Remember she may be feeling any number of emotions, which can be confusing for you. Here are some tips to make her feel loved and cared for during this uncertain time.
Ask questions and listen
Don’t ever presume to know how she’s feeling. Her emotions may change by the minute and she may be feeling so many at once she doesn’t even know how she’s doing. To support her, ask questions and listen. You don’t have to have all or even any answers for her, just your presence will be a comfort. Here are some questions you can ask:
How are you feeling about the pregnancy?
Have you talked about this with your boyfriend? What are his thoughts?
Have you told your parents? How did they take the news?
Have you seen a doctor yet?
Are you leaning towards one decision or another?
What do YOU want to do?
She’s probably being bombarded with dozens of opinions about what she should do, so don’t add yours to the mix unless she asks for it. Simply asking questions and listening will help her to feel heard and that her feelings and concerns are valid.
She’s likely freaking out and needs someone to remind her this isn’t the end of her life. You can be the voice in her life that lets her know she has options, and although this presents an interesting path in her life, it’s not the end. If you remain calm, that will automatically have a calming effect on her and help her to process more effectively so she can make a decision.
Help her be fully informed
All major life decisions feel overwhelming, but one that comes up unexpectedly can feel even bigger. To help it feel more manageable, help your friend find accurate and helpful information about any and all options she’s considering. We offer confidential options counseling that you can recommend to her, and you’re welcome to attend as well if she’d like you to. Options counseling can help navigate uncharted territory and it’s completely free.
How to support your daughter who’s pregnant
If your daughter is in high school or college, the news that she’s pregnant is likely not what you wanted to hear. Even if this is disappointing to you, know that you have a unique role to play in her life right now and you can be a huge part of encouraging and supporting her moving forward. Here are some ways you can do that.
Let her know you love her
Right now, she’s likely feeling a wide range of emotions. One of those is probably shame. Regardless of how you feel about the pregnancy, assure her that she is loved and you are here for her. Make her favorite meal (or something she feels like eating) and help take care of her during this time. She needs you, even if she’s afraid to ask for the help.
Don’t pressure her
Let her know you’re on her team and want to support her. Let her process what she’s feeling and thinking with you without pushing an agenda on her. If you want to have a relationship with her after her decision, she needs to know now that she’s making it without coercion. This doesn’t mean you don’t offer opinions or thoughts if she asks for them; just because the decision is hers to make doesn’t mean she has to make it alone. If you have a relationship with her she likely wants to know what you think.
Help her find accurate information
There is so much information online, but not all of it is accurate or helpful. She may find it beneficial to set an appointment for one of our options counseling sessions where we can go over all of her choices and provide accurate information on each. We also offer free pregnancy tests and ultrasounds if she needs to confirm the pregnancy or determine how far along she is.
The most important thing is that she knows you support and love her. This may be a difficult road to walk, but it’s not a hopeless one. We’re here to offer support, resources, and information so she (and you) can make a fully-informed decision. Call to schedule an appointment today.
We are here for you too
While we cannot share medical information or confirm whether or not someone is receiving services in our clinic, we can walk this journey with you from YOUR perspective too. We are here to answer your questions, provide you accurate and reliable information, and be YOUR support and go to place for reassurance, guidance, referrals, community partnerships and more. Please feel free to call us or schedule an appointment to meet with one of our trained advocates.