Between classes, commitments and social outings, the college years are a busy and fulfilling time. Facing an unplanned pregnancy in college can be overwhelming — you’re now dealing with uncertainty about the future and may not know how to react.
The good news is that there are supportive and caring people ready to help you along the way. This step by step breakdown of how to deal with an unplanned pregnancy in college will help you organize your thoughts and form a plan of action.
Handling an Unplanned Pregnancy in College: A Step by Step Guide
1. Confirm with a test
The crucial first step is to confirm that you are, in fact, pregnant. If you simply suspect you are but have not taken a test, now is the time to do so. You can take an at-home test that will reveal in minutes a pregnant or not pregnant result.
At home pregnancy tests are typically accurate, but there is a slim amount of room for error. So head to a free pregnancy clinic to receive a fully accurate result and have no doubt in your mind about whether or not you are pregnant.
2. Work through your emotions
Now that you have the result, you’re likely feeling a whirlwind of emotions. Allow yourself to work through this completely normal process. We all cope with unexpected news in different ways. Here are some ways to work through emotions in a healthy way:
- Write down how you are feeling and the questions that are swirling around in your head.
- Speak with a trusted friend or family member about your emotions and seek advice on the next steps.
- Accept the emotions that you feel and don’t try to push them away or bottle them up. Whether they are good or bad, you need to experience them in this moment.
Many campuses offer free or discounted counseling sessions for students. If you’d like to talk to someone other than a friend or family member, look into this option. Also, consider speaking with a specialist that deals with women facing unexpected pregnancies.
3. Research Your Options
The next step in dealing with an unplanned pregnancy in college is to familiarize yourself with the options. While each unplanned pregnancy situation is different, there are three options to consider.
- Raise the Child
- Place the Child for Adoption
- Terminate the Pregnancy
Many college-age women are mothers and decide to balance school while raising a child. While this pathway is challenging, it can also be extremely rewarding.
Adopting is a life-changing gift that allows a family to grow and nurture a child they have been waiting for. If you are not ready to be a parent, adoption allows you to give the child the priceless gift of a loving family.
Terminating the pregnancy is a difficult decision that only you can make. It’s best to have support as you work through the decision. You can read our guide to facing an unplanned pregnancy alone to learn about the options in detail.
4. Make Your Health a Priority
No matter how you decide to move forward, now is the time to keep your body and mind healthy. Balancing school with an unplanned pregnancy can take a toll on your physical health. Fortunately, you don’t have to commit to an intense workout regimen and diet to stay balanced and healthy.
Follow the tips below:
First off, make sure you are nourishing your body with wholesome foods. Nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables, whole grains and non-processed food items are great options. Now that you are pregnant, stay away from alcohol and reduce your sugar intake.
Next, make sure that you are getting enough sleep. This can be difficult in college, but research suggests that getting enough sleep can improve your concentration and reduce the risk of labor complications. So make sure you catch some zzzs.
Staying active is also important for pregnant women. Just be sure to consult your doctor about what exercises you should be doing and which ones to avoid.
An OB-GYN is a doctor who deals with female reproductive health, including pregnancy. Talk to yours about lifestyle changes, supplements you should be taking, foods you should be avoiding and any other health-related questions you may have.
5. Find Support and Guidance
It’s true that being pregnant in college is a lot to handle. But it’s easier when you’re not alone. That’s why having support throughout your pregnancy is vital.
Whether it’s a group of amazing friends, sorority sisters, a loving family, a church group or another source of encouragement, make sure that you have trustworthy people that you can turn to.
At Texas Adoption Center, we offer a wide variety of services to help women dealing with unexpected pregnancies. From emotional support provided by specialists to financial support that assists with groceries, utilities and other living expenses, there are so many ways we can help you during this time.
6. Take Advantage of Resources
Many students wonder, “Can I go to college while pregnant?” The answer is yes. Now, more than ever, there are ways to obtain your degree while pregnant.
Did you know that there are organizations and agencies dedicated to helping young women facing unplanned pregnancies? Don’t think for a moment that you are alone on this journey.
Pregnancy clinics, adoption agencies, charities and more each offer services that uplift and aid pregnant women in college. You can search “resources for pregnant women near me” to find specific resources in your community. There may also be on-campus help available, so be sure to explore those options as well.
Pregnant in College? Texas Adoption Center Can Help.
The compassionate specialists at Texas Adoption Center have helped thousands of women facing unplanned pregnancies. Our judgment-free, ongoing support allows you to get the help you need, no matter what stage of the pregnancy you are in.
Whether you need someone to talk to, financial assistance, answers to your questions or all of the above, we are here to help. Contact us today by texting 361-461-3742 or calling 512-893-7943. Or send us a message here.