Flicking through your diary to find that Aunt Flo hasn’t visited in a while? Your periods are late, and you get into panic mode! Worried that an unplanned pregnancy might be on the way? Read on to find out the best ways to cope with an unexpected pregnancy.
Pregnancy is one of the biggest joys in life. But that may not always be the case. Especially, when you find yourself unexpectedly expecting!
Irrespective of whether you’re married or not, an unexpected pregnancy is more of a shock than a happy surprise. It opens the floodgate to a variety of emotions like – disbelief, fear, guilt and even shame for “letting” it happen.
Let us first assure you that – it will be alright. It’s ok to feel a mixed bag of emotions. It doesn’t make you weird or any less womanly. There are plenty of reasons – financially, emotionally, mentally – to feel that the timing isn’t right.
It’s completely natural to feel confused, shocked, scared and even sad. It’s ok. All you need is the right support and you can cross this tumultuous phase in your life.
Unwanted pregnancies in India – The figures
According to a study published by The Lancet Global Health, the total number of pregnancies in India for the year 2015 was 48.1 million. And nearly half of all these pregnancies were unplanned of which the abortion rate was 47 out of 1000 pregnancies.
As you can see, you aren’t alone. Many women find themselves in the same boat. Read on to find ways for dealing with an unwanted pregnancy.
- Be 100% sure
The first and foremost step you must take is to check whether you’re really pregnant. Just because your periods have been delayed doesn’t mean that you are pregnant. There could be plenty of other reasons for missed periods like sleeping disorders, hormonal imbalance, anaemia, intense physical activities and even stress.
Get a home pregnancy kit or book an appointment with your gynaecologist to confirm your pregnancy.
- Don’t panic
This is easier said than done. But we urge you to be calm and think rationally on what needs to be done. If you’re underage and financially dependent, then you’ll have to seek the guidance of your parents. If you are married or in a relationship, make sure to talk with your partner or spouse.
You’ll need to bring someone into your confidence. Remember the other person may also freak out, so keep calm and try not to panic.
- Termination of an unintended pregnancy
If, for whatever reason you decide to terminate an unwanted pregnancy, you have to ensure that this decision is taken voluntarily and not forced on you. Even if you decide to terminate it, you’ll have to prepare yourself mentally and physically for the process. Feelings of uneasiness, anxiety, guilt and sadness are all common.
Make sure to have your partner, friend or even a professional counsellor to help you deal with the process.
- Induced abortions and its negative impact
Before you decide to go ahead with unwanted pregnancy abortion, make sure that you are aware of the negative impact of an induced abortion. The type of abortion depends on how far you are in your pregnancy.
If you are less than nine weeks, then medical abortion (by pills or medicines) is possible. Surgical abortion is usually recommended for women who are 7 to 21 weeks pregnant. Aborting the fetus after 21 weeks is not done usually, until for medical reasons.
If you’re wondering how to deal with abortion, we recommend that you visit your gynaecologist and carry out the procedure clinically, instead of falling prey to illegal practices, which can cause major side-effects.
Abortion is both physically and emotionally draining. So ensure that you have the right support system in place.
- Going ahead with the pregnancy
Irrespective of whether the pregnancy is a planned or unplanned one, no feeling in the world can match the joy you experience on seeing your child smile for the first time. Don’t consider pregnancy as a burden; instead think of it as a blessing. Don’t worry about financial and emotional difficulties. They all will sort out with time.
Nurture the child in a loving and caring environment. Above all, believe that everything happens for a reason and you can handle it in a mature manner.
Ultimately, the choice is yours (and your partner’s). Make a wise decision. And above all, don’t forget to use the right type of contraceptives the next time, so that you don’t have to deal with the anxieties of an unplanned pregnancy ever again.