When you find out that you are unexpectedly pregnant, it is normal to feel overwhelmed and confused. While you are still trying to process this for yourself, you are trying to figure out how you are going to tell your parents. Before you begin to panic, it is important to remember that your parents love you. Here are our tips on how to tell your parents you are pregnant.
How to Prepare
Verify Your Pregnancy
Before you start thinking about how you are going to tell them, you want to be sure you are actually pregnant. Although over-the-counter tests have improved, a lab-quality pregnancy test and ultrasound can give you more information to help guide the conversation with your parents. An ultrasound tells you how far along your pregnancy is and if the pregnancy is viable.
At First Care, we offer free lab-quality pregnancy testing and ultrasounds so you can have definitive answers before you talk to your parents. Being able to answer these questions will show you have taken responsibility. Your appointment is completely confidential and free so your parents will not be notified until you tell them.
Decide if You Want the Father to be a Part of the Conversation
If you have already told the father, you have the option of including him in the conversation with your parents. There are pros and cons to inviting him to join. Inviting him can allow you to have a more meaningful conversation about next steps with your parents. Depending on his personality, he can help keep the conversation productive and safe while supporting you.
However, if your parents do not know or dislike him, it might be best to not have him present. Your parents will be shocked to find out that you are pregnant, so meeting someone new at the same time will put them on edge before you even tell them.
Know Your Options and be Ready to Answer Their Questions
Having knowledge of your options going forward will help put them at ease. They will have a million questions running through their head just like you did when you found out, so be ready with answers for them. Whether you are considering abortion, adoptions, parenting, or you don’t know, knowing about all your options will help you feel more prepared and can help de-escalate the conversation.
During the Conversation
Prime Them for the Weight of the Conversation
To reduce the shock of your news, you will want to make it clear to them that you want to have a serious discussion. Asking them to sit down together and give you their full attention will establish the weight of the conversation you are about to start. Giving them time to prepare themselves to receive big news can reduce the likelihood that they will have a strong reaction.
Don’t Beat Around the Bush
This is a tough conversation, but the sooner you get it started, the sooner they can start processing. Don’t be afraid to be honest with them and tell them it is hard to say. You can start with something like, “What I am about to tell you isn’t easy to say, but I am pregnant.” Being straight forward and to the point gets the conversation started.
Be Prepared for Their Reaction
This news changes their lives too. In their shock, they might have some strong reactions. Even if they know you are sexually active, they might still react emotionally to the news. On the chance that they start yelling or become emotional, remain calm and try to de-escalate as best you can. The main priority is to keep the conversation productive and safe. Keep in mind that their initial reaction might not be what you hoped for, but it could change as they process through the news.
Allow for Silence
Silence is a good thing. It means they are thinking and processing. Don’t feel like you need to fill that silence. Give them the space to calm down, think, and then respond. They will speak and ask questions when they are ready.
Prioritize Your Safety
You know your parents the best. If you feel as if your safety might be at risk, there are things you can do to protect yourself.
- Having someone else there during the conversation
- Having the conversation in a public place
- Having the conversation over the phone
- Having the conversation over the phone at First Care with one of our staff members
At the end of the day, you are the one who is pregnant. Even if you are young, your parents cannot force you into a decision without your consent.
If you want more guidance or coaching on how to have that conversation with your parents, contact First Care today to speak with our experienced staff!