An article out of Cleveland caught my eye this morning. It talked about unplanned pregnancy with a positive tone instead of the normal doom-and-gloom that normally accompanies the subject. It also painted a realistic portrait of the hardships of young parenthood and the importance of family support.
I know that when I first found out I was pregnant with the Munchkin, I was nervous to tell my parents. I feared their reaction. It is true, as well, that we had a lot of issues and communication problems on both my part and theirs of the course of my pregnancy. However, when I come across expectant parents who are considering keeping their pregnancies a secret from their parents (with intent to place and, as such, keep the whole thing “hush-hush”), I encourage them to tell their parents.
The two examples in the article are the reason I encourage expectant parents to share their “secret” with their families. Of course, as you can see if you read, that support doesn’t always come immediately or without other issues. It can, however, make a world of difference.
In fact, in the first story, the expectant father’s family pushed for adoption. In the end, they had the mother move in with them and helped both the father and mother get on their feet through finishing their education and eventually marrying. She acknowledges that without that help, it would have been nearly impossible. She did, of course, note her own sacrifices due to the early pregnancy; she had to be discharged from the Navy. A note from me, who is parenting children while married and stable, is that all parents make sacrifices from time to time for their children.
In the second story, we see a family that did offer their full support and, yet, again, she talks of the realities of parenting. (Cleaning takes me a whole day, too. Or two. Or maybe three.)
Let these stories be an encouragement to you. If you haven’t yet told your parents of your unplanned pregnancy, please do so. If you have already done so and their reaction was less than positive, allow them a little time to digest the news. If you are already having communication problems with your parents regarding this pregnancy, I urge the lot of you to get into a counseling situation. For you alone, for them alone/together and for all of you together. An unbiased third party with experience in this area will help you sort through emotions and make the best and most informed decisions possible.
You don’t have to become a statistic just because you are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy. Your family can help you in that regard. Let them.