When you find out you are pregnant, you might wonder about your options, how you would like to let people know and what support is available to you.
Letting others know
It’s understandable that you might be feeling scared about telling anyone, but it is important to get support.
Is there anyone that you have spoken to in the past that you felt was a good support to you?
How do you think you might feel about telling someone you trust, like a good friend, your partner or family member?
Planning to tell others
- Do you think it might help if you have a person you trust with you for support while you go through the process of letting others know?
- Do you think you could pick a time that is calm and safe for you to let people know?
- What would it be like for you to give your parents or carers some time to process the news?
You have the right to talk to someone around what is going on for you. This includes the right to advice, support and help.
You have the right to information in relation to how you would like to proceed. Remember, it is your decision which option you take.
You can visit your GP (doctor) or local health centre for advice and support. There are also free, non-judgemental crisis pregnancy counselling services all around Ireland. You can find a list of these here – www.postiveoptions.ie or text ‘LIST’ for free to 50444.
You might be concerned about receiving counselling and this is understandable but remember counsellors are trained in dealing with these situations.
If you ring a counselling service, you can ask over the phone about their policy on seeing someone under 18 without the consent of a parent or guardian. Some services will talk to you about how to tell your parents and they will support you in doing that. Other services will only see you if your parent or guardian comes with you.
There are many options to explore once you have found out you are pregnant and this will take some time.
There are many support services available to guide you through and help you understand better the different options available to you. These are some of the options that you have available to you:
- Parenting the child – you can choose to do this with or without your partner or family
- Adoption – to find out more, see here.
- Abortion – a medical procedure where the pregnancy is ended. This is possible in Ireland within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. More information and support can be found via the IFPA website here.
- Guardianship – where it is decided (usually within the family) who will become the child’s legal guardian. For more information on guardianship and the rights of unmarried parents, click here.
Support is available
There are many individuals and organisations who can offer support to you when you are pregnant.
Remember, Childline is always here to listen.