Is your partner pregnant and you don’t know what to do? Maybe friends and family are encouraging you to push her to have an abortion. Whatever your situation, understand that you are not alone. Many couples experience an unplanned pregnancy which can be alarming and overwhelming.
Abortion seems like an easy and legal solution but it does have significant risks that you may not understand. That is why it’s important that both of you become educated on all your options. Abortion is a forever choice that can never be reversed so it’s important you understand all the implications.
First of all, women can choose abortion without the permission of the baby’s father. Communication between you and your partner is essential at this point. Many post-abortive women (women who have made this choice) report that they were waiting for their boyfriends/husbands to stop them. Men seem to have been programmed to respond with a common statement, “It’s your choice. I’ll support whatever decision you make.”
Sadly, women regularly report that they WANT to hear their partner’s honest opinion and do not want to make this choice alone. By saying, “It’s your choice,” she may hear, “I don’t want this baby.”
She is looking to you for support because she can’t confide in many people about this crisis situation. When women hear men say, “It’s your choice and I’ll support you,” they perceive the man wants her to abort. So please be careful that you don’t say something that you could regret.
What she truly needs is your assurance that you will stand beside her in whatever way she needs through this situation. Inform her immediately that she doesn’t need to have an abortion to please you. Tell her you want to help her in making any choices that will impact both your futures.
Here are some ways to help a woman in an unplanned pregnancy:
Confirming the Pregnancy:
The first thing you need to do is find out that she is really pregnant and learn about all your options. Pregnancy centers provide confidential and free pregnancy tests along with many support services. Centers exists to help both of you come to an informed decision.
To help her understand your support, find your local pregnancy center and take her for the pregnancy test. She has more to lose in this pregnancy than you do because it will impact her physically.
If she truly is pregnant, understand her body is being overwhelmed by hormone changes that can impact her in making good decisions. Having your emotional and physical support will reassure her that you care.
It is also important after a positive pregnancy test to have an ultrasound performed to determine if the child is going to survive to birth. It is estimated that as many as 25% of all pregnancies ends naturally through miscarriage. If she is going to lose the baby naturally, you do not need to consider the abortion option.Pregnancy centers typically offer free ultrasounds or have referrals to a doctor who can perform one.
- Check to see if the facility is clean and sanitary. Abortion clinics are rarely inspected by governmental agencies. Infections often result when women visit dirty clinics. If the facility doesn’t appear spotless, find another one.
- If the abortion clinic offers ultrasounds, insist on being allowed to view the screen. Both of you have a right to view any medical tests that are being conducted.
- Should your partner have any doubts, take her home. There is no rush to make this decision as the procedure is the same up until 12 weeks. Any hesitation on her part could result in significant regrets in her future.
- Accompany her throughout the facility. Should the facility staff seek to isolate you from your partner, be immediately suspicious and take her home. Your partner needs you now more than ever. She also needs someone to ensure that she isn’t harmed in any way. Whatever the facility rules are, there is no reason you cannot hold her hand through this procedure.
Remember that abortion doesn’t erase a mistake – it often adds new problems! Abortion is PERMANENT. There is no “undoing” this decision. Research all your options and know that your local pregnancy center is there to help.
If you choose abortion or already have participated in this decision, be prepared that both of you may experience what is called Abortion PTSD (sometimes called post-abortion syndrome). According to many studies that have been done on this subject, you may experience one or many of the following emotional issues:
- Fear of failure
- Fear of being judged
- Fear of making decisions
- Fear of taking risks
- Feeling of defeat
- Feeling unworthy
- Panic Attacks
- Suicidal thoughts
- Sexual dysfunctions
- Sense of loss
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms understand that you are not alone and your local pregnancy center exists to help you find some healing.
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