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New Relationships and Unplanned Pregnancy

How to Handle an Unexpected Pregnancy with Your New Partner

The first few weeks or months of a new relationship are wonderful. There are lots of firsts and romantic gestures; the whole world is full of possibilities as new and exciting as your relationship.

Some things can change a relationship and chip away at the honeymoon period. Time, naturally, exposes faults in your partner that become increasingly difficult to overlook. And the shine wears off. But nothing will end that honeymoon phase quite as abruptly as an unplanned pregnancy.

For most people, a new relationship and unplanned pregnancy couldn’t be a worse combination. Now, you're likely wondering what to do next.

You may even be asking: What do I do with my new relationship and unplanned pregnancy? Can we make it through this? If I’m not ready to parent, what can I do?

Your situation is going to be unique, and there aren’t always easy answers. But, there is help along the way, and it is possible to make the best of this unplanned pregnancy — for yourself, your relationship and your baby.

It Won’t Be Easy

To clear up any misconception at the start, let’s get this out of the way: a new relationship and unplanned pregnancy won’t be easy.

That doesn’t mean it always has to be a bad thing. Most things that are truly good in life don’t come easy. This will take a lot of hard work and dedication, no matter which unplanned pregnancy option is best for you. The good news is that this situation may improve your new relationship in a way you never could have imagined.

Remember: You are not in this alone. Millions of women experience unplanned pregnancy in the U.S. each year, and there are resources to help you and your new partner.

However, you may not want to raise this baby together at this point in your lives, or this early in your relationship. If you want to learn more about adoption (or about any of your options), you can always contact us at 1-800-ADOPTION. 

Things Will Change

An unplanned pregnancy in any relationship is life-changing. In a new relationship, unplanned pregnancy news can drastically alter the trajectory of the relationship. At first this can be challenging, especially if things were going well. But this news doesn’t have to be bad.

Take the time you need to process through all of the emotions that come with a surprise pregnancy. If it’s possible, process these emotions together. Give each other room to work through the negative feelings — fear, frustration, confusion — that come with unplanned pregnancy. Even though it’s hard, and even though things are going to change, they can change for the better in the end.

It Could Make Things Better

The timeline may be significantly faster than you had hoped, but an unplanned pregnancy can cause you and your partner to commit to each other in a serious way.

If you truly see a future together and see a path forward through one of your unplanned pregnancy options, this is a challenge you can face together. If you’re able to do this, it will be possible to navigate your new relationship and unplanned pregnancy at the same time.

It Could Make Things Harder

Let’s be honest — the opposite is also true. While an unplanned pregnancy doesn’t have to impact your relationship in a negative way, it can certainly do just that.

Some new relationships are unable to withstand the pressure of an unexpected pregnancy. This doesn’t mean your relationship is a failure; it’s just that things happened at the wrong time.

A new relationship and unplanned pregnancy can be difficult to maintain. While this can be heartbreaking, there are still ways for good to come out of your unplanned pregnancy — even without your new partner by your side.

There Is Hope — You Have Options

Anyone dealing with an unplanned pregnancy in the U.S. has three basic options. This means there are different ways to handle your surprise, and only you can know which option will be best for you and your new relationship.

  • Parenting: It may seem crazy, but parenting is always an option. If you think raising a baby in your new relationship will be possible, this may be your first choice. However, most people in new relationships with unplanned pregnancies do not see parenting as a realistic choice.

  • Abortion: You always have the right to choose abortion. Keep in mind that each state has different laws, with some more restrictive than others. Abortion is a major decision, and it should be carefully considered before you choose this path. Depending on your relationship, this is something your partner could give an opinion on, but it is ultimately your body and your choice.

  • Adoption: Choosing adoption can be a way to handle your unplanned pregnancy that benefits yourself, your partner and the baby. The adoption process is meant to benefit prospective birth mothers (like you) as much as possible by providing financial and emotional support during this difficult time. When you choose adoption, you can move forward with your own life and relationship while also giving the baby an opportunity to be loved by a family.

Professional Help for New Relationships and Unplanned Pregnancy

You don’t have to go through this challenging process on your own. You (and your new partner) can call 1-800-ADOPTION at any time to speak with a specialist who will help you understand all of your unplanned pregnancy options.

You can also ask about other resources to help with this unplanned pregnancy and create a plan that works best for you both. Should you and your partner decide to move forward with adoption, you can create an adoption plan together and take the necessary steps to strengthen your relationship during this trying time.  

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. American Adoptions, Inc. provides this information as a courtesy and is in no way responsible for its content or accuracy.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Why is American Adoptions the right adoption agency choice for many birth mothers?

American Adoptions is one of the largest licensed adoption agencies in the United States. Each year, we work with thousands of women who are facing an unplanned pregnancy and offer assistance to these women. Our large, caring staff is able to assist you seven days a week and provide you with one-on-one counseling about your pregnancy and available options.

You should choose an adoption agency where you feel completely comfortable with their services and staff. With American Adoptions, you will work with an Adoption Specialist who is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The Adoption Specialist will be your advocate and will provide support and guidance as you create an adoption plan that is right for you.

How will the family tell my child about me and the adoption when my child is older?

Each family has their own style of introducing adoption to the child. When you are matched with an adoptive family, you can ask them this question. If you would like your Adoption Specialist to discuss it for you, just let her know. He or she can share your wishes or provide good ideas from other adoptive families.

You will also be able to share what you want your baby to know about you. You can complete a keepsake booklet to share hobbies, stories, photos of you and your family and a letter to your baby. The adoptive family can provide this to your child as he or she grows older. Be as creative as you like! Some birth mothers have even knitted a special blanket as a gift to their baby or given a similar symbol of their love.

The father of your baby can fill out the birth father's keepsake booklet or write a letter too. You may have other family members who would also like to share photos or a letter to the baby. This is your opportunity to pass on your and your family's love and to share your personality, history and reasons for choosing adoption. The adoptive family will treasure whatever information you provide and will share it with the baby at an appropriate age. In most adoptive homes, the word adoption is in the child's vocabulary early on, and adoption is celebrated in their lives.

Additional Resources

Teen Pregnancy - Information for Young Women

While not every woman who chooses adoption is a young mother, many are. Through adoption, many young women have found an ability to give their babies the best life possible, while finding the opportunity to realize their own dreams, as well. Call American Adoptions today at 1-800-ADOPTION.

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Do adoption terms and phrases leave you feeling confused? Learn the meaning to key adoption words and phrases with our comprehensive adoption glossary.

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