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unplanned pregnancy what did/would you do?

(34 Posts)
prettyballerina Tue 11-Aug-09 13:02:42

I am very confused as have just, (5 mins ago) found out I am pregnant. It is my first pregnancy.
I am interested to see what others have done in this situation because it might make my decision easier.
My gut feeling is that I am too young to have a baby (will be 23 in October)
However, I have been with my partner long enough for both of us to know we want children together at some stage. We live together and he earns more than enough to support both of us. I have a degree, have been traveling and have lived abroad, so have probably got most of the things early twentysomethings want to do out of my system. Similarly although I want to be successful, I have always said that family and happiness would drive me instead of a career.
But, I just never imagined I would have a baby at 23 and to make things worse am due to start a new job on Monday.
This is my first post and I am a little nervous, but any advice or stories you can give me would be more than welcome.

arolf Tue 11-Aug-09 13:38:02

well, not quite the same situation as you - but very similar - my DP and I were living on different continents (for work) when I found out I was pregnant - this was in January this year, just after I got back to my job after christmas in Britain - and at first there were a LOT of tears from me, as I didn't think we'd cope. It wasn't an ENTIRELY unplanned pregnancy, just unexpected (we did not expect to conceive on our 1st and only try, let's put it that way!), and he lost his job when I was 8 weeks pg, then I handed in my notice on my job overseas so I could come home (which we kind of planned anyway), so for a couple of weeks it looked like we'd both be unemployed, and that was a very shitty time. However, I was offered a job back here (sitting at my desk typing this actually ), his company got bought out, and in May I moved back, started my new job, we found somewhere nice to live, and now I have just under 4 weeks left at work before mat leave starts! So you can probably guess, I chose to keep the baby (who just gave me a hefty boot in the ribs, in case I'd forgotten his presence in the last 10 minutes hmm)

I'm 27 now, and do feel a little like I'm playing at being a grown up, but I'm in a very stable relationship, my DP is (now) delighted that he's going to be a dad, and we're both just counting the days until baby arrives!

So what I would say is - give it a couple of days, speak to your DP about it, and really think about what you want from life. Oh, and read as much mumsnet as you can, I've found it very useful when having a panic about anything - although it can on occasion raise the blood pressure a little, it's generally a great source of advice and hand holding.

Good luck

cazboldy Tue 11-Aug-09 13:44:08

I was in your situation - well not as far forard in life i.e degree etc, because I was 14 when I fell pg.

now ds1 is 12

and although ideally I would have liked to have been older, I really wouldn't wish it was any other way

cazboldy Tue 11-Aug-09 13:44:57

oh and he was conceived after a condom split and the MAP didn't work, so we decided he was just meant to be

prettyballerina Tue 11-Aug-09 14:15:59

wow congrats arolf, one of the things I am worrying about is whether I will be able to get mat leave if I am already pg when start new job, but thats looking a bit far ahead I think. Also caz thank you for your input as well, I will let you know how I get on

mrsboogie Tue 11-Aug-09 14:43:57

here is a website with some info on maternity/ employment rights.

Take your time and consider long and hard what you (and he ) think is the best thing to do. If you are deciding about whether to terminate there is counselling available to help you to come to the right decision for you. (be careful not to approach any advisory places that are secretly pro-life set ups masquerading as impartial ones)

It's not really a question of being too young at 23 - its how mature you are as a person - some 35 year olds are to immature to have babies.

Alsoit is worth bearing in mind that many people feel really shocked and think oh my god what have I done? when they discover they are pregnant even if they were actively trying and have other kids and knew exactly what they were doing! That feeling will wear off!

arolf Tue 11-Aug-09 15:06:56

prettyballerina - you have to have been in your job for 26 weeks before the due date to get maternity pay, but for maternity leave, you are eligible for it no matter how long you've been in your job in this country (one other reason I was NOT staying in the country I was in earlier this year, where I would have had to have worked there for a year to be entitled to any leave, and it would all be at my manager's discretion angry)

also, wait and see how it goes - in early pregnancy (in my very limited experience) you are comprised predominantly of hormones, and thus apt to change your mind at the drop of a hat (I know I was! ). I was, to put it bluntly, shitting myself with fear for a few weeks after the positive test - I wished one day that I would miscarry just to take the burden of deciding what to do off my shoulders. the next day I was crying and hated myself for even thinking such a thing. But once I'd seen my baby on a scan at 8 weeks, I knew that I couldn't let anything happen to him - would I have felt the same a few years previously? who knows? my sister saw one of her babies on a scan, and still decided to terminate, as it was right for her at the time. She regrets it a bit, but on the whole thinks it was the only decision she could make. (she had 1 abortion and 2 miscarriages, and is glad in retrospect that she doesn't have a child now - but looks forward to trying for one with her new man when they feel it's the right time)

It's a difficult decision to make, but it would be at any age - and only you (and your partner) can decide what is right for both of you at this time. (oh, and when your baby is kicking you - hard - all sodding night long in the bladder, and you STILL can't wait to meet him, that's when you know it's the right decision wink)

Laura233 Tue 11-Aug-09 15:22:11

Hi Pretty Ballerina,

This is a decision only you can make, it depends entirely on your circumstances and what is right for you now.

I am 21 and currently 16 wks pregnant, I am happily married and it is something we both really wanted, but doesnt mean to say that when I did the preg test and it came back positive I didnt burst into tears and think OMG what have I done, how will I cope!! Hormones will drive you crazy by the way!

I cant wait to have my little girl now (90% sure she is a girl anyway) and are really enjoying planning everything, and I have been very ill since 4 wks and I am still looking forward to it.

There will be a million thoughts going through your head at the moment, maybe make a pro's and con's list, it might help you make your mind up. Think about life with and without a child etc... and as other people have said, why not speak to a counsellor or dr if you are still struggling.

Hope this helps.

Take care,


slushy06 Tue 11-Aug-09 16:43:01

Hi I was 17 when I found out I was pg my dp had just finished uni and I gave up my study's.

We kept the baby and it was the best thing I ever did. I am 21 now I have a 3 year old son a 3 week old dd and a mortgage a stable relationship with no problems we are hoping to get married soon.

It has turned out to be great for me as I will get to stay at home and raise my kids and still be young enough when they are both in school to go and complete my study's and start a career without having to take any breaks to have kids. Also as we were so young we had no debts or baggage so to speak.

I sometimes feel a little sad when I see all my friends going out partying and I am left behind but then I look at my children and realise I have something much more special. That I am the lucky one I hope this helps.

4andnotout Tue 11-Aug-09 16:48:30

I fell pg with dd1 when i was 18 and had her when i was 19. I split up with her bio father before she was born and haven't seen him since, but have gone on to meet a lovely dp and have 3 more dd's. I'm now 27 and don't regret a thing.

KnockedUpDelf Tue 11-Aug-09 16:55:02

I think if you can at all manage it having your babies when you are younger is the way to go.

I can't believe the difference in how I feel physically in this pregnancy at 32 compared to how easy it was at 26.

If you are in an OK situation you just figure stuff out, it won't be easy but it is possible.

RubyLove1 Tue 11-Aug-09 16:57:57

Congrats prettyballerina!

Just because you have a baby, doesnt mean you cant have a successful career. It is still very possible. If you have the support, which you sound like you do and you are determined and focused, it may be a little harder with a baby but if you have faith in yourself that you can be a good mother and have a successful career then you will.

Like you said you have done alot of things that most people have/are trying to get out of their system, so I think that puts you at an advantage as you wont perhaps regret some of the thing you didnt do, if you are that type of person of course.

My Mum had me and my siblings in her early twenties and as we got to nursery/school age it was easier for her to get back into work and build up her career. And she was a single Mum of 5! I know thats a bit of an extreme and Im not telling you what do or anything but just thought I'd give you my take on things.

Everyone seems to tell me that there's never a "right" to have a baby and you just get on however you can.

The hormones will drive you crazy, I used to think I was of sound mind/logic/common sense but I think I threw that all up down the toilet with morning sickness grin What Im trying to say is that you only found out 5 mins ago so you will go through the whole spectrum of emotions and thoughts and anxieties.

Good luck whatever you decide...RL1

HollyBunda Tue 11-Aug-09 17:09:22

My first unplanned pregnancy was when I was 19. I had a termination and I don't regret it at all.
I was far too young and wanted more of an independent life.
I went on to have a terrific career as a Dj and traveled all over the world.
When I was 27 I got pregnant (again, unplanned) and decided to keep the baby as my life was far more settled with my partner, I had done so many wonderful things, and I felt much more mature and sure in myself to become a mother.
I am now pregnant with my third. I love my children very much but I am so SO glad I had them when I did.
I wish I never had to make the decision to terminate, but I did, and I'm glad I had the choice.

designerbaby Tue 11-Aug-09 22:56:57

OK, probably going to get flamed for this, but feel I have got to stick my neck out...

Surely a termination has got to be a last resort? If you really thought you couldn't manage? You sound like you're in a pretty good place, frankly...

It's a shock, sure, and it's maybe not quite the timing you had in mind, but is that really worth ending the pregnancy for?

Life will change for you, for sure, but it won't be over.

I just feel that if you and your partner feel that you could love this child, and provide for it, then you should try to do just that...

I've never been in this position, so many will say I have no right to say anything, but my mum had a termination under similar circumstances (allbeit a different generation) at a similar and has never really gotten over it.

I'll go back to the 19th century now and hide behind my chesterfield.

I really hope I haven't offended.


expatinscotland Tue 11-Aug-09 23:10:44

I agree with KnockedUpDelf.

prettyballerina Thu 13-Aug-09 09:40:14

Thank you all for your messages and support. I have decided to keep the baby and am very excited. Have told my family and they have been very supportive. Am going to leave it til 8-12 weeks before I tell anybody else though, hopefully by then I will have figured out some ways to deal with judgmental friends eek

arolf Thu 13-Aug-09 09:49:20

glad you were able to make a decision! it's great your family have been supportive too - I imagine that would be a great help.

and regarding judgy friends - I have plenty of them (and very judgy parents too) - we just presented the pregnancy to them as a fait accompli - told them we were expecting a baby, when it's due, and then left them to it. Apart from my family, everyone said the right things, and now even some family members are coming round to the idea (with only 5 weeks left, it's about bloody time too - but that's another story really!).

Good luck with the next few weeks, and I hope you get to see your baby on a scan soon - it's really quite overwhelming!

slushy06 Thu 13-Aug-09 10:40:33

Glad you decided on what was best for you and your partner. Also great that your family are being supportive. When you tell your friends I would make out it was planned Or at least don't mention it was a accident and say how pleased you are then they tend to be happy for you IME.

KnockedUpDelf Thu 13-Aug-09 11:43:55

LOL, your friends will be green with jealously when they are struggling with babies and toddlers in their 30s and you are swanning about with your independent 10 year old.

I know I bloody feel that way about my clever friends who did this stuff 10 years ago!

mrsboogie Thu 13-Aug-09 11:47:44

Congrats on your decision! which will be the hardest and easiest decision one at the same time!

definitely leave it 'til 12 weeks - everyone should. once you get to 12 weeks there's a much better chanceof everything being ok.

oh and as for judgemental friends? don't leave room for them to judge - tell them the news as if you expect them to agree that it is the most wonderful thing in the world! do not be apologetic or sheepish or anything like that.

your friends will no doubt be delighted for you.

notevenamousie Thu 13-Aug-09 12:13:49

I was like you, though a few years older, and hadn't been with my dd's father for much more than a year.
My friends still don't really get it, as I am still the only one with children, but they have been lovely in their own way. My career is very different, but I manage to provide for myself and dd (relationship ended sadly - he, at nearly 40, was not ready) and have purpose to my work and a happy home to come back to. DD is 2 and a half, I don't regret anything. Congratulations and good luck smile

designerbaby Thu 13-Aug-09 14:58:53

Good for you, PB. Good for you.


MACKAT Thu 13-Aug-09 21:24:39

Could someone advise which of the agencies are neutral and which are pro? Have booked assuming advise at counselling will be neutral but need to know it is is going to be biased. Thanks
Have not decided what to do butthought counselling would help decide. clearly not if in the wrong agency.

Ilovebeingamummy Thu 13-Aug-09 21:39:33

Good for you pb - I second that.

I was 24 having dd (planned although had only known dp 18mths), 26 having ds and will be 29 when dc3 come along (finally after 3 mc/s)

I was similar situation in that none of my peers had any children (most of my old school friends still don't now although we are all approaching 30) but found that as soon as dd was born I made lots of new friends with new babies (antenatal classes are a godsend)

Also i had started a job in august and was pregnant in the sept. I did get maternity pay (as previous poster says you have to have been in job for 26 wks before mat leave starts). So you should be fine for that. Tax credits also godsend if you are eligible.

Enjoy this precious time...i honestly believe (for me) starting having children at 24 was the best decision I ever made (I'm tired enough with 2 plus bump at 29....I'd shudder at the thought of doing it in 10 years time!)

Again..good for you PB! x

mrsboogie Fri 14-Aug-09 00:37:51

I believe that the Marie Stopes Centres are unbiased MACKAT

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