First, before deciding how you will tell your parents that you are pregnant, start by booking an appointment at the Pregnancy Resource Center to confirm your pregnancy, have an ultrasound to determine how far along you are, and meet with someone to talk through all of your options. (All services are at no cost to you)
Ok, let’s be honest…telling your parents that you are pregnant is not a conversation that either you or your parents want to have. It’s perfectly normal to experience extreme fear and anxiety about telling them something that you know will disappoint them. When I ended up telling my mom for the first time she guessed before I even told her.
But you will get through it.
Likely, they will be upset, but they will survive the news. It is not the end of the world even though in the heat of the moment it may feel like total devastation.
So, how do I break the news that I am pregnant?
1. Make the decision to share it with your parents as soon as possible.
The truth is that waiting may complicate you sharing your news, damage trust, and will add to the tension.
You will have to tell them eventually; putting them off is just postponing the inevitable. It is healthiest for you emotionally and physically to share your situation with them as soon as possible so that you can begin to work through the decisions that lie ahead.
2. Make a plan.
Decide when, where, and how you’ll tell them, and decide who should be present for the conversation.
Timing is critical. There may never feel like a “right time” to share news like this with your parents but there is a “better time”.
Make sure you choose a time when your parents are available to talk for a while. Choose a time when you will be able to have privacy and their complete attention. A time where they will be able to process the news.
If you feel that you may be in physical danger when you tell them, take someone you!
Some questions to think about before you share your situation:
- What time of the day would be best to tell them?
- Where should you have this conversation?
- Do you want to tell your mom and dad together or each separately?
- Would you want someone else with you when you tell them?
3. Have an idea of “what’s next” for you and your pregnancy.
Make an appointment for free pregnancy testing and an ultrasound at the Pregnancy Resource Center. During that meeting you will talk to someone who is experienced and trained in working through the different options for someone facing an unplanned pregnancy. It is important to know what resources are available to you in our Center and in our community.
Although you are probably seeking your parent’s support, remember that this ultimately your decision and whatever you chose will have long-term implications. We each have three roads to travel when it comes to a pregnancy.
4. Get to the point quickly.
The best way to start the conversation with your parents is to be upfront and clear. Have an idea of what you want to say ahead of time.
Easy conversation starters could be:
- “I have something hard to tell you, I’m pregnant.”
- “I need to tell you something but I’m afraid you will be upset with me.”
- “I just took a pregnancy test and it came back positive.”
- “I love you both and hate that this is going to disappoint you, but I am pregnant.”
5. Give them time to process.
Look past their initial reaction, and understand that your news has probably put them into a state of shock. They may not speak to you for a while, they may yell and scream, they may say things that they will one day regret, and ask you how you could do such a thing…do not take it personally. If your parents have a negative reaction, remember that it will be okay. This will get better.
Remember, they will be hearing this news for the first time, in front of you, and they do not get to prepare for how to handle their reactions to the pregnancy. You probably needed time to process the news and your parents do as well.
If your parents continue to struggle, do not panic, you are not alone. There are services that can help you and your family. You may want to ask about family counseling, or making other living arrangements; like a maternity home. Pregnancy Resource Center can help you get connected to services in your area.
Remember, if you’re having a hard time and need more advice, just let us know. We care about you and we’re only a phone call away.
Now be brave and go talk!