I am not ready to have a baby.

Having a baby is one of the most beautiful things in the world that a woman can experience .  A lot of  women have gone through great lengths just to get pregnant.   If you did not plan this pregnancy you might look at your circumstance as a curse.  Hang in there – all will be well in the end.

If you are like me, who for some idiotic reason was not careful and managed to get myself into an unplanned pregnancy, chances are you are probably thinking of the following things:

I don’t want this.  How can I get rid of this?  Is it really a sin to kill a fetus?  It does not even have a heartbeat yet?  Maybe the test strips are wrong. I should test again. Oh my God!  I am so pregnant – my parents will kill me.  Omg! Nakakahiya!  Ayoko pa.  I am not ready.

We should get married.  He said he wants to marry me.  I am not ready to marry him yet, but we’ll I am in this situation now.  We’re heading there anyway.  Hmmmm let me look at wedding dresses.

My goodness! How did this happen?  We were safe, I counted the days, and he said he pulled it away.  He’s such a liar!

The above are typical responses.   It’s amusing and sad at the same time.  Amusing because of the denial that follows the moment you’ve the two lines from the test kit.  Sad, because by that simple test you are going to be plunged into a responsibility  you are not ready to be in just yet – being a mother.

Unwanted pregnancies can be prevented by being smart and using protection.  If you are a devout Catholic (like your parents expected you to be) a simple act of abstinence is the way to go. Obviously, we were not practicing either.

Moving forward, if you found out you are pregnant, single,  confused and afraid- here are the things you need to do to make this ordeal less stressful for you and the baby.

 Figure out for yourself if you want to keep the baby.  Depending on where your live, you might have an option not to pursue the pregnancy.  But this is something that you need to think hard about as this will have a great impact on your psyche and well being.

If your are living in the Phils, like me – it is illegal to have an abortion here.  You could land in jail.  It is also a mortal sin to kill an unborn fetus. So technically speaking, the choices you have are only whether or not you’d deal with the pregnancy alone or with your partner.

Inform your partner.  If he says he wants to get married, ask yourself if that is what you want.  It is okay not to get married, yet.  You can both wait.

It is important to know that getting married is not the only solution to your predicament.  And getting married for all the wrong reasons (especially just because you got pregnant) is the worst idea – ever.

Let your parents know.   A lot of women, especially the young ones, are afraid of letting their parents know.  This is understandable, we do not like to disappoint our parents, especially those who are barely making ends meet just so they can send us to school.  But regardless of how difficult and terrifying it may seem, you need to let them know.

Whether or not they’ll support or disown you – that is something that you need to face.  If you do not have an open communication with your parents, you can write a letter.  Send a text message or send it via messenger.  Whatever it takes, please let them know first.

Have a mature conversation with your partner on the following:

a.  Living conditions.

Where are you going to stay in case your family will disown you?  Can you afford to rent a place?  A room?  Are you going to live together?  I do not recommend that you live together.  Wait until you are married.  Why?  Unless you are certain that you want to spend the rest of your life with this person, please save yourself from the painful and awkward situation of breaking up and packing your things when one of you decides to move out because it did not work out.

b.  Finances.

How much is he willing to give in terms of financial support?  Is he working?  If not, what are his plans?  If you think that you partner’s plans is “malabo”, “mas gubot pa sa lukot” – if his plans are vague, that’s a red flag.  He might be thinking of an escape route that does not include you and the baby.  However, find out if he really does not have a plan in place – yet – because he is a lost as you, or he simply does not want to deal with the situation.  Trust your gut.

c.  Always have a back up plan.

Find a job.  If you are working, you have a good 9 months to save for your delivery.  If not, you need to find one immediately.  15 years ago there are no online jobs, now there are tons of work that you can do even if you are just at home.  If budget is really tight, you might want to consider having a delivery at  a lying in or at a government hospital.

d.  Have the courage to walk away.

You do not need an indecisive man at this critical time in your life.  If what he’s giving you is only stress, leave.  Any man worth his while will stand beside you.  You will go through the process together.  If in case your partner happens to be an asshole, let him go.  If you continue to pursue him and force him – you will only gain in the short term but lose in the long term.

Remember,  all will be well – soon.  It might look and feel like your life is over now, it is not true.  It is only the beginning of a beautiful journey with your little one.

/irene mejer

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