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Unplanned Pregnancy Counseling [A Complete Guide]

Unplanned pregnancy counseling is one of the best things you could do for yourself if you’ve found yourself unexpectedly pregnant because it can be easy to get lost in the many emotions you might be experiencing. What do I do now?

You are not alone. American Adoptions is here to help. Our unplanned pregnancy counseling is available to you 24/7 so that you can get the support and guidance you need at any time. Our pregnancy option counselors will help you cope with the many emotions you’re feeling and walk you through each of your options to determine which is best for you.

Many of the staff members here at American Adoptions are birth mothers who have been in your shoes before and understand the difficult emotions you’re dealing with. Our options counselors will be by your side every step of the way to be a shoulder to lean on and a boon of resources.

In search of a pregnancy counseling hotline? Call 1-800-ADOPTION now to get free information and support.

What is Options Counseling for Pregnancy?

If you’ve been researching your unplanned pregnancy, you’ve likely come across the term “options counseling.” Pregnancy options counseling is just what it sounds like: counseling that helps you explore all of your unplanned pregnancy options (adoption, abortion and parenting) and your feelings about each of them.

Ultimately, the goal of options counseling for pregnancy is to help women determine how they want to move forward with their unplanned pregnancy. The best options counseling for pregnancy is unbiased and supportive; options counselors should not attempt to sway a woman’s decision, but help her come to her own decision that she feels good about.

Unplanned Pregnancy Counseling at American Adoptions

At American Adoptions, we’re passionate about making sure every woman has access to counseling during pregnancy — whether she ultimately chooses to pursue adoption or not.

We also know these concerns don’t just magically stay contained to traditional business hours. You are pregnant round-the-clock, and that’s why we have a 24-hour unplanned pregnancy hotline. You can call our unplanned pregnancy options hotline at 1-800-ADOPTION at any time, to get connected with an adoption specialist who can help you make an adoption plan.

If you want to talk about your pregnancy options, counseling can help you to work through your thoughts surrounding the following subjects and more.

  • Your unplanned pregnancy optionsEvery woman ultimately has three: parenting, abortion or adoption. You and you alone are qualified to make the ultimate decision for your baby, but that doesn’t mean you’re completely alone in the process. There’s a lot to talk about, no matter which of the options you’re considering. For example, if you’re thinking about parenting, you may need help tackling the financial part of the equation. Raising a child isn’t cheap, but a pregnancy counselor can help connect you with information about financial resources to help should you choose to parent. And of course, we are always more than happy to talk with you about pursuing adoption for your baby while providing crisis pregnancy counseling and resources.

  • Feelings about “giving up” on your baby. It’s not uncommon for women to worry that they’re “giving up” on their babies by choosing adoption, and that’s partially because of popular adoption language. While people may refer to it as “giving a baby up for adoption,” in no way, shape or form are you giving up on your child. A pregnancy counseling helpline can help you to understand just how much you are actually giving your child by choosing adoption.

Choosing adoption for my daughter was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make. However, I am grateful knowing that my child is loved and cared for by her adoptive parents. They can provide for her and give her everything that I wish I could have given her. American Adoptions also helped me by providing me with a place to live and the resources I needed to get back on my feet. I am very thankful to them for that,” said Tara about her decision to choose adoption through American Adoptions.

  • Communicating your decision to family and friends. If you’re thinking about adoption, you may be wondering how to tell your family members and friends. It’s normal to be concerned about their reactions, and through counseling for pregnancy and adoption, you can learn how to have healthy discussions with those closest to you — and how to clearly communicate that this is your decision, and anyone close to you should be supportive. Sometimes, it can even be helpful to begin counseling during pregnancy before you tell those closest to you about the pregnancy; a neutral professional may help you to work through your feelings before you have to address the opinions of those around you.

  • How to choose an adoptive familyAt American Adoptions, you get to choose your child’s adoptive parents. It’s extremely important, because this ensures that you can help to build the life you imagine for your child. Who are the perfect adoptive parents? What family best matches your goals for your child? How will you know when you’ve found the right couple? Pregnancy counseling can help you to determine not only what you are searching for in the ideal adoptive family, but how to work on developing a relationship with that family when you do find them. If you’d like to look through adoptive family profiles today, to get a sense of what these hopeful parents are like, you can click here.

  • Whether or not adoption is really right for youSome women do find that, after undergoing pregnancy options counseling, adoption isn’t necessarily the right path for them. And that is completely okay. At American Adoptions, we never want to persuade anyone to stick with a certain unplanned pregnancy option. If adoption is right for you and your baby, you’ll know. If it’s not, you’ll know that, too. It’s our job to help you come to a decision you feel comfortable with, whatever that may be.

Even if you know the answers to all of the above questions — or if you’ve already made your decision and formed an adoption plan — unplanned pregnancy counseling can still be helpful. Sometimes it’s enough just to have a friendly, understanding ear to listen when you’re working through uncomfortable thoughts and emotions in the middle of the night — and that’s what we’re here for.

American Adoptions offers counseling for pregnant women 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at absolutely no cost to you — whether you choose adoption for your baby or not. When you call our unplanned pregnancy helpline, you’ll never talk to an answering machine; instead, you’ll be connected to a licensed professional for the unbiased options counseling and support you need. This professional will be able to talk you through all of your options, not just adoption, and support you in doing whatever you think is best for your baby. Using our options counseling services never commits you to the adoption process.

If you do decide to move forward with adoption, you will be connected with your own dedicated adoption specialist, who will continue to provide 24-hour pregnancy support and guidance throughout the process.

It is always an option to call the American Adoptions pregnancy counseling hotline. To speak with an adoption specialist, all you have to do is dial our unplanned pregnancy options hotline at 1-800-ADOPTION today.

Information available through these links is the sole property of the companies and organizations listed therein. America 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

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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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