How do I tell my parents I’m pregnant?

Young woman looking at her phone wondering how to tell her parents she is pregnant
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How to talk to your parents

Finding out you are unexpectedly pregnant can be scary, and you may be afraid to tell your parents. They may not know you are sexually active, and now to tell them you are pregnant may feel awkward and uncomfortable. You are probably thinking, how am I going to blurt out this news? It is not easy, but it is necessary.

The first thing you need to do is make a plan.

  • Step One: Gather all the facts and information you can. Know how far along you are and prepare to show them that you understand your options and have considered what you want to do. Are you interested in parenting? Is adoption an option for you?

    If you want to parent, how will you handle daycare while in school or working? How will you pay for diapers and baby food? Is the baby’s father going to provide for you and the baby? What would you need from your parents?

    If adoption is an option, here is a website they can look at that explains modern, open adoption, and be ready to provide your reasons for choosing adoption. You can let them know that today, adoption doesn’t mean you are saying goodbye to your baby forever. You and your parents can receive pictures, updates, and even visits.

    Show them you are taking your situation seriously and giving your future a lot of thought.


  • Step Two: Prepare yourself for their reactions. You know your parents so you can probably guess how they are going to deal with your situation, although they may surprise you. You do need to remain calm no matter what their reaction is, and remember that you have had time to get over the shock. They are just now experiencing it. Your parents may be supportive right away, or sometimes, in these situations, people say things they don’t mean. Be prepared to forgive any harsh words that may be spoken.
girl speaking to her parents
  • Step Three: Plan the timing. Springing this information on them when they are about to leave for work or just walking in the door would not be ideal. Find a quiet time when you can ask for their full attention to sit down and have a talk. Maybe a Saturday morning or after dinner on a night when no one has any plans.

  • Step Four: Have the talk. This is a bit like ripping a Band-Aid off. There is no painless or easy way to do it, so you just have to say the words, “I am pregnant.” Remember, at this point, that if they are upset, shocked, or angry, it is because they love you and want the best for you. Give them a moment to overcome the shock, and then ask them to listen to how you feel you should deal with your pregnancy.

    Next, ask what their opinions are and listen without arguing. Even if you don’t agree with them, take the time to truly consider how they feel. They may have great advice, or they may want you to choose an option you are not comfortable with. At the end of the day, the decision is up to you. Don’t allow anyone to force you to make a choice about your pregnancy that you do not want.

    At this point, you may want to have a cooling-off period and ask that you all get together the next day to discuss your options further. If there is disagreement about your next steps, this can give everyone time to regroup, consider the other’s opinions and prepare questions regarding how to move forward.

    Finally, sharing the news that you are experiencing an unplanned pregnancy with your parents is not easy. Whether your parents are supportive and caring or not, you are not alone. You can always call or text a kind and non-judgmental Lifetime Adoption coordinator for advice and support. Help and resources are available such as counseling and assistance with pregnancy-related expenses if you are considering adoption. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help.