So, with that said- I have some advice for the Opposing/ Unsupportive parents out there who are also dealing and swimming through those above ?'s " Now what do we do?"
Well, first off- LOVE YOUR KIDS- love them as GOD loves them and embrace and support them, even if internally you are Freaking Out! This is going to be an extremely hard time or already is, and you are not making it any better by RE-ACTING out of FEAR or being worried about YOUR FAMILY NAME being talked about around town. You should care less about what others think and more about what You can do to strengthen this bond between you and your now adult child.
Secondly, Do Not make a RASH decision on this matter. Take lots of time, love and deep prayer as how to best support your pregnant daughter ( or if you are the parents of the dad in this situation- your expectant son). This is not a light situation and rushing to create an elaborate plan on how you can SOLVE it for them is not helpful. It's counter productive. We all know if a parent tells a strong willed child what they MUST do or takes away choice- the person will turn and do the exact opposite 9 out of 10 times. So take yourself out of the equation completely ( unless your son or daughter is a minor in which case you cannot do this) and Let them find their own way and make their own decisions. This is their baby and their life , not yours.
Third, INFORM , EDUCATE and do not PUSH! You are of course free to express what you think may be best for them and you can and should educate on all the choices they have. Parenting is hard- talk about the finances, life goals for the baby, life goals for the parents, their own desires and hopes and how they can accomplish the goal of parenting. Adoption is hard- Talk about the options and types of adoptions and benefits to them about finishing college or career paths, advantages and options to see and visit with the child and their hopes and dreams for their child, if they choose placement. Weigh out the pros and cons! Talk about Abortion ( if you support all choice) and what that means. Talk about grief, death, the sanctity of marriage. Share your feelings on the benefits of starting a family in the bonds of a committed relationship. GET down to the Nitty Gritty on all subjects and NEVER FORCE your desires on them- ever.
Fourth, WITHHOLDING and MISINFORMATION can block or deter expectant parents( or anyone) from truly understand what these options are. Some people live in a bubble and just never actually pay attention to what is going on outside Mayberry. If you withhold or misinform, you are setting the stage in your relationship for mistrust and deceptive behaviors. Not a good foundation for building trust, now is it!
Lastly, I heard of a recent situation where a Young Woman ( let's call her Jane) finally told her parents she was unexpectedly pregnant! She came to them hoping they would wrap their arms around her and support her as she had decided at 18 weeks to start looking at couples to place with and to give this baby a Mom and Dad. She took some time to think about this and when Jane told her parents, They LOST it completely! " how could you do this to our family?" " What were you thinking?" " Now you have to Clean up this Mess!" " You cannot chose adoption, we will raise the baby and you will Go and FIND GOD." We will get someone to Marry you, even if we have to pay them to." " You have disgraced our family name" " We will send you away for awhile and when you come back, no one will know, then after a few months of the aunt raising the baby, we will "adopt" the baby!" "Adoption is not a choice you are old enough to make!"etc....
All of these are responses based out of fear and Lack of education, and lack of unconditional love!
Please remember when counseling with your young adult...
A child is NOT a tool of repentance for your young adult child to LEARN FROM, or a Mess to clean up! You do not ever make an innocent child SUFFER as a form of Restitution, ever.
MAKING THIS RIGHT- is not just choosing to Parent, it also is Choosing a Adoption plan and finding a Family for this baby.
Neither of these are Easy, ever.
A child is not a Trophy to show off to your people " look we support our daughter as she parents because we are better parents than you!" "I would never let my own grandchild leave our family!" etc. (obviously the people are not informed on how OPEN adoption can be or is!)
A child is not a meal ticket for free gov't handouts or a ticket into the life of someone who is not desiring to be in a committed relationship with them. Both of these are detrimental to all parties involved.Though the gov't help is there as needed when choosing to parent and income is scare.
A child is NOT Magic Glue or a Band Aid that will Make everything all better and everyone Stick Together for the Good of this baby. If the foundation of the relationship is weak or already crumbly- a child only magnifies the problems.
A child is NOT to be used as a tool/ blackmail or any other selfish desire one might think of.
A child is NOT a guaranteed "someone who will love me no matter what!" Because we all know- teenagers can turn on their parents and resent them for tough upbringings and life difficulties.
Enough of that now- Let's talk about HOW TO SUPPORT YOUR YOUNG ADULTS as They Face Unplanned PREGNANCY and all the decisions that come with it....
In loving them as Christ loves you, unconditionally, you will be doing the most good, being the best influence for Good and your relationships will indeed strengthen and Their decisions will become clear to them. And guess what? Your young adults may choose to parent, get married or not- That's great for them! Congrats you are Grandparents! They may choose to place with an adoptive Family and have an open or semi open adoption too! Congrats again- you are still grandparents and may very likely have just Adopted an entire new FAMILY! Yep, in open adoption, you will be involved! ( this varies from couple to couple) They may choose Abortion ( sorry I have no congrats for this one but, suggest some post abortion counseling as soon as possible).
In our faith We believe:
" Children are entitled to birth within the bonds of matrimony, and to be reared by a father and a mother who honor marital vows with complete fidelity. Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. Successful marriages and families are established and maintained on principles of faith, prayer, repentance, forgiveness, respect, love, compassion, work, and wholesome recreational activities."
In the Christian faith, Jewish faiths and
Catholic faiths, all support The Family, adoption as a choice alternative to abortion and the sanctity of LIFE. We all know its a person's choice and all of these faiths have programs for unplanned pregnancy, expectant parents and options for answering those hard questions!
May all who are facing unplanned pregnancy find the support, love and direction they seek. God Bless!