You’re pregnant. What are your options?
If the pregnancy is not wanted, it can come as a big shock. It’s pretty normal to feel panicked. That said, don’t try to deal with this alone. It’s important to surround yourself with people you trust so they can help you cope and figure out what to do next. If you’re 14 or older, nobody else can make that decision for you, but the support is still important. Remember: no matter what you decide, it’s your body, so it’s your choice.
If you’re not ready to tell your friends or family, there are professionals (like your school nurse, your school counsellor, or someone at Tel-Jeunes) who can help you weigh the pros and cons of each option. There are also organizations like SOS Grossesse, Grossesse-Secours, and SOS Grossesse Estrie with agents who can answer all your questions.
If you’re pregnant, there are three options: continuing with the pregnancy and becoming a parent, continuing with the pregnancy and giving the baby up for adoption, or having an abortion.
Continuing with the pregnancy and becoming a parent
This is a big choice, but a valid one. Parenthood is demanding and comes with a lot of responsibility, because another person is completely dependent on you. For that reason, here are some things to consider before choosing this option.
- Do you have people around you (like your family, a partner, or a CLSC worker) who can help you as a parent?
- What is your living situation and how would a child fit into it? For example, if you live with your parents or other people, is it realistic to have a child in that environment? Have you talked to the adults you’re living with? If you’re still in school or want to continue your education, who will be able to support you?
- What is your financial situation? A social worker at your CLSC can help you find financial aid.
Continuing with the pregnancy and giving the baby up for adoption
It’s also possible to continue with the pregnancy, then give the baby up for adoption after. To learn more about this option, you’ll need to reach out to your region’s CISSS or CIUSSS. Don’t be afraid to ask a trusted adult to help you through this process.
Having an abortion
An abortion (sometimes called a ‘pregnancy interruption’ in Quebec) is a safe medical procedure that allows pregnant people to end an unwanted pregnancy. It’s free if you have a health card. Otherwise, it may be covered by private insurance.
If you’re 14 years old or older, you don’t need your parents’ permission to have an abortion. It’s your body, so it’s your choice. If you’re 13 or younger, you will need your parents’ permission. If talking to your parents stresses you out, feel free to reach out to us. We can help you figure out different ways of bringing up the subject with them.
How long do I have?
In Quebec, you can legally have an abortion at any point in a pregnancy. But if you’re far along in the pregnancy, you may need to go to a specialized healthcare provider.
Reference : Éducaloi
What happens during an abortion?
There are two types of abortion: medical and surgical.
- You’ll be given a prescription for two medications to take at home. The first stops the pregnancy and the second, which is taken 24 to 48 hours later, causes contractions to expel the contents of the uterus. You may need to make an appointment at the clinic after that to make sure the process went well.
- This option is available if you are 9 weeks pregnant or less. It’s important to make an appointment quickly, because there may be a wait.
- Even if you have your abortion at home, don’t hesitate to ask someone you trust to support you.
- The procedure happens under local anaesthesia (meaning you stay awake the whole time), and it’s possible to take medications to limit the pain. It takes around 15 minutes, and depending on the clinic, you may be able to have someone with you in the room. Even if you don’t have someone in the room though, it is important to make sure someone can drive you home afterward.
- This option is available if you’re more than 5 weeks pregnant.
Not sure which method to choose? You’re not alone. If you make an appointment with a healthcare provider, they will be able to explain each method in more depth.
Please know that you have the right to ask as many questions as you want.
What could go wrong?
Abortions are safe and physical complications are extremely rare. However, you’ll likely be dealing with a lot of emotions so make sure to have someone you trust to support you during and after the abortion. Terminating a pregnancy is nothing to be ashamed of and we are here if you need to talk.
Reference : Ta raison c’est la bonne