Are You 14 and Pregnant in Missouri? We are Here to Help You Navigate Your Teen Pregnancy
You sat there and stared and hoped that the little lines on the pregnancy test would be different. That you wouldn’t have to deal with an unplanned pregnancy. But the test came up positive, and, now, here we are. So, you’re fourteen and pregnant in Missouri. Now what?
It can feel very scary and intimidating to come forward and tell anyone such big news, especially your parents or legal guardian. But the longer you wait, the longer before you can start making a plan and getting the care that you need. Don’t limit your options by waiting too long. This is not something you should have to go through alone, and the truth will become impossible to hide sooner than later. The quicker you open up and come forward to ask for help, the more time you have to plan your pregnancy and receive proper care.
The first thing to do after talking with your parents is to go see your doctor. They’ll be able to administer a much more reliable pregnancy test to verify that you are in fact pregnant, along with suggesting any vitamins or special prenatal care you made. So now you’ve seen your doctor, verified your pregnancy, and gotten some basic prenatal care and advice. What happens next?
The Top 3 Options Available to You If You are 14 and Pregnant in Missouri
1. Parenting. Your first option is parenting. If you choose parenting, you can continue with the pregnancy and keep the baby. If you are considering this option, please, envision your future raising a baby and be realistic.
This is absolutely a life-changing decision. It will not be easy for you to raise a baby at such a young age. Between school, friends, and not legally being considered an adult yet, it will be tough to provide your baby the time, attention, and constant care they require.
If you have the emotional and financial support systems in place to make this work and genuinely feel like raising a baby is something you can handle, then parenting may be the right option for you. But it does not hurt to still speak to professionals and find out more information about your other two options.
2. Abortion. Your second option is abortion, in which case you would terminate your pregnancy and move on. There are still many stigmas surrounding abortion, but it is a fairly simple and safe procedure as long as you terminate your pregnancy early enough. Please be sure to speak with a certified and licensed doctor about any medical questions you have regarding the procedures available to you if this is an option you are considering.
Keep in mind that, while abortion laws are subject to change and vary by state, many states have strict second and third trimester abortion laws. In Missouri, abortion is only legal up to 22 weeks from your last menstrual period. It is against the law to terminate your pregnancy after that time unless your life or health is threatened.
Waiting too long to make a decision can result in not being eligible for an abortion, so be sure to speak with a doctor as soon as possible if you are considering this option.
3. Adoption. Your third option is adoption, which would mean continuing with your pregnancy and placing your baby with an adoptive family after you give birth. These days there are several different types of adoption available. With open adoption, you don’t have to worry about never seeing your baby again after placement. You can still be a part of your baby’s life while allowing the adoptive family to provide him or her with the best possible opportunities.
Remember, adoption is not giving up. You are not “giving up” your baby, you are placing your baby for adoption in a loving home. You are not being selfish by choosing adoption. In fact, you are performing a selfless act of love for the benefit of your baby.
Considering Adoption as a Pregnant Teenager in Missouri
While adoption can seem overwhelming, Adoption Choices of Missouri is here to help your adoption process go as smoothly as possible. We are a full-service, licensed local adoption agency. This means that all of our adoptive families are pre-screened and qualified, so your baby is guaranteed to go to a loving and stable home no matter what.
Our adoption specialists will work side-by-side with you to guide you throughout the entire adoption process. We will help you with every step of making your adoption plan, from looking through family profiles and choosing an adoptive family, to making your birth plan and following up on doctor visits, and even beyond that, to helping adjust to life after by providing post-placement resources like counseling after your delivery.
We offer many financial and adoption support services to help you throughout your pregnancy and after. We help provide financial assistance, safe housing, medical care, mental health care, and legal representation. Your adoption caseworker will help you file and navigate all the paperwork to find the best level of support available to you.
Choosing Adoption is Your Decision, Even During a Teen Pregnancy
No matter what option you choose, always remember that this is ultimately your decision. Even if you are 14 and pregnant in Missouri, you have the absolute and final say in what happens. No one else can tell you what to do with your baby. It is entirely up to you which route you want to take in regards to what you think is best for you and your baby.
Even if you choose adoption, your voice will be heard every step of the way. You will be the one who ultimately decides what type of adoption you want, what criteria to look for in the adoptive family, and, finally, who your baby is placed with.
But what if you change your mind about adoption once you have started the process, or even once you have your baby? That’s okay too. You can change your mind at any point in the adoption process. While our adoption caseworkers are available to help make sure that it is not necessary to begin with, you can even change your mind up to 48 hours after you give birth.
At the end of the day, it is your baby, and your decision is always the final and absolute say when considering adoption or any other options. Adoption Choices of Missouri serves birth parents statewide and beyond, please call us or text us to learn more! Call us toll free at 877-903-4488 or, in Missouri call or text us at 1-816-527-9800
Meet the Author: Kelly Felix is a graduate from the University of New Orleans. She holds a BA in English as well as a BA in Sociology. Her English concentration is in journalism, and her specialties in sociology are gender studies and environmental sociology.
When she isn’t voraciously guzzling coffee or devouring books, Kelly can be found either bent over a canvas working on her art or at her computer playing video games. She has hands-on classroom teaching experience from her time working as a substitute teacher for Kelly Services. Kelly also completed an in-house editorial internship at Pelican Publishing Company, and she finished the goal internship program at Green Light New Orleans. Kelly generally exists in a state of suspended disbelief, but when she’s not there she resides in New Orleans.