With nearly 230,000 babies being born to teen moms in 2015 alone, the chances of your teen becoming pregnant one day may be higher than you think. Getting the news that your teen is pregnant can be overwhelming, but it’s important to do anything you can to give her the support that she needs.
Your daughter will be going through a lot physically, mentally and emotionally so knowing that she has your support will make the entire process easier for her. The following guide provides some tips you can use to ensure your daughter always knows she has the support she needs during her pregnancy.
Take your Daughter to See a Doctor
Take your daughter to a doctor right away to find out how far along she is and to have the baby checked to make sure that he or she is developing properly. Changes occur during pregnancy week by week and making sure that everything is going well from the start ensures your future grandbaby has the best chances for a healthy delivery.
Be present with your daughter when she goes into the exam room if she feels comfortable with it. This allows you to ask questions that she may not think or know to ask. You need to know how far along she is, if the doctor can tell that there are any complications to worry about, and you need to let the doctor know if there is a history of issues during pregnancy within the family.
Take Your Daughter to a Counselor
Pregnancy can cause a lot of hormonal changes to take place and this can lead some women to become depressed or anxiety stricken. It’s important to take your daughter to a therapist so that she can talk about the way that she is feeling and get any help that she may need.
This can be especially helpful if there anyone at her school is making fun of her or bullying her. Being able to talk to someone outside of her household may be easier than talking to her parents or siblings.
Don’t Push Your Personal Agenda on Her
It’s important to realize that you don’t get the final say in what your daughter chooses for her pregnancy. It’s okay to share with her what your opinion is in regard to whether or not she should raise the baby herself, get an abortion, or put the baby up for adoption. You shouldn’t try to push her to follow what you believe she should do though, because it could cause animosity in the years to come.
Instead, you need to let her know that you support whatever decisions she makes and give her peace of mind that you will be there to help her in every way that you can no matter what decision she chooses.
Take Your Daughter to Parenting Classes
If your daughter has chosen to keep the baby and raise it herself, be sure to take her parenting classes right away. It doesn’t matter how much your child has been around babies, she will not be ready for her own without help.
Going to parenting classes helps her to build her confidence so that she feels she is ready to have the baby when it arrives. You want her to be able to give proper care, without having to rely on you to do everything for her. Knowing the basics of childcare will be essential.
Consider Alternative Forms of Education
Going to school pregnant can be very difficult. Kids can be very cruel when it comes to teen pregnancy and it could make your daughter overly stressed to go to a regular school while she is pregnant because of the ridicule she receives.
Consider an alternative form of education for your daughter while she is pregnant to reduce the stress she feels. Many schools now offer online forms of education so that students who cannot attend regular school are still able to get the education that they need and deserve without having to be in an uncomfortable environment.
Throw Your Daughter a Great Baby Shower
Showing your daughter that you support her doesn’t have to be difficult to do. You could throw her a great baby shower where she can see that others are standing behind her decision too. Take her to local stores, so that she can create a baby registry for the things that she will need for the baby. Be sure to have her put things that she actually needs for the baby rather than items that may be cool to have. Babies can be very expensive and getting all of the health that you can get before the baby comes will make the situation easier.
Don’t Overstep Your Responsibility to the Baby
After the baby is born, you need to step back and allow your daughter to be a mother. There will be mistakes that she’ll make along the way because all mothers make mistakes. She needs to learn from them. If she needs advice, be available to give it to her, but don’t take over the situation.
You want your daughter to be able to take care of your grandbaby when you aren’t around and if you do everything for her, she will never learn how to do things on her own. The only time that you should step in is if you see your daughter doing something that is dangerous to the baby.
There are many first-time moms who don’t know anything about SIDS (sudden infant death syndrome) or how to avoid it. Stepping in to ensure the safety of the baby is different than trying to mother the baby for your daughter instead of her doing it herself.
Finding out that your teen is pregnant isn’t easy for any parent to hear. It’s important to remember at all times that you are the example that your child will follow in the future. You want to be sure that they are kind, compassionate, and supportive of their child and thus you need to show them by providing them with the care and support they currently need.