Pregnant? What are my choices?

In this section, find out about what choices there are if you become pregnant. If you find out you are pregnant there is confidential, free help to support you and your partner.

The only way to know if you are pregnant is to get a pregnancy test, but there are some early signs of pregnancy and these are:

  • Missed period – this is probably the most reliable sign but a missed period doesn’t always mean you are pregnant.
  • Tender Breasts – this may be a sign but it may mean your period is on its way.
  • Morning Sickness – this could come at any time of the day or night.
  • Bloating – this could also mean your period is on its way.

To find out if you are pregnant, a pregnancy test needs to be carried out. This is done with a kit that can test the presence of a hormone that is found in a woman’s urine when a fertilised egg implants in the womb.

This test can be carried out accurately, three weeks after unprotected sexual intercourse or if you have missed a period and think you may be pregnant.

For free pregnancy testing you can go to:

What to do next

Finding out you are pregnant can raise all sorts of emotions, you may have planned this, or you may not have. The important thing is that you have choice and support.

You, and your partner if you wish, can get non judgemental information and support to discuss your options through the NHS Counselling Service.

Currently this service is provided by telephone with a *BACP Registered Counsellor.  You can self refer, through calling 07812486419 and leaving a message or texting.  The Counsellor will get back to you to arrange an appointment.  Please take the time to read the information on the Counselling Service HERE .

BPAS (British Pregnancy Advisory Service) or Alternatives Listening Rooms or also provide free support.

If you are a partner to someone who is pregnant you can also access this free support.

*British Association Counselling & Psychotherapy

Unplanned pregnancy is very common. Around half of all pregnancies are unplanned. If the pregnancy was unplanned, you may feel some of the following:

  • happiness that you were able to get pregnant
  • shock that you are actually pregnant
  • worry that you aren’t ready, or can’t afford to have a baby
  • anger that you are pregnant and didn’t choose to be
  • anxiety about what other people will think
  • excitement about such a big change in your life
  • concern that you might make the wrong decision
  • fear about the process of pregnancy and childbirth

You have choice and support, the key thing is to get support to make the right decision for you and your partner, if they are involved.

NHS Tayside provides impartial, evidence-based advice and counselling for women and their partners around unintentional pregnancy HERE

If the test is positive and this is what you want and expected you will be supported throughout the pregnancy by Tayside Maternity Services . You will be referred to this service through your GP.

If the test is negative you may want to think about your contraception options

If discovering you’re pregnant is not what you expected, you could decide to carry on with the pregnancy and have the baby adopted once it is born.

If you decide that adoption is right for you and your baby, a social worker will spend some time with you to help you with your decision. The preparations for the adoption can begin before your child is born, but nothing will be definitely arranged until after the birth so you will be completely free to change your mind.

You might feel differently once the child is born and want to become a parent.

For more information you should discuss this with your midwife or doctor who will put you in touch with a social worker.

Go to our section on abortion (termination of pregnancy) HERE

Early Pregnancy Loss

Miscarriage is the most common form of pregnancy loss, affecting around one in four pregnancies.  You’ll find lots of information about miscarriage on the Miscarriage Association Website, along with links to relevant leaflets.  The Miscarriage Association also provides information and support on two less common kinds of pregnancy loss: ectopic pregnancy and molar pregnancy.

NHS Tayside provides impartial, evidence-based advice and counselling for women and their partners who have experienced early pregnancy loss.

Currently this service is provided through Near Me video calling or  telephone with a *BACP Registered Counsellor.  You can self refer, through calling 07812486419 and leaving a message or texting.  The counsellor will get back to you to arrange an appointment.  Please take the time to read the information on the Counselling Service HERE.

Pregnancy loss from 24 weeks onwards is referred to stillbirth.  You’ll find more information about stillbirth HERE.

If you have experienced a pregnancy loss from 14 weeks gestation or neonatal loss within Tayside, and NE Fife you can be referred to the Neonatal and Maternity Bereavement Service.

Tel (direct): 01382 496515 (int. 36515)

*British Association Counselling and Psychothereapy

 

Contact for more information

Tayside Sexual & Reproductive Health Services have clinics in Dundee & Perth:

For all areas & clinics telephone: 01382 425 542

Pregnant & Under 25?

You are entitled to the same services as anyone else.  There is confidential help to support you and to discuss your options around making the right decision for you, and if appropriate, your partner.

If you are under 16 and considered competent to consent to your own medical treatment, you can consent to an abortion.

If you are aged between 14-16 you do not need to take someone with you for your clinic appointment, but it is requested that if returning for the procedure you have someone over 16 with you. You are encouraged to try to involve a parent or another adult, for example another family member or friend.

For anyone under 14 the case would be discussed with the child protection team.

If you have had unprotected sex or you had a condom failure less than 5 days ago, you can get emergency contraception

 

If you are under 19 you can be part of the Family Nurse Partnership in Tayside. The Family Nurse Partnership is a Tayside wide service available for clients living within the Dundee, Angus and Perth & Kinross areas.  It is a voluntary home visiting programme for all eligible first time mums (and dads), aged 19 or under at the start of pregnancy. A specially trained Family Nurse visits the mum regularly, from early in pregnancy until the child is two.

A safe space
www.cool2talk.org

If you are age 12-25 ,  for more information or to ask a question go to the Cool2talk website where you can post a question 24/7 anonymously & receive an answer within 24 hours. You can also get free 121 on line counselling on a Monday & Wednesday 8-9pm.

Pregnant & living with a BBV

If you have a blood borne virus and are pregnant, or planning to become pregnant, you should always discuss this with your doctor to reduce any risks to your baby and to ensure you have a healthy pregnancy.  It’s a good idea to start discussing your options with your doctor or other members of your healthcare team as soon as you start thinking about having a baby.

You can read more in our Living with a BBV section or speak to our services who will be happy to answer any questions you may have.

Contraception after giving birth

Your fertility can return quickly after giving birth.

Contraception might well be the last thing on your mind but many unplanned pregnancies happen in the first few months after childbirth so even if you’re not interested in sex straight away, it’s best to be prepared.

You can get more information and advice on contraception after giving birth HERE