Your Family and Friends

What to Do If You’re Being Pressured to Choose Adoption, Abortion or Parenting


When you work up the courage to tell the people in your life about your unplanned pregnancy, it can be disappointing and upsetting if they react by giving strong opinions about what you should do next. During this sensitive and scary moment in your life, the last thing you need is everyone else offering unsolicited opinions or advice.

The first step you’ll take in response to any unplanned pregnancy is always to learn about your three unplanned pregnancy options:

As you make this life-changing decision, you need support and unconditional love, regardless of which path you decide to take. It can be hurtful and confusing when someone important to you doesn’t give that to you, but instead tries to tell you what you should or shouldn’t do.

Pressure can come from different sources. You may feel like you’re being pressured by:

If you hold the opinions and respect of these people in high regard, it can be hard to hear that they disagree with your unplanned pregnancy preferences. But ultimately, this is your decision. You need to do what you feel is best for you, regardless of what anyone else thinks.

Running the risk of upsetting certain people is scary, but it’s preferable to regretting a decision as big as this. We encourage you to listen to your own instincts, and to remove yourself from external pressures whenever possible.

Whether you’re feeling pressured to choose adoption, abortion or parenting, we’re here to offer some tips to help you navigate these pressures, so that you can make whatever choice you feel is right in your situation:

Feeling Pressured to Place Your Baby for Adoption

You wouldn’t be the first woman who has felt pressured to choose adoption, or whose loved ones tried to talk her out of placing her child for adoption. Many women have asked questions like:

You never have to choose adoption if you don’t feel that it’s the right path for you. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re feeling pressured to place your baby for adoption:

Nobody but you gets to decide whether or not your baby is placed for adoption. If you’re not sure what you want to do and you’re facing pressure to choose adoption, an unplanned pregnancy counselor can offer you information about any or all of your pregnancy options and may be able to refer you to whatever services you feel that you need, whether you’re interested in resources to help you parent, receive an abortion or to place your baby for adoption.

Feeling Pressured into Abortion

A 2018 study revealed that almost three-quarters of women who had received an abortion felt that they were pressured into making that decision to some extent. Almost 60% of the women surveyed said they decided to abort in order to make someone else happy, and nearly 30% of the women said that they were afraid of losing their partner if they failed to terminate their pregnancy.

Abortion, like any of the three pregnancy choices, is a deeply personal choice. And, like all pregnancy options, it’s one that only the pregnant woman can make. However, that doesn’t stop women from experiencing pressure from others, which has led to many women asking questions like:

Whether you feel pressured into receiving an abortion, or you feel as if someone is constantly trying to talk you out of choosing adoption or parenting, external pressure regarding your pregnancy only adds to an already stressful situation. You have the right to make whatever choice you feel is best, and you deserve to make that decision without any pressure from others.

While everyone’s situation is going to be unique, we can offer a few tips that may help with some of the pressure you’re facing:

Feeling Pressured to Parent

The decision to become a parent is one that deserves a lot of thought and preparation, which is why many women don’t want to become a parent through an unplanned pregnancy. It’s understandable to want and need to be physically, emotionally and financially prepared for a baby.

However, when you’re facing pressure to raise a baby that you aren’t ready or willing to raise, you can feel angry and afraid. But you always have options, and before making their choice, women have often asked:

No one can force you into motherhood if you feel unready or unexcited. You can choose adoption or abortion if you don’t want to parent, even if there are people in your life who are pressuring you to raise this baby. There are a few important things you should know if you’re feeling pressured toward parenthood:

This Is Your Choice

When it comes to your unplanned pregnancy options, absolutely nobody can force you into making a choice that you’re not comfortable with. This decision belongs to you and you alone. Friends, family members, professionals and even the father of the baby may have their own opinions, but it’s still never their decision to make.

If you are feeling pressured into making a decision that you feel isn’t best, stay firm and seek support. An unplanned pregnancy is hard enough without having someone on “your side,” who supports you no matter what you decide.


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