Deer Peer Column 3/7/13

Dear Peer,
I’ve been talking to this guy since last semester, and I really like him although we are only friends with benefits.  About two weeks ago I found out I was pregnant and I’m too afraid to tell anyone especially him. I’m afraid of his reaction and what he might think of me. I know I’m not ready to raise a child I can barely finance myself!  I want to finish college, travel, and have a career, and hopefully start my own business and I feel as though having a child will hold me back. I’m going through so many emotions and it’s causing me to become really stressed. What are some options I have dealing with pregnancy?
—A.C., living in Morgan View
Dear A.C.,
We certainly understand why you are stressed at this point in time.  Your immediate concern is the pregnancy, but we also think you’re bringing up the many complications of a Friends with Benefits relationship. We hear stories about how students risk losing a good friend if things don’t work out after becoming involved sexually. We wonder about your feelings for this guy.  Do you want to be in a relationship with him?  Do you want to be real friends?  Have your feelings changed since finding out you are pregnant? Have you discussed with him what each of you wanted in the relationship or did this arrangement just “happen”?  It could be that you have different ideas about what has been going on.  Sex for men isn’t always like sex for women since men seem to be able to have sex with no emotional attachment. Some women can, too, but it isn’t always like that.We wonder what you’re afraid of in terms of telling him about the pregnancy.  You say you worry about what he’ll think of you, but maybe it’s really what you think of yourself that’s bothering you.About the pregnancy, the obvious choices are: continue with the pregnancy and have the baby; continue with the pregnancy and give the baby up for adoption or have a relative take care of it; or consider abortion.

If you decide to have this baby, would you want him in your life and in your child’s life?  Ultimately, what you decide to do is your decision but does it matter to you what he thinks?  Suppose you’re leaning towards abortion but he says he or his family would like to raise the child?  We suggest you think about the longterm consequences ofo any decision. What you want now might not be what you will want in the future.  If you decide to involve your friend, you might be permanently connected to him in some way.

The Counseling Center would be a good place to go to talk about your options. You might even bring him there with you to talk with someone together.  Peer counselors or one do the professional counselors or psychologists can help you think about your choices.  Planned Parenthood is also a good place to go to learn about options.  And there is a website that the Counseling Center staff recommends, www.pregnancyoptions.info will walk you through all the choices in an unbiased way.  Come talk to one of us when you’re ready.

The Peer Counselors

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