Men are also affected by the pregnancy and the abortion decision making process. Many men understandably experience an emotional conflict of emotions. We offer the following information specifically to men who are affected by unwanted pregnancy, and who wish to provide support to a friend or loved one.
How are you feeling?
You may be experiencing many different emotions. You may want to be strong for your girlfriend, wife, or friend. But you may also feel frightened for her. You may feel guilty. You may, at times, feel excluded. You may be upset and genuinely sad about losing the pregnancy. Most women want to know how their partners feel. Share what you are feeling. Talk about it. Your partner will ultimately have to follow her own feelings to reach a decision, but it will help her to hear your thoughts and to know that you are genuinely concerned for her well-being and her future.
Putting Feelings into Words
Some men feel guilty about causing a pregnancy. Understand that unless you pressured a woman into having sex with you, the responsibility is equal. Focus not on who is to blame, but on what you can do now and in the future. Tell your partner that you are sorry. Think about what you can do to prevent future pregnancies. Become more involved in prevention.
”Will we break-up?” This is a difficult time for any relationship, but it could grow stronger if you take the time to talk and support one another. Show that you care. Be patient.
”I wanted this baby.” If you had hoped to continue the pregnancy, your sense of loss may be greater. People who suffer a loss need an opportunity to grieve. It is important that you find someone to talk to—someone who will listen and provide support. A counselor or a close friend may be helpful to you. We can refer you to counseling services.
Show Her You Care
1. Let her know you’re sorry that she is the one who has to go through this physically.
2. Check in with her often to see how she’s feeling.
3. Do something special for her...flowers, a gift, a love letter.
4. Be affectionate, but be prepared for her not wanting to be sexual. You may feel rejected, but remember that she connects sexual intercourse with this situation.
5. Be understanding about the symptoms of pregnancy. Nausea, tiredness, irritability and moodiness are all pregnancy symptoms. Most will go away a few days after the abortion.
6. If she chooses abortion, read the after-care instructions she is given. Have pain medication available and maybe a heating pad or hot water bottle. To avoid infection she should not have intercourse for two weeks.
7. Help with birth control. Use condoms. Help pay for other birth control options.