Anyone who finds out they are pregnant/hapū has decisions to make. Once the pregnancy is confirmed, there are some options to consider and only you can decide the best option for you.
Finding out you are pregnant can bring up many different emotions, especially if it is an unintended pregnancy.
WHAT shOuld I DO FIRST?
The first step is to take a test to confirm the pregnancy.
To get the most accurate result, we recommend you wait at least a week after you’ve missed your period to take the test. It is best to do the test first thing in the morning, when your urine is most concentrated.
The earlier you confirm the pregnancy, the more time you have to make a decision and the better you can take care of yourself.
You can get a reliable pregnancy test, advice and referral for pregnancy care at any of our clinics. You can also get a pregnancy test from your doctor, other sexual health clinics, pharmacies or supermarkets.
Positive Pregnancy Test?
If you are pregnant, and you think you want to continue the pregnancy, there are three options for you to consider:
- Continue the pregnancy with your partner
- Continue the pregnancy on your own
- Continue the pregnancy and adopt out, foster or whāngai
If you decide to continue the pregnancy, you can make an appointment at Family Planning, or with your doctor, to talk about the support that is available.
You will also be put in contact with a midwife or lead maternity carer.
If you are considering an abortion, it is important that you are aware of the following information:
- You should make an appointment at Family Planning or with your doctor to talk about your options as early as possible in your pregnancy
- When you are booking an appointment, it is a good idea to mention you are considering an abortion to the person on the phone, so we can book a slightly longer appointment for you
- It is your decision to request an abortion and it is your decision not to have one. No one has the right to make you consent to an abortion or to stop you having one
- You have to talk with two doctors to make the abortion legal
- You will be given the opportunity of talking with a counsellor before making your decision
- You can change your mind at any time
- You can have an Early Medical Abortion (EMA) if you are less than nine weeks pregnant. Surgical abortions are usually done up to 12 weeks and six days into the pregnancy, but can be done later. The doctor/nurse will explain the different abortion methods
- Abortion services are not available in all New Zealand towns and cities. If you are a New Zealand resident and your local District Health Board (DHB) doesn’t provide an abortion service in your local hospitals, the DHB may pay for your travel
- It is not legal to import medications into Aotearoa New Zealand or to take any imported medication to cause an abortion.
How do I make a decision?
Many women have lots of different feelings when they find out they are pregnant. Often it helps to talk about it with someone else.
Choose someone you trust and who will listen to you. This could be your partner, a trusted friend, whanau or family member. If you’re living at home it can be very helpful to talk with your parents, family or whanau about it.
You can book an appointment at Family Planning to talk about pregnancy options if you like. Talking to Family Planning staff, counsellors, or your doctor can be very helpful as they will give you unbiased advice.
Our booklet 'Abortion – What you need to know' may help you. It has information about the signs of pregnancy, decision-making, getting help, the law, types of abortion, access to abortion services, and risks.
The following questions may help you work out what is the best decision at this time in your life.
- Do you have support from family and/or a partner?
- Are you ready to be a parent?
- Who can you call on to offer you support emotionally and financially?
- How will this decision affect your plans for study, work or travel?
- Where do you see yourself in one, two and five years’ time?
- Download our information booklet: Abortion - What You Need to Know (PDF)
- Abortion Services in New Zealand
- Legal information booklet for pregnant teenagers written by Community Law Wellington and Hutt Valley
Family Planning has clinics located throughout New Zealand. Use the clinic finder to find your nearest clinic.