Facing an unintended pregnancy in Louisiana can seem like an impossible situation to be in. You may be struggling to accept the pregnancy and trying to wrap your mind around it. You may be excited to be pregnant, but terrified of what your loved ones may think of your situation. Or, you may be completely at peace with what you are facing. No matter where you fall on the spectrum of emotions and thoughts that can come with an unplanned pregnancy in Louisiana, there are options for you moving forward.

Your unplanned pregnancy options in Louisiana are to parent your child, elect to have an abortion performed, or choose to place your baby for adoption.

What are My Options if I’m Pregnant in Louisiana?

Your unplanned pregnancy options in Louisiana are parenting, abortion, or adoption. While they can seem simple at first, these options for a Louisiana pregnancy may also bring up many questions.

Common questions you may be asking about your Louisiana pregnancy options include:

  • How do I know if adoption in Louisiana is right for me?
  • Am I ready to be a parent in Louisiana?
  • What do I do if I’m not ready to parent in Louisiana?
  • What is more expensive: pregnancy or adoption?
  • Is abortion my only unwanted pregnancy option in Louisiana?
  • How do I decide on a Louisiana adoption instead of keeping the baby?
  • Can I have an abortion in Louisiana or should I keep my baby?

There are many factors for you to take into consideration when it comes to your options for pregnancy in Louisiana. It is wise to seek pregnancy counseling, and speak with your support system about your thinking process. However, the ultimate decision belongs to you. The decision you make regarding your Louisiana unplanned pregnancy always belongs to you, and the final choice should bring a sense of peace with it.

You can read more information about your three Louisiana pregnancy options — parenting, abortion, or adoption — below.

Option 1: Parenting

There are many amazing moments you may experience as a parent; however, there are many heartbreaking ones, as well. Parenting can be incredibly rewarding while also being incredibly challenging. Before you decide to parent your child, please consider what you can realistically offer as a parent.

Here are a few questions you can ask yourself before making the decision to parent in a Louisiana unplanned pregnancy situation:

  • Am I financially stable enough to support a child?
  • Do I have the emotional and physical support I will need to raise a baby?
  • Am I able to provide a happy and healthy environment for a child?
  • Do I have a realistic perspective on what parenting will be like for me in my situation?
  • Will my relationship with the birth father affect my ability to parent my child?
  • Do I have other children who need to be taken into consideration?
  • Am I mature and wise enough to take on the responsibility of aiding in the growth and development of a child?

Remember that these questions are not the only ones to ask. Every woman considering her unplanned pregnancy options in Louisiana will have different circumstances to consider, which means that you may have additional considerations to make in your situation.

If you do decide that you are ready to be a parent in Louisiana, please take a moment to check out these additional resources:

Option 2: Abortion

Electing to have an abortion is not always an easy decision if you are facing an unwanted pregnancy in Louisiana.

There are legal restrictions on abortion due to Louisiana state laws:

  • You must have one state-directed counseling session discouraging you from having an abortion, then wait 24 hours before the procedure can be performed.
  • An ultrasound must be performed at least 24 hours before the abortion is to be performed, and the image of the ultrasound must be described and shown to you by your provider.
  • Parental consent is required if a minor wants to have an abortion.

Restrictions on abortion in Louisiana are meant to discourage you to make this decision. However, the decision belongs to you alone, and if you decide on an abortion as your unwanted pregnancy option in Louisiana, that is your right.

Please speak with your medical provider if abortion is something you are considering.

Post-abortion counseling is available through many local organizations and churches if you feel you need it at any point. Healing from an abortion decision may be necessary for you, and if that is the case, know that there is help out there.

Don’t ever be afraid to ask for support if you need it, and remember that you are not alone.

Option 3: Adoption

How do you know if Louisiana adoption is right for you? The first step in making an adoption decision is to learn about adoption in Louisiana and what the adoption process looks like. The general adoption process is the same, but every adoption situation is different, so be sure to reach out to an adoption professional for more specific information about what your adoption journey could look like.

Here is some general information about choosing adoption for your baby in Louisiana:

  • You, as the perspective birth mother, remain in control of your own adoption process and who you adopt your baby to up until you sign legal documentation voluntarily terminating your parental rights.
  • Adoption is free of charge to all prospective birth mothers, along with any additional services the chosen adoption agency or adoption professional offers.
  • You can determine what type of relationship you will have with your child after placing him or her for adoption. You can choose to have an open adoption, semi-open adoption, or closed adoption. Louisiana does not regulate post-placement relationships but your adoption agency might. Always check with your adoption professional about their standards for post-placement relationships in adoption.

Be sure you advocate for yourself and never settle when it comes to finding your perfect adoptive family and post-placement relationship match!

Life after adoption may take some getting used to, but healing is a journey and not a destination. There are many healing resources available to birth mothers, including online blogs like “Thoughts From a Birth Mother,” national organizations like BirthMom Buds, local churches and pregnancy centers, and your adoption agency or adoption professional.

How to decide whether to keep a baby or not in Louisiana may feel overwhelming. If you find that you need additional support or have questions about your personal pregnancy options in Louisiana, please fill out this contact form. A professional will reach out to you and discuss all your unplanned pregnancy options in Louisiana to help you decide which path is right for you.