The Moody Blues and Unplanned Pregnancy
Finding out you’re pregnant when you don’t want to be can be a real buzz kill and give you a case of the blues, otherwise known as a bad mood. A bad mood has the potential to spill over into all areas of your life, trapping you in a cycle of negativity.
Moods can cause your imagination to run wild with thoughts like:
- My life is ruined.
- My boyfriend/partner will be angry.
- My parents won’t get over it.
- No one will help me.
- I’ll never laugh or be happy again.
- I have to have an abortion now.
The bad news is that you really do feel miserable and scared.
The good news is that your bad mood will pass.
That’s why it is reckless to make a pregnancy decision under the influence of a bad mood.
Human experience shows us time and again that: “Our moods are not permanent and are seldom unmingled with their opposites.” (Derek Kidner)
On the one hand you may feel crushed to know you are pregnant and then suddenly you may feel elated about having a baby of your own.
How is it possible to be feeling both things at the same time? That’s the way moods work.
Because of their fleeting nature, moods and feelings alone should never be the backbone of a decision to continue or to end a pregnancy. Acting out solely in response to a mood usually ends up in self destructive behavior.
Here are five things you can do to stop your moods from getting the best of you when an unplanned pregnancy disrupts your life. Try one or all of them to see what works!
Accept your mood and take some time to ride it out. Don’t act on your pregnancy decision until your mood evens out and becomes less extreme. Caution: If a bad mood lasts more than a week and you find it difficult to function, you may be dealing with depression. Call your doctor or contact a mental health agency if you feel you are depressed.
Rather than imagining the worst, get informed about your pregnancy. Find out how pregnant you are by contacting your doctor or your local pregnancy center. An ultrasound will determine the stage of your pregnancy. Once you have the facts you will be better equipped to make a decision.
Don’t suffer alone with your bad mood. Talk to a friend or someone you can trust with your pregnancy news and discuss how you are feeling. Sometimes just knowing that you are not alone is enough to make you feel better and return you to common sense and clear thinking.
Make up a list of things you can do to help yourself feel better. Stay grounded and go back to basics by citing the simple things that usually cheer you up, like walking your dog, doing some yoga, or calling a friend. Make sure you are getting enough sleep. As your list grows, you can add more items that directly relate to your pregnancy, like checking out health insurance or consulting a doctor. You may not be able to figure everything out right now, but you can take practical steps to feel better. Start small, then you can tackle the bigger stuff when you start to feel better.
Be proactive with your plan by taking the first step. Whatever is first on your list, do it. Taking one positive action will spur on others. Whether it is making that phone call, catching up on some sleep, going on that walk, take your first step in a positive direction to set your plan in motion. Others will follow. You’ll be amazed.
Moods are fickle and can confuse your thinking, as often happens in pregnancy. Only you can say if your surprise pregnancy is stressing you out and making you moody. If so, then pay attention to your moods. While they aren’t the most reliable indicators of your true feelings, they can serve as remiders that you need to take care of yourself during a stressful time in your life.
Take heart in knowing that your bad mood will pass, and when it does you will be in a better place to make a wise pregnancy decision.