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The Power of Unplanned Pregnancy Denial

“How could someone not know they are pregnant by their second trimester?” 

“Why do women take multiple pregnancy tests with the same results?” 

“How can someone be impacted by an ultrasound where they saw their baby and choose to have an abortion anyway?” 

These are all common questions when working closely with women who are facing unplanned pregnancies. 

For those on the outside of the experience, it can be easy to wonder at how firmly denial can take root in one’s mind and heart. 

How does denial play a role in an unplanned pregnancy decision? 

Caring Network operates six pregnancy resource centers in the Chicagoland area. We work closely with women who are facing unplanned pregnancies, providing free services and compassionate support. Through our pregnancy consultations and limited ultrasound screenings, women can begin safely breaking through the barriers of denial surrounding their pregnancy. To help support this important work, reach out to us today!

Seeing is Believing, or Is It?

In her essay, “Believing is Seeing” for Psychology Today, Dr. Ellyn Kaschak says, “Every human eye has a blind spot near the center of the visual field. This is not about peripheral vision or a view from the margins. It is right at the center of experience.” The way our brain copes with this blind spot is to fill in the missing pieces. “The mind is positive that it sees what is really there. The arrogance of the human mind, of the human eye is rooted firmly in physiology.”

So, physically we each have a blind spot. And through human experience, we would agree that we have them emotionally and psychologically as well.

The Blind Spot of Denial

Merriam-Webster defines denial as a “refusal to admit the truth or reality of something (such as a statement or charge).” The mind is simply unwilling to accept reality. This is a common occurrence with an unplanned pregnancy.

Perhaps a woman thought she would never be in this situation. Maybe she believes her missed period is a symptom of something else. Or her life circumstances, personal identity, core values, or worldview are simply not in alignment with a pregnancy and therefore it cannot be true.

The Impact of Unplanned Pregnancy Denial

The coping mechanism that was meant to be protective can become detrimental. A woman may be in denial to the point that she is not able to fully process a pregnancy decision because she cannot accept the fact that she is pregnant.

She may be in denial that abortion is taking the life of her child and believes it is the solution to her situation. She may be in denial that she is far along in her pregnancy and therefore is not receiving the prenatal care she needs or taking the next steps to prepare for her baby.

At Caring Network, our expert staff is here to navigate the initial stages of an unplanned pregnancy with her. She will receive important information that will help her understand her options and the risks of abortion. An ultrasound exam will be performed where she can see the beating heart of her unborn child, helping to connect the dots between her pregnancy and the life growing inside of her. Importantly, she will also be given the space to decompress and express her individual thoughts, feelings, and concerns.

Through the combination of these services and support, along with prayer, the walls of denial may begin to crumble. It is through this process that women can be equipped to choose life for their babies.

Would you like to partner, pray for, or volunteer with us? Contact Caring Network for more info on how to get involved.

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