1 out of every 4 teenage girls in the U.S. will get pregnant at least once by age 20. Not only that but about half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unplanned, including pregnancies among adult women. So if one of your friends becomes pregnant on accident, let her know she is not alone!
It's not easy to know what to say to a friend who wants your advice on a topic as personal as pregnancy. Your best bet is to let her know you are there to listen and help connect her to available resources and information so that she can make an informed decision on what to do next. Here is some important information you can share with her:
- As a teen in California, your friend has the right to confidential and affordable health care including pregnancy testing and prenatal care AND abortion services. That means her doctor is required by law to ask for her consent before releasing any of her medical information. However, if she is using her parents' health insurance, she needs to take an extra step (filling out a simple form) to keep her health information private. She can learn more about that extra step here.
- It's her right to stay pregnant and have the baby, put the baby up for adoption, OR get an abortion. This decision is her decision alone, even if she is under 18. She can learn more about her options here.
- It's important to visit a trusted health care provider as soon as possible, whether your friend is keeping the baby, putting it up for adoption, getting an abortion, or undecided. She can find a confidential and affordable clinic near her using our Clinic Finder.
- It will help to talk with a parent or other trusted adult about what to do next. If she is worried about telling her parents she's pregnant, help her practice what she'll say.
Your support can mean the world to a friend in need. Let your friend know you are there for her no matter what she decides!