Making an Educated Pregnancy Decision

Some decisions sure are easier than others. On the other hand, making an educated pregnancy decision when you have an unplanned pregnancy is a lot harder, certainly more emotional, and will be a pivotal moment in your life, no matter which path you choose.

So, how do you do it? How do you choose which path is right? First, understand that the decision is yours to make and no one else’s. Sure, you can ask for input, but at the end of the day, you are the one who will live with the decision you make, and you must be the one to choose what you feel is best for YOU!

Know Your Options

When facing an unplanned pregnancy, you have three options for your future—abortion, adoption, and parenting. Abortion means terminating the pregnancy, whether through chemical means (the abortion pill, if early enough) or surgery up to twenty-one weeks, six days pregnant in Missouri. Adoption means going all the way through pregnancy and choosing a couple to parent. Parenting is going through pregnancy and you choosing to become a parent.

Evaluate the Options

When evaluating those three choices, take a few minutes, find a comfortable, quiet place, and begin looking at what each of those options entail. Then, take a piece of paper and write two columns for each of the three options, labeling one pros and the other cons. 

After that, list what you believe to be the pros and cons for each option. This will help you to find some clarity so the next step might be easier. Consider, then write down what you think your life would be like in the future with each option and write it down.

Come to Willowbrook Women’s Center

Once you have had time to consider your options, make an appointment and come visit us at Willowbrook Women’s Center. We are a non-profit organization located in Saint Joseph, Missouri. Since 1998 we have been providing no-cost services to women experiencing unplanned pregnancies. We will go over all the information with you, make sure we answer your questions, and help you make a confident decision.

Confirm Your Pregnancy

Once you’re here, we will also offer you a no-cost, lab-quality pregnancy test to confirm your at-home results. Sometimes tests are wrong, or the way they were used was incorrect, and we don’t want you to make decisions that could be based on a false test reading. 

If your pregnancy is confirmed, we will offer you a limited ultrasound to confirm that the pregnancy is healthy and viable and that there is no ectopic pregnancy (a condition requiring immediate medical care).

The last step is to receive information on the options and abortion procedures available to you based on the ultrasound findings. The medical staff will also talk with you about the importance of STD testing and offer you free screening. Untreated STDs can cause Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID), a chronic and painful experience that we would like to help you avoid.

Make an Appointment Today

Give us a call or go online to make an appointment today. If you don’t have the time or space at home to consider your options, that’s ok. You can do that here. We’re here to be your first step, to empower you so you can make a confident decision.

How to Know if Willowbrook Women’s Center is Right for You

When you first discover you are unexpectedly pregnant, you might be in shock. Life just got really messy, and you don’t know where to turn, who to talk to, or what to do. A quick search on Google shows a few places where you can go. As you read through the list, one pops out at you, but how can you know if Willowbrook Women’s Center is right for you?

The first step when looking for a pregnancy center is to hop online, go to their website, and look at what services they offer, and also check to see what services they don’t offer. This will help you set the right expectations if you choose to pay them a visit.

What it is Like at Willowbrook Women’s Center

One thing that is difficult to evaluate from a website is what it’s actually like when you walk into a place. Our clinic is clean, inviting, peaceful, and staffed with caring and compassionate advocates and licensed medical personnel whose goal is to help you feel comfortable.

We are here to focus our attention on you in a kind and gentle manner with no judgment. You will have our full attention and we are committed to protecting you and your privacy.

One of our patient reviewers summed it up nicely, writing, “The most encouraging group of ladies. The appointment takes about an hour. They give a lot of great resources and information.”

Our Services

At Willowbrook Women’s Center, we offer a number of different services. They include:

Confidential appointments: Our services are strictly confidential, and your privacy is of the utmost importance to us. We will not reveal to anyone that you have been to our clinic and because all of our services are no cost, nothing is filed with insurance.

Lab-Quality Pregnancy Tests: Our licensed medical professionals will offer you a no-cost, lab-quality pregnancy test and once it has been completed, will go over the results with you.

Ultrasound: If your pregnancy test is positive, we will offer a no-cost ultrasound. This will tell you how far along you are, if you have an ectopic pregnancy (a dangerous condition requiring immediate medical treatment), and if your pregnancy is viable.

STD Testing: This is an important step before getting an abortion. Left untreated, an STD could affect your future health and result in chronic pain and infertility. STDs can be sneaky and have no symptoms. If you have had unprotected sex, you are at risk.

Abortion Information: As part of our pre-abortion screening, we will provide you with information about abortion (including different methods and what you can expect the cost to be), and we’ll go over all the information with you, answer your questions, and help you make a confident decision.

Community Resources: If you choose to continue your pregnancy or need treatment for a positive STD test, we will provide you with a list of resources from the community to help you. We partner with doctors and agencies to provide services, resources and ongoing support.

Make an Appointment

If you need help, call and make an appointment. We are here for you and will do everything we can so that you can make the best possible decision for YOU!

If after you have made the appointment, you find you cannot make it, or change your mind, that’s ok. Just give us a call, and we will be happy to reschedule or cancel it for you. This way we can open up that time to someone else that is looking for an appointment.

When to Take a Pregnancy Test

If you are experiencing early symptoms of pregnancy, it’s possible you are pregnant. Even the most reliable birth control methods can fail. Taking an at-home pregnancy test is a quick way to find out, but the trick is when to take a pregnancy test. 

You might be tempted to go out and buy an over-the-counter (OTC) pregnancy test right away. That’s fine, go ahead, but don’t take it until you know when it is the best time. Otherwise, you might as well take those hard-earned dollars and flush them down the toilet. 

How Pregnancy Tests Work 

OTC pregnancy tests use your urine to test for the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin or hCG. Your body produces hCG if you are pregnant and is only released if a fertilized egg attaches to your uterus lining or, possibly, outside the uterus. After the egg has implanted, it takes 7 to 12 days for the hormone levels to rise enough to be detectable. 

Tests vary in urine collection method, the way they display results, and their sensitivity. If you choose a test that is less sensitive, your chances of an inaccurate test result are higher if taken too early. 

The required urine collection method varies by test but is usually done in one of a few different ways: collect it in a cup for either dipping a testing stick in, using a dropper to transfer some to the test, or placing the testing stick into your urine midstream. The instructions provided with the test will tell you which way you should collect it. Follow those and all other instructions carefully. Once you have waited the length of time recommended by the test, the results will be displayed. 

The results will show either the words “pregnant” or “not pregnant,” a change in color, a symbol (+ or -), or a line. The instructions on your particular test will tell you which result to expect. 

When to Take the Pregnancy Test? 

For the most accurate result, you should take the test the week after your missed period. If you don’t wait long enough, the results could be a false positive. It is for that reason that most manufacturers will tell you to repeat the test two days later. 

Here are some early pregnancy symptoms that might prompt you to take a pregnancy test. 

A Missed Period: This is the most reliable, and sometimes, first symptom  of pregnancy. To know when you have missed your period, recall the first day of your last period, calculate the date 28 days later and that is when your next period is expected unless you have a longer cycle. If that is the case, use the number of days in your cycle. 

Cramps: When implantation occurs, some women experience feelings similar to menstrual cramps. This can lead you to think your period will be coming soon. 

Tender Breasts: If your breasts are tender and swollen, possibly with veins that are more apparent than usual, this may indicate pregnancy. This is due to the estrogen and progesterone hormones that will start building up.

 Just Don’t Feel Right: If you just don’t feel right, or maybe feel a bit sick with nausea, fatigue, food aversions, and frequent urination, especially on top of some of the other symptoms, these would make pregnancy even more likely. 

When to Come in for a Pregnancy Test 

Whether you’ve recently taken an over-the-counter pregnancy test and had a positive result or you’re just too scared to take a test, and you aren’t sure you want to continue the pregnancy, make an appointment and come in to see us at Willowbrook Women’s Center. We are here for you, to give you the unbiased information you need and to offer the services necessary to help you make an informed decision. We are your first step!

About Us

Located in Saint Joseph, Missouri, Willowbrook Women’s Center has been providing pregnant women with free and confidential services since 1998. In 2009, limited ultrasound was added to the list of free services. Under the supervision of our medical director, licensed medical staff provides lab-quality pregnancy tests, limited ultrasounds, and STD testing to women who are exploring solutions for their pregnancies. Patient advocates are trained in pregnancy options consultation. All appointments are professional, confidential and free. We are proud to offer a relaxed, judgment-free environment where women can be empowered to make the best decision for their pregnancy.

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