Despite early and unwanted pregnancy, your life goes on!
Kah Leticia Njah, mid-wife at the Global Health Clinic in Yaoundé talks on the continuity of life despite untimely and unwanted pregnancy.
Unwanted pregnancies according to the midwife are pregnancies that are mistimed, unplanned or unwanted at the time of conception. Sexual activities without the use of effective contraception through choice are the predominant cause of unwanted pregnancy. In Cameroon adolescent pregnancy prevalence of 26% and adolescent birth rate of 21.8%. The UNFPA reported an adolescent birth rate of 119 births per 1000 adolescent girls aged 15-19 years in Cameroon and UNICEF reported 128 births per 1000 adolescent girls in Cameroon.
Carrying an unwanted pregnancy is not the end of the world, says Kah Leticia Njah. Just a short time ago, adolescent girls concerned could be hanging out with her friends and wondering what clothes to wear. With an unwanted pregnancy, she’s dealing with morning sickness and scheduling prenatal visits. Her world may seem turned upside down but that’s not the end to life. Young girls may not plan to become pregnant but when that happens, youths keep the news of their pregnancy as a secret because they fear the anger and disappointment of their parents.
Kah Leticia advises that all young girls who find out that they are unexpectedly expecting should confide in their parents no matter the consequences. This is to ensure that appropriate care and advice will be given to the young girl. Secondly, the parents should seek medical attention for their expecting child; guide, help and accompany these pregnant youths during this difficult period. Also, the pregnant youth should see a psychologist to be counseled in order to accept the present situation and be able to live with it. Also, the psychologist should ensure the pregnant girl does not feel inferior and should continue her education despite her pregnant state. Her parents and friends should be available to build a support system and listen without mocking or judging the pregnant girl. Models who have lived the same scenarios and are successful should be pointed at and shown to the pregnant youth.
This all put together will go a long way to help the pregnant youth to accept the unwanted pregnancy and be able to take the challenge and face life without any challenges.
Written by Che Engochan with the expertise of Kah Leticia Njah- Midwife