Do Unplanned Pregnancies Ruin Relationships?

Medically Reviewed on 6/1/2022
Do Unplanned Pregnancies Ruin Relationships
An unplanned pregnancy can drastically alter a relationship, especially if both partners disagree on what steps to take next

An unplanned pregnancy can drastically alter a relationship, especially if both partners disagree on what steps to take next. Studies have shown that parents who have an unplanned pregnancy are less likely to be in a committed relationship and more likely to experience instability and conflict after the child is born.

How often do couples split up after an unplanned pregnancy?

Although having a baby is often seen as being a “happily-ever-after” scenario, the reality of becoming parents can put enormous pressure on a relationship. Reports have shown that one-fifth of couples break up during the 12 months after an unplanned birth. 

However, whether or not a couple will split depends on many factors such as the emotional maturity of both partners, financial security, and other stressors.

How do men react to unwanted pregnancy?

Most men react to the news of an unexpected pregnancy with a mixture of fear and excitement. 

Many may have wanted to have kids at some point, but are surprised or even panicked at the prospect of becoming a father sooner than they thought. In general, men in their 30s tend to react more favorably than those in their 20s.

Does your sex life change after having a baby?

Unplanned pregnancy and birth can lead to a huge change in your sex life due to the demands of being a parent and taking care of a newborn

It may be a long time before either partner feels like having sex again, and both partners may be so busy taking care of the baby that physical intimacy wanes.

What can cause an unplanned pregnancy?

  • Incorrect use of contraceptives:
  • Contraceptive failure: About 53% of unwanted pregnancies occur in women who use contraceptives.
  • Nonavailability of emergency contraceptive pills: If the morning after pill is not available, a pregnancy can occur as the result of unprotected sex.
  • Miscalculation of infertile days: If you and your partner rely on calculating ovulation and avoiding fertile days, you could face an unplanned pregnancy if the calculations are wrong. 
  • Lack of awareness: Inadequate knowledge of sex and its consequences could be a major cause of unplanned pregnancies, especially with teens.

How to cope with an unplanned pregnancy

As stressful as it can be to deal with an unplanned pregnancy, here are tips for coping with the news:

  • Allow yourself to feel negative emotions such as shock or fear
  • Confront your doubts
  • Consider your options
  • Don’t let finances be your top concern
  • Find nonjudgmental support
  • Talk to your doctor


Which chemical is known simply as the "hormone of love?" See Answer
Medically Reviewed on 6/1/2022
Image Source: iStock image