Lola Rolls
Advice on Life from a Former Sideshow Fat Lady

Unplanned Pregnancy

Posted By on Friday, October 11th, 2019

Dear Lola,
I’ve been hooking up with this guy on a semi-regular basis for the last four months or so.About every few weeks or so, we run into each other at one of the bars where we hang out with other grad students, and then we end up going home together. We definitely have a good time with each other, but neither of us makes any effort to follow up the next day. Between classes and part-time work, this arrangement works well for me and for him too, I assume. I also have a long-distance boyfriend who doesn’t know anything about these hookups. My plan all along has been to move closer to my boyfriend after I finish my program this spring. I see us getting married and having kids and fabulous careers. Perfect, right? Except I just found out today that I’m pregnant, and my hookup buddy is the father. I don’t want to terminate the pregnancy. I start crying just thinking about it. What should I do? I know it’s wrong, but I’ve even tried to think of some way to make it seem like my boyfriend’s baby. Given the distance and timing though,there’s no way to make that work. At any rate, I wouldn’t really want to do that. Does my hookup buddy need to know? I can’t believe this is happening. I go from hating myself to being
deliriously happy – even though I have no right to feel that way. Help!
–Now What?

Dear Now What,

Congratulations! You are carrying a loved and wanted child, the reality of which fills you with delirious happiness. The circumstances surrounding the conception are a bit complicated to be sure, so let’s break it down. You violated some arrangement you made with a long-distance boyfriend, then sought to hide your indiscretion, and now you want to hate yourself because you’re about to be found out. Hating yourself is utterly unproductive; your time would be better spent focusing on the future.Let’s start with your hookup buddy. You ask if you need to tell him about the pregnancy, and my answer is yes. While you may have no mental or emotional connection with this person, your future child will likely have strong feelings about his presence or absence. The hookup buddy is a one-dimensional source of need fulfillment for you, but he could also be a valuable co-parent.

Tell your long-distance boyfriend the truth about what is going on and then see whether the two of you can and want to continue being together and whether he will want to parent this child. I think you should make an honest assessment beforehand of how much you actually value this relationship. Your letter doesn’t mention your love for him or what you find especially appealing about him. Maybe you excluded that information because you didn’t think it relevant to the case at hand. This seemed like a glaring omission to me though.I would recommend having these two conversations as soon as possible, so you can have an idea of what your parenting future will look like and plan accordingly. Regardless of whether you end up co-parenting with your hook-up buddy or your long-term boyfriend or being a single
parent, you are going to need to make many financial and logistical arrangements to prepare for your child.
Best of luck!

   
Barbara Boehm Miller
Fiction Writer and Creator of the Character, Lola Rolls

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