Am I ready to be a mother? Can I provide for and raise a child in my current situation? Many people have all sorts of fears and doubts running through their minds when they find out they are pregnant. Some may decide that terminating the pregnancy is their best choice. No one needs to sort out such difficult questions on their own. You can get help. There are counseling centres you can turn to. In any case, counseling is free and you can remain anonymous if you wish. That means you don't have to give your name or address. Your partner can also take part in the counselling.

Among other things, you will receive information on legal, medical and social issues at pregnancy conflict counselling. The counsellors can also help you apply for money for living expenses. Maybe you're thinking about the possibility of what’s known in Germany as a ‘confidential birth’ or of giving the baby up for adoption. You can also talk about this at a pregnancy conflict counselling session and find out how a confidential birth or adoption works and what happens afterwards for you and the baby.

Even if you are sure you want to end the pregnancy, you still need to attend counseling. Only after you have attended and received a consultation certificate may a doctor legally perform an abortion. Pregnancy conflict counselling is there to give you a place to discuss the pros and cons of pregnancy at this point in time. In doing so, no one should patronize you, lecture you, or pressure you into making one particular decision. This means that the conversation should be open-ended.

If you decide to terminate the pregnancy, you will be given a range of information about, for example, where an abortion can be performed. You will also find out whether the costs for the abortion can be covered by your health insurance. At the end of the consultation, you will receive a certificate stating that you have taken part in pregnancy conflict consultation. You will present this certificate at the appointment for the pregnancy termination. Not every gynaecologist performs abortions. You can find a list of practices where you can make an appointment with the consultation certificate, for example, on the website of the Lower Saxony Ministry of Social Affairs. You can also contact the counselling centre again after the procedure. For example, if you want to talk about what you've been through or how you’ve felt since terminating the pregnancy.

There are many agencies that offer pregnancy conflict counseling. These include church institutions and non-profit organizations, as well as other politically-independent and non-religious associations. The staff there are specially trained in the area and have a lot of experience and empathy. However, not all counselling centres issue the counselling certificate that you need for abortion. Firstly, a counselling centre must be recognised by the state in order to issue certificates. Secondly, some counselling centres reject abortion on principle. If you decide to have an abortion, find out beforehand whether the counselling centre you want to go to issues the certificate.