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Tessa Dijkgraaf joined a dating app to find a no-strings-attached relationship. So you can imagine her surprise when suspected food poisoning turned out to be pregnancy. Tessa Dijkgraaf joined Tinder to find a no-strings-attached relationship. Memphis with running a business. Would you congratulate a teenager on her pregnancy? When Tessa Dijkgraaf swiped right on a Tinder bachelor who caught her eye, it was the start of a “friends with benefits” relationship they were both looking for.

Having just come out of long-term relationships, they weren’t chasing anything serious. So when Tessa’s suspected food poisoning turned out to be pregnancy not long into their mutually beneficial arrangement, it was a shock. I remember bursting into tears, getting straight in my car to go to my friend’s place where I walked in the door and threw the test on the table and just cried,” 27-year-old Tessa of Sorrento, Victoria says. It was definitely not on my agenda. When she spoke to her then 35-year-old Tinder match a week later, it was clear a baby wasn’t something he planned on either. At first he was OK.

But when I said an abortion was not on the table, he wasn’t calm about it I guess you could say. Tessa, who is pro-choice, said despite feeling external pressure to just “take care of it”, termination was never an option. As soon as I took the test, I knew I was a mother straight away. Tessa is now a proud single mum to 15-month-old daughter Memphis, and juggles the role with running her hospitality business. It’s full on, it’s difficult,” she said. But I run a successful business with confidence, I believe in myself, I make better choices and I really feel a sense of purpose that I didn’t have before .

Tessa Dijkgraaf “burst into tears” when she found out she was pregnant with Memphis. Memphis’ dad does not pay child support and is not a part of her life, but Tessa says the door is open. Right from the start I told him I don’t expect anything from him, including financially,” she said. He is a good, kind person and when, and if, he’s ready , then he’ll always be welcome. I just asked him, if you do want a relationship, just commit to it.

Don’t come in and out and break her heart. Often the father may not want the baby, yet the mother may decide to proceed, creating increased conflict between the parents-to-be,” she said. I have also counselled parents where the mother does not wish to proceed with the birth, yet the father does. Basically, the father has little say either way. Memphis’ father isn’t in her life, but is welcome to be. Ms Phillip has also seen cases where the man is already in a relationship yet has engaged in sex outside of that and “wishes to delete the child and move on so his partner does not find out”.

She said co-parenting was often difficult when the parents did not really know one another. Co-parenting is about being on the same page, raising the child with similar values and standards,” she said. With people that don’t really know each other, this in itself can cause considerable conflict. She said that combined with work requirements, residential choices and future partners made it a complex issue. National Council of Single Mothers and the Children chief executive officer Terese Edwards says she knows “amazing mums” who have raised children who “will enrich our world” outside of a committed relationship. All power to them,” she said.

Would you congratulate a teen on her pregnancy? A teenage girl’s education, financial security, and mental and emotional wellbeing are under threat when she gets pregnant. And we’re making things even harder by shunning her journey into motherhood. But with the choice to raise the child outside a traditional family structure comes judgement, Ms Edwards says.

They are judged if they choose not to have children, they are judged if they have children,” she said. Mothers are judged if they work, or if they give up work. She said income was a major concern, and child support could be problematic if an agreement between parents was not reached. Tessa says she mainly experienced criticism over her singledom while pregnant. I was really shocked at the amount of people that would ask about whether I would terminate or not,” Tessa says. A lot of ‘oh, it’s not fair on the child if the father’s not around’, those sorts of really judgemental comments. But there are no regrets over her Tinder match turning life upside down.