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Teen Pregnancy / Reaction - Page 6

post #101 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Telle Bear View Post

You do better when you know better....I believe that comes with age and experience.
I do get that, I just don't think that everyone reaches the point where they are ready to have a child at the same age. And I think that the child makes most people into good parents with its arrival. I had an unplanned (BCP) baby in my early 20s. There was/is no point muddling over if at some point in the future, I would have been a better parent. I am, with my husband, the best parents our son could have. The same goes for teenaged mothers- they are the best parents, if given the support they need, that their children have. This topic is so close to my heart because of my work with parents of all ages and also because both my brother and I had the situation of being frequently taken for much younger new parents (I was 23 and pretty young looking often mistaken for 18-19ish until the last three years, he was 25 and still looks 15!). It gave me a taste of the needless, hurtful judgment people give out. Both of us are actually 20 something married middle class parents and I found it very repulsive how much better I was treated when people realized that. Further, I know people my age and older with very limited life experiences. Experience and age don't always correlate perfectly.
post #102 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by PoppyMama View Post
The majority of PEOPLE have not been exposed to these options. I also think that teen parents are pushed to want all the STUFF (cribs, strollers, ....crap) .

Exactly!
post #103 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by DocsNemesis View Post
I am working on becoming a speaker in the teen parenting classes in my school district for EXACTLY this reason. I took a teen parenting class in high school while I was pregnant and while breastfeeding was encouraged, cosleeping was NOT at ALL. .
Kudos to you. I'd like to do that someday.
post #104 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post

I'm sorry another poster had a bad experience with older parents. Personally, I think my children's upbringing is very different from both that of their peers, as well as their peers' parents. I hope they have mostly good memories of their childhoods -- but whether they do or not will probably have little to do with dh's and my ages, and more to do with our love, responsiveness, and availability.
I'm not saying it was BAD because my mother was older, but it was definitely different, which in some respects made it harder for me relating to my peers. And she was in poor health, so I grew up with her telling me she doubted that she would live to see me as an adult. She died when I was 11, so that came true, unfortunately. Because of where she was in life, between her age and her health (more importantly), I have come to feel that she probably shouldn't have had me. I'm glad to be here, obviously, but if I were her, I wouldn't have made that same choice. If she had just been an older, but healthy person, that would have been a bit different.

Teen pregnancy is also on my mind because I live near Gloucester,MA, which is now getting country-wide media attention for the jump in teen pregnancy this year. Whether there was a pact or not, 4 girls allegedly are having babies sired by a 24 year old homeless man. Would I really want to congratulate them? I really don't know. I do wish them the best and hope that they do learn more than what is mainstream for their sakes and for their babies'. And please don't flame me for just being honest here.
post #105 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by witchygrrl View Post
Teen pregnancy is also on my mind because I live near Gloucester,MA, which is now getting country-wide media attention for the jump in teen pregnancy this year. Whether there was a pact or not, 4 girls allegedly are having babies sired by a 24 year old homeless man. Would I really want to congratulate them? I really don't know. I do wish them the best and hope that they do learn more than what is mainstream for their sakes and for their babies'. And please don't flame me for just being honest here.
I don't flame you -- I see what you mean about the circumstances being way less-than-ideal. And I speak as someone who believes in waiting 'til marriage for sex -- but I still believe God has a purpose for those babies, and those little lives in themselves are joyous things. I think you can celebrate the child without saying sexual abuse is a wonderful thing.
post #106 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhubarbarin
I am always positive about women's pregnancies.

That stuck out to me - as the OP was talking about a child's pregnancy, not a woman's.
This doesn't make any logical sense to me. If the teen in question is 13 or 14, then yes, she's closer to child than adult - but still a young adult in my mind. If she is 15 or older she is unquestionably an adult to me. Historically girls this age were often married with one or more children.

The definition of adulthood (though not of full physical growth) is sexual maturity in all other animals. No reason people should be different just because we're capable of thinking too much.
post #107 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post
I don't flame you -- I see what you mean about the circumstances being way less-than-ideal. And I speak as someone who believes in waiting 'til marriage for sex -- but I still believe God has a purpose for those babies, and those little lives in themselves are joyous things. I think you can celebrate the child without saying sexual abuse is a wonderful thing.
ITA.
post #108 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by rhubarbarin View Post
This doesn't make any logical sense to me. If the teen in question is 13 or 14, then yes, she's closer to child than adult - but still a young adult in my mind. If she is 15 or older she is unquestionably an adult to me. Historically girls this age were often married with one or more children.

The definition of adulthood (though not of full physical growth) is sexual maturity in all other animals. No reason people should be different just because we're capable of thinking too much.
Yah, I think we humans tend to complicate things too much. I realize human society is way more complex than it used to be, and I'll be honest that I hope my children will be in stable marriages before they have children -- but every other species mates upon reaching sexual maturity.

Our society goes against the grain of what's natural -- I can understand the reasoning behind it, but it's still unnatural and I think we need a little more compassionate optimism, rather than this attitude that we can only be happy for expectant mothers who have "all their ducks in order," so to speak.
post #109 of 189
you get me all wrong, i wasn't bashing older moms at all, i was trying to make the point the the older parent will have kids in their 20's who may have to spend that time they would reserve for their own growth as time to "take care" of their aging parents.

my point was really that age does not matter when it comes to pregnancy, its never peaches and cream no matter when it happens. i actually feel that there is no right time to have a baby that being said, i feel there is no wrong time. families are diverse and thats what makes it so nice to have one. there are always two ways to look at everything and i was just using an example by no means do i age discriminate i'm just saying my heart reacts the same way to an older or younger person raising a child, their struggles may be different but i don't think either has a "better" chance at doing it well
post #110 of 189
How about: I heard the news! You look wonderful! And give her a hug and a smile.
post #111 of 189
Ooh, I understand your trepidation about being too celebratory with this girl since you don't want your DD to join the party. I have worked with disadvantaged middle school age children (some of them found themselves pg), and I think you should just make it known that you support her decisions and do your best to be as non-judgemental as possible.

(Honestly, I would bet that there would be way fewer abortions and dead babies in garbage cans if we could all just get over our self-righteousness and reach out to these moms with a loving spirit rather than just scowl at them and cluck our tongues).

THEN, have a discussion with DD where you ask her questions about what she thinks about it all, and then quietly listen to her.

Anyway, those are my 2 cents. I hope this helps.
post #112 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by magstphil View Post
Keep in mind that we are not talking about children. We are talking about young women who are closer to being adults then childhood.

If you believe in being supportive then why not congratulate her? I'm a little lost on that.
I am not sure exactly how old of a teen the OP was talking about - but a 13 year old girl pregnant? Yes, she is a child in my book. That is babies having babies - and just because historically women married and had kids younger doesn't make it a good idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by honeybunch2k8 View Post
I think young moms need encouragement and support not to be shamed.
This is a point that seems to be made over and over. Just because some of us wouldn't say "congratulations!" to a pregnant teen DOES NOT mean we are shaming them or being negative or giving them hell or any of the other things mentioned so far.

A dear friend's dd's best friend found herself pregnant in high school. 20-something boyfriend who has shown himself not to be a good choice. I like this girl very much, and was kind and supportive, talked to her about childbirth when she was worried/scared/had questions, went to her baby shower, always ask how dd is when I see this girl, fawn over the darling pix, etc. But when I heard she was pregnant in high school, no, I didn't say "congratulations". It just seems inappropriate to me. I'm not comfortable saying that. There is a lot of space between "congrats!" and shaming.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gracequinn View Post
we have neighbors who waited till they were 48 and 51 to get get pregnant and it makes me so sad. I think its selfish. Those kids are not going to have any of their adult life with their parents around and what time they do have will be taking care of them.
I'm not sure you have enough information to make that judgment. How well do you know them? Are you quite sure that you know all the many and various reasons/life experiences that led them to have their first/only at 48 and 51? You know what you've heard, or what they've told you, but that may easily not be the whole story.

My dp's parents were 43 and 54 when he was born - surprise! Not planned but very much loved. His dad lived into his 80s and saw his son graduate college and get married, so some of his adult life - the early years. My parents had me at 26 and by the time I was 14 they had both passed away. So there is no guarantee. And my MIL is now 83 and we are only just this year starting to take care of her; dp is in his 40s.

Also, posters who had kids at 20 or early 20s, or even 18 or 19, isn't really comparable to 13, 14, 15 year olds. So I think it depends a bit on which end of the teen years we're talking about.
post #113 of 189

Posting from Irl.

A couple of points I'd limeto make.
First of all an 18 or 19 year old is an adult woman - entitled to make her own decisions and a 16 or 17 yearold, here anyway, is a minor.
These are NOT children and are different to a 13 year old getting pregnant - under 16 here would be statutary rape anyway but that is beside the point.

I suppose I speak from a different standpoint. Here if a woman - of any age, decides not to continue a pergnancy, she has to leave the jurisdiction to access abortion, regardless of her curcumstnaces or reason.
Therefore when women take that option, they tend to only confide ina few very cloe friends or family.
However, in the last 15 to 20 years, women or girls giving up their babies for adopytion is pretty much unheard of - regardless of their age or circumstances. Even in the case of someone who has a lot of problems and no famnily support, sociual care can stepin with temporary fostering arrangements.
So - if the teen / young woman is 'going public' so to speak, then I would take it that she has decided to continue the pregnancy so, I would say (and we were in that situation when my S-I-L became pregnant) somethign along the lines of - Hey, you've got really big news - or - what an amazing surpise with a big genuine smile on your face, give a hug and ask how she's feeling / doing.
Afterall, if it was unplannd she has only done exactly the same thing as her peers and as most of us, the difference being medical error (in the contraceptive sense) and you can't blame or shame anyone for that.
post #114 of 189
I haven't read every single reply here, so forgive me.

I do not think a teen pregnancy is something to be congratulated. Most of the parents I know, including myself, try very hard to give our children the best and the tools they need to succeed. We discuss birth control, abstainance, responsibility, college, and their future. An unplanned pregnancy is a major complication along the road to that life of self-sufficiency and future success.

I don't have daughters, but I do have teenage sons. My oldest son's ex-g/f had a pregnancy scare a few years ago when my son was only 16 years old. We talked about how his life and his plans for his life would change if he became a father at that young age.

Who would take care of this baby? What about school? Would a family member be expected to take care of the baby? My friends and I are all in our 40's and early 50's. If one of our kids had a baby, would we be expected to quit or jobs, put our family in financial stress in order to care for our children's irresponsibility??

I'm not naive enough to actually believe in the efficacy of abstinence only sex education; however, our teens deserve to know the realities and consequences of their actions.

A friend of mine volunteers at Sparrow House, a local organization that helps pregnant teens. Rather than force them to have an abortion of adoption against their will, this place helps the teens understand what they are facing and helps them prepare themselves.
http://sparrow-house.com/index.html
post #115 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbundantLife View Post
A friend of mine volunteers at Sparrow House, a local organization that helps pregnant teens. Rather than force them to have an abortion of adoption against their will, this place helps the teens understand what they are facing and helps them prepare themselves.
http://sparrow-house.com/index.html
That place is obviously anti-abortion, but they ARE pro-adoption. I looked at the site for less than five minutes and found references to adoption under "counseling." They say they're neutral, but considering they also seem to be teaching that parenting is miserable -- a la "baby think it over," a program normally used to make teenagers think babies are awful -- I'd bet anything they're just like our local CPC: parenting is hard, say good-bye to your hopes and dreams (ie: we will say nothing positive about parenting here) BUT adoption is loving and unselfish, what a beautiful choice (ie: nothing negative about adoption).

All these places really care about is imposing their values on everyone they touch.
post #116 of 189
No, not what I've heard.what they told me. she was sort of sick of working, they had a lot of money and they sort of felt like they might as well have a baby. so she stopped working went on tons of fertility drugs -got pregnant- miscarried -got pregnant again- did gestational selection, ended up with twins born very early who lived in incubators for two months. and are now rambunctious toddlers (and quite adorable). when we had our kids together at the baseball park last weekend she looked at me and said "jeez, i really wish I decided to have children when i was your age instead of when i was an old lady." she laughed and i said "you're no old lady and i nod my head to you for having twins because that is a big enough deal in itself." so again, i used an example, not a blanket statement of all mothers that are AMA and not all teen moms will be good moms. babies born to moms who are AMA typically have increase of preterm birth, congenital defects, miscarriage and fertility problems. Teen moms are more likely to neglect their babies because their brains are still focused on their own growth and haven't fully developed the action/consequence processing center. The younger the mom, the more hardships she will face, especially in terms of trying to finish school, childcare, jobs, it will be hard enough on her already without the people around her dishing it out as well. I'm sure she knows full well what people think of her anyway, I just hope she doesn't begin to believe it.

whats done is done. she going to have a baby and a baby is something to celebrate. that celebration can take place with glorifying teen pregnancy.
post #117 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jessy1019 View Post
That place is obviously anti-abortion, but they ARE pro-adoption. I looked at the site for less than five minutes and found references to adoption under "counseling." They say they're neutral, but considering they also seem to be teaching that parenting is miserable -- a la "baby think it over," a program normally used to make teenagers think babies are awful -- I'd bet anything they're just like our local CPC: parenting is hard, say good-bye to your hopes and dreams (ie: we will say nothing positive about parenting here) BUT adoption is loving and unselfish, what a beautiful choice (ie: nothing negative about adoption).

All these places really care about is imposing their values on everyone they touch.
Sounds like you know a lot about it considering you've never been there, but then again I'm quite familiar with your agenda.

I also wanted to add that many of the girls do decide to parent their babies, but some do not. Why do you think there are no references to abortion? Of course, this is a Christian -run organization that does not believe in abortion. They offer the option of adoption as two of their legitimate choices. If you are so concerned with these poor misguided souls, why do you not get behind the pro-life movement? Abortion is also an industry (your words) that hurts women.

Getting back to my original post, there is not much positive to say about a teen parent who is most likely dropping out of school, financially digging herself into a hole, and probaby raising the baby without the biological father.
post #118 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbundantLife View Post
Sounds like you know a lot about it considering you've never been there,
Their website reads like the sites of every CPC that I *have* been to. If they're different, they might want to make more of an effort to show it.
post #119 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbundantLife View Post
Getting back to my original post, there is not much positive to say about a teen parent who is most likely dropping out of school, financially digging herself into a hole, and probaby raising the baby without the biological father.
I guess it depends on whether you think human value is rooted in any or all of the following --

a)amount of schooling completed,
b)financial security
c)marital status.

I believe the worth of all humans rests in the One who created us. This belief gives me a tremendous amount of positive stuff to say about each and every one of my fellow humans, regardless of their choices or achievement-levels. Our Creator deemed us worthy of the utmost sacrifice, well before any of us here had been born, or gone to school, or earned any money, or got married.

Now, I'm with you in believing that living and being adopted is better than not living. However, I think that any pregnant mama, of any age, who wants to keep her baby should have the support to do this. I believe it's best to keep this primary pair connected if at all possible -- as well as the Daddy, when feasible.

I understand that the reason some of these agencies are able to provide the help they do, is because of the funding from the adoption industry. I wish this weren't the case, because I don't see how such a program can be really neutral.

If one of my girls became pregnant as a single girl or woman, I'd want her to feel totally comfortable continuing to live with us for as long as she wanted to, rather than going through one of these programs, unless she really wanted to (and even if married, she and her husband and child/ren would still be welcome to stay if they wanted to).

Though I don't believe grandparents are obligated to change their plans and help out with baby-care -- I've always wanted to be a very involved grandma (and I looove those need-intensive early years), so I'd consider that my grandmother-role just got a bit of a jumpstart. I wouldn't feel resentful. But, actually, I'd prefer to help my child, the actual mother, stay home rather than sending her out to work while I babysat.

I'll admit that I hope my children are married before they start their families -- but regardless of the circumstances, I still maintain that a baby is a thing of joy, goodness, and love. And laughter. The blessings far outweigh the difficulties.
post #120 of 189
Quote:
Originally Posted by AbundantLife View Post
Why do you think there are no references to abortion? Of course, this is a Christian -run organization that does not believe in abortion.
That's what makes it a CPC -- and also impacts their neutrality and biased their counseling.

Quote:
If you are so concerned with these poor misguided souls, why do you not get behind the pro-life movement? Abortion is also an industry (your words) that hurts women.
I am 100% in favor of reproductive freedom, and I have very positive feelings about abortion and the importance of abortion rights for women who do not want to have a baby at any given time. I am also the founder of Adoption: Legalized Lies, a decade-old organization that helps young, single, and otherwise vulnerable women to raise their children. That's something I can be proud of doing.
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