40% of teens get pregnant each year... - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 02:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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According to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pg.

Does anyone have any other stats, or any idea how this was researched? It says one million teens every year, but how many teens are there in the U.S.? Also, they said it includes those ages 18 and 19.

Actually with the each year thing it said that was for the one million teens, and the 40% was girls under age 20 who have been pregnant at least once.

What are the sources of this info - high schools? Abortion clinics? OB offices?

Does anyone have a different statistic?
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#2 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 02:00 PM
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I don't have different stats, but it doesn't sound right at all. Let me see if I can find anything....

Here's something from their own site:

http://www.teenpregnancy.org/about/a...ease5_7_03.asp

Quote:
The teen pregnancy data, compiled by the Alan Guttmacher Institute, indicates that the U.S. teen pregnancy rate has declined 26.8% between 1990 and 1999 - from a peak in 1990 of 116.9 pregnancies per 1,000 girls aged 15-19 to 85.6 pregnancies per 1,000 women aged 15-19 in 1999.
This was released on May 7, 2003.

thus, according to this, the teen pregnancy rate (for teens between 15 and 19) is presently 8.6%, not 40%.

Note that I've not gone to the Alan Guttmacher site to determine how they came up with these numbers.
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#3 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 02:19 PM
 
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Use the "about" button and take a look at who Alan Guttmacher was. Interesting fellow.

I found the site interesting.

http://www.agi-usa.org/index.html

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#4 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 03:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Also, what about stats for pre-teen pregnancies? They don't seem to be included anywhere. And it can be a bit misleading to include ages 18 and 19, as these women may be out of high school, married, and have good jobs, which in the conservative eye may be less objectionable.
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#5 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 05:23 PM
 
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Looks like the sex ed classes aren't working.

Neither are the free condom handouts in the nurse's office.

Any other suggestions?
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#6 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 05:29 PM
 
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Hey, I'm a pregnant, married 19-year old!

Midwife (CPM, LDM) and homeschooling mama to:
13yo ds   10yo dd  8yo ds and 6yo ds and 1yo ds  
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#7 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 06:16 PM
 
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Please, if the rate of pregnancy was really 40% a year for all teens, then all teens would become pregnant at least once before they hit 20. Sorry, don't buy it.

Think back to your own highschools, were 40% of the girls pregnant? Remember that most gorls keep their babies and don't have abortion. I know I could only have a handful of girls that got pregnant as teens, and this was in "loose" CA.
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#8 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 06:45 PM
 
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I thought teen pregnancy rates were dropping, and they were certainly not at 40% back in the '80s when I was a teen.
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#9 of 32 Old 06-14-2003, 09:54 PM
 
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My MIL was 3 months pregnant with my dh when she walked across the stage to receive her high school diploma. She was also 18 and married for four months.

Yeah, I think the "teen" term can be easily misused for political purposes. And 40% sounds unreal, especially when rates have been dropping for the last decade.
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#10 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 12:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Well, I went to two different high schools - one was a small school in a redneck town in Alaska, and the other was a very liberal large school in Oregon.

While the majority of the girls did not get pregnant, a whole lot of them sure did! If I had to give a stat, I'd say 25% of the junior and senior class at both schools combined, with very few keeping the pregnancies. It was mostly at the smaller school, where everyone gets married right after they graduate anyway. And it wasn't the stereotype of the druggies and F-students, it was cheerleaders and popular types.

They usually had miscarriages or abortions, not births. If they were going to give birth they dropped out of school in the first trimester.

At the larger school, there were still a lot of pregnant girls but not as many. There was even a daycare center for students' babies, but there were not many students with babies. Again, most decided to terminate their pregnancies.

This was a school where the sex ed classes were taught by other students, not teachers, and condoms were distributed.
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#11 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 01:00 AM
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Again, the Nat'l Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancies cited the figure of 8.56 percent per year, not 40%, using data from the Alan Guttmacher Institute. I'm sure the rate may vary from high school to high school.
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#12 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 03:44 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Greaseball
Actually with the each year thing it said that was for the one million teens, and the 40% was girls under age 20 who have been pregnant at least once.

What are the sources of this info - high schools? Abortion clinics? OB offices?

Does anyone have a different statistic?
According to their website the 40% comes from:

Analysis of Henshaw, S.K., U.S. Teenage Pregnancy Statistics, New York: Alan Guttmacher Institute, May, 1996; and Forest, J.D., Proportion of U.S. Women Ever Pregnant Before Age 20, New York: Alan Guttmacher Institute, 1986, unpublished.

http://www.teenpregnancy.org/resourc...a/genlfact.asp

The official stats don't come anywhere near 40% - the site gives some details of where the data came from:

http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/teen_stats.html

This site says 1 million pregnancies is 10%, not 40%:

http://www.agi-usa.org/pubs/fb_teen_sex.html

" Each year, almost 1 million teenage women--10% of all women aged 15-19 and 19% of those who have had sexual intercourse--become pregnant."

Perhaps the teenpregnancy site people got their numbers confused?

Susan
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#13 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 03:34 PM - Thread Starter
 
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It could be that I was the one who was confused...I am often confused...

But I do remember this other article about girls' sports in a particular large high school (the name and state escapes me) and the principal stated that one reason girls' sports are suffering is that 25% of the school's female students are mothers. (Meaning less time to spend after school.)

And he didn't say they were just pregnant, but that they were mothers!
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#14 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 04:47 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Greaseball
It could be that I was the one who was confused...I am often confused...

But I do remember this other article about girls' sports in a particular large high school (the name and state escapes me) and the principal stated that one reason girls' sports are suffering is that 25% of the school's female students are mothers. (Meaning less time to spend after school.)

And he didn't say they were just pregnant, but that they were mothers!
And Principals, Teachers, Policemen, Presidents, always tell the truth :tongueincheek
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#15 of 32 Old 06-15-2003, 09:48 PM
 
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I don't find it difficult to believe that 25% of the girls in ONE particular high school are mothers. But that doesn't mean that this generalizes to the population as a whole.

DH teaches high school. He just had a 9th grader drop out due to pregancy. I would say this happens (or the father drops out to get a job) maybe once every third year. It's very sad.
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#16 of 32 Old 06-16-2003, 03:22 PM
 
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teenpregnancy.org is total propaganda, and it does a lot more harm than good, imho. they put out these disgusting ads (you could find them at places like tower records) where it showed one teen, with a single word, such as DIRTY, written over the person. Underneath it said "it's not fun changing dirty diapers" or something dumb like that...point is, they put labels across people who are supposed represent teen mamas and dads...others were FAILURE, LOSER, etc. Please don't take anything from them seriously.
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#17 of 32 Old 06-16-2003, 03:33 PM
 
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I think the statistic is saying that nearly 4 out of every 10 females becomes pregnant at least once before reaching the age of 20. A rate of 8.6% every year, for the reproductive life of the teens might add up to a 40% rate for all the teenaged years together.
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#18 of 32 Old 06-16-2003, 06:48 PM
 
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That does sound high to me. I wonder if that could include repeat pregnancies?

I do know though that when I took "health" in high school in NYC, out of about 12 girls in the class, there were three that I KNEW had had abortions. Of the others, most of them I didn't know well enough to know that.
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#19 of 32 Old 06-17-2003, 01:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't agree with that organization's philosophy either. I just wanted to know some numbers.

I used to live in a town of about 40,000 people and even in a small town that size there were 11- and 12-year-olds who had given birth.

I'm sure most people have known a high-school age girl who was pregnant, maybe even several of them. I think anyone who has a daughter should be prepared for that possibility.

Of course, on the flip side, anyone who has a son should be prepared for it as well. Girls don't get pregnant by themselves!
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#20 of 32 Old 06-17-2003, 03:08 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by miriam
Looks like the sex ed classes aren't working.

Neither are the free condom handouts in the nurse's office.

Any other suggestions?
Oh, please. What sex ed and what condom handouts?? Sex ed in this country is becoming more and more of a joke, aka abstinence only. Other countries such as the Netherlands that have much better sex ed and free birth control available to all people who need it have much, much lower rates of teen pregnancy, not to mention unwanted pregnancy and abortion in any age class.

Cites:

http://www.guttmacher.org/pubs/fb_sex_ed02.html

http://www1.iwon.com/home/health/hea...A_1205,00.html

http://society.guardian.co.uk/public...627575,00.html

http://www.allaboutsex.org/US_Falls_...Education.html

And there are many more, if you care to look.

Is it any coincidence that the US has one of the highest, if not the highest, teen pregnancy and overall unplanned pregnancy and abortion rates in the (so-called) advanced nations, and also has one of the most repressive attitudes towards real sex ed and contraceptive availability for teens? I think not.

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#21 of 32 Old 06-19-2003, 02:26 AM
 
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out of the 40% how many choose to abort?
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#22 of 32 Old 06-20-2003, 12:28 AM
 
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When I graduated high school, (1997) approximately 40 percent of our graduating class ALREADY HAD children. I can think of 6 girls (that we know of) that graduated pg, and about 10% of the girls who had a child in high school, had a second one, or were pg when we graduated. It's really tragic..although, I guess I was technically a "pregnant teen" for about 2 weeks before I turned 20!

The first girl in my class to get pg was in the summer between 7th and 8th grade. She had three children by the time we graduated. We even had a daycare on campus!
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#23 of 32 Old 06-20-2003, 12:50 PM
 
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When I had my first dd I was counted as a "teen mom" I was 21 and had been married for 2 years. Still pisses me off. They gradually lowered the age so it would look like teen pregnancy was going down thanks to sex ed and fre condoms.: I never trust teen pregnancy statistics. Also I hate scare tactics. especially outrageous ones. Kids aren't stupid. They can see right through them. When people go over the top the end up making kids blow off anything related. It drives me crazy.

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#24 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 02:04 AM
 
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Brain, Child just had an AWESOME article on teen pregnancy. Finally a fact-filled, positive article! I am copying it and giving it to every teen mom that comes into our clinic.

It also gives a website (sorry, I don't have the mag in front of me) that I *think* is girlmom.com or gurlmom. com or something like that. It is supposed to be a POSITIVE and PRACTICAL resource for teen moms.

I don't buy that 40% of teen moms become pregnant every year. That cna't be right. I don't even think that 40% of sexually active teen moms become pregnant every year. That simply doesn't play out.
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#25 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 02:14 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Girlmom is a great site; I'd recommend it to any pregnant or parenting teen. They have a discussion board and space to submit essays. A lot of people there are into natural birth and AP, and the whole site is very neutral as far as choices to make when pregnant unexpectedly.
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#26 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 02:16 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally posted by Andrea0408
It's really tragic..
a car wreck is tragic...a suicide is tragic...abuse is tragic...teen pregnancy is not tragic.

Until our culture learns to deal with this situation realistically and stops condemning these young women and starts assisting them in being good and responsible parents we will continue to see them as a "drain on our resources" instead of contributing members of society, they will be held back simply b/c our culture deems them less than deserving of what married/older mothers receive--respect and a chance to prove their worth as mothers.

I am sickened by the idea that there is something "wrong" with a teen who has children, it may not be an easy path, it may not even start off as a very responsible path, but condemning them is going to do a whole lot more harm than good.

It is our culture's attitude which must change, we must be proactive in showing these teens how to be good and effective parents, how to have a good birth experience, how to make a life for themselves, not sneering at them in a way which says to them "oh poor you" this only reinforces their own belief that they are worthless and things can't get any better.



just my $.02

edited for grammer :
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#27 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 03:14 PM
 
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There's a great article in the current issue of Brain, Child magazine about teen pregnancy - unfortunately it's not on their website but I'm halfway through and it's really interesting. Here's the blurb:

http://brainchildmag.com/currentissue.htm

edited to say: didn't see lori's post when I posted about this!

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#28 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 05:01 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I believe all children - no matter who they are born to - benefit society.

I believe all people, with support, can be good parents.
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#29 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 07:38 PM
 
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Jane, you and I have the same thoughts...

Studies have shown that teen moms do no better or no worse than their socioeonomic counter parts. That is, teen mothers who are middle class finish high school and go to college at the same rates as their classmates who have, for one reason or another (mostly probably luck!) delayed child rearing.

The problem really is poverty. Most teen age moms (not all, of course) are poor. BUT, they have no worse outcomes (in terms of graduation, job outlook, lifetime income, and their children's long term behaviour -- whether they themselves will become teenage parents, or serve prison time) than poor teens who delay their childbearing.

The Brain, Child article was really fantastic. Some of the references (for those of you who have time for light, summer reading : I'm jealous):

"Dubious Conceptions" by Kristin Luker

"The Culture of Fear: Why Americans are Afraid of the Wrong Things" by Barry Glassner

And to be published in 2004: "You Don't Look Olde Enough to Be a Mother: Teen Moms on Love, Learning and Success" an anthology put out by Perigee/Penguin Putnam.

Really, this was the article (combined with an article several issues ago about a woman's daughter becoming infatuated with a woman in a missing poster after the world trade center collapse) that made me shell out the $150 to become a lifetime subscriber to the magazine. It is just too high quality of writing (though, like everything, I don't agree with it all) for me to pass up. This is one of the best articles I have ever read. Well written, well researched, new perspective, refreshing, as well as critical and introspective.

So, there is my plug for the magazine, as well as some thoughts on the issue!
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#30 of 32 Old 06-21-2003, 09:25 PM
 
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DH and I were both born to teen moms.

My MIL was 17 and married when DH was born.

My mom was 20 and married when I was born.

Both of our moms were alcoholics.

We married each other when I was 22 and DH was 37. We had finished our education, built careers, bought a house, traveled and waited three years before conceiving #1.

We learned from others' mistakes.

But we have made our own mistakes that I hope our dear children will learn from.

Life is full of opportunities to make mistakes and learn from them.

Life goes on.
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