I guess it just depends. At 18 I was pregnant and married. I dont regret my choices to start a family early and if I hadn't my choices in lifestyle would not have changed.
Unassisted birthing, atheist, WOHM to 4 wonderful, smart homeschooling kids 17, 11, 6, 3
I always wonder what percentage of the teen mom statistics are made up for 18/19 year olds who are married and wanted a kid.
In college I worked with a girl who was 20, married, had two kid, and was going for an engineering degree. She was incredibly happy and last I heard had a kick ass job.
I got married at 18, had my son at 19 and was divorced by 21. Being a teen mother does not mean your life is over but it can be very hard, for me it turned I was not nearly as mature as I thought I was and while my son is now a 19 yo college sophomore who is more or less well adjusted it has been a hard road. I did eventually go on to college, I have a BA and an M.Ed, I run a small non profit on the outside it looks like well it all worked out. No, I am 38 and I feel like I have lived a million lives. My own mother had me at 19 as well.
I work with low income youth and often times I tell my teen girls who talk about wanting babies, don't do it. Yes when I got pregnant with my son, i wanted a baby problem is I had no idea who I was or any of that and babies cost and an 18 yo and 20 yo back in the early 1990's didn't have the skills to make a decent living. Nowadays it would be even harder. But no being a teen mom does not mean you can't love your babies or anything else but it can be very hard.
The flip side is nowadays when so many women delay having kids being in your late 30's with an adult kid is awkward at times. I have a 6 yo and most people assume she is my only/first kid if they don't know me. One of my oldest friends who also had her first child at 19 and she is now a grandmother at 38 which is very hard for her especially since she is assisting her 19 yo daughter in raising her grandson. I see having a baby as a teen as a multi layered issue.
Everyone says that being a teenage mom can be/is very hard. But it seems to me, based on the things that the posters who were teenage moms are saying, that it's hard because our culture makes it hard.
I became a mother at 32. Nobody looked at me with scorn. Nobody (accept my own mother) judged me for making that choice. I didn't need any one's permission or compliance to follow my own choices.
If I had been 16, I'm sure that society would have made it so much harder for me. There would have been less positive community support. If I had decided to end the pregnancy, I might have needed a parent's approval. I might have needed a parent's approval for the type of health care practitioner and birth style. I'm sure that health care providers would have made all kinds of assumptions about me and crisis type resources would have been thrown at me, since obviously teen pregnancy=clueless shitty mothering in our society. My partner would have been facing his own version of parental pressures and need for approval.
How different could it be for teen moms if they reaped all of the positive support that older mothers are freely given? What if we assumed that every pregnant women is on the verge of an exciting transformation in her life and we celebrated that first? How can we expect the best of mothers if we are selling them the message that they are ruining there lives and a baby will prevent them from ever again having any joy?
One happy momma to a very spirited little girl , her tough little brother , and a happy little suprise late April 2012 . Wife to an overworked and under paid husband .
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