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#1 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 03:06 PM - Thread Starter
 
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When you find out a teen is pregnant, do you typically congratulate them the way you would an adult?

I remember when I was pregnant people were congratulating me left and right, but I was a little bit older. A friend of my daughter's is coming over tomorrow and I found out she's pregnant. I am wondering if I should congratulate her or say nothing at all.

What do you think?
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#2 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 03:16 PM
 
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YES!!! i got pregnant when i was 15 and everyone treated it like my life was DOOMED... i wish i would have been congratulated instead of told how my life was over. doesn't matter how old she is she's is still capable of being a wonderful mother and her pregnancy should be treated joyous occasion!
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#3 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 03:17 PM
 
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I would think if she's keeping the baby, then congratulate her.

I got pregnant when I was 23 and I had a lot of people not sure if they should congratulate me and it made me feel weird. I'm happy about it, so congratulate me!
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#4 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 03:20 PM
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If you are pregnant. That is a good news for you, even if your age is elder. And your friends daughter is pregnant at the same time. In earlier days mother and dayghter's were pregnant at the same time. So nothing is ashamed of...it is you destiny which god has decided earlier for you. So have a positive attitude towards it and be happy.
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#5 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 05:20 PM
 
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If she's planning to continue the pregnancy, then congratulations are in order. If she's planning an abortion, I'm not quite sure how to react, as generally people don't share that information with many people and I've never personally dealt with it. I would think that congrats are in order even if she's planning to have the child adopted after birth- she's still growing a new life inside of her and every new life should be celebrated!

If I hear somebody is pg and don't know their life story or all the details, I'll say congrats.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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#6 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 05:42 PM
 
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I'll be honest, no I probably wouldn't be congratulating her nor would I just because she is not have an abortion.

Wife, mom to DS (4), DD (2) and baby heart 2.7.13

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#7 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 05:46 PM
 
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I never say congratulations I always ask "How ya feeling?" or "Are you anxious?" some such...

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#8 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 05:46 PM
 
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Absolutely. She may end up having an abortion but if she has told people she is pregnant then I would congratulate her on her current pregnant state.
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#9 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 05:50 PM
 
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I would ask how are you feeling!

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#10 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 06:04 PM
 
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I'd just say congratulations. I'm guessing you don't really know how she feels since you don't know what to say. So sincere congratulations is the approprate response. She can let you know otherwise if she wants to.
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#11 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 06:05 PM
 
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Originally Posted by BaMo View Post
I'll be honest, no I probably wouldn't be congratulating her nor would I just because she is not have an abortion.
Why not?

I would DEFINITELY congratulate her if she is keeping the babe. I got pregnant as a teen, and to me it seems rude NOT to congratulate an expectant mom, no matter what age they are... they are still an individual with feelings!

Depending on circumstances, and how well you know her, you may want to add something like ask how it's going for her. If she is adopting, she may not want to be congratulated but rather maybe you could talk to her about the potential adoptive family, etc. I know when I was considering adoption, I wouldn't have really wanted people to say congrats to me... it would just feel bad, because I wasnt really celebrating yk? I would have felt a bit offended and sad. But I would have welcomed people asking me about how the process is going.
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#12 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 07:14 PM
 
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"Oh what an exciting time! How's everything progressing?"

It covers whatever option the girl is choosing , is supportive, and allows her the opportunity to talk about whatever is on her mind. Save the congratulations until after the delivery when every mother deserves it.
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#13 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 07:19 PM
 
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I like Papercranegirl's answer. The etiquette maven in me says you should congratulate her, but she may be in a very difficult situation, practically and emotionally, and congratulations might feel odd to her at this point. I think you can't go wrong by being positive and interested.
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#14 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 07:36 PM
 
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I would definitely say Congratulations. If you're warm and supportive then if she wants or needs to, she'll tell you more details about how she's feeling. Or you can say congratulations and then ask how she's feeling, because it gives her the option of replying with physical feelings or emotions.

I was 24 and in my last year of professional school when pregnant. When I told one of my professors, he looked at me and asked, "Is this a good thing?" I was both surprised and embarrassed. I flushed but responded with a big smile, "Of course!" Seems ridiculous that he asked the question - 24, married, owned a home, in my last year of school in a profession that is typically lucrative . . . but the point is that really IMO the only way to respond, unless you already know someone has chosen abortion, is with congrats. I think especially teen moms need to hear that, since there's so much judgment out there and their own families may not be supportive.
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#15 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 08:52 PM - Thread Starter
 
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My first child was unplanned. I was in my early 20s. My husband was excited beyond belief, but I was working on my DVM (Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine) at the time. The first people I told were my friends who were also vet students. Everyone had pretty much the same reaction, “You can’t take our schedule and have a kid!” My instructors told me that I couldn’t do the labs while pregnant so I would have to take time off. After an appeal, I manage to get that lifted, but I did end up dropping out due to pregnancy related complications.

After my friends and instructors, I was feeling REALLY down in the dumps. I told a couple of people I worked with and this one old lady said to me, “Congratulations!” I had heard so much negativity that I was considering abortion despite my husband’s wishes. That one word made me feel so wonderful. It was so unexpected. Then as my pregnancy progressed I heard more and more congratulations!

When I told my parents, my dad just looked at me and said, “shit!” My mom said, “So, what do you plan on doing now,” (meaning abortion or having the baby). After I said, “Have the baby.” Mom let it soak in for a while, but she later congratulated me also.

I will never forget my parent’s reaction. It hurt really badly, but in mom’s defense I had prior to this that I never wanted to have children. Ever. Dad’s reaction was the most painful, but he later became a pretty good granddad.

The thing I will remember most is the first little old lady who said, “Congratulations!” I remember saying, “What?” and explaining how I had less than two years before becoming a doctor and how this completely derailed my plans. She said to me, “Being a mother is the hardest and best job you will ever have. Every child is a blessing. My husband and I never had children, but we spent our entire lives wanting one.” She was right. I never did finish my DVM, but I do have some wonderful children.

I just wonder if I should tell a teenager Congratulations. Most of me says YES, but then I wonder what message that will send my daughter since I am always on her about taking her pill AND using condoms. I don’t want her to realize what a blessing children are just yet! I worry she might be like, "Damn, maybe I should have a baby!"
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#16 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 09:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by papercranegirl View Post
"Oh what an exciting time! How's everything progressing?"

It covers whatever option the girl is choosing , is supportive, and allows her the opportunity to talk about whatever is on her mind. Save the congratulations until after the delivery when every mother deserves it.

I say basically the same when it comes up with ANY pregnancy. Congratulations seems too cheesy like great, you had sex and won a trophy
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#17 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 09:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by feest View Post
YES!!! i got pregnant when i was 15 and everyone treated it like my life was DOOMED... i wish i would have been congratulated instead of told how my life was over. doesn't matter how old she is she's is still capable of being a wonderful mother and her pregnancy should be treated joyous occasion!
:

I was 16 when I got pg with dd#1. I really wish someone would've said Congrats or been supportive.

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I'll be honest, no I probably wouldn't be congratulating her nor would I just because she is not have an abortion.

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#18 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 09:25 PM
 
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I lurk a lot in the "really young mamas" thread... as my dd was 16 when she had my dgs and I was only 21 when I had her ... and the resounding consensus there is that young mom's want to be congratulated. They get so sick of that 'aw poor baby" or "oh no now what?" attitude they get from everybody.. like they have contracted some sort of disease.. and really that makes a lot of sense.

And as far as your dd goes... I was looking forward to having children from the time I was a child ... I didn't until I was 21 .. on the other hand my dd did not plan on having kids for a long long time.. if ever .. and now she's a 19 yo seasoned mom ... so there you go. whether she is looking forward to it or not .. she will do it when she does it

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#19 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 10:25 PM
 
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I'd absolutely say congratulations!

Proud Anti-Adoption, Atheist, Reproductive-Freedom Fighter Mama
Rylie is 7, Ronin is 3.5
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#20 of 189 Old 06-11-2008, 10:56 PM
 
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I think offering congratulations is fine, and inquiring after how she feels is also very appropriate. Even if she chooses not to have the baby or keep it, it's nice for you to be supportive and nonjudgmental to her, and almost all pregnant women enjoy the opportunity to complain of their symptoms.

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#21 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 03:59 PM
 
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Yes. I think the negative attitudes towards pregnant teens (or even young women, who perhaps look like teens) is despicable. Having a baby changes your life, no matter what age you are - it does not 'ruin' it. I feel very strongly about this. And a young person is not any less capable of being a mother than an older one.

I am always positive about women's pregnancies. I certainly don't gush or rub their bellies, but I am always interested to hear about it and wish them the best.

And I never tell horror stories about pregnancy and birth experiences!
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#22 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 04:34 PM
 
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I would congratulate her. She's probably scared and dealing with negativity. A congratulations could help her see past all of that. If she is considering abortion or adoption, maybe she would decide things differently if somebody gave her some encouragement.

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#23 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 04:44 PM
 
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Originally Posted by ArielMomma View Post
I just wonder if I should tell a teenager Congratulations. Most of me says YES, but then I wonder what message that will send my daughter since I am always on her about taking her pill AND using condoms. I don’t want her to realize what a blessing children are just yet! I worry she might be like, "Damn, maybe I should have a baby!"
I think it will send the message that every child is a blessing and every expectant mom deserves respect, support, and a positive outlook. It's modeling how she should treat her friends and aquantances. There's plenty of opportunity (when not in the presence of the pg friend) to talk about why it's a bad idea for her to get pg right now.

Ruth, single mommy to Leah, 19 (in Israel for another school year), Hannah, 18 (commuting to college), and Jack, 12(homeschooled)
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#24 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 04:59 PM
 
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Just wanted to chime in here. I got pregnant at 20 and although that isn't "teens" strangers always assumed I was much younger than I was. Honestly, I got REALLY tired of dirty looks from people (especially elderly ladies and girls my own age). Having a stranger say something like, "you look great!" or "how do you feel (about physical things... not emotional as that isn't anyone else's business)", or "how exciting!" etc really made my day. I was happy about being pregnant, my family was happy, my friends were happy, so why did strangers and aquaintences seem to have so muc htrouble stomaching it???

Saying congrats isn't nearly the same as saying, "hey, good job not using protection" or something of the like so even if you are somewhat apposed to the person's decisions that doesn't have to effect the way you treat them. However, not saying anything IS almost like saying, "way to screw up your life little girl." to a young person who is already getting tons of harsh words and negitivity in their daily life.

Besides, young moms can be good moms. She is pregnant, it is done, help her to be happy and confident about her ability to be a good mom.

The fact that you're asking probably already means your thinking about her feelings and well being so I assume you're on the right track.

~TRACY, wife to loving dh, mommy to dd (10/05), ds(12/08), 3 kitties, & 2 pups.
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#25 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 05:13 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArielMomma View Post
When you find out a teen is pregnant, do you typically congratulate them the way you would an adult?

I remember when I was pregnant people were congratulating me left and right, but I was a little bit older. A friend of my daughter's is coming over tomorrow and I found out she's pregnant. I am wondering if I should congratulate her or say nothing at all.

What do you think?
congratulate her of course.
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#26 of 189 Old 06-12-2008, 05:47 PM
 
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My first thought was to wonder how she'd feel knowing that people were discussing her pregnancy- and lets face it, a huge number of her classmates probably are gossiping about it. I'd be gentle, whatever you decide to say.

Helen mum to five and mistress of mess and mayhem, making merry and mischief til the sun goes down.
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#27 of 189 Old 06-13-2008, 03:29 PM
 
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Every year as a high school teacher I have 2-5 kids come tell me, "I'm pregnant." I always blink a few times before responding. I generally say, "That's some big news. How're you feeling?" I've had students choose every option from the list. I always make sure to let the kidlets know that I support them 100% no matter what their decision.

It doesn't mean your life is ending to have a child when you are a teenager. It just means that some things will be harder. I don't just say, "Congratulations" because most of the time when kids come talk to me about their pregnancy they are very upset and confused. I do my best to be supportive while staying neutral on judging the situation. It really isn't my place to influence a kid into thinking that having a kid would be a great idea. Neither is it my place to suggest that pregnancy is awful. It's a tightrope.

My advice may not be appropriate for you. That's ok. You are just fine how you are and I am the right kind of me.

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#28 of 189 Old 06-13-2008, 03:34 PM
 
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Another voice chiming in that a positive response is a great option, whether it is congrats or the "oh, exciting news!" -- I was also a teen mom and got very little, maybe none even, positive feedback. Thats a difficult situation to be in, especially when you're planning to keep the child - because you are exciting about the life coming into the world, even if the circumstances aren't perfect.

Karen happily partnered mother of 3 beautiful girls (teen/toddler/newborn).
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#29 of 189 Old 06-13-2008, 03:41 PM
 
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I would say congratulations and gently ask how she's feeling. A mother is mother, no matter what age, and young mothers deserve the same level of respect and courtesy as older mothers do. It really makes me sick to think that some people actually feel as if they have the right to give young-looking mothers a cold look, or a make dirty comments, and that some feel as if they don't have to be as polite simply because of their ages.

Bethany, crunchy Christian mom to Destiny (11) Deanna (9), and Ethan (2)

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#30 of 189 Old 06-13-2008, 03:53 PM
 
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Absolutely! Mothers need support and love no matter how old they are. Quite possibly many people in the teens life are going to be negative about it. No one gets negativity from me!!

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