Not just another statistic. Teen mothers should not be ridiculed, but can still be successful

Alexis Riga, Web Editor & Staff Writer

 Even with the push of abstinence on teenagers, rates of teens participating in sexual activity continue to remain high and so does the rate of teen pregnancy.

   According to www.healthychildren.org, published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, two in five young women will become pregnant before the age 20.  Teen pregnancy is defined as a pregnancy in females who are under the age of 20. Whether the teens were taking action in using protection or not, the news of a young girl  being pregnant isn’t usually welcomed. But why can teens be okay with themselves and friends engaging in these activities, but the moment someone ends up pregnant, they are frowned upon and usually treated different?

  Teenagers who do end up pregnant should not be treated any different than those who are also having sex, whether it just be with a significant other or multiple people. Yes, it was their choice to have sexual intercourse at a young age and there are ways to prevent pregnancy from happening, but, in the end, every person who engages in that type of activity is taking a risk and also a chance in ending up pregnant.  According to “Sexual Risk Behaviors: HIV, STD, & Teen Pregnancy Prevention” by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 47 percent of high school teens surveyed in 2013 had admitted to being sexually active.

  Another thing to keep in mind while you think about the rate of teens who have children are how successful they can be. From my own personal experience, it feels like people believe that just because someone has a child at a young age, they won’t be able to make anything out of themselves or have a “successful life.” Although bringing a child into this world who you are then responsible for does make everything harder, you can still live a life in which you are happy and achieve your goals.

  With that being said, I don’t think to be successful you have to play everything by the book, and pay a significant amount of money on college tuition, to then go to work and attempt to pay back college funds. Successful to me is living in a life to where you make the amount of money you desire, while spending time with family and friends and making the most memories possible. If a young girl ends up pregnant, there is no reason why she should be looked down on or made fun of. Life is what you make it, and honestly you can be so much more than just a statistic that us young women are categorized as.

  Lastly, it is very important to take responsibility for your choices while also making the best of a difficult situation. I did not plan on being a teen mother, but just because it happened doesn’t mean I’m going to hate my life and dwell on my actions. There is always something good in every situation, you just have to find it. The way I see it is that I am now going to do my best to prove to not only myself, but to the world that I can be an amazing mother, even at a young age.