When people hear the term teen mom they usually have a strong reaction against it, if you ask people what they think of when you say the words teen mom the words that follow are usually to the effect of- un-wed, uneducated, naïve, poor, loose, emotional lacking…
I was a teen mom I gave birth to my eldest son at the age of 19, I wasn’t ill educated, I knew about and used protection, I didn’t come from a poor background although I would say that emotionally and as far as self love was concerned I was severely lacking…
As a teen mom I was confronted by many challenges;
I was in my first year of college and pregnant I was told by several of my educators that I may as well give up because it is impossible to be successful in the fashion industry and have a family, I made it to my 3rd year but dropped out when I had to choose between work and school in a high risk pregnancy, we had family to feed so I chose to work.
I was played down and treated as a child by many people who should have been helping me prepare to raise one, I had no life experience, no job, no money and I had made a baby with a boy I had been dating for 5 months and who was still in school.
Often older people would look at me like I was a tart or just stupid they would tut tut that I was unwed and so young and I was even told that by one woman that I should give my baby up because babies should not be raised by babies!
My ex was given a lot more freedom and I was expected to give him a lot more freedom because he was a man and I was the woman/ wife and mother, it was as if in the eyes of others it was my fault that he now had a baby to raise instead of people looking at it that we both played our part.
I lost many friends because I could no longer and would no longer party and the relationship I had with my boyfriend grew incredibly strained as I no longer lavished as much individual attention on my partner and now had a baby who needed my undivided love and attention; at the same time I felt a lot of pressure to make our relationship work, I didn’t want to fail and prove everyone right.
Having said all of this my son was still the greatest gift I could ever have received I was young naive and stupid and my son was my greatest saving grace.
He taught me patience and made me feel a love I never thought was possible, people think that young moms don’t know what they are doing but I know moms as young as 14 who are more dedicated to their children than some older woman, age has no meaning it is what you make of your life as a mom that makes a difference…
Being a young meant that I was young enough to still be a child with my children when they were young and needed me to be, it meant I was more flexible and adaptable in my ways and that lack of sleep did not affect me as much as it did with my second and 3rd sons.
My body bounced back quicker and I had more energy, I was also very eager to learn and explore all the many books, ideas and methods that our parents before us did not have.
From a mother’s point of view of course I would prefer it if my children chose to settle down first, go to college enjoy their teens and twenties before having children but as a teen mom and young mother I also know that there are no guarantees and that even longstanding relations can end in a flash and all the money and experience in the world cannot buy happiness or good parenting.
If my boys come to me one day and tell me that they are sexually active I will not be angry I would rather that they not hide it and then I can provide them with the knowledge and protection so that they do not end up with an unwanted pregnancy, if they brought home a pregnant girlfriend, I would be hurt because I would hope that I had given them the best knowledge I could to avoid it however I would not be angry, I would do everything I could to help him and his partner in every way that I can and will ensure that they take the responsibility and become the loving parent that their child needs and deserves whether he stays with his partner or not.
Being a teen mom was hard at times; incredibly hard, but I have no regrets, I have pulled through a failed marriage, having to sleep on a friend’s couch working 3 jobs because I had 3 children to raise on my own. I have gone through depression and several miscarriages, I have found love again and married the love of my life, I have had many moments where I have felt like a terrible mother. I have lost my patience, cried and screamed with frustration, but my children have pulled me through each and every dark day and I am incredibly blessed to have been their mother, I believe that being a teen mom was the best thing that could have happened to me, others may not feel the same way but that has been my experience.
This story was written by Chastin from Crazy Momma of Three.