Teen Mom Shares Her Own Experience On TeenInk.com

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I got pregnant at 14 years old and had my daughter when I was 15. I had no help from my mother and no father to guide me. All I had was stares from people who didn't know a thing about me but still judged me. People thought I should get an abortion since I was so young but at that age I knew abortions weren't for me.

Now, I am 16 and my daughter is now 1. I still receive negative perceptions from most people I come in contact with. I had one incident when I was in church; this lady kept staring at me so I smiled at her. She turned her nose up and moments later she had the audacity to say why do you have a baby, you are not even holding her the right way. That's when I realized how rude and cruel most adults are to all teenage mothers.
Most adults don't understand that I have just as much responsibility as they do. I don't have a car so I have to find a way for my daughter to get to and from daycare. I also don't have a job; therefore I have to depend on others to financially support me and my daughter. My family values education and so they decided that finishing high school was more important than working a job. In addition to that I'm not married yet so I have to make sure my daughter sees her father. I know there are so many teen moms that have overcome obstacles and made a good life for themselves and their family.

While searching the web, I found a statistics article about teen moms. It said, "The poorer the young woman is the more likely for they will become a young mother." This statement made me realize the obstacles I will have to overcome just to be looked at as an individual instead of as a teen mom that is going to be on welfare and a school dropout. (Source)

The reason I'm writing this editorial is to plead with people not to judge teen moms just because we have a child. No young woman should have to justify "why" she had her baby. I want people to stop looking at me like I'm scum off the bottom of their shoe and see me as a young mother, not someone that has committed a crime.

Currently I am looking past all of the negative comments made toward me. I'm a junior working on becoming a better person and also trying to bring up my grades. I will soon be ready to go on college tours to make an investment in my future. I plan to have a good life with my daughter and I refuse to let the rest of the world dictate how I will live the rest of life based on "what they've heard".

This was written by Brittany W. from Indianapolis, IN and originally ran on TeenInk.com, a website where teens contribute their own writing and photography. Check out her original post here and leave a comment with your thoughts.

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