How To Cope With Teenage Pregnancy As A Parent

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Parent shocked about teenage pregnancy

How would you cope with teenage pregnancy if you were a parent? Isn’t that a tricky, tough, and traumatic question?

This is one of the most touchy topics that parents would ever want to even think of. None of them expect teen pregnancy when they raise their daughters from being their beautiful baby to a gorgeous young lady.

But when it happens, you’ve to face it. You can’t ignore it, but accept the fact – and your own daughter.

You’re going to read a moving story from a parent out of her personal experience. She dealt with her teenage daughter getting pregnant at a time when she wasn’t expecting it.

Today’s guest blogger is none other than a community member of Aha!NOW and someone who showers magic through her ministry and motivational thoughts, Yvonne I. Wilson.

She is this month’s top active community member and you can see her name on the Leaderboard in the sidebar, and as a result gets to write a guest post on Aha!NOW. She has a story to tell about teenage pregnancy, and you, parents and teenagers alike, should read it.

Over to you, Yvonne. 🙂

In many aspects, I am sure you will agree that parenting is among one of the toughest and least underpaid jobs that you will ever have.

Mark you; do not get me wrong – I love being a parent. 🙂

Likewise, I am positive that you do too. However, it is a huge responsibility, and with being a parent, there are many challenges.

Quite frankly, there are no off days!

Even when your children are all grown up, have left home, hopefully married 🙂 and in a committed relationship, you are still a parent.

Then, if you are like many parents, and have a teenage daughter living at home, you have dreams of the day when you will attend her college graduation and walk her down the aisle.

But one day while you are at work, she calls you up on the telephone and says, “Mom, [or Dad] can you come home so that we can have lunch together? I also have something I would like to tell you.”

You hang up the telephone and your gut instincts lead you to believe right away that something is not right – and lives are about to be changed.

Let me share with you all that happened in my life.

The Darkest Day of My Life as a Parent

The moment I got into my car to drive home on that sunny day in March 2012, my heart thumped heavily against my chest and then it felt like it had sunk into my stomach.

As I am driving along the highway, I said a short prayer to calm my nerves. I tried to freeze my mind so that it would not think, especially not anything negative.

I fought back the tears. For comfort, I convinced myself it was not bad news.

My daughter was six months shy of her sixteenth birthday.

She had just started college and was only in her second semester. Prior to that, from the moment she turned fourteen and leading up to that day, she was a ‘troubled’ teenager.

The problems she gave me, and the troubles she kept on getting into, were attributed to peer-pressure. It was my worst nightmare when it was discovered that she had become sexually active.

Now as I walked into her bedroom, I met her curled up in bed under the covers. As I sat facing her, I saw fear in her eyes.

She began, “Mommy I have something to tell you and I know you might not be happy, but I can’t keep it any longer.”

“Okay, go on and tell me,” I said.

She went on and related everything up to the point where she said the words, “Mommy, I am pregnant.”

I was stoned! More like being dumbfounded! There I was, muted. Then a hint of anger and betrayal boiled on the inside of me.

I remained silent, as I looked her in the face, trying my best not to display any outward emotions.

“You see now, you are not going to love me anymore… [Inaudible] That is the very reason I was afraid to tell you,” she said.

Nothing could have prepared me for this. It was the last thing I wanted [needed] to hear.

As she sobbed uncontrollably, her words pierced my silence, which somehow jolted me back to reality.

My daughter needed me more than ever. I sat there cold with my self-righteousness, thinking only about myself and how as a church leader, I would ever face the church and society.

I leaned forward with my hands outstretched and I recall so vividly, how I held her so tight into my bosom.

I gently kissed her forehead and re-assured her how much I loved her.

“I love you dearly, Susan,” [not her real name] No matter what, I will never turn my back on you. I will be there for you every step of the way,” I said.

I continued, “However, I need you to know this is one of the very things I was trying so hard to steer you away from. You will also finish your college education whenever that time comes again.”

“Yes, mommy, I promise I will,” she replied.

I left her room in a daze. I was ashamed, confused, and guilty that with all I had done, perhaps, I had not done enough, and I was to be blamed.

That was my part of the story, which leads me to write on the topic of teenage pregnancy. Here are some other issues with teenagers who become pregnant.

PLEASE READ: How To Deal With Teenage Problems

Current Trends and Issues with Teen Pregnancy

While in some cultures and even in societies, teen pregnancy is considered taboo, it is certainly not a new thing.

According to the US Department of Health and Human Services report [updated August 4th, 2104] as it relates to trends in teen pregnancy, about 82 percent of teen pregnancies are unplanned.

Further, US teen birth rates per 1000 females ages 15-19, by race or ethnicity combined over the years ranged from 59.9% in 1990 to 29.4% in 2012.

It was also noted in the report that the national teen pregnancy rate has declined almost continuously over the last two decades.

DON’T MISS: 9 Ways To Cope As A Single Parent

Sign for NO teenage pregnancy

Tips on How to Avoid Teenage Pregnancy

Here are some tips on what parents can do to help teenagers not get pregnant at the delicate juncture of their life.

  • Don’t give in – Encourage your child not to give in to peer-pressure.
  • Abstinence – Teach your child to say ‘NO’, and to know when it doesn’t feel right to walk away from the situation.
  • Health education – Explain the different options on what will or will not cause pregnancy and how the body functions. For example having un-protected sex and the use of the pull out method by the male versus protected sex.
  • Partnership – Work with a qualified physician or family planning practitioner to help you and your child to understand the different types of birth control, and choose the best option.
  • Protection – The use of protection by using condoms cannot be emphasized enough. Condoms do burst, yes, but it is still a very safe method.

MUST READ: 4 Tips To Setting Healthy Boundaries For Teenagers

How to Cope During and After Teen Pregnancy

As hard as this may sound, put aside your own feelings and fill the void and emptiness in your child’s life with the basic needs of acceptance, unconditional love, and emotional support.

1- Seek a qualified physician for medical advice and health care early

You also need to take an active role throughout in your daughter’s health care by ensuring she gets proper nutrition and adequate rest.

In addition, help her to stay away from harmful behaviors such as smoking and drinking of alcoholic beverages, and other substances that could harm her and the baby.

2- Find a trained counselor to speak to

Find someone who has experience dealing with teen pregnancies. A spiritual advisor is also another good option as well.

3- Contact the baby’s father and his parents to set up a meeting

The aim is to get to know the father’s position and his intention as it relates to his financial obligations, and his involvement in the baby’s future life.

4- Keep the lines of communicate open

You need to do this every step of the way so that your daughter does not feel left out or abandoned.

5- Prepare for the reality

Take an active role in helping your daughter prepare for the reality of a new life coming into the world.

6- Help her to build a good support group with family and close friends

These persons will be necessary to empathize with her and to give a supportive shoulder to lean on.

Find a counselor and a support network for yourself. Take care of yourself emotionally, physically, and spiritually.

7- Don’t forget to celebrate the new life that is about to come into the world

Having a baby planned or un-planned is meant to be a joyous occasion. And it is not such a bad idea after all being a grand-parent, especially for the first time.

8- Don’t withdraw her from school

See that she finishes her high school or college education.

DO READ: How To Cope With Teenage Mood Swings

A pregnant teenager standing

Lessons [to be] Learned When Your Teen Daughter Becomes Pregnant

I am willing to admit that some mistakes were made along the way. Yet in hindsight, I could see that lessons were also learned.

While this list is not exhaustive, here are some that I believe you will find beneficial.

  • You cannot choose your child’s ‘battles’ or trials in life

As parents part of our responsibility of course, is to protect and to provide the kind of environment for our children that are safe and free from harm.

What I realized however, is that I could not be every place my daughter went to, and the power to choose her trials, burdens, and experiences in life did not [do not] rest with me, but a higher power than myself.

Children will learn many things, but the lessons will come by their own experiences as they journey through life.

  • Educate your teen from early about practicing safe sex

This is not to suggest in any way that it is ‘cool’ for your teenager to have sex outside a marital bond.

Rather, it is to empower the child with knowledge and the tools while you show the consequences of what could happen if safe sex is not practiced.

  • Never compare your child with another

Even when there are identical twins, no two persons are ever truly alike. Our elders would also tell us – ‘different strokes for different folks.’

Additionally, while another child may not have gotten pregnant as a teen while being sexually active, that is by no means an indication that your child will not become pregnant as a teen.

  • Avoid being judgmental and dealing harshly with your child

Emotions are running high at that time. However, recognize that you are not the only one traumatized, ashamed, confused, guilty, and fearful of what the future will bring in that regard.

It is also not the time to give your daughter a scolding or a lecture.

  • Quickly move from denial to the point of acceptance

While it took me three days as one would say to ‘get over it, it’s already happened!’ You should move quickly from the denial stage to the acceptance stage.

Here’s the fact – denying it won’t make your daughter’s condition any better. It is the time to step-up and give her the support that she needs.

She is already in a vulnerable state and most likely ashamed. So, give her the reassurance and help her to feel your love, and to recognize you are indeed concerned.

  • Give your child some ‘space’

Give your daughter space – while not too much space, because she needs some time alone to deal with her own emotions.

Meanwhile, do all that you can to build/re-build an environment of trust so that she can feel comfortable enough to express her innermost thoughts and feelings.

  • Do your best to listen, be objective, and be respectful of her feelings

Regardless of the circumstances, it’s a good idea to give your daughter your undivided attention, to give her your listening ears, and to be respectful of her feelings.

There are basically three options at this time for your pregnant daughter – abortion, placing the baby up for adoption, or keeping and raising the baby.

You may have a lot of questions that need to be answered as well, but don’t pressure your child into talking or making a choice one way or the other.

  • Quit getting into the blame game

Everyone is encouraged to take responsibility for their actions but never blame yourself or any one particular individual.

Give yourself room to get over the shame and embarrassment, and realize that life was meant to be the way it turned out.

Your daughter did not get pregnant by herself.

So here is a good opportunity to be that vessel through which, both she and the baby’s father can experience the grace of forgiveness and love.

SUGGESTED READ: Is Yours The Most Effective Parenting Style

Mother and her teenage daughter after pregnancy

Life Doesn’t End Because of Teen Pregnancy

Life carries on, and so did my daughter live on. Here is a little update on her –

Update on Susan

Susan gave birth to a healthy baby girl on September 23rd 2012.

She is about to complete her final semester in college and hopes to graduate in 2015 with an Associate’s Degree in Business Management.

On August 1 2014, she was employed as a Corporate Administrator. She and her baby’s father are still together and are working together to raise their daughter.

My Question to You About Teenage Pregnancy

Do you think that society deals harder with teenage girls who become pregnant than they do with the male who impregnated them?

Do you think that society, school or religious organizations are playing a big enough role in helping to reduce the rate of teenage pregnancies?

Share Your Thoughts:

Have you or anyone that you know ever had a daughter who became pregnant as a teen? How did you cope? What lessons would you say were learned from that experience?

Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos



Show Comments

40 Comments - Read and share thoughts

  1. Datta Ghosh

    August 31, 2014 at 11:26 pm

    Yvonne that was so courageous, so inspirational. You not only faced things but kept your calm and went beyond to write so that others benefit. This act establishes that the world is still a good place to live in

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      September 1, 2014 at 4:17 pm

      Hi Datta

      Thank you for your kind words by which I am so encouraged at this time.

      It has given me the motivation to push forward even more on behalf of our youths who are definitely facing challenges in their own lives.

      We can help by reaching out to them in our community and by taking the time to understand them and what push them to do things a certain way.

      I would love to have you join us also in the Family Life Network group and share your thoughts and ideas on the things that are impacting our families.

      Blessings and have a great day.

  2. Carolyn Nicander Mohr

    August 28, 2014 at 12:48 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    Thanks to you and Angela for sharing your stories here at Harleena’s place. I have three teenage daughters, including twins who are just the age your daughter was when she got pregnant. I would have very mixed feelings if my daughters got pregnant as teens. First, I would be devastated because of the impact a baby would have on so many lives. Second, I would be excited to have a grandchild!

    Honestly, I hope I never have to deal with this issue, but who really expects it to happen? This will help so many people who are facing this issue. Thank you very much for sharing your brave and inspiring story with us, Yvonne.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 28, 2014 at 8:47 am

      Hi Carolyn,

      It is a scary thing of course and it does have a huge impact on everyone. So much adjustment have to be made in our lives. It is never the same and sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming, especially for the young parents. They miss out on a lot of things also that other children their age are enjoying.

      Also the baby who never asked to come into the world cannot be made to suffer. Everyone has to do his or her part in order to ensure the best care possible.

      Teenage pregnancy should definitely be avoided.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. Blessings 🙂

  3. Barbara Charles

    August 27, 2014 at 7:21 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    Thank you for sharing such a personal and emotional story with us. Your story, how you handled it, and your advice I’m sure it will help someone else who may go through this in the future.

    It is so hard raising children in this day and age. Although my first did not get pregnant, she was definitely a handful and was sexually active long before I was ready (not her, but me) 🙂 It was rough. However, we got through it with conversation and love and support as you did.

    Thank you for the work you do and for your sharing such an intricate part of your life in order to help others.

    God Bless,
    Barbara Charles

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 27, 2014 at 10:57 am

      Hi Barbara

      Thank you so much for the grace of kindness, love and support that you have expressed for us through your comment. It means a lot.

      Initially, it was hard for me to talk about because of my Christian faith and me being a ministry leader
      but after a while when I got past the guilt and shame, it became so much easier for me to share and as you rightly said, to help someone else in the future.

      We are never given more than we can bear and it is just so amazing how the tests and trials we are given turn out to be our greatest teacher on the issues of life to uplift, inspire and encourage someone else along the way.

      Thanks for sharing about your daughter and for being there for her in spite of and for giving her your unconditional love and support. One day I am sure she will thank you for that.

      God bless you 🙂
      Yvonne

  4. donna merrill

    August 25, 2014 at 10:17 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    Great to see you here on Harleena’s place! First, I want to congratulate you!

    Teenage pregnancy is getting more and more common these days.

    As a parent, we can educate them, listen to them, be there for them. I know, I survived those teenage years and it wasn’t easy. But, “accidents” do happen.

    It is up to the teen gal if she wants that baby or not. I have a niece and a nephew that both had teen pregnancies. My niece was 16 and now she has a wonderful baby boy. She has held her relationship with the father of her child. Although not married, both parents support hem emotionally and financially. She turned out to be a pretty great mom!

    My nephew stood by his girlfriend when she wanted to have the baby. Yes, they were “troubled kids” but with the support of all family members, they are on their second child. I do give him credit for being there and being a part of his children.

    The old saying that “It takes a whole village” applies here. When a teen makes the decision to have that child, we as parents, and relatives must be there to support them, make them feel comfortable, and most of all accept their decision.

    We have to lend a hand to them and directed them to health care, and all the problems they will be facing having that child. But most of all, show them how they can continue their education.

    It can be done! Right now my niece had finished high school via a computer class. Now that her child is a little older, she is going to a community college where there is a good day care program. It’s a start…but the entire family is cheering her on.

    This is a hot topic these days. And If a girl gets pregnant, it does take two! If the father is not in the picture, it is more difficult.

    -Donna

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 26, 2014 at 4:12 am

      Hi Donna

      Such a wonderful story about your niece and nephew and how they all stepped up to their responsibility.

      As parents we need to be there for them and give them the support they need. It doesn’t always have to be financial – just being there for them emotionally while we continue to give them unconditional live, both can go a long way.

      And you are so right that teenage pregnancy is a hot topic these days. Things have changed a lot, times have changed as well and teenagers will continue to try out stuff. They want the experience but still we must continue to do our part to make sure teen pregnancy is avoided.

      Glad you commented. Blessings. 🙂

  5. Dr. Diana

    August 24, 2014 at 11:11 pm

    Hello,

    What a fantastic post here 🙂

    Pregnancy time is the most precious time for any lady in this world. Mother feels happiness at that time. But you are right, people should avoid teenage pregnancy. Because teenage pregnancy is a socially, economically, physically and emotionally complex issue.

    ~Dr. Diana Hardy

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 26, 2014 at 3:56 am

      Hi Diana

      It is true that pregnancy and giving birth is a happy time for any lady. But for all of the reasons you have cited in your conclusion, I agree that teenage pregnancy must be avoided.

      Thanks for your comment. Much appreciated. 🙂

  6. Rene Howitt

    August 24, 2014 at 6:51 pm

    Yvonne…As a mom of three beautiful grown daughters, I have to admit my husband and I were doing the “success dance” when our last daughter turned 20 years old and there were no unplanned pregnancies. How sad is that. In today’s American society we would measure successful parenting in that way.

    We have to begin addressing how we are allowing our children to be sexualized even as toddlers. Good parenting or bad parenting isn’t the only issue. The images that are implanted in our children’s brains, from a very early age, through all media does have a pile on effect. Just look at Hardee’s latest commercials. Our children are being bombarded with sexual images from billboards, TV programming and TV commercials. Then when their sex drive kicks in we are all surprised that in their minds sex is just like a handshake. Not trying to attack the media just wanted to point out that there are other influences in the life of our children.

    I’m the founder of COPE24….Changing Our Parenting Experience. We are a child advocacy organization whose mission is to significantly reduce incidences of child abuse/neglect through our future parents. Our method will be by reaching all of our youth in middle and high school and preparing them for the stresses and responsibility of parenting. We have already produced many videos about in the moment parenting. Moving forward we are going to be addressing other issues that are significant to this problem but that teens may not actually see a connection. Good examples are drugs/alcohol use and abuse and addiction, also unplanned pregnancy. Obviously, all teen unplanned pregnancies do not lead to abuse but immaturity is a huge factor in child abuse/neglect. Teens are still immature and when there isn’t a great extended family support system things often go badly for the children.

    I just wanted all to know that COPE24 is planning a video production on the “unplanned pregnancy” for 2015. We have tried morality, religion, and birth control and yet the numbers are still significant. We plan to show students how their life changes if they are to parent successfully. Teens are all about having fun. Maybe if they truly understand that being a teen parent is about as far away from fun as one can get, this will fill that gap.

    We must keep trying. I want to personally thank all of those grandparents and other family that have stood by our youth in this situation and offered emotional, financial, and actual physical support to them. We must always remember that the infant had no choice in the matter and will need to be loved, nurtured, and supported.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 26, 2014 at 4:30 am

      Hi Rene

      I applaud you for this great contribution and raising awareness not only to your child advocacy organisation COPE24 but also shining light on dark areas in the world where from a very young age our children are sexualized and oriented.

      The programmes that children are allowed to watch these days, even the way we allow them to dress sends a message – only that in many instances it is the wrong message.

      Adults must be willing and also held accountable to a certain standard and be each other’s keeper and neighbourhood watch. Again, it takes a village to raise a child.

      All the best with your upcoming project and I hope it goes well. Blessings! 🙂

  7. Angela McCall

    August 24, 2014 at 1:12 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    This post seems like specially written for me. Your story is my story except I wasn’t the leader of the church. But we always believe that “sex belong in the marriage”. We don’t believe in pre-marital sex. Sex is like Fire. The Fire belongs in a fireplace. But if you put the Fire on the carpet, it will burn your house!

    Teenagers don’t understand this semantic.

    Their minds are under developed. It takes 22-years before a child’s mind is fully developed.

    I have never revealed this in public. But now that you talked about this, I thought I’d share my own experience. My daughter was only 17 when she got pregnant.

    Like you, I was in school when my daughter texted me, “Mom, I have something to tell you and dad.”

    My heart raced but needed to think positive. No, it couldn’t be. It just couldn’t be. I taught her the birds & bees, where the baby come from and all that. I was hoping it would be a different news. But my daughter have never spoken to me that way before special when she included the name “dad”. I knew it was something negative, something that was not right.

    At the moment we were going to a Family Counselor. The therapist was also a Christian woman at our church. Before she got pregnant, I suggested I wanted my daughter to be in birth control pills.

    My logic was, “Been there. Done that.” I’m an old fashion woman and I always believe that marriage should be first before sex. But when you are dating, sometimes even though you said you wouldn’t do it, but by heavy petting sometimes, you end up doing the very thing that you didn’t believe. And so during my single years, I said I know how that goes. And so I’ve always had an IUD because I just didn’t trust myself. To me it’s like a security. Just in case I slipped. I have that security!

    Then my husband replied, “But that’s like giving a gun to a criminal. Here, don’t use it but ‘just in case’ someone wrong you, you can shoot them!”

    I said, “How can you even compare a gun to a birth control? This is a matter of life and death. Would you rather have a baby that is unwanted then abandoned? Or would you rather have a child that is wanted and loved?”

    Both our therapist and my husband was against my decision. Of course, she is from the old generation and her value in life is, Girls should *ABSTAIN* from sex till they are married. Well…to me this is baloney. Not with my daughter.

    First off, my daughter was very honest in the very beginning, she said she didn’t believe in God. And so why should we push “what we believe” on my daughter if she doesn’t believe in God & church?

    When she said she was pregnant, I was totally shocked. This is the daughter whom I thought would finish college first, get married, get pregnant, and have a family! WRONG. Sometimes when we want on this order, it doesn’t happen!

    I wanted to abort the baby. I told my daughter that if this is less than 9-weeks old, you can take some pill that will help abort the baby. But she said she wanted to keep the baby. That it was wrong to kill the baby!

    I said, “Wrong!? Now you have the concept of wrong? If you think this is wrong, why didn’t you go to Planned Parenthood and get yourself some birth control pills? You can go there without your parents permission!”

    “What about your school?” I asked. My daughter replied, “I can still go to school even after the baby is born! {so-and-so} had a baby too and she is still going to school and doing fine.”

    I laughed about this and said, “Yeah. Right. But it’s 10x harder going to school when you have the baby!”

    She wouldn’t believe me. She had a hard time concentrating on her studies. She didn’t finish high school. But later on, while she still had the baby, she studied her GED but was struggling just to get her studies. Finally she got her GED but with a lot of struggle. And now she’s getting her Business Administration diploma and graduating this December 2014.

    Now at school she is getting good grades and is an “A Student” but my granddaughter doesn’t stay with us now that she’s 2-years old, she’s with the father’s family all the time, she comes and visit here every Friday. I feel bad about this somehow. She doesn’t really spend a lot of time with the baby. I asked her, “Why?”

    She said, “Because when she had the baby she couldn’t concentrate in high school and that’s why she quit. And now she’s afraid it might happened the same thing and that’s why she’s letting my granddaughter’s grand Aunt to take care of her while both of my daughter and and her ex-boyfriend are in college.

    Anyway, when she told us that she was pregnant and I wanted to abort the baby…

    I said to her, “I will not raise this baby. You are!” So you better think twice until you still have a chance to either abort the baby or give it for adoption. I said, “I don’t think this fetus has a soul yet…” And so when I visited my sister, I told her the same story. She paused for awhile and said, “I have something to share with you, Angela. When I was in Louisiana, I had met a woman who was raped. She wanted to abort the baby too but after I read her this book, she changed her mind.

    Let me read this book to you…People make mistakes but God never made a mistake! And so she carried this baby to full term. And when she held this baby in her arms the baby died. So you see, you don’t know what God is planning for this baby. This baby might live or die. You don’t know. This baby’s life is not in your hand but in God’s hand.” Then she read to me in the Bible and it says there that the moment the baby is conceived it is a living soul.

    And so I contemplated, “Lord, I leave it in your hands.”

    All these times my thoughts went round and round my head. I BLAMED MYSELF. (Notice it is past tense) During this time I said…IF only I have continued to bring her to church and get her in that Sabbath school on a regular basis. IF only I was more faithful to God. IF only I had done this and that. I felt so ashamed. A total failure as a parent. What is my family going to say about this? What is my husband’s family are going to say about this? What is my church going to say about this?

    But you know God is good. I believe that “All things work together for good”. Even if this is something Negative, God always use it as a Positive. I’m telling you this story not because to gossip about my daughter but to help a lot of young teenage girls out there. IF you want to abstain from sex, DO NOT even kiss your boyfriend. The moment that kissing is done, one thing lead to another. And the next thing you know, the cat is out of the litter box. It is uncontrollable!

    If you like a boy, keep in touch by talking on the phone. Writing to each other. Keep that “communication” going until you know this person totally. You don’t have to go to bed with someone to get to know him. You can get to know him by spending a lot of time with him *IN GROUPS*. Never alone. When you’re alone and have problems, you can solve your problems by talking to each other through COMMUNICATION and not by having sex in bed.

    SEX is elementary, my dear. You don’t need to go to college for this! But COMMUNICATION takes time. That’s why God said to ABSTAIN in sex before marriage. Give it 2-years at least of dating without sex and see what happens!

    Now, I am glad that my daughter did not have an abortion. I *loved* my granddaughter so much and she is the best thing that ever happened to me. For I know she is created by God. I am delighted when she is around. The feel of shame vanished when my husband’s family and my family gave us support. I couldn’t believe how supportive they are. And our church too, they are all very supportive and I cannot express more my gratitude that there are still GOOD people left on planet earth.

    I am over this with feeling now. And I am only sharing this for teenagers to read so they can learn from this mistake. Both Parents and Teenagers, they can lessons from life when something like THIS happens!

    The LAST thing your pregnant teenage daughter need to hear is CRITICISM. During the turning point of your daughter’s life, she needs parents who can outstretched their arms just like Jesus did. He came down not for the righteous ones but for the LOST. Always remember that. The church are *NOT* for Saints but for Lost Souls.

    Love your daughter just like Jesus. See her in God’s eyes.

    My daughter was very appreciative during this time, by the way. I hear her say, “If it wasn’t because of my parents, I wouldn’t be alive today. It was my family who supported me all the way!”

    And now my daughter is graduating this December and is an A Student in Business Administration. Thanks for sharing your story and for writing an excellent post. Have a Happy Sabbath!

    God bless,
    Angela

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 26, 2014 at 5:24 am

      Hi Angela

      I applaud you for your bravery and your courage to share this powerful testimony about you and your daughter and how you dealt with the situation. There are really no coincidence and by that I mean my story, your story, is also someone else’s story who perhaps have not had the courage to share.

      I believe however that sharing our life experiences can be very therapeutic. It is a source of healing from hurts and disappointment that can come as a result of situations such as teenage pregnancy. Finding the right audience to share it with and people who will be supportive as opposed to being judgemental and critical is what’s important.

      Your comment is filled with pearls of wisdom throughout and again I want to thank you for being so transparent and willing to share what you believe in.

      At the mention of God, it is bearing witness that He is real, that He makes no mistakes and everything, including pregnancy and who will be the chosen ones through whom that new life spring forth was already predestined by Him.

      I believe that you did the best for your daughter in supporting her and encouraging her every step of the way. The fact that she will be graduating later down this year is a major accomplishment. I congratulate both of you and wish every success in life in the future.

      Thank you for your comment and for the added value that it brought to this discussion. Have a great week ahead. 🙂

  8. Christy Garrett

    August 23, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    I realize that this topic is probably a parents worst nightmare but I think supporting your teenager when they need you the most is the best thing that you can do for your child. If you kick them out, how are they supposed to cope with being a young parent and raise a baby on the streets. Instead, embrace the opportunity but there is also no need to make it easy for your child.

    I remember when I found out that I was pregnant with my daughter, I was 19 and was planning on getting married to the man I was dating. As a young mom, it was hard to raise a baby but I survived. Yes, I might have missed the opportunities to be an adult without the responsibility of a child but she kept me grounded and out of trouble. My daughter was a blessing and even though my relationship with her father went bad after 5 years of marriage, I truly believe that my kids were given to me for a reason. My parents weren’t happy that I was pregnant so young but they quickly got over being upset after she was born.

    We all make mistakes in life and some of those mistakes have higher consequences but don’t make your child feel horrible for making a mistake like getting pregnant. Your child will have to work in order to support the baby but you can also help as needed to make sure that your grandchild doesn’t go without the basics.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 24, 2014 at 4:26 am

      Hi Christy,

      Oh definitely I agree this is a topic that is a parent worse nightmare and all the more reason why I am hoping more readers will weight in on it and have the discussion about it.

      Regardless, teenage pregnancy is a honest mistake. I don’t think that the young girl or boy intentionally set out to get pregnant. Later on in a conversation I recall my daughter telling me how devastated she and her boyfriend was when they found out that she was pregnant.

      As difficult as it was for me to accept, kicking her out never once crossed my mind. I saw the opportunity to strengthen our relationship, to help both of them to become more responsible young adults and parents to their child.

      What amazed me also was how he stepped up to his responsibility and has been there from that day.

      I wasn’t much older than you when I found out I was pregnant. I had just turned 21 and so I understand how difficult it could be raising a child and missing out on your youthful years.

      But these are lessons we learn in life and by sharing we realise we are not alone and someone else have gone through a similar experience. Children are indeed a blessing to us and all the other reason you have stated.

      I applaud you for sharing your experience with us and for adding more value to this discussion. Cheers to you! 🙂

  9. Babanature

    August 23, 2014 at 7:12 pm

    Hello Yvonne,
    What a nice post about teenage pregnancy…
    For now, i do not have a female child… but i have seen so many parents that got heart broken when they find our their daughter is pregnant.

    But right here in Africa, if you’re a teenage and you still go to high school, if you’re pregnant, you won’t attend school till maybe after the pregnancy or the first 2months of your pregnancy.

    Thanks for such an informative post and do have a lovely weekend both of you…

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 23, 2014 at 10:16 pm

      Hi Babanature,

      Thank you for taking the time off your busy schedule to comment. Happy you found it informative.

      Glad you mentioned how situation like teenage pregnancy is handled there in Africa. It is always good to know how it is handled in other cultures. Here in the Virgin Islands it is similar. The child is allowed to go to high school while pregnant for as long a period as she is able to cope with. After the birth of the baby, she is allowed to continue and complete her education.

      If it happens while she is already attending college as in the case of my daughter, she is allowed to go on and finish college at a time when it is convenient for her.

      Have a great weekend and happy to connect.

  10. Jodi

    August 23, 2014 at 6:46 pm

    This is something that always seems so bad at first, but changes because there is so much time before the baby comes. Not that it’s just easy, raising children is HARD, but it just get normal. The shock is the worst, but the pregnancy is so long, usually people catch up by then.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 23, 2014 at 9:59 pm

      Hi Jodi,

      That’s a very encouraging thought. Thank you for that. Getting over the shock is really the hard part because once the baby comes everyone catches up, some catch on 🙂 and some people do change.

      For one I noticed that I changed. I not only became a first time grandparent, but having her being raised in my home I am able to assist in giving her a good foundation in life and to instill good values in her.

      I am more patient, gentle, and more compassionate. These are just a few of the ways the situation has changed me – not to mention the joy, love and laughter she brings to us.

      Bless you and thanks for your support and encouragement. 🙂

  11. Lexis

    August 23, 2014 at 5:22 pm

    Thanks for sharing your story Yvonne. I guess I will never truly no how I would be in the same situation, but I hope I would be able to step up to the plate and be their for my son or any possible daughters the future may have in-store for me. I also hope that I would be able to help (as much as any parent can) my children avoid making a mistake that causes their childhood to end.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 23, 2014 at 9:43 pm

      Hi Lexis,

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us. I am reminded of what someone once said and that is: ‘You never know how strong you are until you realise being strong is all you’ve got left.’ It’s a statement that I find so true.

      My encouragement to you is that none of us are given a trial or a burden that is greater than our strength. And while I do not wish teenage pregnancy for your son or any daughter you may have, I believe that deep within you have the strength to rise to the challenge and to be there for him or her.

      The key thing though is to focus on prevention. Blessings! 🙂

  12. mathi

    August 22, 2014 at 5:37 pm

    Yvonne,
    You have been an excellent mother when your daughter needed you most. But teenage pregnancy should be avoided at any cost. The fault mostly is with the parents who do not spend quality time with their children. Children should be taught values of tradition and morality at a very young age. Not only girls, boys also should be taught the dividing line that should be between them till they are mature enough to get married.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 6:49 pm

      Hi Mathi,

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree that there are some parents who do not spend quality time with their children and teach them values and morality. Those parents must be held accountable.

      By the same token, many children are raised in a Christian home where all those things are taught and upheld to the highest standard yet the teenage daughter still got pregnant, such as in the case of my daughter.

      It is such a thin line. Still parents must explore all of the options of what they can do to prevent teenage pregnancy.

      I am glad that Harleena gave the go ahead for me to write on this delicate subject matter. It is so relevant. And your comment added more value.

      Have a great day. Blessings. 🙂

  13. Nathaniel Kidd

    August 22, 2014 at 11:00 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    I loved this article. I applaud you for how you handled the situation. There is nothing that compares us for those dreaded words “I’m pregnant”. We want so much for your kids and the last thing we want is for their future to be altered by such a life-changing event.

    There is not any training that prepares us how to handle that moment but the love you showed your daughter at that moment, she will carry with her forever. I am sure she felt safe!

    I also love your ideas for avoiding pregnancy altogether as well as how to cope with it once it happens. This article is definitely very useful and informative. Thanks for sharing.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 11:52 am

      Hi Nathaniel,

      I am glad you loved the article and have found the tips on how to avoid teenage pregnancy and how to cope with it useful and informative.

      Looking back I just couldn’t understand then why I was allowed to go through such traumatic experience but it is all coming together now. That great trial which could have destroyed me didn’t win but instead, it made me a stronger person.

      I agree with you that no amount of training can prepare us how to handle that moment but certainly the experience with it has become the teacher that we can all learn from such a lesson.

      Cheers and blessings to you. 🙂 Have a lovely day. I appreciate you taking the time from your busy schedule to not only read the article but to share your thoughts with us.

  14. Balroop Singh

    August 22, 2014 at 8:08 am

    Hi Yvonne,

    I am so glad to meet you here! Also, I am happy to hear that your daughter is happy and is planning to get married after having completed her studies. What more can a mother aspire for. I can understand that it must be a very distressful time for you when your daughter dropped that bomb unawares and it requires a lion’s heart to accept and support such a teenager. Even in such advanced times, such teenagers are killed by their own parents, without any remorse, in many societies. Cultural pressures and extreme wrath drives people to that level!

    Your sane decision to give an assurance that you still loved your daughter when you yourself must be in a state of shock is a very balanced approach but it is so difficult to accept! Yes, love never wanes but this realisation comes much much later…the initial reaction is anger, shame, guilt. It is very natural to blame yourself for being a failure. Despite these universal emotions, which must have traumatised you, it is very creditable that you were so loving and supporting!

    I hope teenagers learn from the experience of others. I hope they read such articles to understand the other side of having fun. Thanks for sharing your story, it is heart wrenching!
    A big thanks to Harleena too for inviting you for such an important and sensitive topic. Who could have written it better than a mother like you!

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 11:35 am

      Hi Balroop,

      I appreciate your feedback and the courage and grace that I have found in your words. Not only did it take a lion’s heart to hold on in such a distressing time, it required a special kind of grace that only the man above could give.

      I am glad you mentioned cultural pressures. I would also add to that religious beliefs as well in which a combination of both results in pressure on the teenager to have an abortion and when that option is rejected by the teen, it then leads to the teenager being killed by their parent.

      One of the things I hope would come out of my sharing this experience is that it will create a global awareness to the many things that the youths of today are struggling with. ..it’s not just peer pressure to have sex at a young age but a spin off to get into other negative behaviour and abusive situations and that results in low self-esteem etc

      They need help from us adults and parents to teach and guide them and to point them in the right direction. Young people today are the future.

      Thank you for your valuable contribution to the discussion. Have a wonderful day. 🙂

  15. Sylviane Nuccio

    August 22, 2014 at 6:13 am

    Hi Yvonne, and welcome at Harleena’s

    I’ve never met you before, so what a great opportunity.

    Teenage pregnancy is a sad thing, I would say. I’ve never had any children but I did get married in my teenage years with someone I divorced when I was just 20 and I can say for a fact that a teenager has no CLUE as what he or she is doing. It’s really like our brain doesn’t function properly at that age, so I can’t imagine the challenge of carrying a child.

    It’s definitely no time for parents to abandon their kid, though, they really need all the mental support and guidance they can use, along with help to learn life lessons.

    Thank you for this great post 🙂

    Harleen, my anti-virus system keeps telling me that your site is suspicious, do you have any idea why?

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 7:53 am

      Hi Sylviane,

      Thanks for the greeting and warm welcome. It’s a pleasure to meet you as well.

      I agree that teenagers have no clue what s/he is doing at such a young age and your point is valid that their brain has not been fully developed. I didn’t get married as a teen but at 21 to my daughter’s dad and I am telling you even then I was clueless. I soon began to miss out on my youthful years. Sadly that marriage ended in divorce. In a lot of instances I was just too naive and ‘silly’ about lots of things.

      Life is even harder for a teenager getting pregnant and having to take on the added responsibility of womanhood and motherboard while still trying to understand themselves as a youth. It’s like a baby having a baby.

      So there it is again in agreement with you, that is the time for parents to step up and to give the child all the mental support and guidance they need.

      Thanks for taking part in this discussion and blessing us with your wisdom. Have a great day. 🙂

  16. Corina Ramos

    August 21, 2014 at 10:50 pm

    Hello Yvonne,

    Nice to meet you and welcome to Harleena’s place :).

    As a teen mom myself, I will never forget how my parents handled it, totally opposite of how you did.

    I have been very blessed so far with my teens but that doesn’t mean it’s been easy :). Parenting is tough but as long as we communicate with them and guide them, they’ll be okay.

    I think girls do have it tougher than boys but it starts with the parents. Mine know if they get a girl pregnant, no they don’t have to get married but they are going to be there for that child in every way and get an education.

    Thank you for sharing your experience with us! Be blessed! Harleena, as usual you have picked a great guest! Hope you’re having a great day dear!

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 1:48 am

      Hi Corina

      Thank you for your warm welcome. I appreciate you and your courage as well to share your story as a teen mom. It can be a very traumatic experience finding out your teen daughter is pregnant and no doubt your mom must have felt she was handling it the best way she knew how.

      One of the things we realised when my daughter got pregnant was the huge amount of financial responsibility that came along. The multiple doctor visits over time, tests and so on. It challenged us quite a bit but there is hope that it will get better.

      I am very happy to hear that your boys are a blessing to you. I am pretty sure that came as a result of you providing them with unconditional love, guidance and an environment in which they feel safe. You have done well and I commend you highly for that.

      Continue to share with them and keep the line of communication open.

      I agree with you that if it happens that they get a girl pregnant that should not be the deciding factor in getting married and making such a lifetime commitment. What’s important is being there for the child and to take care of his responsibility.

      Thanks again for commenting and for agreeing with Harleena to have me do a guest post here at Aha! NOW. Cheers! 🙂

  17. Victor Noah

    August 21, 2014 at 7:27 pm

    Wow! These is really an interesting article for the teenagers out there. I believe they’ll learn from your past experienced.. Thanks so much ma’am Harleena for posting and do have a nice weeks ahead.. 😀

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 22, 2014 at 1:10 am

      Hi Victor,

      Thank you so much for your contribution to this discussion.It will help teenagers a lot for but also adults, more so parents as a guide as to how to cope and help their teenage daughter through a situation such as this. Blessings!

  18. Swadhin Agrawal

    August 21, 2014 at 7:24 pm

    Hello Yvonne,

    Congratz on being the top member on this community. i’m sorry to hear that the incident occurred to you.

    Yes in a world of today teenagers are a bit out of the track and these things could happen to anyone. this is not a mistake of the parents or the girl child this is a mistake of the era we live in. Not that it wasn’t there on history (many of Indian mythology and other ancient mythologies too speak of the ordeal) . But things have grown up in volumes now.

    No one could have better explained that parents undergone such a situation. and I m very much thankful to you for writing this sensitive topic on Aha-now. It will help many find the right solution.

    Getting angry and suppression is never the right choice specially when your subject is a fragile teenager. We have to be there with them as it is the time they most need us and if we act otherwise we would end up loosing our beloved daughter or son (in other cases).

    I think right education, abstination, not comparing ur teen and encouraging her to practise chastity is the best solution as you have mentioned.

    Thanks once again for turning your weak moments to make others strong.

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 21, 2014 at 7:51 pm

      Hi Swadhin,

      Thank you for your kind words. One of the points that you made and which I think is so relevant in this discussion and should not be overlooked is “this is not a mistake of the parents or the girl child this is a mistake of the era we live in.”

      There is an old saying, ‘it takes a village to raise a child.’ It simply means everyone have to come together and work together to raise children who grow up as outstanding members and citizens of the community. Not just with teenage pregnancy but everything else.

      There are a lot of troubled teenagers in the world today- many are searching for answers and that’s where people would need to come together and provide them with the right answers and the solutions in life before those with the lies and deception get to them.

      Thanks for endorsing the solutions provided and also for your contribution to this discussion. Cheers 🙂 Yvonne

      • Swadhin Agrawal

        September 16, 2014 at 10:30 pm

        Hi Yvonne, sorry for the late reply. Thanks for liking that line of me and it is true. The biggest problem of today’s teenagers is that they are expected to show good behavior without seeing any from the elder ones.

        Yes we are social animals and so everyone in the community is somehow responsible in the process of upbringing the child.

        Have a good day Yvonne. 🙂

        • Yvonne I. Wilson

          September 17, 2014 at 3:15 am

          Hi Swadhin, I could not agree with you more on this. Raising a child goes beyond the home, it is extended into the community and they too are somehow responsible.

  19. Harleena Singh

    August 21, 2014 at 6:20 pm

    Hi Yvonne,

    Welcome to Aha!NOW, this time as my guest 🙂

    I’m so happy that you decided to write a post on teenage pregnancy because this has become a guide post for all parents who have teenage daughters. Thank you so much for writing it!

    As a parent, I appreciate your courage and commitment to stick to and support your daughter even in these difficult times, for both you and her. This post is a lesson to all parents all around the world as to how to deal with the problem of teenage pregnancy.

    Communities and societies all around the world deal differently with daughter who become pregnant when still teenagers. It’s sad to know that in some parts of the developing and third world countries, teen pregnant daughters and their families have to suffer a lot, and in some parts of the world, they get killed too.

    The question is very relevant and right as to why shouldn’t the one who impregnates be punished, because the responsibility lies with both the sexes.

    I think as a parent you did the most wonderful thing and I’m sure your daughter will be very proud of you. Good to know that she carried on with her education and is now settled with a job, and probably will get commitment from her child’s father too.

    Your tips to avoid teen pregnancy and the ways to cope with it are right on spot. The lessons that you teach are very meaningful and you’re right, life doesn’t end because of teen pregnancy.

    I’m sure my lovely blog audience and community have questions to ask and experiences to share with you from their own life and life accounts of the ones they know of.

    You’re the star of Aha!NOW today and I’m leaving you alone here to bask in the limelight of glory and fame! I’ll be here only to welcome the new guests, so all the best and it’s over to you, Yvonne! 🙂

    • Yvonne I. Wilson

      August 21, 2014 at 7:39 pm

      Hi Harleena,

      Thank you so much for the warm welcome. I am indeed grateful and humbled for the honor of being featured as a guest on your blog, Aha!NOW. I am happy that we connected and that I have someone like you to look up to and to emulate. I call you out as my online mentor and guide by what you share each time on your blog. The encouragement and the support that you have given me over the months, is priceless and I do not take it for granted. It means a lot to me.

      With regards to teenage pregnancy, it takes an extraordinary amount of courage and grace to go through having a teenage daughter, in this case my daughter got pregnant at such a young age. In that moment it felt like hopes and dreams were shattered but one of the things that stood out that I believed really kept us ‘sane’ in the process was the strong support our family gave to us [and continue to give us]

      I agree that communities and societies all around the world deal differently with their daughters who become pregnant when they are still teenagers. Actually I know of some parents who have resorted to putting out the child from the home as a way of dealing with the shame. They end up not wanting anything to do with the child and then someone else have to come to their daughter’s rescue to get her off the street. Sounds terrible I know but it is still happening to this day.

      It is really not the time to punish the daughter when she is already pregnant and as you rightly said, the responsibility lies with both the male and the female. I had to take a step back, put myself in her place and recalled that I had sex at a young age myself..just fortunate that I did not get caught as in got pregnant. By putting myself in her place, I just could not allow myself to become judgmental.

      I am glad that you found the tips on how to avoid teen pregnancy and how to cope with it to be spot on. I hope that your blog readers find them that way too.

      One other thing I would like to share is that my daughter and her baby’s father are now in a committed relationship and have plans to get married in the near future. His parents are very supportive of them both and give them the encouragement and guidance as needed.

      Thanks again for having me. I send you a ton of love, hugs and kisses. 🙂 Yvonne






How To Cope With Teenage Pregnancy As A Parent