10 February 2017
In today’s culture, pregnant teenagers are considered disposable. There are several risks in becoming pregnant that could cause problems in having the baby. There are some that are most significant and there are some that are less significant. One of the more significant ones is how having a baby is the majority of reasons that people drop out of high school. When they have a baby in high school it is one of the most stressful things that could happen to them. Their social life may significantly decrease after having a baby because they don’t want people making fun of them, and all of the activities that they might have been involved in before they became pregnant they are more than likely not involved in after having the baby. There are lots of different studies that have been done about how many teens with a baby actually finish high school and how many never do.
There are several risks in becoming pregnant as a teenager that may cause problems with having a baby. One of the major ones is not being able to provide for yourself and for your newborn baby. Money is sometimes hard to make for these teenagers because they still have to attend high school while trying to maintain a job so they will be able to place food on the table for both her and her new child. “An ongoing problem is finding a job,” says Jeremiah Andrynsky who is the fiancé of Mackenzie Webster (Teen moms work for education) Marilene Lopez, a 17 year old girl with a 4-month-old baby. Lopez also explains that “it is hard, but I’d rather finish school so I can get a better job.” (Teen moms work for education) Being a high school girl while trying to maintain a decently good grade in school, and trying to find time to work so they are able to provide for their family is one of the hardest things to do for a teenage girl with a baby. This is hard for high school girls who do not have a baby, led alone the ones that also have the stress of a baby in their lives along with everything else they have.
Along with not being able to provide for themselves and their new born babies there is a lot of stress that these women are under after they have the baby, and while they are pregnant. Mackenzie Webster is 18 years old and 6 months pregnant. She was being forced to change where she would attend school because she had the baby. Webster said that “decreasing the stress was my top priority.” Stress is one that may also cause physical health problems because they are not taking care of their bodies. This may include receiving enough sleep per night, not eating right, or trying to work off the extra baby fat so they stress about having to do that while taking care of a baby. Amy Flowers Umble says, “add the stress of a baby to the stress of being without a home, and you get the perfect recipe for a high school dropout.” (Teen pregnancies in area down, but needs up) Becoming a parent in high school is one of the hardest things to adapt to. It takes a lot of activeness in the child’s life to make sure they have all that they need. When teenagers become pregnant and have the baby, most of them are not able to pay for everything that they baby needs. There are some who do not have anyone to turn to because their parents might have kicked them out or they move away so their parents wouldn’t find out. They then begin living under the definition of homeless which Umble describes as, “… students living in motels or doubled up with friends or family members.” (Teen pregnancies in are down, but needs up) Umble also states “those standards allow students to qualify to expedited free and reduced-priced meals and transportation to stay in school even if they move.” (Teen pregnancies in area down, but needs up) For a teenager this just adds more stress to the stress that they have already had with them.
Also another major problem that pregnant teenagers have is they are more likely to drop out of high school than students who have not become pregnant. Lisa Shuger says, “parenthood is a leading cause of school dropout among teen girls. Thirty percent of all teen girls who have dropped out of high school cite pregnancy or parenthood as a key reason.” (Teen Pregnancy and High School Dropout) Shuger also mentions that “over the course of a lifetime, a college graduate will earn, on average $1 million more than a high school dropout.” This is why Shuger states that “dropping out is literally a million-dollar mistake.” Margie Hale, Executive Director of West Virginia Kids Count said “almost all teen girls that get pregnant drop out.” (Pregnancy among teens lowest in Mon) While they are hurting their own body and life they are also hurting the life of their baby to be and how that child will succeed in school.
The biggest way they are hurting the life of their child is by how that child is able to learn throughout his/her life. Shuger had this to say about this risk, “because there is a close connection between teen pregnancy and academic failure and because teen pregnancy affects the educational achievement of teens themselves (as well as that of their children), those concerned about educating young people should also be concerned with presenting teen pregnancy.” (Teen Pregnancy and High School Dropout) Shuger also mentions that “the connection between too-early pregnancy and parenthood and educational attainment is strong.” Again Shuger says that “both teen parents who drop out of high school and children of teen parents suffer serious educational challenges. Too-early pregnancy and parenthood not only makes it more difficult to complete education, career, and other life goals, for teen parents, but it also affects the future prospects of their children.” This means that the child may have trouble in school and might be at a lower learning level than that of other students who were not born to a teen parent.
There are also many adults who are trying to improve teens knowledge on how life changing it is to have a baby before they are even out of high school. There are many programs that show the teenagers the risks of having a baby in high school, and why they should attain abstinence until they are ready to have a child. Shuger says that “ninety percent of adults believe reducing teen pregnancy is a very effective way to reduce the high school drop out rate and improve academic achievement.” (Teen Pregnancy and High School Dropout) This is something that all parents and school teachers should try their hardest to stress to their child/children, but sometimes that may still not be enough for their child to want to wait till they are old enough and mature enough to be able to take care of a baby and provide for all the baby needs.
In today’s culture, pregnant teenagers are considered disposable. There are several risks in becoming pregnant that could cause problems in having the baby. There are some that are most significant and there are some that are less significant. One of the more significant ones is how having a baby is the majority of reasons that people drop out of high school. When they have a baby in high school it is one of the most stressful things that could happen to them at such a young age. Their social life may significantly decrease after having a baby because they don’t want people making fun of them, and all of the activities that they might have been involved in before they became pregnant they are more than likely not involved in after having the baby.
Lang, Alex. “Pregnancy among teens lowest in Mon.” Dominion Post, The (Morgantown, WV) 05 Feb. 2013: Points of View Reference Center. Web. 19 Jan. 2017.
Qualls, Meredith. “Teen moms work for education” Decatur Daily, The (AL) 11 May 2014
Shuger, Lisa. “Teen Pregnancy and High Scholl Dropout” The national Campaign, America’s Promise Alliance. No date specified
Umble, Amy Flowers. “Teen pregnancies in area down, but needs up” Free Lance-Star, The (Fredericksburg, VA) 08 August 2012