The rate of teenage pregnancies varies across the globe. This is still a rampant problem in the United States, where an alarming number of teenage girls under the age of 18 are becoming pregnant (Anand & Khan, 2013). This issue of teen pregnancies goes far beyond the social stigma that might come along with the pregnancy, here are three reasons why teenage pregnancies is an issue for the families of those involved:
1. Teenagers cannot support themselves or a child – many teenagers who are pregnant with a child before graduating high school usually are not able to provide for themselves, let alone their baby. This puts unnecessary financial strain on the entire family. Not only will the child be at risk of living under the poverty line, the mother of the child will have to stop schooling or lessen her number of classes in order to take care of the baby.
2. Chances are, the father will not be in the picture – studies show that the lack of a paternal figure in the home will cause psychological problems for the young child born from a teenage mom. Children born in homes where the absence of a father is seen are more likely to be involved with drugs and petty crimes, according to a study conducted in the United States (Anand & Khan, 2013).
3. Teenage mothers are not emotionally ready to have offspring – motherhood is a tough job that many teenagers are not ready for. A lot of teenagers are still emotional and have no control over their hormonal changes, this could lead to severe post-partum depression which will affect the safety of the mother and the child (Anand & Khan, 2013). An unstable mother will not be able to take care of her child, and a teenage mom is more likely to suffer from depression after child birth.
There are a number of reasons why teenage pregnancy is a bane in society. Not only is this bad for the mother and child, the entire family will be affected. Bringing a child into the world, without being prepared is very irresponsible.
1. What if the teenager is going to get married?
The question of being emotionally ready and stable for a child is still at hand.
2. What if the teenager was raped?
There are options involving family planning that can protect the teenage girl. It is also possible to have the baby put up for adoption.
3. What if the teenager is from a rich family?
The financial ability of the family does not define the readiness of the mother both emotionally and even monetarily. The parents of the girl are rich, not her.
Anand, P., & Kahn, L. B. (2013). The Effect of Teen Pregnancy on Siblings’ Sexual Behavior.