Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Frequently Asked Questions of a Teen Mom

I get asked the same questions over and over again, whether they're from teenagers or adults. I figure I'd go ahead and get these out in the open. If you comment on this entry with a question, I'll add it to the post and answer it there. :]

Did you get pregnant on purpose?
No. I was on birth control, surprisingly enough. But I'd fallen behind and missed a few days. I hated the BC I was on because it would make me nauseated and make me wake up with excruciatingly painful muscle spasms in the middle of the night. Anyway, I did not plan on getting pregnant.

Do you receive a lot of discrimination because of your age as a mother?
Not really... but I'm always cautious about it. I was kind of anxious to start going to church again because I was terrified of being shunned or treated rudely. Luckily I picked the right church for me and I was readily accepted and felt right at home. I'd also heard horror stories of delivery nurses being rude to young mothers during and after the delivery. I was lucky there, too. But some just can't see past my age and group me with the teen moms who aren't so motivated and selfless and send me hate mail and such. Luckily, those are few and far between.

What is your opinion of teenage mothers in general?
It really depends. I think that not every woman is cut out to be a mother, no matter what her age. Some teenagers never go through the drinking/partying stage and adapt perfectly to parenthood. Others just can't let their personal lives go to take on the responsibility [and blessing] of raising a child. A female has the potential to be a good or bad mother, no matter what her age. There are plenty of adults that are terrible mothers.

Would you go back and change anything?
Absolutely not. I love the life I'm leading right now. I love my daughter and how close her birth has brought me with my family. I wouldn't be in college and have graduated early if it weren't for her. She's the best thing that has ever and will ever happen to me. :]

Would you recommend getting pregnant to teenage girls?
No. It's extremely difficult, especially if you're dealing with issues with the father. Some girls' parents shun them for getting pregnant, leaving them homeless and without financial support. I am very fortunate to have the aid of my parents. I have no idea where Athena and I would be if it weren't for them. In my opinion, a teenager's top priority should be finishing high school, and that is made very complicated with an infant. Enjoy staying out late, sleeping in, being with friends and having money while you can, girls. Motherhood isn't for everyone.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

A Little About Me

When people learn my name is India before meeting me, they get this m
ental image of a Middle Eastern girl with dark hair and tan skin. That couldn't be more wrong! I am very pale and I have blonde hair [though I've had many other colors]. I was born in Virgina on Cinco de Mayo in 1992. After that, I moved all over Texas and finally settled in with my family south of Fort Worth the summer I turned 10. I went through my freshmen and sophmore years with no issues at all; I made straight A's, was almost obsessively involved with choir and had no interest in the drinking and smoking my peers seemed to be tapping into. I found out I was pregnant at the beginning of my junior year. I contemplated an abortion along with adoption. Neither seemed to feel like the right choice. So gradually everyone at my high school found out, and I received a wide range of responses. From physical threats to anonymous gifts, I was never really sure where I stood with most of my class. This was 2008, and no one else at the high school was pregnant;
it was only me. Now, I almost always know someone my age that is pregnant. I don't want to talk about increasing young pregnancy rates... Anyway, when my third
trimester rolled around, I was transferred
to AEC [pronounced 'ace'] for the rest of my pregnancy and six weeks after the delivery. My
classroom had four other girls, all from diff
erent high schools. My teacher, Mrs. Brownell, was a very sweet, kind, nurturing woman who was extremely protective and motherly towards "her girls." Thanks to her, I felt almost immediately at home. Of course, in that classroom, it was hard not to. We had a couch and several rocking chairs for the girls to nurse or rock their newborns in. At the end of my 7th month of pregnancy, my best friend, Megan, threw me the baby shower of the century. The color scheme was pink and green; pink for my baby girl and green for my due date in March. Of course with my luck, Athena decided she wasn't ready to make an appearance until April 2, when I was induced. With my epidural and constant ingestion of ice, the birth went flawlessly. Athena weighed 7lbs 6oz and was 19in long.
I went back to AEC a week after Athena's birth and then back to my high school 6 weeks after that. The school system made it extremely easy for me to finish my junior year by setting up a bus that, in the mornings, picked Athena and I up, dropped her off at daycare, then me off at school, and the opposite after school. Someone would have to go com
pletely out of their way to drop out with that kind of assistance.I decided to go to AEC for my senior year and graduate early. Within 9 weeks, I was done with high school a
nd enrolling i
n college.
The rest is pretty simple. I watched Athena learn new things, start to walk, start t
o talk. I knocked out class after class, and now I'm only 2 semesters short of my Associate degree. I'm extremely proud of myself and I hope I'll always have the motivation I have

Hello, Everyone!

My name is India. I'm 18 and in my third semester of community college. On April 2, 2009 at 16 years of age, I gave birth to my daughter, Athena. I am no longer with her father, Corey, and that's an area I prefer not to get into. I'm completely content raising Athena alone.
Not completely alone, of course. As they say, it takes a village. My entire family and a bundle of my friends have been of such valuable help to me not only throughout my pregnancy, but throughout Athena's life so far.
The purpose of this blog is simple. I'd like people to see that it's completely possible for teenage mothers to adapt successfully to parenting; that we're not all like the girls on Teen Mom. I want other young parents to see that they're not alone in their struggles, stress, alienation and exhaustion.
We're all in this together.