Have any of you ever seen the show “Teen Mom”, “Teen Mom 2” or “16 & Pregnant”? I have and those are moments I will never get back. I know the “premise” if that’s what you want to call it, is to show the “harsh” realities of teen parenting, but I actually think it’s had quite the opposite effect. In just 2 seasons of the show, 2 of the mom’s are either in jail, or have been arrested, 1 is on her second marriage, 1 overdosed on prescription pain pills and 1 set of parent’s lost custody due to extreme neglect and fecal matter being all over the house. Now you would think that most girls would have the common sense to say “No way! I’m not having children until I’m ready.” But there has been some teens that have come out and said that they got pregnant just so they could get onto the show. And really, who could blame them? With these girls gracing the covers of magazines, making thousands of dollars for photos, Facebook pages with over 310 K followers and great cars, hair and nails, that is more of a draw than prison photos. So you tell me, which photo looks more appealing?
I am 26, in a committed relationship, my hubby and I both work full-time jobs, receive no government assistance, no daycare subsidy and we rent our own home. I don’t have a TV show that follows my every move. I get no world-wide adoration from prepubescent teens for me being a mom. I made a choice to carry a child and it is my personal belief, that if you make that decision, that you SOLELY are responsible.
Please understand that I come from a small town that breeds “babies for paychecks”. And when I say this, I’m not exaggerating, it is RAMPANT there. There are streets, and numerous ones that are all women and children living off the system. Now don’t get me wrong, I believe that there should welfare, but there should be restrictions and limitations. Living your entire life on the system is NOT ok. Having babies just so you don’t have to work is NOT ok. I believe it should be there for parents who have many children and their spouse dies or takes off without any notice. It is meant to help you through a time of dire need. Not because you don’t want to help yourself. There are woman who spend their government cheques on frivolous items while their children starve. But yet, they still get to keep their children and still receive cheques. And some of these women just keep having babies. And just with any man. Isn’t choosy, just whomever will sow their seed. And the sad thing is, it’s the children that suffer. And that is what infuriates me. Many of these kids grow up to perpetuate the cycle, because this is all they have every known. These children didn’t ask to be born, didn’t ask to be put into impoverished situations and be neglected. Again, let me reiterate that not every woman with children on welfare is like this, there are some that truly need it and I support that, but where I am from, the women that have babies for paychecks, it’s more common than hiccups.
I understand what it is like to be a hormonal teenage, I was one after all. But there are options.
- Abstinence. I know this is often easier said than done, but so is parenting.
- Contraception. If you are ready to have sex, you can get free condoms from health clinics and a box of contraception can range from $12 – $30 for birth control. Now, if you cannot afford contraception, then you certainly cannot afford children.
- Adoption. There are many families that can provide a life for your child when you cannot. Just because you “want” a child and “can” procreate, doesn’t always mean you “should”.
- Abortion. While this may not be for everyone, it is an option.
Like I have said repeatedly, I believe in a welfare system, but I don’t agree with it being so viciously abused. I think the Canadian Welfare System needs to be overhauled. For example, you should only be allowed to be on it for so long. In that time, the Government should help you with accessing resources like job training, and other things that will help you get onto your feet. They should lay the path, but it is up to the individual to walk it. There are no free rides and having a child isn’t your ticket. If you wish to be lazy and not work, then do not drag a child into it. I’ve been poor and under the poverty line. I didn’t go onto Welfare. I got another job. I cut out needless expenses. I made responsible choices.
I also feel bad for the generation of 40, 50 & 60 something’s that are now raising their grandchildren. They did not work all their life just to be burdened with the financial strain of children that are not theirs. And maybe these celebrity “Teen Mom’s” wouldn’t be so famous if we didn’t watch their shows, or buy the magazines they are one. If we don’t care about what show they are on, they won’t be on one.
*Sorry ahead of time for the rant, but I was so infuriated by that Magazine cover. Again, when I talk about parent’s on welfare, I’m directing those comments to the one’s who abuse the system, not the one’s who need it.*