If you’re a teen mom such as myself you know the stares, the judgmental looks we get just going into the grocery store. It’s hurts but hey, that's what we signed up for right? Wrong!
My name is T, and I am here to tell you my story and maybe shine a little light on the truth behind being a teen mom.
I was 16 when I had my first child, a sweet baby girl. I was terrified what would my friends think? What would my family think? I struggled daily with the uncertainty I felt with raising a child when I was one myself.
Everyone always tells you the struggles of raising children but rarely do you hear of the struggle of raising children while trying to grow yourself. (Well, that’s what I’m here for!). So here it is:
- Those inescapable stares—You know the ones that you can feel through you back! The ones that send chills up you spine. The ones that send you back to your car crying.
- The whispers—This piggybacks off of number one: you can see them pointing and hear the soft criticism, but what can you do about it? Flip out? That’s giving them exactly what they want!
- Financial Struggles—This is something I know all too well. Babies are expensive! We all know that. But when you’re teen, it’s 10 times harder to get a decent job that’s gonna take a chance on a “baby whose having a baby.”
- Child care—If you're one of the few who are lucky enough to have a wonderful support system who can watch your baby whenever you need them GOOD FOR YOU but that is not the case for most. Child care is so expensive. So even if you are able to find a job to take a chance on you, most likely going to be minimum wage, now you're literally giving up half of your paycheck to have someone babysit so you can work. And even when you do finally find someone you trust, you feel as if you’re failing by asking for help.
- The steady feeling you’re gonna fail—This is a big one! Now I know every mother feels this way. But for a teen mom, it’s like we almost feel like we have to be perfect. If we don’t have the most well behaved, perfectly cleaned all the time kids then “we aren’t cut out for this” and “should have waited” or “are terrible for being that life into the world”.
- The question—Now this is the hard one and honestly in my opinion the worst thing you could ask any mother, ARE YOU KEEPING IT? You don’t know what that mother is going through!
Now these are just a few things that I went through in my first year of motherhood. I cried, I laughed, I prayed, and I felt like giving up. But everyday I thank God that he gave me the strength to pull through.