Through the Eyes of a Teenage Parent
September 22, 2017
Many different challenges can make high school difficult. Family problems, mountains of homework, working multiple jobs. But if I had to name one thing that would make school nearly impossible to finish, it is becoming a teenage parent.
It’s more than hospital bills and changing diapers. It’s more than the child. It is the weight of responsibility that doesn’t end when the bell rings at 3:10. Kaitlynn Porter, a senior at GCHS, is expecting. “It is definitely harder. Things have been completely different since people have found out.” I am also a teenage parent, and we shared many of the same challenges. It’s almost like being a famous Hollywood actor. Always rushing to appointments, always in the public spotlight, being bombarded with questions and pictures. “I’ve lost a lot of friends,” she stated. You’ll find that this sentiment is echoed by many other teenage parents.
Believe it or not, becoming a teenage parent isn’t so bad. Obviously, there are setbacks. Your future and your goals might seem like a distant dream. But sometimes, having a child is the best thing that could happen to some people. Chris Santiago, a senior at GCHS, believes becoming a parent has made him a better person. “Yeah, definitely. Now I’m just doing me. I’m focused on college and being there for my daughter.” The reason why I can relate to this so much is because I am also a teenage father in high school. As far as my future goes, I’ve never been a procrastinator. When I have my mind set, for me it’s like going from point A to point B. Something as serious as going to college or following my dreams is something that wasn’t ever going to be postponed just because I had a child. To me, it’s just an excuse for people to be lazy. Instead, it gave me even more reason to think about the future and actually succeed in my goals.
There are days where, if it weren’t for my child, I wouldn’t even be in class, or at school period. You can mentally and physically feel the change from the previous day, where you were just a normal Granite City High School student, to the next where you are the local teenage parent. Many teens think being a parent is impossible, and will bail immediately. Often I get the question why I haven’t; it is because I was and have felt abandoned by not only my parents, but many people. I am proud to say that my dreams and goals are to graduate high school, go to college, find success in whatever path I choose, and be the best parent that I possibly can.
Teenage pregnancy is a global issue and is often not properly addressed or discussed openly. Young girls and boys need to be more aware of the consequences of their choices and be fully educated about sex and the many challenges that come with it. How can a positive change be made without this happening?