As I am searching for new blog topics I think about the people around me and their lives. What do people want to read about? What do people not know enough about? I am always trying to pick people’s brains and figure out what people actually want to read. I chose the topic 'The Truth About Young Mums' because I know a few people who have been through it and I know others will go through it, maybe they'll come across this blog one day and maybe it will help them.
Unfortunately there are a lot of stereotypes associated with young mothers. I wanted an honest view in this post because there are a lot of assumptions of the type of people who are young mums and the type of lives they live. I spoke to 4 young mums, an older mum who was a young mum some years ago and 3 current young mums.
How did you feel when you found out you were pregnant?
Rochelle: I was fully upset and scared for my future. I remember being sick for a couple of days and not going to sixth form. My mum must have thought something was up because she told me to get checked up at the clinic. I was sure I wasn't pregnant as I just had a recent period. To my surprise I walked out of the clinic head in hands, crying my eyes out on the phone to my mum. I literally thought my world had ended.
Laura: When I found out I was pregnant I was anxious and scared more than excited, I knew my partner didn’t want to have any children so telling him scared me. I couldn’t allow myself to be excited until I knew what the future held for me and my baby.
Nyesha: When I found out I was pregnant I was very scared but excited at the same time. I had no idea what I was getting myself in to, I didn't realise how much went into being a mother but I was quite confident that I was going to do whatever it took to be the best mother I could to my baby.
Rianna: It was very unexpected, I guess I shouldn't have been surprised because I know how babies are made. I wasn't scared at all but I was nervous to tell my boyfriend luckily his reaction was positive.
Did you plan your pregnancy?
Laura: I didn’t, If I knew how hard parenting is I probably would have waited a couple more years.
Nyesha: My pregnancy wasn't planned at the time of conception. Having suffered a major loss in the family I can honestly say I fell pregnant due to my careless mentality. Having been such a sensible teenager I never would of seen myself diverting from my original plan of attending college to having to tend for a baby. It was crazy.
What reactions did you get from people when they found out?
Laura: To be honest everyone’s reactions were great, no one was disappointed or gave me a hard time, actually that’s a lie. My sons dad’s family gave me a hard time. They had their own expectations for him so I understand it.
Rochelle: Most were shocked and surprised as I always said I wouldn't have a baby young. It's one of those things where I felt like when you are pregnant and young you don't hardly hear congratulations, all you hear is gossip.
What were your exceptions of being a young mum?
Laura: I thought I wouldn’t be to go out much and enjoy my youth. I thought my friends would be interested for 2 minutes and then disappear and I wouldn’t really have money for myself.
Rochelle: I thought it would be really fun, growing up with your child. Being a young mum would be more beneficial for her when she's older than me as a young mum lol. I knew it would be hard and get tiring but I did think it was all fun and games, sigh.
Rianna: I watched Teen Mom and Sixteen and Pregnant but when you see people pregnant around you, you only see the nice bits. You see a cute pregnant bump and they give birth to this beautiful baby. There is a lot more to it.
What was the reality of being a young mum?
Laura: It wasn’t as bad as my expectations. I can’t go out all the time but it isn’t as bad as I thought it would be. My mum is amazing and is always willing to have my son if I need a break, I still have freedom. My friends are still my friends and have not left me. Yes all of my money goes on my son but I’ve learned that I don’t actually have to spend so much on him, he has enough and I have learnt to treat myself from time to time. No matter what age you are a mothers love is more powerful than anything.
Rianna: When everyone left the hospital, I looked at my son and I thought omg I actually have to look after this baby. No one tells you the blues you get after having a baby and how much it hurts when your milk comes in. After you have a baby you want to go to baby groups but a lot of the other mums are older and married, you feel a little bit left out.
Were you in a relationship when you fell pregnant? If Yes, did you feel supported by your partner at the time?
Laura: I didn’t which put a lot of strain on us, he didn’t want to have a baby and I did. It was hard because I felt I was lumbering him with a responsibility that he didn't want and it felt like he was forcing me into something I didn't want to do.
Rochelle: Yes, at the time, my partner was more for having the baby than I was. So I definitely felt supported in the way that I felt he was comfortable and happy with the pregnancy. The opposite is always the girls worst case scenario.
Nyesha: My partner was supportive of us having a baby when he found out I was pregnant but once the baby was born his attitude changed. We were young and although I found it trying at times I always knew that my main outcome was that I was going to make sure my child had everything he needed and I was going to love and care for him no matter what. We were both going through a lot at the time, looking back I do feel amazed at how much we were trying to deal with at such a young age, it's no wonder that the relationship never lasted.
What stereotypes do you hear about young mums?
Nyesha: The stigma of being a young mum was not nice. Every mother is different young or old, I was just so determined to do the best by my child and prove people wrong.
Rianna: A lot of people stereotype them as scroungers who have a baby, claim benefits, live off of the government, child will probably get taken into care. That's disappointing because I am none of those.
Did your relationships with friends change or stay the same?
Laura: Not really, most of my friends were at University when I was pregnant so I didn't really get to see them anyway or when we did make plans I would be busy. No matter how little we see each other, they will always be my best friends forever! I’ve always had the same group of friends and nothing will change that.
Rianna: Yeah I used to have this distant friend called Sharaye, I had a baby and then all of a sudden she became my bestie. (Lol, I'm Joking) Not as such, I think it's because I have a good support system. I'm still with the childs father and we parent 50/50. We both go out and see our friends.
Rochelle: All of my relationships changed apart from 1 friend lol. When you have a baby you don't have time to chase friends. And plus at the time I fell pregnant I wasn't really hanging with the best of people so I had to distance myself as they weren't the kind of people I want myself or my child to be associated with.
Do you have anything you would change about the situation if you could?
Nyesha: I have no regrets I have lived my life this way and it has taught me so much. I am a much stronger, loving and caring person as a result of it but what I will say is it is hard. No matter how someone makes it look the reality is that when you go home and your alone with that baby another life that you are responsible for and your all alone while your friends are out being teenagers it can take away from the beauty of motherhood. It's scary and nerve wracking to know that whatever you do will impact this little persons life, you are in control of making them a person. I don't want any young person to go through the hardship and struggles I have. No one at 16 should have to think for another and make such sacrifices. Yeah I survived it but barely just and if I didn't have my people I can honestly tell you I wouldn't know where I would be today.
What are your plans for the future?
Rochelle: I definitely want to start my own business in beauty. Once I've got that up and running I would love to start investing and buy a home. Make money, travel the world with baby girl and loved ones. Also the main thing is to give her some siblings when the timing is better!! Xxx
I hope this gave you more of an insight and truth into the mind of these yummy mummy's. The truth is that nothing in life is easy. You can have relationship issues at any age and be scared to be pregnant at any age.
There is no such thing as the perfect mum, there is no such thing as the perfect age to have children or the perfect way to raise them. I am not advising anyone to be a young mum but while some prefer a more traditional route of being married or being older to start a family mother nature can take its course at any time. This blog post is simply aiming to stop being branding these women negatively, that isn't the reality.
A mother can only do their best, love and compassion can be shown at any age and while there are difficulties, mainly financially and maturity in raising a child at a young age, these mums are still bloody good mums who are fighting everyday for their children's future.
PLEASE NOTE: This blog post is not to promote young pregnancy or underage sex. We advise safe sex after the legal age here at DHWL.
Shay RS x
Check out my blog post on 'Why I love love' here.