My mother had me when she sixteen. Looking at our lives now, you would never be able to tell. Despite being advised by many people around her that an abortion was best, she chose life. Specifically, my life. She chose the route that she knew meant putting herself second.  This was something a mom at any age has a hard time coming to grips with. She made the more difficult choice.  She could have continued on the life path she had already planned for herself, but she chose life. Despite being the daughter of a teen mom, my childhood wasn’t too much different compared to other kids. When you’re little, all that stuff doesn’t matter. Looking back now, I understand how important my mother’s choice was in deciding to not only have me, but to keep me.

This is a shout out to the young moms who chose life instead of convenience. They experience harsh criticism and judgement when they should be recognized for their courage. Teen moms experience a far different pregnancy than older moms who are expecting. Instead of being showered in congratulations, teen mothers are ridiculed and advised to be ashamed. My mom had to face the judgement from friends, relatives, and doctors before she even had me. Along with this, teenage pregnancy threatened to set my parents back financially. Instead of running from responsibility, both of my parents got jobs and ended up working their way up in the education administration field and oil, gasoline, and chemical industry. They never received governmental assistance, even though they definitely qualified and could have used it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not here to encourage teenage pregnancy, I simply want to give thanks to those parents who choose life in the face of fear and the trials of being teen parents. It is definitely easier to find yourself and become financially stable before having children, but my situation goes to show that there is no “right” way to living this life. People are not defined by the mistakes that happen, but by the decisions people make afterward because those decisions directly affect the outcome of the situation. Statistics will show that there are a vast amount of negative results from teen moms keeping their children, but just like any statistic, it can always be proved wrong. My parents proved that through working hard and remaining faithful to their morals, good things can happen in return. I am the first in my family to go to college, a Dean’s List student, and have dreams of going to law school one day. I could not have done it without their strong guidance and support. Being a pro-life young mom doesn’t have to be a burden. A mother can still live out her life and fulfill her dreams after having her baby. Yes, I choose to full-heartedly advocate for the right-to-life.  Maybe because I know that I, like everyone, was not able to control when and how I was conceived, but am thankful to for the life I have now.

Being in my teen years myself, I can’t imagine what it would be like to have a baby right now. Life seems so hard and stressful as it is. Life plans? Career goals? Social life? Freedom? It is all put on the back burner for a teen mom. Life as she knows it is over. So there are choices teen moms can make about their pregnancy: to continue with the pregnancy and keep the baby, to continue with the pregnancy and put the baby up for an adoption or abort the baby. All of them are viewed as societally acceptable but only one results in a life actually ending. Choosing to be pro-life is easy until it comes to making the decision that permanently affects your life forever. So here is a thank you to the teen moms who chose life over abortion, when they definitely could have chosen the “easier” way out. I wouldn’t be here if my mom had.  

Sincerely,

A daughter whose mom who had her at sixteen

Abigail R
CONTRIBUTOR

Image Credits: Abigail Roenne