There seems to be a lot of buzz in the news about Bristol Palin’s upcoming gig on Dancing With the Stars. Chris Kelly and many others are gleefully smearing her name because, and you may want to sit down for this, she is a teen mom. Shocking, I know. With the way Bristol Palin’s name is being trashed you would think she slept with Satan himself. Oh the horrors! A teenage girl had sex and had a baby! The charlatan! The tramp! The shock! The horror!
Put down your flame torches. I, frankly, don’t care that a woman of child bearing age, much less Bristol Palin, had sex, got pregant and gave birth. Welcome to life. I also had sex as a teen and gave birth when I was 15 years old to a little boy. I am not a whore, slut, charlatan or any other smear name that Bristol Palin is being called. I also doubt that Bristol Palin is as bad as everyone wants you to think she is. The only difference between Bristol Palin’s teen pregnancy and mine is that the paparazzi are not following me with cameras running and my mom isn’t a famous politician. I also get my share of name smearing but, it is not plastered on every news outlet.
My sister-in-law, Yuri Beifus, gets many looks of hate and discontent when she is out with her young daughter by herself. Beifus was married and 17 years old when she got pregnant. Yet, she is still treated like any other pregnant teen moms. She is disrespected and put down because she is a young mother. When she goes out to the store with her daughter, people make rude comments like “some people need to tie their tubes” and “Shouldn’t have spread your legs so young”. When I asked her about her experiences as a young mom, Beifus stated, “If I used WIC, I got ten times more hateful looks and rude comments for them thinking I was just some single teen mom. It hurts. It really does.” Societies views of young mothers are the same as many of these rude shoppers.
If the largest argument I have seen is that these young pregnant moms are unwed, then why treat married pregnant teens, like Yuri Beifus, pregnant and married at 17, the same way?
As a young mother myself, I have received many rude and hurtful comments as well. What I don’t understand is, why aren’t the men getting the same treatment? Young fathers aren’t ostracized like we are. I know a few young fathers who are held above all others when they are seen in public with their children. Their brood became girl magnets and the guys jokingly taunt them with congrats for getting the girl.
If we, as a society, are ever going to move on and grow up; we need to stop placing blame solely on the pregnant young mothers. Blame the fathers of the children too. Better yet, treat the women as if they are carrying sacred gifts like we treat the older pregnant mothers, single or not. After all, we did not get pregnant by ourselves. Aside from immaculate conception and in vitro fertilization, it takes two people to create a baby. Girls don’t impregnate themselves. So why do we get the bum rap for teen parents? It’s disheartening to see so many teen mothers belittled just because of others prejudices.