By Alexia Squires
The Spartan Times
Southern High School
Teen pregnancy in the United States is common.
According to the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, three out of ten American girls will become pregnant at least once before age 20.
In addition, many may have mothers who also became pregnant during teen years.
Getting pregnant at an early age could have a huge effect on a girl’s education and future.
Pregnancy is the leading cause of teen girls dropping out of school – few pregnant teenage girls graduate. This could be due to doctor appointments, staying home because of morning sickness, bed rest and being embarrassed.
Just last year, according to the Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Campaign of North Carolina, the teen pregnancy rate dropped about 10 percent from 2011. In 2011, Durham ranked near the middle of N.C. counties, at number 45, for teen pregnancies among 15-19 year olds.
While abstinence is best, girls who are sexually active should take birth control and protect themselves from sexual diseases. But still, girls who decide to receive a Depo-Provera shot, a form of birth control, from a physician, may still have a chance of becoming pregnant. According to statistics, even condoms typically result in 15 pregnancies out of every 100 users.
Concerning these pregnancies, if you are grown enough to create your child, then you are grown enough to take care of them. You should take responsibility and make sure if you are having sex to protect yourself at all times. Some parents kick their teen girls out the house because of a pregnancy and others may just get mad and let them stay.
But with the support of their parents, teen parents can take care of children, continue school and graduate. For many children whose parents are teenagers, their fathers may not be in their life. Could this be because young men feel that they cannot handle the responsibilities of managing a child?
Statistics show that in the United Sates four out-of-ten unintended pregnancies end in abortions. Out of the total number of pregnancies, an estimated 24 percent end in abortions.
African-Americans are almost four times more likely to have an abortion. In 2008, about 1.21 million abortions took place in the U.S.
About 40 percent of minors having an abortion reported that neither of their parents knew about the pregnancy nor the abortion. Doctors generally give three choices to think about before making any decision: an abortion, adoption or to keep the baby.
Many teenage girls decide to go with abortions when they don’t know what to do and have not received counseling. Women making the decision of getting an abortion need to think hard of what would be best for the child and themselves.
I think abortions should be one’s personal choice. We don’t know a girl’s situation of how and why they became pregnant. With counseling and having someone to talk to, it can give these girls a better outlook on their future with or without their unborn child.