NATASHA FORSBERG/TEEN PREGNANCY AND FAMILY

EARLIER THIS WEEK, REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTAL NOMINEE SARAH PALIN ANNOUCED THAT HER SEVENTEEN YEAR OLD DAUGHTER, BRISTROL, IS FIVE MONTHS PREGNANT. PALIN HAS ALSO INFORMED US THAT HER DAUGHTER PLANS TO MARRY THE FATHER OF HER CHILD. AS A SOON TO BE SEVENTEEN YEAR OLD MYSELF, I CAN’T IMAGINE GETTING MARRIED AND HAVING A CHILD IN THE NEAR FUTURE.  I BELIVE FIRMLY THAT IN ORDER TO HAVE A CHILD, YOU MUST BE EMOTIONALLY AND ECCONOMICALLY STABLE. NO TEENAGER FITS THAT DESCRIPTION. NO MATTER HOW MATURE THEY ARE. I’M NOT SAYING ALL TEENAGE PARENTS ARE BAD PARENTS. IN FACT, SOME TEENAGERS TURN OUT TO BE AMAZING PARENTS. BUT RAISING A CHILD TAKES A LOT OF HARD WORK, AND I DON’T THINK MOST ADOLECSANTS REALIZE THAT. WHAT I’M MORE CONCERNED ABOUT HOWEVER, IS THE FACT THAT SHE PLANS TO MARRY HER BOYFRIEND REGARDLESS OF THE FACT THAT SHE’S NOWHERE NEAR HER TWENTIES. MANY YOUNG PEOPLE HAVE THIS IDEAL ABOUT MARRYING THEIR HIGH SCHOOL SWEETHEART AND WHILE IT WORKS OUT FOR SOME PEOPLE, FOR MOST IT JUST DOESN’T . AS PEOPLE GET OLDER, THEY CHANGE. THE PERSON WHO WAS YOUR “TRUE LOVE” AT SEVENTEEN, YOU MAY NOT BE ABLE TO STAND FIVE YEARS LATER. I NOT ADVOCATING THAT SHE SHOULDN’T KEEP HER UNBORN CHILD, BUT RATHER JUST SAYING THAT TEENS IN HER SITUATION SHOULD BE MORE REALISTIC ABOUT STARTING A FAMILY.  

SARAH PALIN ALSO STAUNCHLY PROMOTES IN PRO LIFE AND ABSTINANCE, SO IT ISN’T SO HARD TO BELIEVE THAT SHE MAY HAVE HAD SOMETHING TO DO WITH HER DAUGHTER’S ULTIMATE DESCISION.

THE FACT THAT PALIN BELIEVES IN ABSTINANCE AND THAT HER TEEN DAUGHTER ENDED UP PREGNANT AND UNMARRIED JUST GOES TO SHOW YOU THAT ABSTINANCE MAY NOT BE THE BEST CHOICE. TO AVOID TEENS SHOULD HAVE A GOOD UNDERSTANDING OF CONCEPTION AND IT SHOULD ULTIMITELY BE UP TO THE TEEN IF HE OR SHE WANTS TO WAIT UNTIL MARRIAGE, RATHER THAN TELLING ADOLECSANTS NOTHING ABOUT SEX AND TELLING THEM TO WAIT.  

FOR YOUTH RADIO, I’M NATASHA FORSBERG, YOU CAN LISTEN TO THIS COMMENTARY AND MORE AT WWW.YOUTHRADIO.ORG.  

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