How does having a child affect a teen's life? How does having a child affect a teen's life?

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Clearly, the teen's life is changed by keeping the baby.  Even with abortion or adoption, the person will be forever changed.  You have to live with the idea that you created a life, and either ended it or gave it up.  Sometimes, new parents go into a deep depression after...

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Clearly, the teen's life is changed by keeping the baby.  Even with abortion or adoption, the person will be forever changed.  You have to live with the idea that you created a life, and either ended it or gave it up.  Sometimes, new parents go into a deep depression after giving up a baby for adoption.  Teens are no exception.  It may be the right choice, and they may know that it's the right choice for the baby and parents to have a better life, but it's still emotionally heartbreaking to give up your child.

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Apart from the above posts (which I think are right on in regards to answering your question), I find a really good, modern movie that deals with this topic directly is Juno.  Juno, the main character, is very true-to-life in regards to how she is affected by pregancy.  Although I do think the movie glorifies teen pregnancy a bit (in that the end is a bit too-good-to-be-true), I still think it goes a long way in answering your question.

If you'd like to stay in the movie realm, but see the intensely negative side, try watching the 80s movie For Keeps.  I'll never forget when I saw that film.  (It came out when I was in high school.)  With its postpartum depression, screaming couple, and screaming baby, ... it pretty much cemented my virginity for many years to come!

And finally, I'll end with a personal story from when I was a student teacher.  I remember Amanda, ... she was probably the smartest student in our junior AP class, ... and nine months pregnant.  I'll never forget when she stayed after school one day talking with my mentor teacher and I.  I remember Mrs. H commenting, "Yeah, I always wondered about that guy you were going out with.  You have always been such a wonderful girl, ... and he was such bad news!  The whole staff was thinking, 'Yuck!'"  Amanda just stood there for a moment with her mouth open and then she started yelling, "Mrs. H, ... WHY didn't you TELL me that!?!  If someone, ... ANYONE would have told me, I would have listened and wouldn't be in this situation right now.  Instead, no one cared enough about me to tell me the truth.  NO ONE."  She stormed out of the room.

After being privy to that conversation, I have always tried to be BIG on communication with my students.  And once they figured out that I wasn't afraid of this taboo subject, the questions started coming.  In regards to you, lhexie, my advice is to COMMUNICATE with your friends (and/or students if you are studying to become a teacher).  Try to encourage them to make wise decisions in regards to sex and marriage, ... and support them if and when they make mistakes.

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There is no one answer that is true for all teens, of course.  However, being a parent is always difficult and it is even more difficult for the typical teen.  I have seen this anecdotally in students of mine who have had children while in high school.

Parenting a young child is physically exhausting.  You often have to get up every few hours all night to care for the child.  Imagine doing that and then trying to go to school as well.

Having a child also takes away a teen's ability to simply be a teen.  A teen parent cannot simply go out whenever she wants to.  She has to find someone to care for her child if she wants to do anything with her friends.  This drastically changes the sorts of relationships she has with people.

Overall, being a teen parent is very difficult physically and emotionally.

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