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» Scarleteen Boards: 2000 - 2014 (Archive) » SCARLETEEN CENTRAL » Relationships » Teen marriage/pregnancy

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Author Topic: Teen marriage/pregnancy
-Lauren-
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Member # 25983

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For those who don't know of this situation, this is referring to my 16 year old sister who is pregnant. Both families as well as my sis and her boyfriend are in a rush towards getting married. They call it "the right thing to do". How can I tell them, logically, without ripping my hair out, that it is NOT?! I've searched high and low on the net for statistics on the likelihood of teenage parents staying together, but have so far turned up fruitless. Can the more learned users of the boards help me to muster up the facts and present them in a constructive way?

Basically, what I want to say is that I personally feel there is no need to rush, even given the situation. If their love is oh-so-strong, then they shouldn't need to get married NOW-- why not in 5 years or so, since they're expecting to stay together that long, anyway? Is it lack of a feeling of security? It's also a massive adjustment to become parents as teenagers; why throw marriage into the already-stressful mix? Further, the two don't have means of living on their own, so I think it would be pretty pointless to marry when you're still living seperately in your parents' homes. Lastly, as much as this guy seems responsible and mature (though the mere fact he got her pregnant nixes that a bit), there is no absolute guarantee he won't want different for himself as he grows up, but my family seems to think marriage is a fix-all. He can't run if he's married. Sheesh.

Unfortunately, nobody takes "how I feel" seriously, instead accusing me of being a killjoy. This is why I'm searching for some facts to present. Any help is very appreciated! I don't want my sister to screw up her life more than she already has.

Posts: 4636 | From: USA/Northern Europe | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
Gumdrop Girl
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is there a cultural basis to your family's reasoning? did oyur parents marry young or under duress?

anyway, i would try to be supportive by offering practical advice, like encouraging the couple to get premarital couseling. too many young folks go in headfirst without any idea of where they're headed.

your sister has never lived outside the home. i bet she's not had to deal with serious conflict resolution with her boyfriend. what about practical matters like MONEY?

anyway, dunno if you're the churchy type, but a lot of churches do have programs to prepare people for marriage. religion aside, they offer a lot of practical help.

and yes, running is still an option in marriage. i'd like to cite: Brad Pitt + Angelina Jolie - Jen Aniston.

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Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
-Lauren-
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Hmmm, cultural bias? No.. but my aunt on my dad's side got knocked up at 17, married the guy. The guy now works for the department of defense and she's a spoiled rich housewife. Maybe hoping for the same future? [Wink]

The boy's family are really churchy, and already are making them go to couples' counseling. For the record, my family is damn close to being total heathens, myself included. You're right in assuming she has not had to deal with any conflict resolution at all; pretty hard when all they do is watch TV and play video games over here. And money? Yeah, that's not really a problem when my parents have already pledged to cover all baby expenses. She hasn't completed her high school, and the boy only takes a few useless courses at community college (like italian and karate) just so he can say he's a college student. Sorry if that was harsh, but everything just comes so sickeningly easy to them.

It's like they just won't-belive-the-facts. Ugh! It's like they refuse to believe that every teen mother who's been abandoned by the father, every teenage marriage that has crumbled, is because those people weren't as committed and in love as they are. Oh, to just knock some sense into them!

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Gumdrop Girl
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Well, Italian's not useless. Didn't know RCC had karate, though.

Well, they're being optimistic and they're being supportive. That's what your sister needs right now.

I know you're upset, but I think you need to ride this out for a while. Don't worry, reality will bite them soon enough. But when it does, you will need to worry because that's when your sister is gonna need you the most. In the meantime, try to put your sis and her bf on a track for better chances. encourage them to finish their schooling.

and if you wanted stats and stuff, i googled the following: http://www.teenpregnancy.org/whycare/sowhat.asp

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LA County STD Hotline 1.800.758.0880
Toll free STD and clinic information, and condoms sent to your door for Los Angeles County residents.
1 in 3 sexually active people will be exposed to a STD by the time they turn 24.

Posts: 12677 | From: Los Angeles, CA ... somewhere off the 10 | Registered: Jul 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
-Lauren-
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Member # 25983

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Yeah, you're right. There's nothing I can really do but try to ride this out. That site you gave me is exactly what I was looking for, thanks! I'll try to be supportive, but I'll still try my best to try to convince her/them that they should put a hold on marriage until reality does bite them and become clear. Thank you for your help and support!
Posts: 4636 | From: USA/Northern Europe | Registered: Oct 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
kitka
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At some point you'll have to step back and let them tread water on their own. She's your sister, yes, but there's only so much of their problems that you can take on by yourself.

My younger brother got married at 22, to a girl whom he is now divorcing after less than one year. My other brother and I, and my parents, advised him again and again that marriage wasn't a good idea. He didn't really listen.

They eloped, had a terrible marriage where she cheated on him from day one. It took him a few months to realize what a lousy person she was.
But eventually he was able to puzzle it out on his own, and he's learned from his mistakes. Hopefully your sister will be able to figure out the best way to conduct her own life under her own terms, with a modium of emotional upset.

Posts: 455 | From: New York, NY | Registered: Apr 2005  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a Moderator
   

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