Study: Teen Pregnancy Becomes More Acceptable

June 7th, 2010 by

MIAMI (CBS4) ―

A new study about teen pregnancy is revealing some surprising results: More teens now think its hip to have a baby on your hip.

Tanisha Fleming is a 15-year-old wrapping up 9th grade. Her first year of high school has been quite an eye-opener; she learned a lot about fashion.

“Pregnancy has become the new fashion sense in a way.” Fleming explained. “Some people will be like ‘I have Nikes, or some type of brand name jewelry, and somebody will pop out ‘Oh I’m pregnant.’”

When asked how much pressure is there on her to have sex, Fleming responded “Well since I”m in school that’s basically the main topic.”

Hip to be pregnant started a few years ago according to organizers behind Urgent, Inc, an Overtown agency dedicated to fighting teen pregnancy.

Program coordinator Shedia Nelson told CBS4, “Here in Overtown it’s almost a right of passage to become pregnant. Like you are not accepted as a woman until you become pregnant.”

That mantra is definitely fitting into a new study out from the Centers for Disease Control. The government survey of 2,600 teens concluded that youngsters are growing more accepting of pregnancy. In 2002, one in four teens said they wouldn’t have sex because they didn’t want to get someone pregnant. This latest survey found just 12% is now concerned about that.

When asked if it was ok for a single woman to be pregnant 64% responded yes. That’s up from 50% in 2002.

Saliha Nelson, vice president of Urgent, Inc quipped, “Parents, we have a lot of work to do.”

Nelson believes modern media depicting kids raising themselves or absent parenting is cultivating the acceptance of teen pregnancy. She says its up to parent to set the record straight.

“Study after study has concluded that parents have the most impact in setting the expectations and behavior for their kids. So you should know as a parent that they are listening even when they are not,” said Nelson.

For Tanisha, she is getting that message at home, at Urgent, Inc., and even on MTV. The network’s hit show “I’m 16 and pregnant” showcases the realities of teen parenting.

Fleming said, “It says to me to stay away from boys.”


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