Wednesday, January 16, 2008


I saw Juno over the holidays and I really enjoyed it. I thought it was funny and smart. But it left me feeling a little conflicted. The story is about a 16-year old girl who has sex with a boy that is not really her boyfriend and she gets pregnant. I went to see a movie about teenaged pregnancy with my teenaged daughter. Since it's a movie everybody lived happily ever after, of course we know in the real world of teenaged pregnancy there is no happily ever after.

Or is there?

On the way home from the movie my daughter asked me how old grandma was when she had me. "Twenty-six". Then she asked how old I was when I had her. "Thirty".

What the heck is she asking me all these questions for?

There was a scene in the movie where Juno's father and step-mother are having a conversation about Juno's situation and they said that they would prefer her to be expelled from school or on hard drugs as opposed to being pregnant at 16. I have mixed feelings. Actually, I don't have mixed feelings. I don't want my daughter getting pregnant if she's not equipped to handle the situation. This is why the movie left me feeling conflicted ... because I loved this movie but they portrayed Juno as someone who was equipped to handle the situation. I'm not buying it. Being a teenager is hard enough without throwing a baby into the mix. Juno decided that the best thing to do for all concerned would be to put the baby up for adoption. That I agree with. But how many times have you seen a young Black girl make that choice? Why do we feel this obligation to birth and raise a child that we are not ready to birth and raise? I'm just saying, I've come across many young girls who found themselves in that situation and it was as if they weren't aware of their options. They assumed their fate was sealed. Why are kids so determined to do things the hard way? I've told both my teenagers that there is an easy way to do things and there is a hard way. Be smart, stay focused and choose the easy way.

I'm rambling now and I know it so I'm going to cut this short. It was a good movie and if you haven't seen it you should see it.

With love,


DJ Diva said...

I really do want to see this movie. My g'ma and my mother were both teenage mothers. It could have happened to me...but I chose the "easy" way. I could not imagine rasing a child as a child although I pray for those who do/did. I'm hoping that I broke the cycle because I don't know what I would do if one of my twins got pregnant early. Scratch that...I would be there to support her in whatever decision she made..

Ooooh this was a hard one...Leave it to you to leave me flabbergasted LOL

Sharon said...

Having had my own son as a single person at the age of 24, I can't imagine ANY teen-aged girl being ready for all that motherhood involves. I was a college graduate making more than $50K a year and still it was a struggle. I very openly discuss with my son how unintentional his conception was because I hope it will encourage him to be more careful than I was as a young, sexually-active woman.

He has this idea that I never put a foot wrong, and I feed off that perspective to try to teach him that these life-changing events can potentially happen to ANYONE so it is critical to always be aware of the consequences of what may seem like the most basic or innocent of actions. I hope it works!

Haven't seen the movie yet but definitely plan to....I am oh so glad you came back!

SP said...

I'm definitly going to see this movie. I may be childless right now, but I'm sure the topic will come up one day...

lyre said...

I had a baby at 18. Was able to finish college at 21 and start my career immediately afterwards. Bought my first house at 25 and didnt have another baby until 26. Oh and I also taught my kids to wait until they are married and able to care for a child. Hence my first grandchild is about to be born by my 32 year old first born.

It can be done with proper familial support and love. But it was NOT easy. Many a days I took my little bundle to college with me. He is actually in my college yearbook. Married the 21 yearold that got me pregnant and divorced him 4 years later. It takes a determined spirit to make it.

If I had it to do all over again, I'd wait till 25 at least.

Aunt Jackie said...

my mother my grandmother and i did a documentary when I was 16. I am the oldest daughter of the oldest daughter for at least 7 generations maybe more. Each mother gave birth to her first child at 21 and my mother wanted me to break the cycle.

i was told specifically not to get pregnant as a teenager. i was told specifically that if i did there would be no support.

I'm not 36, i've never had kids. I don't blame my parents but I guess I just kinda always equated being a young and or single parent as a i'm just old and not sure exactly WHAT will happen in the kid department.

The years really do roll by.