Idol Chatter

Idol Chatter


’16 and Pregnant’ is Important Television

posted by Ellen Leventry

16andpregnant.jpgWhen news that Jamie Lynn Spears was pregnant at 16 first broke back in December 2007, I suggested that Ms. Spears turn it into a teaching moment and film a reality spotlighting the hardships of being a teen mother.
Well, it’s been a long gestation period, but MTV has taken the idea and run with it in its new series, “16 and Pregnant.” The show glosses over nothing–30 hour labors! Inattentive teen fiancées! Destroyed social lives!–but never preaches stay abstinent or use protection. It’s “just the facts, ma’am,” but, boy, do those facts speak for themselves.
Take Maci and her boyfriend Ryan, the couple featured in the first episode. A good student, a cheerleader and a softball player, everyone is shocked when Maci announces she is pregnant. But the family soon rallies around her and the mood is general excitement, except for Ryan whose main concern seems to be filling his stomach with food and riding his dirt bike. He’s scared as can be (with good reason), and perhaps a bit disinterested, and you can see it all over his face.


Meanwhile Maci is working a job, attending community college, and recently quit her dance team in order to save money and care for Bentley, since Ryan doesn’t seem to be capable of changing dirty nappies shouldn’t be faced with such responsibilities, but as Maci notes, she had to step up to the plate, and she wishes Ryan would too. And so is the non-glamorous, hard-work, often dream-dashing reality of teen pregnancy.
This Thursday, Farrah, a popular cheerleader, finds herself facing single-motherhood with a mother urging her to put the baby up for adoption.
Once again, I need to applaud MTV for producing high-quality, dare I say important, television amongst its usual offering of sexual salespeople: from videos (yes, they do still play some) to reality shows, wherein hookups typically result in nothing more than bruised egos.
Watch Maci and Ryan’s episode.
“16 and Pregnant” airs on Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on MTV.
16 and Pregnant at LocateTV.com



  • Your Name

    I think its great that there is some open discussion going on regarding
    the issue of teen pregnancy. I think it places the baby in these situations in a very untenable situation. My own mother,lied about her age when she was 15 and eloped in a nearby state with her then-boyfriend, my natural father who was only 19. My mom came from a very dysfunctional and alcoholic home, and she told me, “she just wanted to have someone to “love her.” A brand new baby unfortunately, is not the one to fill up “one’s inner emptiness.” She went on to have two additional siblings before she was 22. By then, she was feeling very bored, trapped in a loveless marriage and overwhelmed by the stress and demands of three small children. I also believe divorce can very much be what one could term a: “Generational problem.” Meaning, it can be much easier for each successive generation to use divorce as an “out” of very hard situations.

  • Carrie LEwis

    Hello, my name is Carrie, I am from a small town, and will always live here. I wanted to let someone know that there is light at the end of the tunnel of being young and pregnant. I was 16 and pregnant and was happy with the thought of bearing a child, and now I am 27 have three beatufil girls, got a college degree, own a home, and I am still trying to climb higher. I just want people to know that your life isn’t over just because you have a child at such a young age, you can still do things with your life and come out on top even if you are not always supported. I am hoping to make a book on this one day and hope to help someone. please e-mail me for questions lewis@wcrtc.net

  • http://randomlittlemoment.blogspot.com/ Your Name

    I love this show! I agree that it tries to convey an important message to teenage girls, but I also think that it somewhat puts fame upon the girls in the show. I would really like to discuss this more with other viewers on http://randomlittlemoment.blogspot.com/ !

  • http://www.indydisplays.com/ Nathan

    Great article I’ve just added to my bookmark list.Thanks…

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