Friday, March 5, 2010

Who Cares?

I suck at philosophy. And you want to know why? Because I don't care. When people ask questions like "why are we the way we are?" and "what is existence?" and "what is reality?", you know what I say? Who cares. I find all these big thinking questions annoying. I know they don't have answers, so I don't care to try. This is not a big help in my philosophy class.

Today, though, I did stumble across a question like this that got me thinking. It all started with this blog post. One pesky little link to this article and I was off. I couldn't stop thinking, looking things up, reading articles on wikipedia. So, I thought I would share all these thoughts and links with you, the great people of the blogosphere, to see what you thought (of course, no one actually reads this blog, so no one will actually respond. But I will keep trying. One day, I will have at least one reader. I am determined!). I apologize in advance for my attempts at intelligent thought. I promise I will return to our regularly scheduled programming tomorrow (pop culture, chick lit, and other cream-puff flavoured things).

All this leads me to the ultimate question: Is teenage pregnancy wrong?

Our culture shouts a resounding yes to this question. Our culture says that teenagers are unfit to parents--they are irresponsible children who don't know the first thing about how to raise a child of their own. But why? Aren't there benefits to being young parents? Who says 20's or 30's are a good time to have kids? Aren't there drawbacks to having a child at every age? Why does our culture frown upon teenage pregnancy sooooo much. There is nothing biologically wrong with it. Actually, it is healthier for both the parent and the child because of the lessened chance of birth defects/pregnancy complications. Doesn't nature tell us, therefore, that it is better to have babies early?

See, that is all good in theory. And in tv shows, like Gilmore Girls, where everything works out perfectly on a nice sound stage in California:

It all works out fine in books like Slam by Nicky Hornby and Annie's Baby by an anonymous teenager. But what about in real life? When I think about teenage pregnancy in the abstract, I think it might actually be a good idea. But when I apply it to my own life, it terrifies me. I'm not ready to be a mother. I have plans. I have dreams. I can barely handle being responsible for myself, let alone someone else. I'm sure some girls my age could, but not me.

What do you think? What is the best age to have children? What would you do if you found out you were sixteen and pregnant? Personally, I think I would waver between adoption and raising it myself. Not because I don't believe in abortion but I because I don't think I could go through with an abortion. I'm pro-choice for other people, but I can't imagine it for myself.

I'm sorry if I'm not making much sense. I shouldn't attempt higher thinking. But I do want to say one final thing, to all you teenage mothers out there: I'm sorry. I'm sorry on behalf of my culture, a culture where stories like this are a big deal:

(Personally, I didn't care that Jamie Lynn was pregnant. I was just sad that Zoey 101 was ending)

I'm sorry for all the nasty looks you've ever gotten and all the snide comments you've ever heard. You are doing a courageous thing, a thing I could never do. Teenage pregnancy may not be right for me, but it might be right for you.

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