'16 & Pregnant' Recap: Briana & Brittany Prove Why Choice Matters

Tuesday's 16 and Pregnant with Briana was just as sad as usual. Where are the happy pregnant teenagers? Oh yeah. Never mind. Briana is sweetly honest about how scared she is throughout her pregnancy, but the most striking part of the episode happened at the beginning when Briana's big sister Brittany, who was also pregnant, made the decision to have an abortion.

To see both choices so clearly illustrated was pretty amazing for a show that has largely ignored the right to choose in the US. So from the beginning, Brittany and Briana illustrated the path following two opposite choices.

As Briana struggled with fear and terror and a deadbeat boyfriend, Brittany's options stayed open; she had freedom and she still got to live the life of a young adult.


Meanwhile, Briana became a single mom at just 17 with all that entails. As Brittany went to haunted houses and out with friends, Briana stayed home feeding and burping her baby.

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No one would say a baby is a bad "choice," but it sure is the harder one when you are only 17 years old. Briana is dealing with baby daddy drama while most people her age are just going to school and dating.

In fact, Devon, Briana's baby daddy, was as bad a "dad" as they come on this show. Lucky for her (and us), Briana, while certainly sad, is no Teen Mom Chelsea Houska. She is realistic about what Devon can and can't do for her.

But that doesn't mean she is happy about it.

There is no doubt that her life would have been easier and her horizons wider had she made the choice her sister made. This is why we have choice in this country. And while Nova Star is a beautiful baby whose life no one could regret, the fact remains that Briana's life is permanently altered.

At the end, when Briana gets stood up by Devon, it seems fairly obvious (and depressing) that Briana is going to be completely on her own.

She is a good girl, a responsible, smart, and honest one. But the stark difference between their choices made the episode even more sad.

When Briana told her sister she made the choice she wished she had made herself, she highlighted the truth. When a teenager says she wants to have a baby, she has no idea. And while no one "regrets" a child, everyone can see that these girls would have been better off had they not had babies. "Never make a permanent decision on temporary feelings," Briana says. So true. And so sad.

Did you like the juxtaposition of the two decisions?


Image via MTV

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