Why 'Teen Mom' Needed an Abortion


MTV's Teen Mom is probably the most accurate portrayal of real parenthood on television today. But as far as its basis in the reality of teenage pregnancy, it's missing one major component:


According to the Guttmacher Institute, 27 percent of teenage (15-19) pregnancies ended in abortion in 2006. 

That's a lot of teen "moms" who are not being represented, and the fact is, it does real teenagers a disservice. The reality is, there is a third choice and it isn't an easy one.

Teen pregnancy is currently a very hot topic. Shows like Teen Mom are bringing the conversation to the forefront. In the UK, there is currently a national health proposal on the table that would bring prenatal clinics into high schools.

But in the United States, young girls who become pregnant have three choices, and yet Teen Mom merely glossed over the third as though it didn't exist. Are the people at MTV really all anti-choice? Somehow I find that hard to believe.

According to Slate.com, MTV left it out for two reasons:

  1. It might not be safe (repercussions).
  2. It might not fill an hour-long show.

I just wish that a show that gives such a nuanced picture of adoption and the pain that causes birth mothers would do the same for abortion.

It's never an easy decision and is not, as some might have you believe, the easy way out. I have a hard time believing that it wouldn't fill an hour-long show. But I do see that it might not be good for a girl to go through such an ordeal on national television while she's only a teenager.

Still, perhaps they could have addressed it in a more generic way. Filled an hour-long episode with stories from older women who had abortions at 16 or who were considering it (without telling us the outcome). It just seems to me that all three choices ought to have been presented.

Do you think something was missing from Teen Mom and 16 and Pregnant?


Image via MTV.com


1st trimester, emotions


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sstepph sstepph

I think if they showed a teen mom going through an abortion it would bring a lot of teens to realize that they should wait to have sex, be smart and use protection, and get on the bill. They showed all sides, but this.

Brittany Anne-Marie Mays

Ya. I was thinking the same thing. But I guess there aren't many people so willing to openly admit what they did, especially on national television.

octav... octavia137r

wow lets show teen moms killing their children? frustratedLord help this nation! Adoption is the best choice give the baby a chance to live with someone who wants children and maybe can`t have children of their own or  just like to adopt. 

Lori Appel

I think the statistic you pointed out of 27% teen abortions speaks major volumes and actually contradicts the point of the show.  The point, in my view, is to show what happens to those who choose to go through with the pregnancy in a world where teens are pressured to have an abortion.  The abortion issue is already out there and this show is just a way to show the other options.  In no way does it glamorize teen pregnancy either, it just shows some of the grueling everyday situations they have to go through.

Fight... Fightclmembr

I don't believe for one second that seeing real people deal with abortion will prevent a single teen pregnancy. I still think education, and contraception will. Sure morals could help too, but you can't force those on people.

nonmember avatar m

Um, I'm a little confused. The show is called "Teem Mom," not "Teen Pregnancy." If they have abortions, they are preventing themselves from being teen moms and shouldn't be on the show, right?

Truel... Truelove77

Wow! :( Uh no.....*rolling eyes in disgust*

MissE... MissExtremist

Wow Sasha, how many blogs are you gonna write about abortion!!??  You have like a odd obsession with it seriously. Nobody is gonna jump on your bandwagon , get over it and shut up about it already!

LoriA... LoriAnn87

IF they show a teen going thought the decison to have a aboriton and what she goes thought after isnt' going to stop teens from having sex or babies.

SallyAM SallyAM

This was my biggest criticism about 16 & Pregnant. It makes sense to show all three options on that show, though I don't think it's as relevant in Teen Mom since they're all already moms. Either way, it's doubtful that MTV would have gotten enough advertisers for that.

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