I don’t even quite remember what I was doing on Google today and just landed on this picture and of course you can imagine how every single hair strand on my head just rose to the occasion! I thought, OMW! Society has something up its sleeves that is not funny. Well, a lot of young parents to be specific the ladies face a lot of stereotyping in today’s world. So just to clear the air because I am a young mother I will let you in on some fun facts. I do not even think that I will number them because none is more outrageous than the other. Makes me wonder if the sole reason of these judgments on a daily basis are because we “deserve” the poor treatment and to be ashamed and humiliated in order to prevent other girls from getting pregnant? I truly hope that this post will serve as an encouragement to young mothers out there not to be negatively affected by the comments people make about them and mostly importantly that society may accept us and instead of judging help where they can. But then again people will always have opinions but it is us to decide how their opinions affect our day to day decisions.
Young mothers must be promiscuous and irresponsible.. Well, here is a fun fact that I am realizing as I interact with young mothers every day. 90% of them were not sluts as people like to call them or wait is it booty calls? No! This 90% I speak of, their baby daddy was actually their first and only person that they have ever been with sexually. There was a time while I was pregnant and not showing a friend of mine made a comment,”Fii, don’t you find that the women who are getting pregnant these days in campus is just a form of punishment for them to stop being promiscous, eh! Wamekuwa wengi sana (they have become quite a number!)” and I just sat there and sipped my water in peace. I guess that was one of the many reasons I kept my pregnancy a secret for so long because people look at you like you are now saved from your old ways. Am I praising fornication when you keep it totally exclusive with one person? No! I am just saying that you will be surprise that 90% of these women have just been with that guy alone. Here is the thing, those who have multiple sex partners are very careful, they know all the family planning methods by heart like I know the national anthem. Trust me on this one.
Do not succeed in life. Uhmmm.. Well I don’t have much for this specific stereotype but maybe when someone who thinks of this, during his or her free time can Goggle Victoria Rubadiri, Muthoni Njoba. These two are truly an inspiration to me. I can’t wait to meet Victoria soon! I am sure there are plenty of women who had babies in their teens and early twenties out there doing amazing things in their life right now.
Do not end up getting married or finding someone who genuinely love them if they happen to separate with the baby’s father. Again wrong!! A lot of us find love, it is just that most times because of the past hurt these women tend to lock out any man who is showing them advances and may also end up not realizing his true intentions which was to be with her in the long term. However, those who open up and let go of the past hurt find someone who was meant to be with them.
Maybe I should combine this with another stereotype that young mothers are desperate. Here is the thing we are so busy doing a lot of things. I love using my example instead of another’s. I am in school Monday to Friday from 8am to 12pm every day. In the afternoon I am working on Amira Africa. During the weekends I am with baby and my family or having meetings that are work related. On Sunday after church I am travelling back to my little den, there are young mothers who are doing more than this from day to day so we do not have time to be desperate or run after a man who will waste our time. When we find one who is worth our time we create time for him in our busy schedules.
Robbed of our social lives. I would rather put it this way, robbed off our not genuine friends. I am telling you getting a baby young sifts all the friends from the not good friends like chaff from rice. Chap! Chap! We still do have our social lives intact, very much.
They become school dropouts; It is contributing to some girls having to drop out of school especially in the rural areas however it is not the case for all the young women who have babies early. There are a number who go back to school and finish school, with a good support system and motivation they make it. Out of my own experience I had to go back to school when my baby was four months old and I would take the bus to Athi River from Ngong every day which made me spend roughly 6 hours out of my 24 hours every day travelling by the bus just so I can go to school and come back to baby every day, now I guess ya’ll know why it was very important that I won that electric breast pump from Phillips the other day. 🙂
Thank you again for all who voted. Not until now that baby bear is one and a half years that I have moved permanently to the houses near school but I always am home when I get a chance to see him. So we as young mothers try our best to secure our future together with our child’s and still be there for them, no matter the cost it takes.
Are bad mums do not know how to take care of children. How can a child take care of a child? Is usually the common statement. People think that because you are a young mother, you do not know how to take care of a baby. Here is another fun fact, any first time mother always has a hard time adjusting whether in their late twenties, thirties but we all get the hang of it eventually. It comes naturally.
We leave the work to our parents and basically do nothing. People assume that the young mothers go and dump the baby at their parents’ house or guardians house and go back to their ‘promiscuous’ ways to look for another one to repeat the cycle again. Of course there are those who actually do this but there are those of us who do help while we are being helped because there is the aspect of not having work now so the monthly allowance we chip in buying the diapers or whatever the baby may need. Some even go to an extent and get part time jobs for this. My baby is the one who inspired me to start Amira Africa, so our babies make us go out there and do things that honestly speaking, we wouldn’t be doing if they did not come our way.
“Finally back to the picture, of the little boy whose tears are flowing. Last week there was a talk on Citizen TV titled “Absentee fathers” where they tried to imply that boys who are raised without their biological fathers are doomed for the rest of their lives. Others say that children born out of wedlock usually are problematic in school, do not end up finishing school, are the ones who are taking drugs, are violent etc. Honestly I do not believe that someone’s future is sealed just because they are born by a woman in a certain age bracket. They say that such a family is broken, what really is something broken? My baby is being raised in family whereby we are all there for him when he needs us at all times, to me that is a complete family where he is nurtured and mentored in the best possible way to be the best he can be. There are children who have been raised by single mothers, who have turned out extremely well example Barrack Obama, Shaquille O’neal etc., just to mention but a few and with that I have come to the conclusion of my post.”
What are some of the stereotypes you feel young mothers around you face??