Research indicates that at least 750,000 in America teenagers become pregnant every year. Most of these pregnancies are unintended and may affect the teenagers’ life negatively. Surveys indicate that most of the teenagers do not believe they will get pregnant by engaging in sexual activities. In actual sense, most of them use contraceptives to avoid the pregnancies. Nonetheless, the rates of affected teenagers remain steady, and may increase in the future because of various underlying problems.
To start with, teenagers are under constant pressure to fit in with others who are already having unprotected sex. A research by Kaiser Family Foundation revealed that 33% of pregnant teens stated that they were not ready to have sex but proceeded on because of peer pressure. Psychologists indicate that at such a stage, forming friends and being accepted by the peers is of paramount importance, to the extent that many make wrong decisions, including having unprotected sex.
Secondly, in the light of tough economic times, many parents are busy and unavailable to offer proper guidance on sex and possibilities of pregnancy in teen years. Therefore, the teen turns to their friends for guidance, which may be misleading. Still, some parents do not have insights on how to guide their teenagers on the subject of sex. They are unable to answer the questions and may even be shy to answer them in the best way possible. Further still, they may take the wrong approach and in the process discourage the teenagers from opening up about sex.
Thirdly, the celebrity in the movie industry has managed to glamorize pregnancy to the extent that many teenagers feel under the pressure to get pregnant also. It now seems to be highly acceptable in social circles to be pregnant. Also, having sex is made to look glamorous in the movies and may even be associated with the sophisticated people in the society. Unfortunately, the teenagers do not have access to information, from the movies and celebrities, on having protected sex and the responsibilities associated with parenthood.
Fourthly, as research by Guttmacher institute indicates, some teenage pregnancies may result from rape. Most teenagers may expose themselves, unknowingly, to situations where they are sexually abused. They may go to wrong clubs or in unsupervised camps for fun and get raped in the process. Lastly, teenagers tend to experiment with drugs and alcohol, resulting to inability to control impulses. Thus, it is becomes easy for them to engage in unprotected sex. Precisely, when addressing the issue of teenage pregnancy, underlying problems such as peer pressure, parents’ absenteeism, glamorization of pregnancy, and rape must be considered.
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