Have you heard this news story that 17 girls in a Massachusetts high school --all of them under 16 years old-- made a pact to all get pregnant? They wanted to all go through it together. They thought it would be fun.
One of them, in an effort to do this, got pregnant by a 24 year old homeless man.
What a loser.
I don't know what is wrong with these girls' lives that they have decided that having babies with homeless men is a better life plan than going to college or, at the very least, spending their late teens and early 20s partying a lot. It's sad. But it's also sort of like, "Hey, you thought this was a ba-rilliant plan. Now look. Sucks, huh?"
I'm not being very understanding, I know. Ok, but how about this? If you are going to go be a moron and get yourself knocked up, at least pick a guy who's loaded so you can live off his money. Don't pick a bum.
I should probably be concerned that most of the fathers are in their 20s. But I'm not that surprised. Guys are creeps. So.
This whole disaster makes me think of the time one of my 6th grade classmates thought she was pregnant. After a few days, it was established that she'd "lost the baby" or something. In hindsight, I'm sure she was making the whole thing up, but at the time I did not even consider that she was probably lying.
She was 11. The father was allegedly one of our 11 year old classmates. And she knew she was pregnant because she took one of her mom's pregnancy tests. Apparently the woman kept dozens in her closet at all times.
What a mess!
But what disturbs me most about the whole scenario was the fact that I was not disturbed at the time. I recall sitting in the library and hearing this news from her during "reading time." (And this little lady could've used a lot more reading time, and a lot less free time, if you ask me.)
We all gathered round the table, as she discussed, in a whisper-yell that she was with child. I was seriously not part of the cool crowd, which she was (because 11 year olds who have sex are cool!), so I was surprised they were even letting me listen in on this important piece of gossip.
And as she sat there looking distraught, everyone comforted her. "It will be fine." "We can help you." "You'll make a great mom." "Maybe he could punch you in the stomach."
I said nothing, but not because I was scared or upset. I just didn't know the protocol for something like this.
Nowadays, when a friend says she might be undesirably pregnant, I know the protocol is to say, "Oh fuck!" followed by, "I'm sure you're not. Have you been eating less? Are you stressed?"
So as I read this story about these sad sad girls, I can't help but relate to being young and having no freaking clue that pregnancy is a big deal. And that having babies is not fun, not even if 16 of your closest friends are all going to be preggers at the same time.
It's only as you get older and you start feeling like you have a life of your own, that sacrificing that new life you just made for yourself is a terrifying prospect.
But before we reach that stage of maturity, the only understanding we have of raising children is from playing house. And when you play house, you can feed your baby doll imaginary food, and you can accidentally drop her on the floor a few hundred times, and you can forget about her for a few hours if you want a take a nap or go on a play date.
So in response to this news story, I don't blame the schools, and I don't blame the disgusting men who slept with these girls, and I don't blame the parents, necessarily.
No, I blame the dolls. And the social construct that girls are supposed to play with dolls. So that we end up with girls wanting to have babies when they themselves are still babies.
And while we're at it, I should add that I don't think it's the best idea for boys to play with guns and little army men. That's not producing fantastic results either.