Adolescence is a stage in our life in which we gradually undergo physical, psychological, sexual and social changes until we reach adulthood. This stage begins to live around 10 or 12 years, it is the first phase, called pre-adolescence, and ends at 19 years.
The menarche is the first period , and therefore the first indication that the body of girl is becoming a woman, it is already possible to conceive of a life within.
SEX EDUCATION IS NECESSARY FROM THE MOMENT THE GIRL HAS HER FIRST PERIOD
Whatever the age, both at 11 and at 13, we must explain to our adolescent daughters that from that moment on they are fertile women with the ability to conceive a child if they have unprotected sex.
We must educate our pre-adolescent children sexually, whether they are boys or girls, because the girl becomes pregnant by having sexual relations with a boy.
It is convenient that from home we speak clearly with our children, and we explain the physical and emotional changes that they will begin to have in adolescence. We must speak to them with confidence and explain the risks they run if they decide to have sex at such a young age. Not only risk of pregnancy, but also risk of contagion of sexually transmitted diseases.
After explaining the physical and emotional changes that you will begin to notice, it is time to talk about contraception. I think teaching condoms is the best way to start, and the safest in terms of sexually transmitted diseases.
The chances of an adolescent becoming pregnant are greatly reduced if, from home, she obtains the information and enough confidence to ask questions and clarify her doubts. Although it does not mean that it cannot happen.
From the schools and institutes they also receive sex education, give talks and workshops on sexuality and learn the different contraceptive methods they can find and which is the most suitable for them.
RISKS OF TEENAGE PREGNANCY
Because the future mother is a girl in full development, her body, despite being fertile, is not ready to have a baby. The mother is in full growth and in full transformation from girl to woman. Her pelvis is taking its final shape, the birth canal is immature , it is not yet the final one, as it has not fully developed, her breasts are also in full development, but they are not yet those of a young or adult woman.
All these physical changes, as well as the emotional ones -because the emotions and feelings during adolescence soar, and it feels very different from reality-, lead to the pregnant adolescent being able to suffer:
– Placenta previa .
– Severe anemia.
– Premature delivery.
– Complications during delivery: fetal distress , uterine atony.
– Low birth weight baby.
– Babies with developmental problems.
– Neonatal jaundice.
– Increased risk of breathing difficulties.
– Higher proportion of caesarean sections : some adolescents are not prepared for the moment of delivery, and do not cooperate, which can end up in urgent caesarean sections.
– Long- lasting postpartum depression .
AND IF DESPITE ALL THE INFORMATION SHE BECOMES PREGNANT, WHAT DO WE DO?
It may happen that despite talking to our children, educating them sexually, and informing them of all the risks, of all sexually transmitted diseases, and of the great responsibility of having a child, they become pregnant, or our child leaves pregnant to a girl, we must sit down and calmly reflect among all what we should do.
It depends on the family culture, or religious beliefs, we can make one decision or another, of course always taking into account the opinion of future teenage parents.
There are several options, which depending on the country will be legal or not:
– Interruption of pregnancy.
– Give the baby up for adoption.
– Face the situation and take responsibility for the future child.
Whatever decision is made, this will be a hard blow for the family, where the most beautiful thing in the world, which is giving life to your child, will become physical and emotional conflict.
As parents I believe that we must maintain the union , and support our children in the decision taken together, assess all the options, and see how our lives will change from this moment and how to face it in the best possible way.
Depending on the reason why you got pregnant, we will also make one decision or another. We will not face the news in the same way if the pregnancy is due to sexual abuse, as if it is due to not using contraceptives with her boy.
RISK FACTORS FOR TEENAGE PREGNANCY
– Consumption of alcohol and drugs .
– Living in poor or precarious situations.
– Lack of education on the part of the family.
– Not be in school.
– Being a victim of sexual abuse or sexual violence.
– Having older “boyfriends”.
– Being the son / daughter of an adolescent mother.
– School failure.
YOUNG PEOPLE AND FUTURE GRANDPARENTS
Once the news is digested, the decision faced, and if we make the decision to go ahead with the pregnancy, we should not treat it as a problem . We have made a decision and we must accept the consequences that this entails. We will have to support our daughter and help her to have a calm and happy pregnancy, as these situations often bring a queue in families, and can be treated as a failure or a family upset. This only hurts, and we must avoid it.
YOU GAIN NOTHING BY CONSTANTLY REMEMBERING THE MISTAKES OF THE YOUNG PREGNANT WOMAN
She will be full of fear and insecurity, and must find warmth and calm in her parents. The ideal would be to be able to speak with the two families, both the boy’s and the girl’s, and together reach an agreement on where they will live, if they will continue together, or which doctor to go to since it is a pregnancy of risk.
I suppose that, as parents, neither of us want our children to get ahead in motherhood or fatherhood. But if it happens, I am sure that when we have our grandchild in our arms, something will change, and that despite everything we will get ahead, because life, after all, no matter how much we plan it, can give us surprises, and It will be better to live them in the happiest possible way , both for our daughter and for the new member of the family.