POLL: Do Teen Mom Reality Shows Glamorize Teen Pregnancy?
Speaking of MTV programming…
We’re pretty used to people either loving or hating reality television, yes? I mean, as an tube-viewing society, we get that some folks can’t wait to see more deliciously sweet bromance moments between Pauly D and Vinnie, and some would rather disconnect their cable service than watch one minute of Mafia princesses sluggin’ it out, right?
So, as the Teen Mom 2 finale last month got closer, I wasn’t all that surprised to see some of the usual positive and negative buzz pop up on the ‘net.
However, I was surprised – just a little – to see a certain type of negative buzz pop up again, and again, and again…
Teen Mom glamorizes teen pregnancy.
Glamorizes, as in, makes it look glamorous.
Um…have you SEEN this show?
I got into Teen Mom 2 kind of the same way I started watching Mob Wives and Jersey Shore. Over the 2011 holidays, MTV and VH1 ran mad marathons, and I had nothing else to do.
So, I kind of got to know Chelsea, who had an amazing support system but dropped out of high school, continued to go back to her less-than-supportive boyfriend, and couldn’t motivate herself to study long enough to get her GED.
There’s also headstrong Kailyn who, after breaking up with her boyfriend and living in his family’s basement for a little while, was determined not to sign up for welfare, worked two jobs and went to college, and finally got her own place.
I did have a soft spot for Leah. She tried her best to make it work by marrying her twins’ father, living in a house so run down she had to bathe her children in the basement, and fighting her husband on getting a job so she, too, could help support the family.
Oh, and let’s not forget Jenelle, whose mother sued her for custody of her child and who couldn’t seem to transition from carefree teenager to mother when she started a seriously unhealthy relationship with a homeless guy, got caught up in breaking-and-entering and drug charges, went to jail, and – oh yeah – later found out she’d been juggling it all with bipolar disorder.
Can someone please tell me how ANY OF THAT glamorizes getting pregnant as a teenager?
Don’t get me wrong: I truly wish nothing but the best for these girls and their babies. I’m serious. As time goes on, I hope they get the education and skills they need to finish school and start great jobs. I want them to learn to support themselves and their babies, find loving relationships, and get anything else out of life they want.
I just think viewers are wrong when they say these girls’ stories glamorize teen pregnancy.
Despite negative opinions about the show, ratings (and apparently teen pregnancies) are high enough to warrant Teen Mom 3, and another season of 16 and Pregnant (Teen Mom‘s, um, mother show) premieres March 27, 2012 at 10 p.m.
Meanwhile, what do YOU think?
Image Source: Wikipedia
Sparks, A. (2012). POLL: Do Teen Mom Reality Shows Glamorize Teen Pregnancy?. Psych Central. Retrieved on April 25, 2015, from http://blogs.psychcentral.com/celebrity/2012/03/poll-do-teen-mom-reality-shows-glamorize-teen-pregnancy/