Mother and daughter

For many years in the UK the concept of single parenthood and teenage pregnancy was frowned upon with the Victorians associating it with “shame”.  Time and attitudes have moved on apace since those days but I have seen some incredibly disturbing behaviour this week in the news.

A 12 year old girl has given birth to a baby daughter and her father, when interviewed by the press, mentioned that he was “proud of her”.  In the circumstances, I imagine it would be necessary for him to show his support for his own daughter.  The father of the baby is just 13 years old.

In another horrifying news story a 14 year old boy was charged just over a week ago with the attempted rape of 10 year old girl in Shrewsbury.

Whilst it is true to say that many children are reaching physical maturity earlier than previous generations there is no doubt that at 12 years old a child is still a child, and the concept of children having children being something to be proud of eludes me.

It may be that in these circumstances a child’s parents will bring up the baby as their own and there are cases where this has happened in the past.  However, then we perhaps have to look at responsibilities and consequences to our actions.

A child with unsupportive parents given a pregnancy may have to rely on Social Services to take care of the baby when it is born or immediately put the child up for adoption, or worse endure a termination.

As parents, no matter how supportive we may appear to be in front of the media, it would ordinarily be our worst nightmare for one of our children to be in this condition and perhaps if we look at some of the reasons why this can occur we may be better placed to avoid it.

Acceptable standards of behaviour
Almost as soon as children can walk and talk it is important that parents teach them acceptable standards of behaviour.  This forms an important part of your role and responsibility as a parent.  Starting very young will ensure that life is much easier for you in managing the behaviour of your children as they get older.

This can be difficult if you are juggling your career whilst taking care of the home and managing the children but becomes infinitely more so when they leave your care and go to nursery and school unless you have taught them some basic morals and values.

It really is essential that when your child reaches an age to attend nursery or school that you seek establishments that are sympathetic to the values and acceptable standards of behaviour that you believe in.  If they are on your wave length then the chances are that all children in their care follow the same rules.

Of course, this subject is not just about girls.  Boys also need to be aware of acceptable standards of behaviour too.

Education
If your daughter is physically mature and therefore capable of having children then educating her in the facts of life is a must.  You will find this easier if you have developed an open and honest relationship with her throughout her life and that begins at a very early age.

The main reasons that girls become pregnant at a very early age are:

  •  They don’t know about the various methods of birth control
  • Some may not feel they are being shown enough love at home and this is when many girls confuse love with sex.  When someone shows them the affection they feel they are lacking pregnancies can and do occur.
  • Others may see pregnancy as a way to make the boyfriend stay with them

Often a pregnancy occurs by mistake because of this lack of education.  As children grow into their teens there may be many more reasons such as forgetting to take the birth control pill or because some of their friends have babies or even to rebel against their parents

Acceptable standards of behaviour through child etiquette classes
Child etiquette classes are a perfect medium to ensure that your children learn acceptable standards of behaviour in all things as well as a way to guarantee they will behave well in any situation.  Naturally you want the best future possible for your children and to achieve this, their education should not be confined to just getting good grades.  Their excellent qualifications combined with cultural and social skills will make them leaders of industry or perhaps Prime Ministers or Presidents.

Having children whilst they are children is not the way to plan a happy and uncomplicated future.

Your Family Coach

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