A real role model for young mothers

2.17.2012

Maya Angelou

Maya Angelou gave birth to her son just three weeks after graduating from high school. She spent many years after that drifting through jobs, relationships, and cities trying to raise her son without an advanced education or efficient job training. Eventually, Angelou wrote a series of six autobiographies and became a well renouned poet. Her screenplay was the first original script by an African-American to be produced, and she was the first black woman to direct a major motion picture. Angelou has been awarded three Grammy's, a Pulitzer Prize nomination, and over thirty honorary degrees.

As a young mother, it is often hard to find people to consider role model's. Teenage pregnancy is often looked at as a terrible thing that results in your life ending. Forever. I mean, just look at the Stay Teen commercials. Having an unexpected pregnancy at a young age ruins your life. 

Or so they say...

Then you have the stars of Teen Mom and Teen Mom 2 covering tabloids and airing their stories on MTV. Relatively, these are the only young mothers who receive widespread recognition. These are the girls that are supposed to be a representation of the greater population of teen moms. 

What have these girls done that makes them worthy of this? They got pregnant young. So far, that is the only thing that they have accomplished. Maybe I am the only person who gets frustrated when hearing about book deals and how much they make per episode, but these girls are not activists. They are reality television stars. So they allow their lives to be filmed to "create awareness". They didn't come up with the concept for the show, and they sure as hell don't do this for free. They are paid to "help" prevent teenage pregnancy.

I would be impressed if these girls were actively spreading the message that they believe in. If you have this fame and the capacity to make such a big difference, why are you wasting it buying trailers and cheating on your significant others? Do they realize the impact that they could truly make if they actually tried? Instead of being so adamant about teen pregnancy needing to be prevented, why don't they aid those who are in the same situation? They have this huge opportunity to make a difference, and all I see is them wasting it.

To me, they are not role models. These are not people who are going to make a significant change to our societies view on young parents. In fact, they seem to just be proving them right time after time. Why can't we recognize individuals like Maya Angelou? I certainly had no idea that this amazing woman was once in my situation. Now that is inspiring. That gives me hope in my future, in my dreams. It makes it seem like anything is possible.

What does MTV make seem possible for teen moms? 

Trailers and fake boobs.

Maya Angelou reciting her poem 'And Still I Rise'. 

Post a Comment