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22 June 2008 @ 12:24 pm
Pregnancy news alert!!  
As always, Madeleine is here to bring pregnancy conversation to the table:
As summer vacation begins, 17 girls at Gloucester High School are expecting babies—more than four times the number of pregnancies the 1,200-student school had last year.

Some adults dismissed the statistic as a blip. Others blamed hit movies like Juno and Knocked Up for glamorizing young unwed mothers. But principal Joseph Sullivan knows at least part of the reason there's been such a spike in teen pregnancies in this Massachusetts fishing town. School officials started looking into the matter as early as October after an unusual number of girls began filing into the school clinic to find out if they were pregnant. By May, several students had returned multiple times to get pregnancy tests, and on hearing the results, "some girls seemed more upset when they weren't pregnant than when they were," Sullivan says. All it took was a few simple questions before nearly half the expecting students, none older than 16, confessed to making a pact to get pregnant and raise their babies together. Then the story got worse. "We found out one of the fathers is a 24-year-old homeless guy," the principal says, shaking his head.
eh_notsomuch and bart_calendar were also on top of this news item.

Go Bush Administration!! Your $1 billion for abstinence-only education finally has some tangible results. Know what would be really sweet? If you could do this to the rest of the world, too.
bart_calendarbart_calendar on June 22nd, 2008 07:45 pm (UTC)
The only school in the world where it's the girls who are trying to talk the guys into not wearing condoms.

Also, how skanky must the girl who did the homeless guy have been. I mean, seriously, if you are a 15 year old girl looking for unprotected sex it's not that hard to find a boy your own age to do the deed, even if you look like Broom Hilda.
Bettie Brimstoneinfloresence on June 22nd, 2008 09:47 pm (UTC)
Hey - he might have been a really attractive, well educated university dropout type homeless person. You never know. He could be the next Siddhartha Guatama. Although, impregnating teens doesn't seem very ascetic, that's for sure.
nothingheadsomethinghead on June 22nd, 2008 07:54 pm (UTC)
I have not yet seen Juno but if anyone left Knocked Up thinking that they just had to have a baby, they really missed the point.

Also, I think that abstinence-only education is a terrible idea, but trying to blame this event on abstinence-only education is obviously a bit specious.

These girls were deliberately attempting to get pregnant. It's not a matter of being uninformed sluts who didn't know how to avoid pregnancy, it was a group of girls that treated babies as bling and thought it'd make them cool.
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 07:44 am (UTC)
Specious for sure. I think I just hate gwb a lot this week and this made me want to get annoyed at him more. ;) I could argue that his lack of an open, scientifically-based dialog on the subject led to these pacts, but yeah, I just hate him and there's really no overt, direct connection.
Charity Hussein Froggenhall: mike says huheh_notsomuch on June 22nd, 2008 09:20 pm (UTC)
Don't know how much I like being described as being "on top" of a teen pregnancy item, but thank you!

I know teenagers are stupid. We were all stupid at that age. I was Queen of Stupid. But I don't understand the thought process here: there are no jobs in your area, your life sucks, so hey! Make a baby that you can't raise and therefore condemn yourself to living in your crappy little town with your parents for the rest of your life.
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 07:51 am (UTC)
I could say 'no pun intended,' but alas, it was
Can't someone loan them a baby for a day or a week? I would. I see babies from across the room and shudder in joy that I don't have one.

They can be absolutely adorable, but it has been my experience that doesn't last more than a twenty minutes, after which you want to hand it the hell back to a responsible party other than yourself.

We had those Sugar Baby experiments (or I read pre-teen novels about them). What's the next generation way to prove to girls how much having a baby crimps your style?
galenamoongalenamoon on June 27th, 2008 02:32 am (UTC)
Re: I could say 'no pun intended,' but alas, it was

ok, so I was only mildly offended. =) shudder in joy? LOL!
lagizmalagizma on June 27th, 2008 04:22 am (UTC)
I already plan to purchase your kid rub-on tattoos and a drum set.
Oh, it's true. Your baby even came up in therapy. I told Dr. Wittenberg that my cats were awesome and I loved coming home to them and they'd made the last year of my life very happy, which led into me declaring I was never having children. He was really taken aback, and questioned why I didn't think I'd have children. And I was like, dude, no, I'm not working on the fact that I don't want to have children. That's just a fact and I don't need therapy for it.

He told me children bring great things into your life. I was like, no, Brad and Jenn have much great joy but also no sleep, franticness, fear of ruining a living human being, worries about keeping this fragile thing alive, parents who think you could be more motherly in some way, strange in-laws who don't help, dogs who need to be walked more, a million freakin' bottles to wash instead of books to read, no time to enjoy food and drink alone, life away from their office, and...

He kind of laughed at me. He told me that it was only really bad for the first few months. Whatever.

So, yeah, I DO love your kid and I want to nibble his extremities and he's fascinating to study. I even like him for extended periods of time. I'd just rather he's ultimately your responsibility, but I am totally up for rolling my sleeves up and pitching in. Plus he's really freakin' adorable.
Crystalcrystalstarr on June 22nd, 2008 09:20 pm (UTC)
I heard it was "pregnancy packs" these little teen's were making, thinking it would be really cool to have babies. Wait tell they try to squeeze that watermelon out of their lemon hole.Wont be so cute then. This isn't even funny. When I was a teen , sure I loved sex too, but babies were disgusting to me and not something I looked forward to at that age. At 19 and married I still was terrified to have my daughter. Damn these are 14-15 year old's they are talking about. Seriously what is going on with these kids. I don't think its media only, sure movies glamorize it a bit, but it has to be parenting too.
bart_calendarbart_calendar on June 22nd, 2008 10:42 pm (UTC)
Also, why were the dudes not try to avoid becoming dads. When I was 15 I would do anything to get a girl to bring me to orgasm, but I'd still at lest pull out or try to get a blow job. I mean, I was dumb, but I wasn't insane.
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 07:55 am (UTC)
I watch my fair share of Dr. Phil, and for dudes, there is some kind of magical thinking I see them take on. If they don't think about it, it won't happen. If she doesn't ask for a condom, it means she's on the pill and you don't have to bring it up.

Girls do this too, of course, but in the case of the impregnaters of the pact makers, I think it was probably pretty easy to find guys clueless about the whole process of how babies are made.
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 07:52 am (UTC)
I still live in terror of pregnancy. I haven't moved a bit from my high school fear that I'd get pregnant and then my mom would know I was having sex.

I identified so much with the main character in Saved!, taking the pregnancy test. "Please let it be cancer, please let it be cancer, please let it be cancer." I know that feeling.
Bettie Brimstoneinfloresence on June 22nd, 2008 09:44 pm (UTC)
Just when I thought teenage girls couldn't get any more stupid...
Threnody: GIRyenniemonster on June 22nd, 2008 10:19 pm (UTC)
I saw this the other day, too. It made me think of Nick Hornby's book, Slam. He was pretty shocked to discover that some teen girls think of babies as some sort of hot new accessory, like they're iPods or designer handbags. The idea of it makes me a bit queasy, too.
Bettie Brimstoneinfloresence on June 22nd, 2008 11:38 pm (UTC)
If babies came in pink or gay neon rainbow and had a docking bay where you could adjust the volume remotely then I'd totally get me one on ebay.
Threnodyyenniemonster on June 23rd, 2008 02:46 am (UTC)
When you put it that way, they do sound like trendy accessories!

Pink: the color of some baby flesh tones...sort of...kind of.

A docking bay where you could adjust the volume remotely: crib + baby monitor.

Ugh, I really feel the urge to go to my students on Monday and remind them that this is not a good idea. They're all college-bound kids eying schools like UCLA and Harvard, so I'm sure they already know this, but...it doesn't hurt to remind them.
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 08:01 am (UTC)
Am I the only one thinking we need a flour baby assignment? Yennie has the power to do it!! (Well, can you teach sex ed in English class?)
(Deleted comment)
lagizmalagizma on June 23rd, 2008 07:46 am (UTC)
You know, I actually did some mapping before making this post to figure out where Gloucester was. I understand the difference more now.
Echoes: nancy pantsbrooklynhype on June 23rd, 2008 07:14 pm (UTC)
Off topic. Back when you posted the pregnacy test finding at the Dollar Tree, I scoffed, and thought, "Only in CA." Yesterday, I was in there with my dad and they had some at the checkout! Apparently NC is up on things now.
lagizmalagizma on June 27th, 2008 04:24 am (UTC)
Yay! I hope you keep plenty on stock. You can be pregnant any time. The immaculate conception happened once. It can happen again.