Our county seems to have a higher than average number of teen pregnancies, and a lot of the moms and moms-to-be wind up coming to our school, either for the flexibility our school allows or just to get away from the regular high school environment. (My "favorite" was the girl and her mom, whom I wrote about before, who wanted to come to our school only for the pregnancy, then return to the regular high school to have a "normal" senior year, including cheerleading.)
I've written before about how conflicted I feel about these girls. We want to support them and help them get finished with high school so they can (we hope we hope we hope we hope) continue their education and provide for their babies. I worry that we send the wrong message, though. The girls show up with their babies, we ooh and aah over them, and the rest of the school population sees them getting all this attention.
(My next-to-favorite was from THIS school year, when a girl gave birth to a baby on Friday and then showed up with him at school on MONDAY, as if it were freakin' SHOW AND TELL or something. Sheesh.)
I said all that to point out that it isn't at all unusual for several of our students to be expecting babies at any given moment. Smart, dumb, white, black, gorgeous, homely, there is a LOT of teen sex going on in our county. Unprotected teen sex at that.
One of our girls (who I am convinced is as cray-cray as they get and has already been suspended twice, once for fighting and once for asking a teacher "who the f*** do you think you are?") is pregnant, and like many of our population (I guess like many of this generation period), she lives with her grandmother.
I heard her discussing her unborn child with some of her friends while they were going to lunch one day last week. (At least one of the friends is pregnant too, and I'm afraid that's part of the unending cycle, a competition of sorts.) This cray-cray pregger girl was saying that if HER child got pregnant as a teenager, she would "put her out." In other words, kick her out of the house.
I was drawn into the conversation, and her friends asked if I agreed with them that the girl in question was practicing a double standard. (That's my term, not theirs.) I asked her if that meant she thought her grandmother should have put HER out.
"No," she said, "parenting is different for me."
Wow. Even for a cray-cray, I was amazed. She wan't being funny either.
That's just the way she rolls. Sadly, she isn't the only one.