Today is Valentines Day and my love goes out to all the young mothers who have been part of Wezadada through and through. This one is for you <3
This is research I did when I started Wezadada Foundation. So the participants must are older, their kids as well- but it is still what they though as young moms, to young kids. See what young mothers actually think 🙂
Connection between one group of people facing a situation to another not directly facing the situation is sometimes something we never fully achieve as a society. Our aim with this post is to somehow connect the outside world with young mother’s feelings thoughts, feelings and expectations. We may never fully foster the kind of understanding we would like to receive from the society but it is always good to have tried and failed than to have never tried.
Therefore, today I present to you questions addressed to young mothers around Kenya and their responses, to create some sort of awareness on the challenges and experiences of young mothers. A glimpse into young motherhood.
This is non-manipulated feedback, straight from the mother’s perspective. It gives insight into the reality of being a young mother and the issues weighing heavy on their minds. This also gives awareness on the issues young mothers are oblivious of many times than not and this will guide me on the themes of my empowerment course for young mothers which will be publicly out by July.
- Which misconception about teen moms out there would you like clarified and how?
That once you’ve become a mom your social life dwindles. It’s like being a mummy results to you being a stay at home person. People call out to you, if you go out for rave or any other night life activity. They say you should stick at home and take care of your baby. Anything else just doesn’t work out.
Well, being a young mommy doesn’t mean your life has come to an end. It basically means, you get to be responsible. You get to party- yes but not the whole night… responsible skills? Yes.
So basically you learn how to become an adult. You learn how to take care of both baby and you. You don’t drink as much cause well, you just don’t.
FROM LAURA 21 – MOTHER TO A 16MONTH OLD.
Are you much different than mothers who get their children later in their twenties and why?
I believe am much different to have my baby in teenhood than moms at a later age. As a teen I was not ready for all that comes with motherhood. My education was at stake, balancing between motherhood and school. Secondly at a teen age I wasn’t yet married and hence got a child out of wedlock. Dealing with all these at that age brought tears to my eyes most of the time. I think a more stable and married mother has it a little bit easier.
MISS BENTA 22- MOTHER TO A THREE-YEAR-OLD.
What comment said by someone really hurt about being a young mum? And what would you have preferred they say instead?
“After all I took her to school to learn and not any other stupid thing”
I felt so unwanted and again hated… I felt like giving up. Hatred filled my heart.
This comment was given out by my own father. I loved him sooo much but after this I had mixed feelings… It really hurts to see the only person you are looking up to for strength and support turn you down.
… I wish he had said “I took her to school though… am still proud of her.”
MURURU 21- MOTHER TO 11MONTH OLD
What do you think the society can do to help young mothers?
The society should help educate young mothers so that they are destined for greatness and become contributing members of society. So that they learn to appreciate their young ones and learn how to cope with what comes at every stage of parenthood.
MUM LYAN 21- MOTHER TO 2YRS 11MONTHS.
Do you sometimes regret being a young mother?
Sometimes yeah I do. Seeing my peers dong things and living freely, makes me feel sad. Times like this makes me regret since I too would love to be doing some of the stuff.
e.g. going out together for parties, impulsive shopping. As a mother everything should now be planned having your kid in mind.
Though now am far from it since each day with my kid brings joy.
TERRYANE 23- MOTHER TO 3YEAR OLD.
Nope I don’t… because a kid is a gift from God. Also there are women out there who are adults, who get pregnant in their teens and get ideas from friends to abort and do it, but today they use millions to make sure they have kids. Being a teen mother gives you life experience and gives you motivation to know what can be done to a kid. It also makes one to be mature and open minded. If I regret becoming a teen mother, then I would be holding on to the past. Work with the present and move forward because that kid tomorrow is the key to a different future. Be proud to be a mother, it is not only about age but confidence of the future.
VANIS 21- MOTHER TO 2YEAR OLD
Are there aspects of your journey as a young mom you would like to highlight?
“Everything is going to be ok” that was what my mother told me when she learnt of my pregnancy. Throughout, my teenage years I had security and support from my family and when I turned 19 I found out something that would change my life forever, I WAS PREGNANT. Being pregnant at a young age can be hard mentally, physically and also financially. People have choices. Some life choices are simple, some are hard and can have life- altering consequences. Being pregnant has many choices tied to it, either keep the pregnancy or do away with it. I thought of an abortion but later decided to keep it because I knew I wouldn’t leave with it in the long run. I suffered from depression because the baby’s father had left after denying the responsibilities. There were many days that passed when I felt like I wasn’t going to make it. I wasn’t ready to raise a child but one day I woke up and realized that my life would go on anyway, and that I should do the best I can and learn from my mistake. I believe that becoming a mother really changes my perspective. I remember when my son was born, I held him to my chest and understood how my own mother could never give up on me. My past was my past and I couldn’t put anything before my child. Prayer is the number one thing that keeps me going.
In conclusion, my pregnancy was a very difficult and hard time in my life, but God gave me strength to make it. Despite the trials and tribulations, it was all worth it to bring home my wonderful son. Consequences is no coincidence, there is always a reason for everything. Most of us learn from what we have done. In my case, it has made me think and grow up before my time and learn to enjoy life and take advantage of its most precious moments.
YVONNE YASMINE 22- MOTHER TO 1YR 8 MONTH OLD.
What are your words of encouragement to another young mother today?
First I’d like to tell a teenager who finds herself pregnant to try take it positively… Motherhood is a beautiful thing… It is a gift from God.
To the parents, they should support their teenagers. Nobody is perfect. Yes, you have a right to get angry but please support them.
NICOLE, 23-MOTHER TO A 2YR 5 MONTH OLD.
That is what young moms had to say and this can really show you how difficult it is for young moms ‘to rise to the occasion’. There is the aspect of looking at what put them in the situation in the first place but as Nicole said “nobody is perfect”. That is a topic for another day but all in all, a young mom needs you to move forward- be kind enough to support and care for them.
THANK YOU FOR BEING HERE!