In today’s society teens are faced with many pressures. The effect of these pressures put on them is the inability to make right decisions when it comes to certain situations. One of these most common situations teens find themselves in is becoming a parent at a young age, a result of pressure from peers. I’m Melle, and I’m Maxine and were going to talk about one of the problems of the youth—teenage pregnancy. It isn’t shocking to see a high school student pregnant these days. Teenage pregnancy now has become a trend. Many teenagers don’t know how big their responsibility is to raise another human being when they themselves still need some growing up to do.
The National Youth Commission, supported by the Department of Health and the World Health Organization, convened the 2014 National Summit on Teen Pregnancy last April 24. This summit, which saw the active participation of adolescent youth, delivered a clear message: Adolescent sexual and reproductive health (ASRH), or the lack thereof, is fast becoming the defining issue of this generation of young Filipinos. Without a robust response from all stakeholders, the Philippines is on track toward a full-blown, national teenage pregnancy crisis.
Staggering facts support this call for concern. Recent (2014) data from the Philippine Statistical Authority (PSA) reveal that every hour, 24 babies are delivered by teenage mothers. According to the 2014 Young Adult Fertility and Sexuality (YAFS) study, around 14 percent of Filipino girls aged 15 to 19 are either pregnant for the first time or are already mothers—more than twice the rate recorded in 2002. Among six major economies in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the Philippines has the highest rate of teenage pregnancies and is the only country where the rate is increasing, per the United Nations Population Fund.
Teenage Pregnancy is one of the most alarming issues in our world today. Many teenagers engage themselves in sexual intercourse with their partners just to be “in” with their friends. Surprisingly, some countries even celebrate early teenage pregnancy, as it is a clear sign of fertility. But moderately, a teenage girl being pregnant before adulthood is critically looked down upon with shame. In 2009, around 410,000 teenage girls, ages 15 to 19, gave birth in the United States, and shockingly, that’s a 37 percent decrease from the teen birth rate in1991. Basically, teenage pregnancy occurs due to the following reasons: general rebelliousness, peer pressure, and lack of self-esteem.
First, there is the rebelliousness of parents and of rules of adults. During the teenage stage there is a burst of sudden and unknown emotions. Teens feel a natural sense of rebelling against the set norms and rules. Coupled with a sudden sense of fresh-found liberation and sexuality, results in giving vent to their feelings through sexual experiences.
Second, peer pressure is an early stage of pregnancies. This pressure causes sexual intimacy for the opposite sex. If a child hangs out with a group who is sexually active, then nine out of ten that child is sexually active too. Most teenagers opt to have sexual intercourse because they need to achieve the acceptance given by the “circle of friends”. The only way to be accepted is to have relationship with the opposite sex and have sexual relations. In some countries, teenagers face too much peer pressure to start having sex at a very young adolescent age. This kind of behavior may lead to unwanted teenage pregnancies. Lastly, the lack of self-esteem is an effect of teenage pregnancy. Many teenage girls feel that pregnancy is the only alternative to feeling powerless and unimportant.
It isn’t shocking to see a high school student pregnant these days. Teenage pregnancy now has become a trend. Many teenagers don’t know how big their responsibility is to raise another human being when they themselves still need some growing up to do.