Now I've Seen Everything
Now I've Seen Everything

23 People Share What It Was Like to Have Very Young Parents

Parenting is a task for which no one has prior training — it may be easy for some and more complicated for others. Becoming parents at a very young age brings some difficulties, and also certain advantages. Only people who have been through these experiences can tell us what it is all about. And there is no one better than them to give us their point of view.

At Now I’ve Seen Everything we want to share 23 stories with you about how being a parent while going through your youth can lead you to live an untraditional life.

  • My parents got married when they found out my mom was pregnant at 16 (she had me her senior year, at 17), and both still managed to work their way through college with me in tow. It was honestly pretty annoying. They liked to party a lot with their friends, which got annoying quick, especially when they had a bunch of 30-somethings over listening to loud music at all hours of the night when I had to be up early. My mom enjoyed the attention of being mistaken for my sister, but it felt gross. My dad wasn’t really interested in doing “dad” things until they had my sister in their mid-20s. ©writingaboutrain / Reddit
  • My bio-parents were 14 and 15 when I was born. They opted for a closed adoption but my bio-mom did leave a thoughtful gift for me. My mom told me that my bio-mom was very kind and through the pregnancy was always really worried about me. She did a lot of watercolor paintings with poems for me when she was pregnant and gave them to my mom. My mom had them bound in a book for me and would read them to me when I was little. Some of them talk about how she can feel me moving around and what my heartbeat sounded like. It’s odd, because they really look like a child did them and I can’t believe how much she went through at a young age. I think this made me more compassionate toward girls than other boys were in middle school and high school. ©GreedyWing / Reddit
  • I had my son at 17, and one of my fondest memories is being in the car after going to McDonald’s and singing SpongeBob’s intro song together. He was so in awe that we could watch cartoons together. ©ewwfreckles27 / Reddit
  • My great-great-grandmother passed away at 103, when I was 24. 3 out of my 4 grandparents are still alive and in their mid-sixties. I was the ring bearer at my own parents’ wedding at age 2. It never felt weird, until during school I realized that my grandparents were younger than a lot of my friend’s parents. My mom got carded at my 21st birthday party and she said, “Well that’s my child, and he just ordered a beer so...” I’ve lived a normal life and my parents are still together, which I think is pretty incredible. ©InTheVirtualB***s / Reddit
  • A friend of mine is a teacher. She had a parent come in for a parent/teacher conference and it was actually her student’s grandmother. The child was 8. The grandmother was 36. She had her daughter at 14, and her daughter had her child at 14. I had my first at 32. I can’t imagine having a grandchild at that age. ©Designgoddess / Reddit
  • I was born to a teen mom, and a single one at that. I definitely had a lot more freedom and less supervision as a child. Since she worked 2 jobs I would often be on my own after school until about 8 or 9 at night, sometimes later. She definitely struggled to hold down jobs due to not having an education and the overall grind would eventually get to her. At one point she was walking 11 miles a day to and from work because we didn’t have a vehicle. Eventually, we lost our home and we remained in and out of shelters until I was about 12. I learned A LOT about the world in those days. Now that I’m older, I wouldn’t trade it for the world. It gave me every bit of motivation I have, it gave me better social skills (gotta learn to make friends quickly when you move frequently), and most importantly it taught me to be humble and never view less fortunate people as beneath me. ©K**hKapn1991 / Reddit
  • My mom is 15 years older than me and dated 7 of my friends throughout my life... 4 when I was still in high school... Other than that, I think I became more mature than her when I was 12... I took care of my 3 siblings, did the cooking, cleaning... got them to school... I started working 40 hours/week at 14 so my siblings could have some sort of a normal childhood (get clothes, school supplies, I even took them go-karting on each of their birthdays... those are some of my favorite memories). ©dylan_lowe / Reddit
  • My parents were 18 when they had me. I got lucky, they loved each other and are still together today, almost 32 years later. I had a great home life with great parents. That being said, I had to put up with a relentless onslaught of jokes starting at age 13ish. I even had a teacher say something along the lines of “Geez, your mom is so attractive. She single?” After a parent/teacher conference night. In middle school. In front of the class. ©TyTyTheFireGuy / Reddit
  • I’m not the one my mom had as a teen, but my older sister was. My mom had her when she was 16. She was basically thrown out of the house with little support from my grandparents. She had all of us kids (there are 5 of us) by age 30. Growing up, my mom was mostly a single parent and worked a lot and we couldn’t do any extracurricular activities. There were so many activities at school etc. that she couldn’t attend because she had to work to be able to afford bills and things. I had to grow up really fast to take care of my younger siblings and myself. I was also always told I was very mature for my age.. ©mytorchsong / Reddit
  • My mom was 16 and my dad was 19 when they had me. They took me to a lot of concerts and music festivals growing up. Starting around age 9, their go-to birthday present for me was concerts. The first couple of years, it was stuff they liked. After that, I started developing my own tween/teen tastes, they’d give me 3 tickets so I could take a friend and my uncle as a chaperone. ©jinantonyx / Reddit
  • I was 20 when I had my daughter, and people often asked if we were sisters. My daughter was always horrified when people assumed we were sisters. When she started third grade, we had just moved so she was in a new school. She came home a couple of days into the school year declaring that I had to start dressing like an old person because then maybe people wouldn’t assume we were sisters. We laugh about it a lot now, many years later. ©Gainersbiggestfan / Reddit
  • My mom and I are really close. She had me at 14. Growing up, I noticed a lot of my friends didn’t get along with their moms. I always thought she was really relatable. We’d go eat, go shopping, get coffee, gossip, and just hang out. She worked a lot, sometimes multiple jobs at once, so I felt like I did fewer extracurricular activities than my friends. But I was pretty happy growing up. She is always concerned with money. I’m starting to notice that she’s not very good at saving money, or planning for retirement and whatnot. I once asked a family friend, “Now that us kids are grown, how are my parents still living paycheck to paycheck?” She explained that, in her opinion, my mom basically skipped learning how to take care of herself as an adult. Instead of learning how to effectively adult, she focused on taking care of her kids. I will forever be grateful for my mom and the hard work and sacrifices she endured to raise me and my siblings. ©I_prefer_naps / Reddit
  • I was there for the poor part of my parent’s life, whereas my brother gets to experience the well-off part. Not gonna lie, I’m a little jealous but I’d rather him have this life than mine ©jaytos530 / Reddit
  • My mom was a teen mom and when she was able to pay for Christmas without borrowing money from family members you could really tell how proud she was. ©P1pslyTheGreat / Reddit
  • I’ve noticed that I didn’t have the same opportunities as other kids because being a teen mom can lead you down a road of struggle and poverty if you don’t have help from your family. I’ve always wanted to play sports, but she could never afford the equipment needed at school for me to be a part of it. Mentally, I’ve had to mature faster at a young age because she was still a kid herself. It’s unnerving to think teachers would tell me I seemed older than my age at 10 years old. ©Ainika / Reddit
  • I’m a teen mom myself and these stories are the reason why I grew up real quick. I was happy to become a mother and my now husband joined the army to support us. Today is our 10 year anniversary, we both have very good jobs, he’s in law school and we’re about to buy our first home. We worked hard to get where we are today and I don’t regret being a teen mom. Matter of fact, I’ll be in the Bahamas in my 30s while my kids are in college. Cheers to the people that scolded me for being a teen mom. They’re changing diapers and making bottles at 2 AM while I’m cozy in my bed. I went through all that as a child but I wasn’t going to let it prevent me from being a great mother. I got pregnant and I accepted it. ©nothinglessthanjess / Reddit
  • I’m an early 2000s baby, my mom really liked emo music when I was little, so I considered myself “emo” at 6. I remember sitting in the backseat of my mom’s 4Runner and listening to Mindless Self Indulgence, MCR, Blink-182, American Football, Fall Out Boy, Taking Back Sunday, and all the late 90s-early 2000s emo music. I got to watch a lot of ’90s cartoons along with 2000s stuff because it was what my mom watched and we always had fun sitting on the couch watching TV. I had a really good childhood, me and my mom were always friends, she is great mom, and I always look up to her for being a strong, young, single mom who raised me alone. ©StarrAtlasAI / Reddit
  • My mom always says that the best part of being a teen mom is that now she can just chill out while her friends are changing diapers or taking care of kids! :D (she just turned 40 and I’m almost 23). ©FlyingPlatypus314 / Reddit

Do you think it is better to be a young mother and rest when you’re older or to have children as an adult, when you have more experience? How was your upbringing and your relationship with your own mother?

Preview photo credit les_beau / Reddit
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