New NYC anti-teen pregnancy campaign....are they being too harsh, or just enough? - page 2

Critics blast NYC's anti-teen pregnancy campaign Just read this article. And I have to admit I am kind of conflicted. On the one hand...Studies have been done showing so many negative... Read More

  1. by   PeepnBiscuitsRN
    I work in OB in a hospital that is in the inner city and we see quite a few teen pregnancies. Most are in the 16-19 year old range, but we've had a few 14-15 year olds and even a fresh 14 (as in they spent most of their pregnancy being 13). I have noticed, as have many of the nurses on the unit who have worked at this hospital for many years (like 30+) some commonalities- new mom is 16, "grandma" is old was grandma when she had mom? When we have a new mother who happens to be a teen, a lot of the family (of the mother) show up- 98% of the family who come to visit are women- aunts, sisters, cousins, grandma, great grandma...great grandma is in her 50's, grandma in her 30's, new mom in her teens. Aunts in their 20's with five kids in tow. Before they've even left the hospital, grandma is caring for the baby like her own, mom is on her cellphone, on Facebook, watching TV. Other teenybopper friends come and visit and coo and gush over the baby and talk with great envy as they play with the baby like it's a glorified dolly.

    What I'm saying is that in many sub cultures it seems like it's expected. Like it's almost a rite of passage. As another poster mentioned, that mom has the whole system down. She's got it all squared away- cash assistance, food assistance, medical assistance, child care assistance so that she can go get a job or finish school...but that never happens. Mom is back in a year or so having the next baby. It's very cultural. Some nurses I work with who have worked at the hospital for 30+ years know certain names- "oh yeah, (insert familiar name here) we know about that family" and (other name) there's nothing ever good associated with them." Some of them probably remember when that new mother was born. There's something deeper than just shock value that needs to be addressed. It's like a giant ball of string that is knotted up and tangled and needs very badly to be untangled, but where do we start?
  2. by   SoldierNurse22
    The only reason I can see these ads as NOT being effective is because at the teenage stage, most teens are still heavily involved in the personal fable--"that won't happen to me" mindset. They are also completely unacquainted (for the most part) with adult concepts, such as paying the bills, rent, managing money, working, and tending to a mature relationship/marriage to name a few. There are some teens who are able to see beyond this, and perhaps those ads will make a difference to them, but I think if a teen is able to see through the nonsense of their peers and understand the message in these ads, they're less likely to be the at-risk population this ad targets.

    They are developmentally able to process logic, but the personal fable makes them less likely to do so, hence the vast array of risky behaviors the teenage population often displays. Their unfamiliarity with life as an adult makes the messages in these ads of long-term consequences less likely to resonate with them. How do you explain to a pregnant teenager who has no idea what it's like to pay the bills that they will soon be responsible for another life?

    It wasn't too long ago that I was a teen myself. I remember being torn between knowing that something was true and those friends of mine who, no matter how much good sense you tried to expose them to, refused to listen to facts.

    In other words, I am worried that teenagers will not comprehend the adult ramifications of their actions and cling to the personal fable in response to the brutal honesty in these ads. I tend to agree with PeepnBiscuits in that this is a cultural monstrosity that needs to be detonated from within, but how to do so remains very vague.

    The ads, however, are not remotely offensive in my opinion. Since when did truth become offensive?
    Last edit by SoldierNurse22 on Mar 9, '13
  3. by   i_love_patient_care
    I don't think the ads are offensive at all. These kids need a wake up call. Luckily for me, as a teen I baby-sat infants a lot and and had an older sibling who lived at home with her baby when I was 16. I got to see what parents go through, arguably it's not the same responsibility. It is a taste of it, though, and convinced me to wait a long time to have children of my own and use effective birth control.
  4. by   pmabraham
    Good day:

    The message needs to be strong, to be repeated, and to be varied enough not to be droned out, but consistent enough that it never loses the main points.

    Thank you.
  5. by   myelin
    meh. These ads target pregnant teens and teen moms and basically shame them for making "bad" decisions (interesting that no one seems to care about the teen dads in this scenario, apparently it doesn't matter that he also made a "bad" decision). I don't think this will make a lick of difference for prevention of pregnancies. I think the best way to approach teen pregnancy in this country is to take an example from other nations that have much lower rates than we do. These countries typically offer comprehensive sex education at a very early age and build on it throughout schooling AND offer people far more support then we do (thus helping to end the cycle of poverty and pregnancy). Shame does not create behavior change.
  6. by   priorities2
    Another consideration is that NYC is so highly diverse. In typical American culture, there's a period of being a teenager between childhood and adulthood. This is a relatively new phenomenon evolutionarily and certainly isn't present in all cultures, and in many more cultures, the period of being a teenager is much shorter. I think this ad would be highly offensive, for example, to my Hmong friend, who had her first baby at 16 and now at 19 is pregnant again. She has been married since 16 and was doing what was expected of her by her parents by having these children. Further, all of the Hassidic Jews in NYC! That is just one specific cultural subgroup where having a baby at 18-19 is perfectly acceptable. I find these ads to be terribly ethnocentric for such a diverse city, not to mention shaming to both teen mothers AND their innocent children.
  7. by   imintrouble
    As long as a baby is a meal ticket, no ad in the world is going to be an adequate deterrent.
  8. by   Spidey's mom
    Not offensive at all.

    I especially like the one that says "Honestly mom, chances are he won't stay with you. What happens to me?".

    Chances are, he won't.

    Why not tell the truth to teens?

    I like the ads.
  9. by   That Guy
    Parents arent so someone has to tell these kids what is going on and harsh truths.
  10. by   azhiker96
    I think the ads are just reminding the teens that parenthood is not easy, especially if you're a teen. I like the one that tells dad he's going to pay for the next 20 years.

    They did say a similar campaign in Milwaukee decreased the teen pregnancy rate by 35%. I think that's a lot better than the "just say no" or free condom programs. They also said each ad had a number that could take calls or texts from people who wanted more information. I hope it helps.
  11. by   peppapig123
    I don't find the ad offensive, but I just saw one or two comments on here that I found offensive. Maybe its just me...
  12. by   Sadala
    Ads targeting the symptom of a problem are never going to be helpful. Kids need to be taught (at home and at school) how to access birth control, how to prevent disease, and how to prevent teen pregnancy.Harping on mothers and children already here is like trying to close the barn door after the horses are out.I know that lots of folks don't want their children to have premarital sex. Guess what. They are most likely going to do it anyway. Prepare them.On the other hand, nice to see that the ads at least mention that these children have TWO parents. Usually its just the mother who receives the criticism since she's the most visible part of the equation. I'd like to see info on the studies that show a < in pregnancy with these ads if anyone has a link.
  13. by   Spidey's mom
    I think part of teaching my kids involves talking about consequences of having sex as a teen. That's what these ads do. They are conversation starters.

    Don't let your hormones override your intelligence. Are you ready for the risks of having sex? Here are the risks (the ads).