Conversations with Teen Mums

I never would have thought that I’d be a mum so young, without sorting myself out first. I kind of regret not sticking at my education, because then I could be doing other things right now, not finishing high school. I could be working. Cause the struggle now is not affording things.
I liked school up until high school and then I decided it wasn’t for me. I think I lost direction. I didn’t find the work difficult or anything. I was just too focused on my social life and all that kind of stuff. I started hanging out with people the year older than me, and mum got a call saying they’re not like going to be good influences on me. But I didn’t want to hear that. I’d start running away from home and stuff and just doing whatever I wanted. I think I was about 13. Thinking back it was really unfair on my mum.
It was just my headspace. I just didn’t want to be there, didn’t want to like go to school. I had no motivation cause I wasn’t at home anymore. I was staying with my friend’s family. They ended up sending me to alternative education. But it didn’t work. I just didn’t show up or anything, so I ended up dropping out. I had no reason to go. I wanted to be working and making money and stuff like that. Not just doing things that I didn’t think would be beneficial for me. But being at the teen parent unit is good because you want to do it for your baby.
I’ve never wanted to be treated like a kid since I was like 12. And I never understood why everyone was still doing it. I thought, ‘Actually, I don’t care if you’re an adult. I’ll respect you if you respect me’. That’s the outlook I’ve had on adults my whole life. I just think I grew up a little too fast and just had experiences that changed how I thought about life.
I had such a weird vibe. Cause I was a smoker and it was making me feel so sick and I just didn’t want to eat all these things so I just walked down and got a pregnancy test and it was positive. So I bawled my eyes out and didn’t tell anyone for a week. Then I told my mum. Before I got pregnant, I was told I might not be able to have kids. So that’s why I kind of wasn’t being careful, cause I thought I just couldn’t have kids. And then when I found out, even my mum was surprised.
Everything is falling into place except I’m really broke. I don’t want to be on the benefit my whole life. I want to go back and work. I would never just want to sit and do nothing with my life. But I just haven’t figured out what I actually want to do. I mean, everyone’s telling me don’t get stuck into law because you’ll be doing that for so long. And you won’t get any income for a long time. So I don’t know if I should be thinking about something else or not.
I want to have like a career and all that but it’s going to be really hard to get at a young age. My mum was quite young when she had me as well, like 22. Not as young as me. She started in her career like a year before I was born, and she’s still doing it. I’ve just watched her get more and more advanced. From renting to owning houses and all that stuff. And I want that for myself. But I just don’t see it.
My parents treat me like an adult now. My step dad was saying, ‘Every generation thinks they know the younger generation but they don’t’. Like he was saying, ‘I don’t know what your generation’s really doing’. So it’s probably going to be the same for me. I don’t want to pretend that I know what her generation’s up to.
I just want her to not do what I did. I don’t want to be a grandma when I’m 30 or 35 or however old. I want her to finish her school, and get a good job and stuff like that. Because everything that I wanted to achieve by now was put on slo-mo. I was working, had my internship on a tv show, and then couldn’t continue cause I had to go give birth, when I could have still been working and building myself up in the company. I’m not where I’d want to be right now at my age.
I just want her to be happy and have everything she needs. Cause I know I’m not going to be able to spoil her and go overseas like I did when I was young. But as long as I can provide what she actually needs then that’ll be what I want. I just want her to go to a good school and for me to not be on the benefit for much longer.