Conversations with Teen Mums

I was 16 when I first fell pregnant with my son, Boston. His dad, we were just sleeping together. It wasn’t kind of anything.
I got judged cause I wasn’t in school. I didn’t do nothing. And because I was 16 and fell pregnant. Especially my family. They knew it. They knew something was gonna happen. They were just like reminding me of how disappointed they were.
And then to turn around today and say, ‘I’m in my fifth year of school. Uni next year. And I’ve got two kids now and a house’. That makes me proud of myself.
My childhood. From what I remember, there was a lot of drinking going on. There was us and a couple more houses on the street and they would always drink together and they would hop between the houses. At the time I thought it was cool because I didn’t have a bedtime. We were out until whatever hour of the night playing, just doing whatever we wanted. But when I think about it now, there wasn’t really no-one to look after us.
My sister, she looked after me. Cause we were really poor back then and she would sell smokes, cause she was going to high school. They were like a dollar each, and she’d use that money to buy my lunch for school.
Me and my mum, we are so similar we’ve clashed most of my life. Now that I’m a mother I can see that she was only being a mum. When she’d stop me from going out, which used to make me really mad, I can see now that it was because she was worried.
Since I was really young I’ve always wanted to be a teacher. I used to play teacher when playing with my friends. I’d have my little school books and I’d write down names, and tick off the roll. I just feel like it runs in our family.
My dad motivates me the most. He always talked about education. His parents were teachers. He always said to me they never pushed him, that’s why he pushes me and my sisters. And I think him pushing us and always showing an interest in us makes me want to push myself and show him, ‘Look dad, I did this’.
I hope my kids are all happy. I hope they don’t let anything stop them. I hope they see me as role model, from falling pregnant at a young age to turning that into something. I hope that as they face their struggle they turn it into something as well.