30 November 2011
Reality Television Glamorizes Teen Pregnancy
Media, specifically television has taken the issue of teen pregnancy to a whole other level. The shows 16 and Pregnant, Teen Mom, and The Secret Life of the American Teenager document the lives of young teenage girls facing the issue of being a pregnant teenager. Originally created to show the controversial subject of teen pregnancy, all of these shows soon began to change. As the seasons continued in all three of these shows, the controversial subject of teen pregnancy soon became a glorifying concept. What was first viewed as just a fantasy is now becoming a reality for many teenagers. Viewers of these shows are now seeing that teen pregnancy isn’t all that bad; it may even be considered normal according to MTV and ABC Family. The “teenage celebrities” on these shows are making it through life just fine; portraying that anyone else can too. Yes, these teenagers may have faced hard times in the beginning, but at the end of the day, their lives are unrealistically viewed as ordinary. Both MTV and ABC Family depict the lifestyle of being a pregnant teenager to be somewhat glamorizing.
The reality television show 16 and Pregnant was first aired on MTV on June 11, 2009. This show follows the stories of four pregnant teenage girls [Farrah, Maci, Amber and Catelynn] that are in high school dealing with the hardships of teenage pregnancy. “Each episode follows a five to seven month period in the life of a teenager as she navigates the bumpy terrain of adolescence, growing pains, rebellion, and coming of age; all while dealing with being pregnant” (MTV.com). During the first few episodes of season one, the struggles of dealing with teenage pregnancy seemed difficult and nearly impossible. MTV portrayed each girl as if they were not going to make it through this crisis they were about to face, and their lives were soon coming to an end because being a pregnant teen was not acceptable. As the show...
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Sun, Feifei. “Baby Mamas”. Time. 18 July 2011. Vol. 178, Issue 3, Pages 58-60. 23 November 2011. Web.
Thompson, Arienne. “16, Pregnant … and Famous: Teen Moms Are TV’s New Stars”. USA Today. 23 November 2010. 25 November 2011. Web
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