Thu | Jul 7, 2022

Letter of the Day | Do not discriminate against teen mothers

Published:Tuesday | May 10, 2022 | 12:07 AM


I am a 22-year-old mother of two girls – a four-year-old and a one-year-old. I wasn’t able to finish high school, not because I am a young mother, but because of poverty. I had my daughter when I was 18, shortly after I started doing short courses here and there, so that I have different choices whenever there’s a different job opportunity.

I have no CSEC subjects. I have tried applying to a security company, but the question asked was, “Who will take care of your children?” In the end, I did not get the job. Most companies I applied to had the same question.

I applied to the Jamaica Defence Force but I failed the second medical, not because of any medical issues, but because I was told I have children. Why can’t they give us the option to come back when our child/children are older, instead of just failing us, while not giving us the opportunity to make something of ourselves?

This is why teen mothers think it’s the end of their world whenever they get pregnant. The society tells us that it is okay to be mothers, but does not give us options to make something of ourselves. Not everybody has family support, some of us were born and left to take care of ourselves. Some people don’t have the resources to go back to school, or they have to live on things handed down. My questions to our prime minister is:

What options are there for young mothers?

How does one come out of poverty when there are not enough options for us?

There isn’t enough opportunity out here for young people, especially for young mothers. I don’t see where we are heading to prosperity, and I hope you look into the matter.

You aren’t responsible for we becoming teen moms, but hopefully, Mr Prime Minister, you can implement something where teen moms like me have a better chance to make something of ourselves.