The “Ideal” Life Path for a female that is proudly endorsed by the feminist narrative goes something like this.
14-18 High school boyfriend
17-18 Lose virginity sometime during their junior or senior year.
18-20 YOLO in the drunken parties and frat houses of a public university
20-22 Settles down with the college boyfriend.
22-25 “Discovering” herself
25-30 FOMO fueled hookup culture
30-35 Husband hunting
35-40 First “marriage”, 1.73 children, and divorce
> 45 Second marriage, or else, wine and cats
“My (24) younger sister (17) is planning to have a baby with her boyfriend (19) as soon as she turns 18. She will not listen to me or our parents, and her boyfriend’s family is supporting her decision.
So first off, we’re from a small town in the southern US where a lot of girls get married and have babies right out of high school so my sister has a lot of examples of people she can point to and say that they did the same thing she’s planning to do and it turned out fine. I’ve tried showing her episodes of Teen Mom and Sixteen and Pregnant and she just says that she’s not going to have that difficulty because she’s not going to be in school while trying to have and raise a baby. I don’t know how else to get through to her, she just seems blind to the fact that this isn’t going to be a walk in the park.
Her boyfriend and her have been dating since middle school and so she’s fully convinced that he’s committed to her, and I guess it does seem like he is because he’s willing to go along with this. He’s what everyone in our town calls a “nice boy” but I just doubt that he’s responsible enough to be a father. He does already have a job in his family’s business but I don’t think it’s enough to take care of my sister financially, but his parents are old-fashioned/religious and think that him marrying a “nice girl” and having a baby immediately is a great decision so they’re willing to help out. His mom has actually tried to ask my mom for her opinions about baby names. They’re totally supportive of this.
I really just need some advice about how to talk my sister out of this. I’m not that much older than she is and I cannot imagine already having a kid old enough to be in first grade. It seems insane to me. My parents agree and want my sister to go to college and get an education and not just pop out a baby with the first guy she’s ever dated. But she just seriously doesn’t care what any of us think. We can’t really even stop her from seeing her boyfriend because she’s obviously just going to run back to him as soon as she’s 18 in February and probably never talk to our family again. My father legitimately considered trying to get him in legal trouble over the age difference to keep them apart but it wasn’t possible and he decided it would just push my sister closer to her boyfriend’s family too.
Please give me some advice on what to say to her. I don’t want to watch my sister make a life-ruining decision and she’s just impossible to get through to.
tl;dr: My sister is trying to get pregnant immediately at age 18 and I need to convince her not to ruin her life like that.”
A few days after the original posting, the author posted a follow-up.
“EDIT: Thank you everyone for your stories and advice. I ran out of steam to reply to every comment but I did read every single one. I guess that I’m just going to have to accept that my sister is going to do what she wants to do with her life whether or not our family thinks it’s a bad idea. I’m going to ty to get her some real information about parenting and what it costs and the kind of support system she’ll need, and see if I can get her some hands-on experience through babysitting or volunteering. I’m hoping that everyone is right and that if I just try to help her figure out what exactly she needs to do instead of explaining why I think this is a bad idea, she might decide on her own that she’s not cut out for it. Or maybe she’ll actually take it seriously and try to learn and be a good mother. It’s still hard for me to imagine how she could be happy with this decision, but like everyone has said I can’t do anything to stop her so I should help her try to be successful. Even if things don’t turn out like she expects or how she wants, I still love her and would want her and her baby to have the best life that they can.”
Are we seeing evidence of the proverbial pendulum now swinging back to traditional roles?