As you know, Young Mom Support is not about statistics. When I do interviews, people always expect me to trot out loads of numbers, as if a number can ever properly represent the thousands of people that teen pregnancy affects. There is no way that any statistic can properly capture the lives of unique people, their circumstances, personalities, thought patterns and choices. It just doesn’t mean enough besides some general patterns.
However, in the interests of learning more about my Mxit people (they really are MY people now) – we’re running a series of polls – each week we ask a different question.
Interestingly, in the first week I ran a poll asking if moms were accessing the child support grant for their babies. I didn’t get a screenshot for this one, so will run it again next week so you can see. The majority said no, most likely reasons: not enough money to be worth the effort, and didn’t know how to access it.
We’ll see how that shapes up when we run it again.
The two recent polls: How old were you when you had your child (most common age 16-17)- probably to be expected? The contraception question was interesting – (by FAR the answer was using nothing at all), to my mind shows that there is clearly a long way to go in promoting and improving access to contraception.
This week’s question is about REASONS for falling pregnant – either it was completely unplanned or it was planned for reasons of collecting child grants, to keep a boyfriend, to have a baby to love etc. We’ll see how that goes.
Given the small sample size and loads of other things – its clearly NOT a scientific result. But gives a small glimpse into the general picture. Btw, have spoken to more than one person who fell pregnant as a result of rape – unreported, untreated for HIV or with emergency contraception, and no counselling – all of these women were raped by someone they know. Usually pregnancy discovered too late for abortion, with a small number who chose not to abort even though they still could.
All any of this really shows, is that people are DIFFERENT. No number is ever going to give the whole picture.