Teen pregnancy rate lowest in two decades
April 5th, 2011
03:57 PM ET

Teen pregnancy rate lowest in two decades

Shows like "Teen Mom" and "16 and Pregnant" have helped make teen pregnancy a topic of national conversation. However, the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that the actual rate of teen pregnancies in the U.S. has declined to a record low.

In 2009, around 410,000 teenage girls, ages 15 to 19, gave birth in the United States. That's a 37 percent decrease from the teen birth rate in1991. Then, 61.8 births per every 1,000 females was a teen pregnancy. The rate has now dropped to 39.1 births per 1,000 women. Yet according to the United Nations, the rate of teen pregnancy in the United States is nearly nine times higher than in the majority of other developed nations.

In a press release attached to the new Vital Signs report, Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, the director of the CDC, wrote that despite the steady reduction in teen pregnancies over the last two decades, "still far too many teens are having babies."

"Preventing teen pregnancy can protect the health and quality of life of teenagers, their children, and their families throughout the United States."

The Vital Signs report looked at data from 1991 to 2009 and found that in addition to the steady decrease in the rate of teen pregnancies, there's also been a decrease in the percentage of high school students even having sex. More teens are using contraception, too; the CDC says the percentage of students who had sexual intercourse in the past three months without using any type of contraception decreased from sixteen percent to 12 percent while the percentage of students using two forms of contraception (for example, a condom and birth control pills) increased from 5 to 9 percent.

Still, roughly 1,100 teenage women give birth every day. According to the CDC, that means one of every ten new mothers is a teenager. The majority are Hispanic or African-American, with respective birth rates nearly double that of white teenagers. Combined, all teen pregnancies cost taxpayers about $9 billion a year.

soundoff (324 Responses)
  1. Mei

    Also, LACK of responsbility is extremely high amongst teens. They have no understanding of being responsible, especially due to broken families situations. If the parents act irresponsible in their own relationships, kids will think that is normal and don't care about being responsible in their moral actions either.

    April 6, 2011 at 08:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Arog

      And this is different than other generations....? Wake up buddy.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:54 | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      @Arog- I would have to say, absolutely. Spend some time around some elderly folks in your area. I am talking about those whose parents went through the great depression, the ones who experienced the shortages due to WWII, the ones who had to drop out of school in junior high and get a job to support a family. Yes, they knew something of responsibility, character, and integrity, and no, our teens of today know nothing about those characteristics.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:37 | Report abuse |
    • mobrule

      I blame bush for the decline.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:44 | Report abuse |
    • OldGoat

      @mobrule: What's there to blame? One less teen pregnancy = one less mouth for welfare to feed.

      April 6, 2011 at 12:28 | Report abuse |
    • Alexia

      That is not true. We look up to you guys and learn from everyone older than us. Not everyone has a broken family and was not loved and are not educated. Stop thinking all teens are horrible because some of us are not ! & not all of us are on welfare either !

      Why can't adults be glad that the rates are going down ? You always have one thing negative to say. Its so sad.

      April 6, 2011 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
    • Sugartaste81

      I think a lot of the people here reminicising about the "old days" when we had "values" are forgetting that plenty of teenagers got pregnant back then-they were just shipped off to a boarding home or faraway family member until they had the baby. This was so the teen did not "embarass" the family. Hell, your grandmother might have been one of them (mine was!)...frankly I'm glad the shame and secrecy surrounding teen pregnancy has (somewhat) assuaged.

      April 6, 2011 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • PennyNot

      Sadly I disagree, having delivered welfare checks for many years and having the children ask for Mom's 'paycheck' they may know exactly what they are doing. Staying home, not working, being fed & housed and not being held responsible by intent. Yes, many on welfare are trying hard to get off it, many are quite content.

      April 6, 2011 at 13:39 | Report abuse |
    • Booperguy

      Man, they just doggone stupid! Have you ever heard a teen speak today? "Me and my brother went to the mall today..."

      April 6, 2011 at 21:09 | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      You are an idiot, go look at some statistics of pregnancy rates over the last 3-4 decades. They have been steadily declining since then. I hate this "well, back in my day things were better..." BS because well, it is mostly false. The good ole days were not so good.

      April 6, 2011 at 21:31 | Report abuse |
    • Hmm

      I am a teenager, but that doesn't mean I don't use proper grammer. It's irritating to be judged by the stereotypical thoughts of adults who think they know everything.

      May 11, 2011 at 15:48 | Report abuse |
    • Kimberly D

      ookay true but not every teen life is like this...thr r many diffferent situations...dis doesnt apply 2 every teen..im 18 and still a virgin and my parenst dnt hav the best marriage but they taught me well...nd i respect my self 1000% thank u very much

      June 11, 2011 at 13:45 | Report abuse |
    • K

      Some teenagers are responsible!Their are a lot of teens that never been suspended,expelled,arrested or hardly need any discipline.Yes a lot of teenagers are irresponsible but that's how it has always been.I was kind of in the middle,I needed some discipline in my early teens (12-15) but matured after that.You were a teenager once and needed discipline sometime in your life because nobody is perfect.You all should be applauding teens for the pregnancy rate being down instead of dissing teens once again.We were all teenagers for the same amount of time and all of us acted out,some more than others,so let's not act like we never do anything wrong.

      July 23, 2011 at 21:29 | Report abuse |
    • Really?

      It is pretty pathetic that you guys are steryotyping all teen moms to be on welfare and being a "burden to taxpayers." The only people i know that are on welfare are adults who are completely content with not working and having the government pay for them. I don't know any teen on welfare. I had a baby at 17 and have never had any welfare, wic, etc. Putting teens today down for having a baby young isn't changing anything, it makes you look ignorant. There has always been teen pregnancies but like someone else said they had to get shipped off or give the baby up for adoption so their families wouldn't be embarrassed. So instead of making yourself sound completely ignorant to what goes on by making blanket statements about people you should think first. Birth control is not 100%. Just because someone is a teen mom doesn't mean they were being careless.

      August 1, 2011 at 13:18 | Report abuse |
    • boomer

      @Booperguy your sentence should start "My brother and I" not "Me and my brother". I'm a teen and even I know that.

      September 5, 2011 at 08:53 | Report abuse |
    • Name Withheld

      this message is to OLDGOAT-

      Really how dare you say something like that. You sound so ignorant. i myself gave birth at 17 and I am now 19 years old with a two year old little boy who DOES NOT Live off welfare. I am a medical assistant which a well paying job. He has a nice home, nice clothes and toys and is definitely well fed from the money I MAKE at MY job. People LIKE YOU are the ones who make people hate "teen parents". Oh and not to mention I also married my high school sweetheart who is the father of my son and we are trying to have another. Not every young person who has a child is bad or lives off welfare. Next time you make a comment try not to make it sound so ignorant... It may be hard for you, but atleast try.

      October 11, 2011 at 12:47 | Report abuse |
  2. dx2718

    I don't think 18-19 year olds should count in the statistic if they've graduated from high school and are married. Some people marry right out of high school and start having babies immediately. And the statistic should count mothers younger than 14 as well. This sounds like a doctoring of statistics to make it look like the rate has gone down.

    April 6, 2011 at 08:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    • offfwhite

      I agree. I also think that comparing 2009 statistics to 1991 statistics wipes out whatever trends emerged in that 18-year period. HIV/AIDS education skyrocketed in the 1990s, then abstinence-only education followed suit in the 2000s. I'd be curious to see the variation within those 18 years.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:45 | Report abuse |
    • emily

      yes but the MAJORITY do not. go back to school and learn statistics please.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:19 | Report abuse |
    • Alyssa

      What does being married have to do with it? They're still young enough that they likely aren't in a secure financial position, which is more likely to place a burden upon taxpayers to sustain the health of the child. It's also medically conclusive evidence that teenagers, even 18 and 19 year old married teenagers, are still more likely to have health complications for themselves and their children. Being married is irrelevant.

      April 6, 2011 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • mobrule

      all stats get doctored to suit someone's agenda.

      April 6, 2011 at 11:21 | Report abuse |
    • OldGoat

      What makes you think being married at 18 somehow makes you more responsible? Most of these kids don't have a corner of a clue of what life is going to be like having a mouth to feed and not having enough money with which to purchase food, let alone what it'll be like to take care of that child for the next 18 years..

      April 6, 2011 at 12:32 | Report abuse |
    • marissa

      I agree, im a teenager myself but i have a yunger sister who has had a a child, only 13 years old ! bu the problem is that most parents had their children at a young age and get caught up on trying to be their daughter/son's freind other than a parent. it truly is sad how things have influenced teen in the us.

      August 15, 2011 at 12:11 | Report abuse |
    • TEEN mom

      I understand the concerns with welfare, etc. . . I was a teen mother (I'm 22 now) and I was never on welfare (nor am I now). I started a charitable organization that the government approved and I now volunteer as an advocate for teen mothers. My group encourages education, breastfeeding, and in general healthy lifestyles and we offer a means to acquire it. I was a teen mother and I now have multiple medical licenses and certifications and I graduate from college with my bachelors degree in business management in 1 year. Stereotyping is not the answer but it is what statistics often point us towards. If stereotyping teen mothers really made the situations so I wouldn't be in the position I am today. I am Native American AND a teen mother and I have a high school diploma and continued to further my education without the aid of the state. My family had some to do with it but mostly my boyfriend and I just worked hard to support my daughter. We now teach a course for tots as well and a lot of the mothers who waited to have children learn from my instruction. It just goes to show that not ALL teen moms are included in the "poverty gloom and doom statistic".

      September 19, 2011 at 11:03 | Report abuse |
  3. Jame

    I personally think that blaming shows like Teen Mom is a load of BS. I've watched the show – and if anything it teaches young girls not to get pregnant. The girls on that show do not have it easy by any means, their lives are very difficult and although the show portrays the love that is shared between a mother and child it in no way promotes it.

    April 6, 2011 at 09:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lobbyistgrl

      I totally agree. Most, if not all, of the teenage girls that watch that show have a jaw dropping reaction and vow to never be a statistic after watching the pure chaos that those girls go through.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:36 | Report abuse |
    • Brooke

      Agreed – I've been saying the same thing. Anyone who think it promotes teen pregnancy...doesn't watch the show! The couple who has faired the best....chose adoption!

      April 6, 2011 at 09:37 | Report abuse |
    • Dk

      I can't believe you think that show is real. One of the girls is from my college hometown and both her and her bf get paid mad money to act like they hate each other and make their lives seem horrible.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:10 | Report abuse |
    • Agreed

      Absolutly agree. Its funny how the article opens with a staement that almost implies that these shows would increase teen pregnancy. These shows definitly make teens think twice about teen pregnancy and my daughter will definilty be watching the entire series.

      April 6, 2011 at 11:08 | Report abuse |
    • Jame

      well, it is a 'reality show' that young girls will watch and learn from. Whether it's actual reality or not....

      April 6, 2011 at 15:18 | Report abuse |
  4. Jake

    Um...do 18 and 19-year olds count as "teenagers"? Yes, the "teen" is in each number, but they are legally adults. And why stop at 15? If the headline is "teen pregnancy rate lowest in two decades" all "teen" ages should be reported separately for each age group (13-17) with perhaps 18 and 19 presented separately, with the explicit understanding that they are adults, and in many cases already married. It could be that failure to include the 13 and 14-year olds is skewing the data (unlikely, but still).

    April 6, 2011 at 09:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Fred

      I agree that the show helps.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:49 | Report abuse |
    • c3

      And i totaly agree with you because 18-19 should not be considered as teenagers because your right leagly 18-19 year olders are considerd adults.

      September 16, 2011 at 11:22 | Report abuse |
  5. Kyle

    I would like to know what the rate of abortions is? The stat is based of teens giving birth, not including the ones that have abortions. This is a very slanted stat,

    April 6, 2011 at 09:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Rob

      I was wondering the exact same thing! This article isn't telling the whole story.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:17 | Report abuse |
    • BigMike

      Here in the northeast abortions are the only thing keeping are heads above water ! The department of social service here in Massachusetts is bleeding the state dry with free every thing for knocked up teen's and then this machine has a never ending job security and retirement package ! Who would want to stop it if you live off the back of tax payers? Thank god for the doctors and nurse's who perform this much needed service to the people of Massachusetts !!

      April 6, 2011 at 09:30 | Report abuse |
    • Jon

      I was also wondering the same thing. The only thing that can be determined from that statistics given is that teen births are low. A quick google search led me to a Time article that says abortion rates had fallen from 1990 to 2006 though. Not sure after that.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:10 | Report abuse |
    • Floyd

      @BigMike is thanking God for people that give abortions??? Woah!

      These stats are misleading if the abortion question is not answered though. The abortion rates have fallen through 2006, so only assuming that trend has continued. Education on abstinence, birth control and responsibility are helping.
      Did public the public example of Bristol Palin having a baby in 2008 help the 2009 number decrease? A lot of questions and either this article does not cover everything, or the study itself is incomplete. Either way, the trend is going in the right direction and responsibility is the key. However, new life, intentional or not is a good and precious thing no matter what. Abortion is wrong.

      April 6, 2011 at 11:22 | Report abuse |
    • BigMike

      Why is this a good thing ? Kids having kids they can't even take care of them self's, plus they are uneducated, low income and most of the time are using drugs of some kind kids who just like to do it at the drop of dime.. I don't think ! Children born in to this kind life will not be adopted. They will end up bounced around foster care system till they have a kid and it all starts over. We the tax payer will support the teen mom ! And one more thing the man with the pointy hat in Rome isn't pay tax so he and his church can take a hike off a cliff. Abortions are helping control the cost over runs placed on the tax payer..

      April 6, 2011 at 12:08 | Report abuse |
    • Floyd

      @BigMike....life is good. Abortion is not. It is unnecessary surgery which has its risks and also affects women emotionally/psychologically long after the procedure. Then you are still paying for the same problems through your taxes. The answer is in your point but you are not realizing it....education! No matter what, education is the key.
      Your wasted tax dollars are on training, equipment, artillery and weapons that are designed to kill and destroy life. Your tax dollars are being wasted on environmental cleanups caused by human, corporate negligence. Your tax dollars are being wasted on fighting crime. Your tax dollars are being wasted on unnecessary litigation, investigations, government inquiries, poor spending, and corporate bailouts. Your tax dollars are being spent on the abortions you promote lining the pockets of the already wealthy doctor who really does not care about the mental stress afterwards. Your tax dollars are being wasted on studies that are incomplete and make it impossible for anyone to make an informed, proper decision. This has nothing to do with the guy in Rome.
      Life is good and precious. We need to be responsible with it, but not destroy it when it happens. I would trade those wasted tax dollars any day for ones that will create a better environment/situation for these kids to get properly educated and this problem may not go away completely, but will substantially decrease.

      April 6, 2011 at 15:33 | Report abuse |
  6. HCR

    Here is a curve ball fou ya. Do you know why teens are not getting pregnant as much any more? Are you serious? These kids listen to the news, they are listening to there parents. Do you honestly think they wouild want to bring a kid into this world we live in? We have the worst national deficit in history, we have wars going on all over the world, We are spread oiut too thin. We have problems of our own state side, but we have to worry about what people are doing elsewhere, we have to monitor there progress, and help with funding. Do you honestly think with over $14 Trillion in debt in this country alone, that these kids may have actually realized what is going on in the country, and have decided taken a step back themselves? interesting thought huh?

    April 6, 2011 at 09:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • NOOOOO

      Everything you mentioned isn't even known by teens. Nice try though. A teen can care less about the national deficit or war. Theyre more concerned about the latest style and the hottest guy to do.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:38 | Report abuse |
    • Violet

      NOOOOO- I'm 15, and I care.

      April 6, 2011 at 09:59 | Report abuse |
    • Suz

      @Violet – thanks for weighing in. It's good to see young people involved in this conversation, too.

      I'm not sure that many teenagers are thinking about the crazy world we live in and deciding not to have babies based on that – but I do think that a lot of them have lives that are already very complicated and realize that adding a baby to that would be a disaster. Teens are often difficult, but rarely are they stupid.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:10 | Report abuse |
    • Hester P.

      Agreed HCR...and just out of curiousity – wonder what the birth stats are on all the other segments of the population? I'm willing to wager that teens are not the only group who've increasingly thought twice before risking a pregnancy.

      But I guess a headline about declining rates of teen pregnancy is much more appealing than a headline about a decrease in births overall. Contemplating the reasons for a decrease overall – provoking thought about people's uncertainty and doubts about the future...that's potentially depressing territory.

      NOOOO ... perhaps in your personal experience this is how teens have behaved, but not all are vapid and self absorbed.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:32 | Report abuse |
    • Dan

      YESSSSS a lot of teens are stupid. The focus of this article is teen pregnancy. So....there ya go. I know a lot of teens that are pregnant (at my college I am involved in a Christin organization and one of the branches helps teen moms). All that I know of got pregnant accidentally from not using any kind of birth control, in order to make a guy stay with them, or intentionally because they have a romanticized view of what having a child is like (they got in a little over there head). The first two are stupid, the third would be more ignorance.

      And the vast majority of 15 year old dont give a crap about the state of the nation. And the ones that choose to have a child don't factor that in at all.

      April 6, 2011 at 13:07 | Report abuse |
    • squirk

      in response to 'Noooo-Actually probably many teens know about the deficit and other political issues. Fifteen year olds today have grown up with the internet in the classroom as well as at home and thus may even have a more rounded view of world and local events then a 40 year old had when they were 15...

      April 6, 2011 at 22:02 | Report abuse |
  7. Fred

    I think shows like Teen Mom help. At no time have I seen being a teen mother glorified on that show. It's a continual struggle in their lives (forget what they are paid by MTV for a moment), it's mostly teen moms on their own, with family, fighting with their familiy because they aren't being a parent as they now should, etc. etc.

    Unfortunately, someitmes you need to use pop culture vehicles (MTV etc) to send a message and I really think that kind of show helps.

    April 6, 2011 at 09:47 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Suz

      I have to agree with you. When I was in high school, my best friend got pregnant our junior year – and watching what she went through with her family and friends was enough motivation for me to make good and sure that I was never going to have unprotected intercourse.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:07 | Report abuse |
  8. kld4

    BigMike...i'm glad you look at baby killing as "keeping your state's head above water" Maybe your mom should have helped that cause and had one! Abortion is no the answer. Parenting and raising stong self confident children is.

    April 6, 2011 at 09:54 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Reality

      I think there are many answers, and safe and legal abortions is one of them. Also contraception education and abstinence education are helpful. Access to planned parenthood for birth control needs to continue as well since many parents would refuse to allow their daughters to get on the pill, but the reality is it may be the only thing that is keeping them from having an unwanted child.

      April 6, 2011 at 10:36 | Report abuse |
    • Floyd

      "Unwanted child" is exactly the kinds of terms that are destroying society and making those children feel inferior and lead to more social problems to you will end up paying for anyway. What a horrible term.
      Abortion is not the answer. Responsibility, knowledge, access to birth control, education is. Life is good folks. Life is beautiful. Take care of the children. Be responsible and loving. It is much simpler, healthy and fulfilling than being mean and selfish.

      April 6, 2011 at 11:48 | Report abuse |
  9. Suz

    I think that the lesson to be learned here is that we achieved success in lowering the teen birth rate by educating teens about ALL their options regarding birth control, including abstinence. The more options that young people have, the better the chances that they'll make a choice that works for them. I think that as long as we focus on helping kids realize that pregnancy is much easier in adulthood instead of foisting our morals on them, we'll ultimately succeed in driving the numbers down even further.

    April 6, 2011 at 10:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Judge Dredd

    Too many people breeding, must stop them now.
    I am Judge Joe Dredd
    I am the law

    April 6, 2011 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lawgiver 3000

      LOL I sentence you to Life!... Without Parole!

      April 6, 2011 at 10:24 | Report abuse |
  11. BC

    NOOOO- Haha, stereotyping is never a good thing. The fact that I and other teen read this and commented shows how much you really know.

    April 6, 2011 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. emily

    teen pregnancy is labeled TEEN pregnancy not to be negative but describe age. and it just so happens the majority of TEENS who get pregnant struggle. so as a nation we strive to lower the rate of teen pregnancy due to the struggles that occur such as education and employment. ALL TEENS are in high school unless graduated early and advanced well then okay. but those who don't are in the process of educating themselves to either go on to college or get their diploma and find a decent job to supply for themselves. THEREFORE it is not tp=o prevent teen pregnancy but prevent pregnancies of those unprepared and end up have major economic and social problems and the majority of these people are young people, TEENS. so do not sit here if you are a teen and are having to problems with your pregnancy and are well prepared, this is rare, and does not happen to most teens who become pregnant,

    April 6, 2011 at 10:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Choconet

    There are some serious flaws and contradictions in this data! The teen rate among African Americans has dropped significantly over the last decade! In fact, it is now lower than whites and Hispanics. This blaming everything that's wrong with society on African Americans is quickly coming to an end! The African American population in general has been reduced due to abortions, birth control, and AIDS check the census statistics. In all fairness to "the man" I do see that they are now pointing their finger at Hispanics first.

    April 6, 2011 at 11:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • slb1113

      The teen pregnancy rate of blacks has dropped 45% since 1990 however blacks and hispanics have a pregnancy rate nearly 3 times that of white.

      April 6, 2011 at 12:07 | Report abuse |
  14. asgardshill

    Sorry about this, folks. But I've been snowed under with work lately and just haven't been able to get to everybody. I'll get caught up and we'll get those numbers back up real soon though.

    April 6, 2011 at 11:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. my6cents

    Who are these people who seem to insist that its some sort of crime for moral people to " foist their morals on their children " ? I'm 55 years old and when i was a teen my parents did this and i thank God for it. I watched the " do whatever makes you feel good" philosophy slowly turn much of this country to crap. Too many people know their " rights " but want others to take on the responsibilities.

    April 6, 2011 at 11:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. dew

    thats a lie , where i live these mexicans girl are popping out babys every day, as soon as they have one here comes another one, the mexicans next door to me have 4 girls and eveyone of them have at least two babys 4 teenage girls 9 kids and still popping them out. the more babys they pop out the more help they get

    April 6, 2011 at 11:59 | Report abuse | Reply
    • MEL

      Being pregnant and actually having the babies are two different statistics. Put in mind that a lot of our young teen white females are filling up the abortion clinics.

      April 6, 2011 at 12:15 | Report abuse |
  17. radon86

    It would be nice if the article highlighted the impact of abstinance on the reduction in teen pregnancy instead of focusing on birth control. Do the math – only a 4% increase in the use of birth control, but a 37% reduction in teen pregnancy. That implies abstinance is having the bigger impact.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Alan

      I think the information here is misleading, there is decrease in the ability of women to fall pregnant in all age groups. I feel that it is a general decline in fertility due to food additives and medicine side effects. Fertility clinics and artificial insemination is at an all time high.

      April 6, 2011 at 12:27 | Report abuse |
    • Cason

      Except the answer is not 1-1. That "4%" could have a MASSIVE impact on teen preg rates.

      April 7, 2011 at 00:51 | Report abuse |
    • Cason

      Not to mention the abstinence is working argument has failed so many times. Rates of teen pregnancy abstinence education only districts is nearly always higher than at comprehensive education districts.

      I stand by my point below, perhaps the biggest reason for this is the willingness to communicate, and the anonymity and wealth of information on the subject thanks to the internet.

      April 7, 2011 at 00:55 | Report abuse |
  18. Pliny

    How about a breakdown of these numbers, based on RACE.

    I think we all know the sad-story that will tell.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:09 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Denizen Kate

      Which part of "The majority are Hispanic or African-American, with respective birth rates nearly double that of white teenagers" did you not read?

      April 6, 2011 at 14:16 | Report abuse |
  19. Nel

    Most of the young girls getting pregnant are Hispanic and African-American, but 16 and pregnant and Teen Mom fail to portray the real, almostall those girls are Whtie. I am sure that the show makes things up just for ratings...they aren't even protraying who is really affected the most and all those girls' parents have $$$$. How about showing some girls' who lives are really affected and made worse by getting pregnant
    Instead of all this baby mama and dada drama nonesense

    April 6, 2011 at 12:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • K

      Have you ever seen the show?Most of the parents of the teens don't have a lot of money.Farrah's mom does and Maci's parent's seem to be comfortable but they aren't rich.Catelynn's mom sure as hell doesn't,she lives in the ghetto.So know your facts before posting!

      July 23, 2011 at 21:33 | Report abuse |
  20. Jim

    I think a report on the # of abortions is needed as well (by age and race as well). It probably would not include ones done at Planned Parenthood though because they did did not contribute to any abstinence assistance which yielded fewer teen pregnancies. This abortion report is important because we could show how girls are no longer being punished having babies because of mistakes.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Andy

    I wish these numbers didn't include married 18-19 year olds; I think the numbers without them would tell a more accurate story of the problem rather than including those who marry young and choose to have children early.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Denizen Kate

      I agree with you, Andy. I got married at 18 and was a mother at barely 20. That used to be normal, but that was before birth control became widely available.

      April 6, 2011 at 14:10 | Report abuse |
  22. I Can't Adopt Any More!!

    My wife and I are foster/Adoptive Parents and we have already adopted 4 children from mothers who are not able to care for thier children. We dont have room for 410,000 more children. I am 100% against abortion but I wish parents will work harder to instill values into their children and encourage abstonance. Kids need to be kids, not parents! I wish they could wrap their heads around that. I do wonder if the timing of this article alligning with the proposed budget cuts to Planned Parenthood is purly coincedental? Doubtful.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • my6cents

      Sorry , instilling values into our kids is now pollitically incorrect. It's considered an affront to their rights and not tolerant of any and all alternative views.

      April 6, 2011 at 13:04 | Report abuse |
    • Chartreux

      Abstinence has a failure rate of 83% when taught as a method of birth control to teenagers. It's nearly useless.

      April 6, 2011 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
    • Cason

      Abstinence* I hope your school district teaches those foster kids to spell better than you. Okay,that was low blow.

      "..not to be parents!" Except they aren't kids. They are teenagers who want ONE thing. They aren't looking to be pregnant and become parents. They just satisfy themselves, and then have the burden of a child afterwords.

      April 7, 2011 at 00:59 | Report abuse |
  23. I Can't Adopt Any More!!

    Oh and the term "teenage women" is an oxymoron.

    April 6, 2011 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Denizen Kate

      No, it isn't. A girl legally becomes a woman at age 18. One can even argue that most 16 and 17 year olds are grown women, too, but the law doesn't recognize that.

      April 6, 2011 at 14:06 | Report abuse |
  24. Heather

    The biggest problem for women in modern America is not that we are women (or in this case - teens). It's that we have babies! It's hard for a woman of any age to have a child. There is more economic support - if they do it young. A working woman gets tremendous professional descrimation, too. There is political descrimination against mothers on ALL levels. How are girls to learn how to do this right - in our consumer driven culture? The incentives need to change, in addition to the parental and educational aspects. This only gets better once adult mothers are able to show young girls how to be responsible mothers and hold financial and economic influence. That is key to affecting the cultural, social, moral and economical future of women/teens and the children they will bear. Women need to own this responsibility and power - they create life with the choices we make. We need to teach daughters how to use this power responsibly.

    April 6, 2011 at 13:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Sasha

      Amen to that, Heather. I am always horrified when I hear women have to give their baby to a daycare provider just 6 weeks after birth; then they have to pay an outrageous amount of money for that, all that for "society"??? Are you serious? I get it, some women "want to do this". That's fine. But I think that if a woman (or a man) decides to stay home for a year (or longer) they should be allowed to without penalty. Can we not get maternity leave like other countries have it? Where the employer has to guarantee your job will be kept for 2 years? I know for a fact that it is done if you decide to do the Peacecorp for 2 years; why not for maternity/paternity leave?
      I sometimes think our society hates parents!

      April 6, 2011 at 17:25 | Report abuse |
  25. aizen

    and that dumb tv show called teen mom should be stopped...they give those kids money, and make them think they are stars and put them on magazines...there is nothing to glorify there...shame on u mtv even though i dont expect nothing good from you, shame of you morgan freeman and the guy from the kelsey krammer..

    April 6, 2011 at 13:30 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. Norm

    Not surprising since the obesity rate is increasing. Who wants to nail a fat chick?

    April 6, 2011 at 14:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Fig1024

    we can thank the good people at Blizzard for making World of Warcraft – the best tool for keeping teenagers abstinent. The only reasons blacks and hispanics continue to have higher pregnancy rates is because their families are less likely to afford WoW accounts for their kids

    April 6, 2011 at 14:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • K

      I'd rather my kid be a parent than be racist like you!I'm not black,I'm white but a lot of black and Hispanic people are successful as well!

      July 23, 2011 at 21:37 | Report abuse |
  28. bob


    If Planned Parenthood doesn't care about women and girls, why does it provide free condoms and low cost birth control?

    Why does it offer counesling before any medical procedure?

    Why does it offer different routes before performing abortions?

    Why does it refues to perform abortions on a woman or girl who is being coerced?

    April 6, 2011 at 15:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • mdhm1234

      Well, on that last point, it would be because it is illegal to coerce someone into an abortion, and thus illegal to perform the abortion in the presence of coercion. If Planned Parenthood does care about women and girls, why do 98% of their services to pregnant women consist of abortion? Why are they fighting legislation that would make all their employees mandatory reporters of child abuse? And why are they fighting legislation that would require abortion clinics to meet the same minimum standards and receive the same inspections as other out-patient surgical centers?

      April 6, 2011 at 19:20 | Report abuse |
    • Hintofgray

      Planned Parenthood provides many services that women and girls need and want. Anybody who is against that is welcome to go elsewhere for medical care. And no, Mei, you don't get to decide how your tax dollars are spent, other than through your vote. I don't like my tax dollars being spent on wars, but I don't have any say in the matter, other than to vote for the candidate I believe will vote in my best interests.

      April 6, 2011 at 19:26 | Report abuse |
    • Hintofgray

      Who cares why? I don't. As far as I'm concerned, PP provides services women want and need. I don't give a rat's patootie if you approve of them or not, mdhm. As far as the percentage of women who go to PP for abortions, so what? If that's what they want, PP is a provider of a legal medical procedure.

      You are incorrect in your statements about what PP is objecting to and why.

      April 6, 2011 at 19:38 | Report abuse |
    • Chartreux

      mdhm, you are mistaken in your claim that Planned Parenthood's services are 98% abortion. For ten years when I had no medical insurance they provided me with affordable birth control and annual Pap tests. I had no abortions at Planned Parenthood, then or ever.

      The anti-abortion crowd is misleading about Planned Parenthood's role because they disapprove of the abortions they perform. It's appalling that they're so willing to throw out the baby with the bath water that the anti-abortionists turn a blind eye to all the good works Planned Parenthood does to help women and only focus on the abortions they perform.

      April 7, 2011 at 00:08 | Report abuse |
  29. hiawa23

    defunding Planned Parenthood will increase abortions, as they provide all kinds of womens services, & birth control. The republicans are hilarious. Just goes to show, these guys can lie about anything yet sell some Americans on anything. I am scared for our country especially for minorities, the poor & lower class, & women.

    April 6, 2011 at 19:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. hiawa23

    If you want to stop abortions, then why are they attacking birth control. Poor women who don't have access to birth control will have more abortions or worse, but they don't care about these women, many of them depend on Planned Parenthood. Just another way for many to push views on the rest of us.

    April 6, 2011 at 19:42 | Report abuse | Reply
    • mdhm1234

      Well, actually, the Pence Amendment as it stands in Congress does not remove funding for birth control. The funds would be removed from Planned Parenthood and sent to other nonprofit clinics. Within ten miles of our local Planned Parenthood facility we have three community medical facilities that provide comprehensive care for those of low income or those who lack insurance. These three clinics are examples of the places that would be able to access funds to provide for family planning.

      April 6, 2011 at 20:10 | Report abuse |
    • Hintofgray

      Do those clinics provide abortions to those that want them?

      April 6, 2011 at 21:11 | Report abuse |
    • mdhm1234

      Hint of Gray–If you want the government to subsidize abortion, then you need to make sure the government overturns the Hyde Amendment. The Hyde Amendment, which passes yearly with bipartisan support, prohibits government funding of abortion. Therefore, your question about whether other clinics which might receive subsidy perform abortions is irrelevant to this conversation. The money in question is allocated for family planning services which do not include abortion. These services would still be available at other medical clinics.

      April 7, 2011 at 11:46 | Report abuse |
  31. Merlin

    There are knuckleheads (young and old alike) who can create life quite easily. They then classify themselves as "parents". The job of real parenting begins after the child is born. It takes love, work and the ability to give positive guidance to be a parent. Children should be reared, not raised. (Farm animals and produce are raised.) The lack of social skills and abundance of ignorance is, for the most part, the parent's fault. Young minds are like a sponge and soak up whatever they are exposed to. I've seen young people who possess the skills to be more successful at parenting than older folks. Age doesn't necessarily yield wisdom.

    April 6, 2011 at 22:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. Cason

    Has no one mentioned the advent of the internet? Really? Teens have access to education a million times easier than they did 20 years ago. It takes a teen today to learn everything in one bored evening that could've taken a teen years to come across with out proper education. As a young adult I can say that I learned (and still learn for that matter) so much about intercourse I wouldn't have come across for years, granted I am a bit awkward.

    April 7, 2011 at 00:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. Kirby

    Being a teenager, and having 3 jobs and going to school everyday, you people anger me to no end. We're going to be in charge of YOU someday, so raise your own kids right and quit griping and complaining.

    April 7, 2011 at 07:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Orange Pekoe

    This article is telling us that there are LOTS of teenagers who DO get it. The highest rates of teen pregnancy was back in the Fifties before the advent of reliable birth control. This article also says that kids understand the need for birth control and responsible behavior more than before. Essentially, about 960 teen girls out of every thousand are NOT getting pregnant which means they do understand responsibility. This in no way translates into "teenagers today have no idea about being respnsible. That's a complete misrepresentation of the facts presented in this article.

    April 7, 2011 at 08:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. Hey

    I honestly dont think Shows like Teen Mom and Teen Mom 2 help, sure they do show the struggles of being a teen parent, but over all I think it glorifies teen pregnancy. When teenagers see these teen moms on magazines and on talk shows, it makes it seem like being pregnant would be fun.

    April 12, 2011 at 11:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • K

      Some teenagers see it that way and some don't.

      July 23, 2011 at 21:42 | Report abuse |
  36. Not right

    i honestly agree with you about the teen mom stuff i mean some of these teen momz out hear don't even care.They just decided to put there buisness out there on a show like that seriously, you think that low of your sel then you act like adonkey on the show like you have no home training.HOW DARE YOU................

    May 23, 2011 at 16:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. little mama

    i am 15 an i have to say this is very interesting. i m doing a research paper on teen pregnancy an your comments have helped me a lot

    May 26, 2011 at 13:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. people are funny

    WOW!! some of the post on here are pretty interesting. I was a teen mom and yes many of you people are right it is very hard, but its just how things are now in days everything is given to us and life is so much easier. Everyone here can say how hard they had it and i don't doubt it, but not in days some teens believe it is the right time to have children and their is nobody or nothing that can stop them parents just have to teach their children morals and respect. its the parents and the society's fault, and for many of you who are bashing on these teens, don't instead give them advice. are you people serious!!

    June 16, 2011 at 20:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Come on!

    Everybody is saying how teenagers are not ready to be parents, on welfare, and unstable financially, and bashing teen parents because "we're wasting your tax dollars?" First of all, nobody is ready when they have a baby, I don't care how much you planned or how prepared you think you are. Being a parent is never what you expect it to be. Second, not all teens are using government money either. Some do, yes, but there are MANY adults playing the government system. And third, saying we are irresponsible for not using contraceptives are just making another assumption. Nothing is 100% effective except for abstinence. Many people get pregnant when using some form of contraceptive. The things you guys are saying just make you sound ridiculous, like you have no clue what goes on around you. Just because someone is a teenage parent doesn't at all mean their going to be a bad one. Many, like me, bust their butt to get school done to provide a better future for their child. I went back to work 3 weeks after having a c-section so I wouldn't have to use Wic or any other government aid. And I know alot of girls who try just as hard as i have to give their baby a good future. You guys really need to think before you make the harsh comments your making. And also, If you are so against teen pregnancy and think we're wasting your tax dollars etc. then why are you trying to get rid of abortions? That makes no sense at all. Think people!!

    August 3, 2011 at 10:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. joutisorirl


    August 9, 2011 at 11:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. Bry

    I was 16 when i got pregnant but i was on birth control so you cant go saying teens are careless. I grew up fast and took care of my son no one else did i had a job and i pay taxes today so to go and say teen mothers are living off welfare and tax payers is stupid because not all are. Just like someone else said everyone was a teen once and even back in the day there was teen pregnancy it was just kept a secret my grandmother was one and got married and became a Realtor so stereotyping is just stupid because we arent all the same

    August 24, 2011 at 00:56 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Frankie

      You go girl. I was almost a father at 16.

      September 21, 2011 at 12:24 | Report abuse |
  42. Frankie

    You people categorize teenagers way too much. Yes, the rates are high and some moral aspects are broken but did you forget that they're the highest college competing generation EVER? Come on when I was in high school I knew plenty of women and men experiencing teenage parenting and the generations coming simply haven't changed. In my honest opinion I think these generations are getting bigger, stronger and smarter but we need to give them a break and look at their positives not their flaws.

    September 21, 2011 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Samantha

    Sometimes teen pregnancies can be a good thing because I know a girl who if she hadn't gotten pregnant she wouldn't be here today. She was so depressed. She had noone to love her and noone for her to love her back.

    October 17, 2011 at 13:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. :)Nykky Loves Mark

    Being a teen is hard but just look forward and keep going on trying to live a happy life. Dont look behind in the past because it only brings you down. Dont le people judge you for what your not. you know the truth behind every story so keep it that way. find some one who makes you happy so you wont think about the past. =) i found mark and idk what i would be doing if it werent for him making me happy all day everyday=) <3 i love you markey!!!!!<3

    October 17, 2011 at 13:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Agreeing with JON

    JON i agree with you, i am only 19, and i am ashamed at our youth, along with myself. We know no such responsibility at all, and that is exactly why their are teen pregnancies, and high rates of crime now days. I wish we had more parents to step up to teach thier kids real responsibility, and stop spoiling the youth.

    October 27, 2011 at 11:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. 10duece

    I like how the headline says "pregnancy" but the details say "births." No mention of the abortion factor among teens which is probably the reason for lower birth numbers compared to when it was harder for teens to have abortions.

    November 1, 2011 at 17:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. usmc102210

    I see all these comments about how teens are immature, or how they are irresponsible. First, I am 19 years old. I am in the United States Marine Corps. That is not at all irresponsible, or immature. Adults had their problems in their days to, where kids did not have any integrity or honor. We as humans need to stop this petty fighting and work together. To help prevent teen pregnancy, to help americas youth. We need to be role models, the upstanding citizen everyone should be. But then a kid comes on here down the road, tryin to be raised right, and sees generations bickering among each other? that is immature and irresponsible. Thanks to everyone, and semper fidelis.

    November 4, 2011 at 09:26 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lil

      I usually blame the parents, guardians, teachers, et cetera. I like your perspective on the case, but this is an extremely sensitive social issue. People obviously do not like problems, but that is why we bicker so much about them. The point is to find solutions. Unfortunately, those who are directly involved in the problem tend to lack the perspective to solve those kinds of problems. We need to solve those before we solve anything else. You should know this being one soldier in a huge organization. It starts with one, and then groups, and then you have an organization. Let us solve the problems that are holding us back, so we can focus one these larger problems.

      November 4, 2011 at 09:36 | Report abuse |
  48. Owen Kohel

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    November 15, 2011 at 22:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. hi


    November 21, 2011 at 23:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. 2Deep

    I've started a movement, "MOTHER'S AGAINST BABIES HAVING BABIES, but I need your help to truly make this work. Please go to YOUTUBE and look up BABIES HAVING BABIES SPOKEN WORD. Please leave a comment, forward the message; whatever you deem necessary, but let your voice be heard.

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    November 22, 2011 at 12:56 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.

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