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Monday, 2 October 2017

Can you raise a kid at 16?

Can you raise a kid at 16? Can you provide child support? Can you provide healthcare?
This is the lame argument some people try to state when discussing whether or not sixteen year olds should have sex.

To counteract; can you raise a kid at 18? What about 20? Can most people aged 18-25 raise children? Does that mean no one should have sex till after they’re 25?

I wonder if people like this have never heard of birth control. Probably, since they’re stupid enough to think 16 year olds can’t raise kids but 18 year olds can. I’m 20, and I’m too stupid and immature to raise a child. Ok, I’m not stupid or immature, but I’m not emotionally, financially or practically in a position to have a child now. Having a child at this point in my life would be one of the stupidest decisions I could make. Not to mention my first thought would be ‘who the fuck is the father? AHHH!’

I love kids, and I would love to have children young (‘young’ to me being 24/25) if I was in the position to and had a stable long-term partner (not necessarily married, but seeing ourselves together long term). Teen pregnancy has actually reached an all time low in the UK, with just 14.5 per 1000 births in 2016 being to teen girls. Reasons for this include improved sex education, increased access to contraception, higher focus on education and an increase in stigma towards teen mothers. If there’s one thing sex ed actually succeeded in, it was teaching us all about contraception and STDs.

This is brilliant in my opinion; I don’t think teen pregnancy is something that should be encouraged. Teenagers shouldn’t feel afraid or ashamed of having (consensual) sex, and should be well educated on condoms and birth control. If you use condoms and another form of birth control, there’s a 99.9% chance you won’t get pregnant. Why wouldn’t you take that chance?

I’m aware that in some cultures, it’s normal for young girls to have children. I’m assuming those cultures take a more ‘traditional’ approach of women’s role being to raise children and men’s role being to protect the family. In Britain, the focus for girls is on education and careers, not on having children. I believe in balance; aim for a career, but don’t ignore the ‘biological clock.’ I don’t think teenagers should have children because of maturity levels, but at the same time in our hunter-gatherer days most girls had kids around 13/14. (Then again, back then you were dead by 30).

What do you think? When is a ‘viable’ age for people to have kids? Or is it less about age and more about stability in terms of how emotional stable and financially stable you are? Does external support make a difference? If you have a large, loving family or grew up in a ‘commune’ type setting, naturally having children becomes easier as you’re supported by many rather than it being just you and your partner.

Lemme know your thoughts below...


  1. to me it depends on the person, it's possible to raise kids at 16 it's very difficult and shouldn't be encouraged, nice article

    1. No worries. I think we all know someone from school who got pregnant in their teens. Provided they can work it out and provide good care for the child it's their call at the end of the day.

  2. Women have always tended to prefer to have kids younger than later because that is when they're most fertile and give the most nutrients and tend to have the least problems etc. so part of that is an evolutionary thing. With the modern advances in society, women can wait a little longer to have children they used to without losing a lot of the benefits.

    In societies like USA and England, I don't think any 16 year old person should be having a child, they're still a child themselves - of course they're not ready! And part of that IS our society, it's not tailored to making women baby-producers as their primary focus. In cultures that do, those younger women are definitely more ready than the young women of the same age in our cultures.

    The way I see it, becoming a parent IS a 2 person experience which means it shouldn't happen unless both people are ready individually as well as collectively, emotionally, financially and practically etc.

    1. Yeah nowadays women can also freeze eggs if they want to have children later as opposed to earlier. I think when it comes to having a child it's good to have as much support around you as possible, so the support of both partners but also extended friends and family. Of course wealthier people can also afford to higher nannies and au pairs as well.

    2. Yes, this is why even polygamous homes are better for children than single parent homes as there is always someone around to tend to and pay attention to the children.


I'm Zarina Macha, an author, blogger, and musician from London. I write about stuff on the internet 'cos having opinions is fun -- if you want to join the games, please note your thoughts below. All thoughts welcome, even if they're mean (just no spam links please -- can't tell you what a liability those are to remove).
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