MTV reality shows help lower teen pregnancy rates - WFSB 3 Connecticut

MTV reality shows help lower teen pregnancy rates


New research seems to suggest the MTV show 16 and pregnant and its spinoffs may be responsible for helping prevent thousands of births to teenaged mothers.

The series is a realistic depiction of what happens to young mothers and the hardships that can come with a baby. Eyewitness News spoke to some young women who are at risk of being teenaged mothers.

16 and pregnant and Teen Mom follow what happens when a teenager decides to have a baby, from the delivery to the first weeks of parenthood. The shows follow their mother and her children as they experience joy and hardship including angry parents, medical complications, lost sleep and financial issues. 

The problem of teen pregnancy is familiar for the teenagers that are part of Pathways Senderos Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. It is a non-profit group based in New Britain that tries to help young women and men to not become parents too soon.

"You get these students who are in poverty and don't have a lot of things," said Nick Jakubowski of Pathways Senderos Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program. "But when you have a baby, that's yours. You can take ownership of that."

Jodalis Montalvo, 17, has a goal to graduate high school. Montalvo said she would be the first in her family to do. She said she knows with a baby, it would be difficult to graduate high school.

"My mother and sister got pregnant early," Montalvo said. "I see my sister struggling every day. I don't want to go through that."

Pathways Senderos Teen Pregnancy Prevention Program work with children between grades five and 12. The organization's challenge can be breaking the cycle and when a teen graduates, it sets an example for her or his siblings or their own children.

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