I fell pregnant at 16 – people judged me for being a teen mum and always stared at my bump, but I have no regrets | The Sun

I fell pregnant at 16 – people judged me for being a teen mum and always stared at my bump, but I have no regrets | The Sun

February 27, 2023

A MUM who fell pregnant at 16 has revealed the perks of becoming a young parent.

Jane Lindsay, now 30, got a big shock when she and partner Garry, who are still together, found out they were expecting a child.

But the thing that upset her most was how people that didn’t even know her thought they could pass judgment.

Now that she has a masters degree under her belt and a lot more confidence, she wants young mums to know they can do anything they set their minds to.

Jane says: “I felt very stereotyped at 16. I felt everywhere I went people were looking at me then looking at my bump. 

“I have a young looking face. I still get ID'd in shops even now and I'm 30. 

“So I can't imagine what age people must have thought I was when I was 16 with a bump.

“I remember people would say ‘that's you now stuck in until they're 18’ or ‘that's a shame, you're very young.’

“When I had Jamie's brother Daniel at 20-years-old I felt the exact same all over again. 

“People said ‘Oh my goodness two kids and you're only 20" or ‘you better not have any more.’ 

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“People did upset me. In fact it got to me more than I realised. 

“I developed postnatal depression which made everything 10 times worse. 

“And then came social media, so it wasn't just the old lady on a bus staring at me.

“There were people all around the world talking about this subject, TV programmes were made and it seemed like a big worldwide problem.”

Jane adds: “The hardest part of being a young mum is that every single person has an opinion and they feel entitled to share that opinion with you. 

“Not all young mums wake up and go ‘I want a baby’ and that's what happens. 

“Everyone has their own story as to why they are pregnant at whatever age they are.

“I guess it's similar to mums who are 40. I bet they have the same issue, everyone wants to tell them ‘oh that's too late to have a baby’ or ‘I guess you had a great time in your 20s and 30s.’ 

“It's probably polite comments from most people but the thoughts afterwards run through our heads.”

Now that her oldest son is a teenager, Jane can look back on her life differently.

And she sees a lot of advantages to the fact she backs a mum at such a young age.

She explains: “I wish I could have enjoyed my babies a bit more when they were young. 

“As I had just left school I always felt like I needed to push myself to work or study as I didn't want to feel like I let people down.

“I thought because I hadn't had a career and a stable income I couldn't take the time off. 

“I had to go to college, I had to go to university and I had to work and before I knew it my children were nine and 12. 

“Don't let society and what has been the norm rule your life and how you are as a mum.

“I think a lot of people think children hold you back. 

“Which yeah there were some nights out at uni I didn't go to and some graduate jobs didn't suit me as they were based elsewhere but I'm not sure I would have got as far as I have done without my children. 

“They have given me the drive to achieve and they teach me new things every day. 

“It's been great showing people that yes I did go to uni and I did get degrees whilst having two children at a young age and it's now funny to see people having kids in their 30s sleep deprived and I'm getting a full night's sleep. 

“It shouldn't matter what age you become a mum as long as you are being the best mum you can be.”

Jane adds: “The biggest benefit is I feel like I can see a very exciting life ahead for my family. 

“There will hopefully be loads of time to experience some of the things people tell me I should have been doing in my 20s. 

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“I can now go on these experiences but as a family and share it with my children. 

“I can also relate to my children a lot more as we are not three or four decades apart so quite a few of our interests are similar like gaming or jumping around inflatable obstacle courses together.”

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