One of my favorite things to watch on television is talk show paternity test results. For years, The gossip and intrigue has kept me tuning into shows like Maury, Ricki Lake, and Jerry Springer. The one thing that has significantly changed about those shows are the ages of the unsure mothers. Girls as young as thirteen are calling into talk show networks questioning the paternity of their infants. When did adolescent pregnancy become so acceptable that talk show hosts are able to make millions of dollars by emceing hour long segments called "I"m Thirteen: Who's my Baby's Daddy?" Teenage pregnancy is not a satisfactory achievement and should be more widely viewed as a growing dilemma in the United States.
Times have changed, and things that were not acceptable during our parent's youth are becoming more of a part of our daily lives. I would always give my mother slack during sex talks for getting pregnant with my oldest sister at the age of fifteen. She admitted that she wished that she would have done a little more growing up before beginning a family of her own, yet she always explained the fact that she was married to my sister's father. "Indeed there were more teenaged women who became parents in 1960 than there are now, but most of these women were married, or they got married while they were pregnant (Brown par. 3)." More and more present day girls, almost 75 percent, are having children without first saying wedding vows to their children's fathers (Teen Pregnancy Rates Drop Sharply par. 5). .
For Americans, the problem has seemed to fall into the category of "Whose problem is it?" Unless someone has a child who is an adolescent parent themself, he or she would not devote much interest into the issue of teenage pregnancy. No family wants it to happen to them and often avoid sexual conversations and discussions with their children. What parents fail to realize is that the problem and the solution both lie within the household.