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Navigating Motherhood as A Teen: A Guide for Black Families

June 30, 2024

June 30, 2024

Guest Contributor: Brittany Latrice, Maternal Developmental Coach & Teen Mom Advocate

Teen mothers face unique challenges that require tailored strategies for success. By understanding and addressing these challenges, we can help teen mothers thrive, ensuring they not only survive but flourish in their roles. This guide is to reflect support and resources for helping navigate motherhood as a teen.

Teen checking the results of a pregnancy test for navigating motherhood as a teen
Source: DepositPhotos.com

Economic And Social Disparities

Teen mothers often face economic and social disparities, which are known to limit access to childcare, quality education, and at times healthcare. These barriers make it difficult for Black teenage mothers to provide a good life for their child(ren) let alone pursue their own goals. Understanding these economic and social pressures is essential for developing effective support systems.

Social Support Systems

Building a social support network is crucial for Black teenage mothers, Often Black teenage mothers are met with discrimination which can break down their self-esteem as well as their mental health. Community resources and support from family and friends play a vital role in providing the necessary resources and emotional support.

Education Disruption

The delicate balance between schoolwork and motherhood is a significant challenge. Teen moms often struggle to keep up in school due to lack of adequate childcare and working to support their family.

“According to the CDC, Black teenage girls still face higher pregnancy rates compared to their counterparts.”

Although teen pregnancy rate has dropped over the past two decades, according to the CDC, Black teenage girls still face higher pregnancy rates compared to their counterparts, 27.4 per 1,000 females in 2020 compared to 14.6 amongst counterparts. These statistics are what highlight the need to have more focused attention to help Black teenage mothers thrive.

Solutions for Empowering Black Teenage Mothers: Building Strong Support Networks

  • Financial Education: Providing financial literacy programs such as Black Moms Connection (BMC) can help Black mothers manage their finances more effectively.
  • Job Training: Access to job training and career development programs like SheRisesInc and MOMCares can improve economic stability.
  • Education: Programs such as Adolescence Family Life Program (AFLP) provides case management, counseling as well as educational support to help teenage mothers stay in school.

Healthcare Advocacy

What can communities do to support Black mothers?

Communities can offer in-school or after-school programs that address the social support needs that these young women need ensuring that resources are made available to them and providing safe spaces where they can talk about what they want and need or just vent.

How can healthcare providers better serve Black teenage mothers? 

Healthcare providers can focus on ensuring that Black teen mothers feel heard and respected. They must remember that although she may be a minor, it is still her body, and her opinion matters. Providers must remain supportive throughout the mother’s healthcare journey.

What role does financial literacy play in empowering Black mothers?

Financial literacy enables teen mothers to not only manage their finances, but also find a job that fits their schedule, and plan for their families’ future, while achieving economic stability now versus later, reducing stress and enhancing overall well-being.

Reflecting on my journey of motherhood, what helped me navigate the most was the 4’C Method –Clarity, Courage, Confidence, and Change. Gain Clarity by identifying your obstacles, and embracing things that will Change including you. Having Courage to move beyond the obstacles, and elevate your Confidence by embracing your true authentic self. By prioritizing self-care first, you can then care for others including your child, which means seeking support, mentally, physically, and spiritually. Not only will you survive but you will thrive.

For more information, you can follow us on Instagram @blackblossomsociety, visit our website at Blackblossomsociety.org, or contact us via email at blackblossomsociety@gmail.com. 


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