ERIC Number: ED270673
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1985-Oct
Adolescent Welfare Mothers: Lost Optimism and Lowered Expectations.
Ortiz, Elizabeth T.; Bassoff, Betty Z.
Early pregnancy and parenthood are established indicators of high-risk status for both mother and child with regard to future health problems, poverty, and child abuse and neglect. A study was conducted to describe the views of a sample of teenage Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) mothers. Subjects (N=53) were urban teenage mothers receiving AFDC who volunteered to be interviewed. The results revealed that most of the women felt they had employable skills and almost one-half were looking for work. Premarital sex was overwhelmingly acceptable to the mothers. Mothers supported having and keeping the baby if a teenager became pregnant. Almost all mothers thought teenagers should use birth control. Mothers felt that a double standard existed when teenagers became parents; the father was more likely to be admired and less likely to be looked down upon than was the mother. Almost one-half of the mothers did not consider parents to be sources of guidance. A comparison study used students (N=409) in high schools in the same neighborhoods as the welfare mother sample. More teenage mothers saw themselves as single parents or married in 10 years than did non-parents. Non-parents expressed more perceived control over their lives and were less likely to have no specific career goals. Teenage mothers had less support for finishing high school from their parents and boyfriends. A system of comprehensive, continuous services for teenage mothers with a preventive and developmental thrust is needed. (ABL)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A