Instead, let's talk turkey about the havoc pregnancy wreaks on the body. Forget upset tummies and weird cravings. That makes the whole process sound quaint. Instead, dig into the grittier details (preferably with colorful photo illustrations and videos) of any number of common side effects including acne, hemmorhoids, non-stop gas, joint pain, leg cramps, bleeding gums, bloody noses, massive bloating, yeast infections, sinus infections, inhuman constipation, and a combo of funky smells, discharges, and swelling delightfully dubbed "cheeseburger crotch." Better still, long after delivery--and long after that dreaded pregnancy weight has been shed--many moms are left with such enduring mementos as incontinence, breasts that have no intention of returning to their pre-pregnancy state, and stretch marks that never, ever fade.
Obviously, not every pregnant mum experiences all of these horrors. And, biologically speaking, it's easier to bounce back from such physical trauma at age 16 than at age 26 or 36. Still, I don't see any harm in giving teen girls the most brutal dose of reality possible when it comes to the joys of motherhood. They may not care that having a baby now could ruin their (already vanishingly slim) chances of becoming a brain surgeon. But one or two might turn up their noses at the thought of pregnancy leaving them with saggy boobs, hemmorhoids, a stomach that resembles a map of West Africa, and a disturbing tendency to piss their pants every time they sneeze. Forever.
Maybe not. But it's worth a shot.
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Pregnancy as Pink Sock
Michelle Cottle has a brilliant blog post on what to tell teenage girls to stop 'em trying to get pregnant.