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People Born To Teen Mothers Describe How Their Lives Are Different Than Other Folks

People Born To Teen Mothers Describe How Their Lives Are Different Than Other Folks
Photo by Filip Mroz on Unsplash
To those who grew up with a teen mother, the following exchange may sound familiar:

Person A: "Is that your sister?"

Person B: "Nope. That's my mom."

The dialogue above can be humorous to kids who have great relationships with their teen moms, while others may scoff at the very suggestion that their mothers are close enough in age to be siblings.

While this scenario seems atypical, kids with teen moms are not all that uncommon.

According to the CDC, "a total of 194,377 babies were born to women aged 15–19 years, for a birth rate of 18.8 per 1,000 women in this age group" in 2017.

With the rate of U.S. teen pregnancies dropping 7% in 2017 from the previous year, it is still considered higher than in other "western industrialized nations."

Curious to hear from the child's perspective about growing up with a teen mother, Redditor eggyboi422 asked:

"Kids born to teen mom's, how different is your life compared to other kids?"

Wouldn't Change It For The World

"I was born to a teen mom, and a single one at that. I definitely had a lot more freedom and less supervision as a child since both of her parents (my grandparents obviously) passed away soon after I was born, so there weren't many options for babysitters. Since she worked two jobs I would often be on my own after school until about 8 or 9 at night, sometimes later."

"She definitely struggled to hold down jobs due to not having an education and the overall grind would eventually get to her. At one point she was walking 11 miles a day to and from work because we didn't have a vehicle. Eventually, we lost our home and we remained in and out of shelters until I was about 12."

"I learned ALOT about the world in those days. At the time I hated it and was jealous of other kids having normal lives. Now that I'm older, I wouldn't trade it for the world. It gave me every bit of motivation I have, it gave me better social skills (gotta learn to make friends quick when you move frequently), and most importantly it taught me to be humble and never view less fortunate people as beneath me.

"She was diagnosed with cancer when I was 13 and died when I was 15 which sucks, cuz IMO I grew up to be a good person and good father. Would love to have her around to see it."


Growing Up Fast

"I've noticed that I didn't have the same opportunities as other kids because being a teen mom can lead you down a road of struggle and poverty if you don't have help from family."

"I've always wanted to play sports, but she could never afford the equipment needed at school to be apart of it. Mentally, I've had to mature faster at a young age because she was still a kid herself. It's unnerving to think teachers would tell me I seemed older than my age at 10 years old."


Couldn't Afford To Play Soccer

"My mom was 19 when she had me (she was from a third world country on top of it). There was a year i stopped playing soccer because there wasnt enough money. There was also the year i asked for a sega genesis from santa (a couple of years earlier) and didn't get it and my mom made up some excuse about how it came but it was missing a part. That was the year i realized a) santa wasn't real and b) anything i asked for from santa was coming out of her pocket."

"I was six that year, i tried to pretend i believed her but i think she knew i knew she was lying you know, me being six and all and not all that great at acting. I never really asked anything expensive of santa again and only got chocolate from Santa in the following years a tradition that continues whenever I'm home for christmas even now when I'm in my late 30s i still get a stocking full of chocolate from 'Santa.' It's a beautiful little silent tradition we don't talk about that's like a reminder for when times were tough."

"But i know my mom carries a lot of guilt about the things she couldn't give me as a kid that she was able to give my younger brother and sister because their financial situation got much better right around the time my younger sister was born."

"I try to tell her that she shouldn't, and highlight all the things i loved about my childhood, and the intangible things i was given because i was able to see how she was struggling and how hard she was trying, and then got to see how her trying paid off at a young age. Those were gifts my brother and sister didn't get to have, and they're much more valuable than a season of soccer, a sega genesis, or whatever else i could have asked for. I hope your daughter can see it that way too."


Treated Like A Sister

"I was born in 1964 when my mother was 16. Grandparents adopted me so I'd have a 'name.' Father's family paid for the hospital bills and that was it because they didn't want to ruin his chances to go to VMI. Mother had three other kids from at least two other men and tried to treat me like a little sister although a girl in 3rd grade decided it was her duty to tell me I didn't really have a daddy."

"Three bedroom country farm with four kids, grandparents and mother was a constant fight complete with fists and screaming almost daily. At least we could go outside....Lost a brother to a gunshot when stepfather cheated on mother and left gun down while he was leaving, other brother accidentally shot him."

"Mother continued to treat me like a sister until she decided she wanted to be a mother. My grandmother was the one who raised me and the one I consider my true mother. When she died, she left me the land with her house on it and my mother tricked me into signing it over to her (I was very naive). She accused my straight-edge goth-y kids (in their 30s now) of being on drugs because they wore black and has held a remark I made about moving away when I was 16 against me to this day."

"My father sent me $50 when I graduated and $100 when I got married the first time. And I had no idea he was even my father until I was 23."

"I would have liked to have had a different childhood."

"Edit: Y'all are some wonderful people. Thank you to those who had kind and healing words, hugs to those in need of a little extra."


Growing Up With Live And Well Great Grandparents

"One of my friends has a teen mom, she doesnt talk about it too much but she says that its nice how all family members (great grandparents) are still alive."


"That threw me off so much. My parents had me at 40 and their parents had them around 30 so by the time I was born I already was one grandparent down and it only took a few years for the next to go. Now at the age of 22 I have none. Meanwhile my bf whose family all have had children around 18 and his great great grandparents are still alive and he goes on trips with his grandparents."


Not My Sister

"When friends would come over for the first time growing up, I'd get a lot of, 'I didn't know you had an older sister!'

"I don't. That's my mother."

"Also: since my Mom and I are only 16 years apart, we ended up liking a lot of the same music. Which made going to concerts a lot easier, because we'd often wanna go to the same shows. So, I've definitely seen a lot more bands than friends."


Growing Up With Music Festivals

"My mom was 16 and my dad 19 when they had me. They took me to a lot of concerts music festivals growing up. Starting around age 9, their go-to birthday present for me was concerts. The first couple years it was stuff they liked. After I started developing my own tween/teen tastes, they'd give me 3 tickets so I could take a friend and my uncle as chaperone."

"Edit to address something that has come up multiple times in the responses below."


Cool Aunt And Uncle

"My mom was 18. So my aunt and uncle are only 10 years older than me (my uncle is 6 years) so I got to do all kinda of rad stuff with my aunt and uncle like skateboarding, surfing, snowboarding."

"They were and are more like a brother and sister."

"Real dad is a pos. My mom fell in love at 20 with a 40 year old. They are still together 38 years later. Raised me like his own.

"He had 5 other kids. So I had all kinds of brothers and sisters and tbh a better life than if my real dad stuck around."


Emo Mamma

"I'm an early 2000s baby, my mom really liked emo music when I was little, so I considered myself 'emo' at 6. I remember sitting in the backseat of my mom's 4Runner and listening to Mindless Self Indulgence, MCR, Blink-182, American Football, Fall Out Boy, Taking Back Sunday, and all the late 90s-early 2000s emo music. I got to watch a lot of 90s cartoons along with 2000s stuff because it was what my mom watched, and we always had fun sitting on the couch watching TV. I had a really good childhood, me and my mom were always friends, she is great mom, and I always look up to her for being a bada** young single mom who raised me alone."


She Was A Pregnant Pre-Teen

"my mom wasn't a teen when she had me but she started having children when she was 14 and was basically pregnant every other year... I was her 6th child at 25 and she had 11 children in total. She doesn't remember or know exactly who my biological father is lol so yeah..."


"It Is The Person That Makes A Difference"

"My teen mom - less money, less patience, dated more men, has been divorced several times."

"My SOs teen mom: lots of money, lots of patience, dated two men, only divorced once."

"I think it is more the person than the age that makes a difference."

"Edit: the reason my MIL had more money is because: she had a good personality and was able to get good jobs, she was able to advance her career, was financial responsible with spending, worked very hard to get her college degree, and this was 40+ years ago so the cost of living and wage were more comparable."

"The reason my mother didn't have more money: she is hard to get along with and struggled to get a good job, when she did get a good job she was not financial responsible, the divorces caused her to lose most/all of her gained sums because she choose to walk away rather than split assets. My mother also got a college degree and STILL struggles with jobs because she argues so much."

"Lastly, none of the were strippers/escorts. They are very close in age. Both had little/no parental support (my MIL having moved to the US away from the Philippines and my mother was kicked out). Thank you and good night!"


The 5-Year-Old Chef

"I was growing up at the same time my mom and all of my aunts and uncles were."

"On a more obvious day-to-day note, I was at home on my own making stove top spaghettios at 5 years old... So I would probably say I have needed to be more mature, independent, and more okay with a majority of things not going my way than a lot of the people I know. I don't really get along with people my age because of that."


"My Childhood SUCKED"

"My mom is 15 years older than me and has banged 7 of my friends throughout my life... 4 when I was still in high-school...."

"Other than that i think I was became mature than her when I was 12..."

"I took care of my 3 siblings, did the cooking, cleaning... got them to school... hell I started working 40 hours/week at 14 so my siblings could have some sort of a normal childhood (get clothes, school supplies, i even took them go-karting on each of their birthdays... those are some of my favorite memories)"

"Over all I think that my childhood SUCKED, I never got to be a kid... I don't think ANYONE should have kids before they are mature enough to handle one... and teen mom's should have a lot if over-sight by cps."

"Edit: giving more context... this was in a small town in the 80's... my siblings and I are doing pretty well nowadays."


People Reveal The Weirdest Thing About Themselves

Reddit user Isitjustmedownhere asked: 'Give an example; how weird are you really?'

Let's get one thing straight: no one is normal. We're all weird in our own ways, and that is actually normal.

Of course, that doesn't mean we don't all have that one strange trait or quirk that outweighs all the other weirdness we possess.

For me, it's the fact that I'm almost 30 years old, and I still have an imaginary friend. Her name is Sarah, she has red hair and green eyes, and I strongly believe that, since I lived in India when I created her and there were no actual people with red hair around, she was based on Daphne Blake from Scooby-Doo.

I also didn't know the name Sarah when I created her, so that came later. I know she's not really there, hence the term 'imaginary friend,' but she's kind of always been around. We all have conversations in our heads; mine are with Sarah. She keeps me on task and efficient.

My mom thinks I'm crazy that I still have an imaginary friend, and writing about her like this makes me think I may actually be crazy, but I don't mind. As I said, we're all weird, and we all have that one trait that outweighs all the other weirdness.

Redditors know this all too well and are eager to share their weird traits.

It all started when Redditor Isitjustmedownhere asked:

"Give an example; how weird are you really?"

Monsters Under My Bed

"My bed doesn't touch any wall."

"Edit: I guess i should clarify im not rich."

– Practical_Eye_3600

"Gosh the monsters can get you from any angle then."

– bikergirlr7

"At first I thought this was a flex on how big your bedroom is, but then I realized you're just a psycho 😁"

– zenOFiniquity8

Can You See Why?

"I bought one of those super-powerful fans to dry a basement carpet. Afterwards, I realized that it can point straight up and that it would be amazing to use on myself post-shower. Now I squeegee my body with my hands, step out of the shower and get blasted by a wide jet of room-temp air. I barely use my towel at all. Wife thinks I'm weird."

– KingBooRadley


"In 1990 when I was 8 years old and bored on a field trip, I saw a black Oldsmobile Cutlass driving down the street on a hot day to where you could see that mirage like distortion from the heat on the road. I took a “snapshot” by blinking my eyes and told myself “I wonder how long I can remember this image” ….well."

– AquamarineCheetah

"Even before smartphones, I always take "snapshots" by blinking my eyes hoping I'll remember every detail so I can draw it when I get home. Unfortunately, I may have taken so much snapshots that I can no longer remember every detail I want to draw."

"Makes me think my "memory is full.""

– Reasonable-Pirate902

Same, Same

"I have eaten the same lunch every day for the past 4 years and I'm not bored yet."

– OhhGoood

"How f**king big was this lunch when you started?"

– notmyrealnam3

Not Sure Who Was Weirder

"Had a line cook that worked for us for 6 months never said much. My sous chef once told him with no context, "Baw wit da baw daw bang daw bang diggy diggy." The guy smiled, left, and never came back."

– Frostygrunt


"I pace around my house for hours listening to music imagining that I have done all the things I simply lack the brain capacity to do, or in some really bizarre scenarios, I can really get immersed in these imaginations sometimes I don't know if this is some form of schizophrenia or what."

– RandomSharinganUser

"I do the same exact thing, sometimes for hours. When I was young it would be a ridiculous amount of time and many years later it’s sort of trickled off into almost nothing (almost). It’s weird but I just thought it’s how my brain processes sh*t."

– Kolkeia

If Only

"Even as an adult I still think that if you are in a car that goes over a cliff; and right as you are about to hit the ground if you jump up you can avoid the damage and will land safely. I know I'm wrong. You shut up. I'm not crying."

– ShotCompetition2593

Pet Food

"As a kid I would snack on my dog's Milkbones."

– drummerskillit

"Haha, I have a clear memory of myself doing this as well. I was around 3 y/o. Needless to say no one was supervising me."

– Isitjustmedownhere

"When I was younger, one of my responsibilities was to feed the pet fish every day. Instead, I would hide under the futon in the spare bedroom and eat the fish food."

– -GateKeep-

My Favorite Subject

"I'm autistic and have always had a thing for insects. My neurotypical best friend and I used to hang out at this local bar to talk to girls, back in the late 90s. One time he claimed that my tendency to circle conversations back to insects was hurting my game. The next time we went to that bar (with a few other friends), he turned and said sternly "No talking about bugs. Or space, or statistics or other bullsh*t but mainly no bugs." I felt like he was losing his mind over nothing."

"It was summer, the bar had its windows open. Our group hit it off with a group of young ladies, We were all chatting and having a good time. I was talking to one of these girls, my buddy was behind her facing away from me talking to a few other people."

"A cloudless sulphur flies in and lands on little thing that holds coasters."

"Cue Jordan Peele sweating gif."

"The girl notices my tension, and asks if I am looking at the leaf. "Actually, that's a lepidoptera called..." I looked at the back of my friend's head, he wasn't looking, "I mean a butterfly..." I poked it and it spread its wings the girl says "oh that's a BUG?!" and I still remember my friend turning around slowly to look at me with chastisement. The ONE thing he told me not to do."

"I was 21, and was completely not aware that I already had a rep for being an oddball. It got worse from there."

– Phormicidae

*Teeth Chatter*

"I bite ice cream sometimes."


"That's how I am with popsicles. My wife shudders every single time."


Never Speak Of This

"I put ice in my milk."


"You should keep that kind of thing to yourself. Even when asked."

– We-R-Doomed

"There's some disturbing sh*t in this thread, but this one takes the cake."

– RatonaMuffin

More Than Super Hearing

"I can hear the television while it's on mute."

– Tira13e

"What does it say to you, child?"

– Mama_Skip


"I put mustard on my omelettes."

– Deleted User


– NotCrustOr-filling

Evened Up

"Whenever I say a word and feel like I used a half of my mouth more than the other half, I have to even it out by saying the word again using the other half of my mouth more. If I don't do it correctly, that can go on forever until I feel it's ok."

"I do it silently so I don't creep people out."

– LesPaltaX

"That sounds like a symptom of OCD (I have it myself). Some people with OCD feel like certain actions have to be balanced (like counting or making sure physical movements are even). You should find a therapist who specializes in OCD, because they can help you."

– MoonlightKayla

I totally have the same need for things to be balanced! Guess I'm weird and a little OCD!

Close up face of a woman in bed, staring into the camera
Photo by Jen Theodore

Experiencing death is a fascinating and frightening idea.

Who doesn't want to know what is waiting for us on the other side?

But so many of us want to know and then come back and live a little longer.

It would be so great to be sure there is something else.

But the whole dying part is not that great, so we'll have to rely on other people's accounts.

Redditor AlaskaStiletto wanted to hear from everyone who has returned to life, so they asked:

"Redditors who have 'died' and come back to life, what did you see?"


Happy Good Vibes GIF by Major League SoccerGiphy

"My dad's heart stopped when he had a heart attack and he had to be brought back to life. He kept the paper copy of the heart monitor which shows he flatlined. He said he felt an overwhelming sensation of peace, like nothing he had felt before."



"I had surgical complications in 2010 that caused a great deal of blood loss. As a result, I had extremely low blood pressure and could barely stay awake. I remember feeling like I was surrounded by loved ones who had passed. They were in a circle around me and I knew they were there to guide me onwards. I told them I was not ready to go because my kids needed me and I came back."

"My nurse later said she was afraid she’d find me dead every time she came into the room."

"It took months, and blood transfusions, but I recovered."


Take Me Back

"Overwhelming peace and happiness. A bright airy and floating feeling. I live a very stressful life. Imagine finding out the person you have had a crush on reveals they have the same feelings for you and then you win the lotto later that day - that was the feeling I had."

"I never feared death afterward and am relieved when I hear of people dying after suffering from an illness."



The Light Minnie GIF by (G)I-DLEGiphy

"I had a heart surgery with near-death experience, for me at least (well the possibility that those effects are caused by morphine is also there) I just saw black and nothing else but it was warm and I had such inner peace, its weird as I sometimes still think about it and wish this feeling of being so light and free again."


This is why I hate surgery.

You just never know.



"More of a near-death experience. I was electrocuted. I felt like I was in a deep hole looking straight up in the sky. My life flashed before me. Felt sad for my family, but I had a deep sense of peace."



"Nursing in the ICU, we’ve had people try to die on us many times during the years, some successfully. One guy stood out to me. His heart stopped. We called a code, are working on him, and suddenly he comes to. We hadn’t vented him yet, so he was able to talk, and he started screaming, 'Don’t let them take me, don’t let them take me, they are coming,' he was scared and yelling."

"Then he yelled a little more, as we tried to calm him down, he screamed, 'No, No,' and gestured towards the end of the bed, and died again. We didn’t get him back. It was seriously creepy. We called his son to tell him the news, and the son said basically, 'Good, he was an SOB.'”



"My sister died and said it was extremely peaceful. She said it was very loud like a train station and lots of talking and she was stuck in this area that was like a curtain with lots of beautiful colors (colors that you don’t see in real life according to her) a man told her 'He was sorry, but she had to go back as it wasn’t her time.'"


"I had a really similar experience except I was in an endless garden with flowers that were colors I had never seen before. It was quiet and peaceful and a woman in a dress looked at me, shook her head, and just said 'Not yet.' As I was coming back, it was extremely loud, like everyone in the world was trying to talk all at once. It was all very disorienting but it changed my perspective on life!"


The Fog

"I was in a gray fog with a girl who looked a lot like a young version of my grandmother (who was still alive) but dressed like a pioneer in the 1800s she didn't say anything but kept pulling me towards an opening in the wall. I kept refusing to go because I was so tired."

"I finally got tired of her nagging and went and that's when I came to. I had bled out during a c-section and my heart could not beat without blood. They had to deliver the baby and sew up the bleeders. refill me with blood before they could restart my heart so, like, at least 12 minutes gone."


Through the Walls

"My spouse was dead for a couple of minutes one miserable night. She maintains that she saw nothing, but only heard people talking about her like through a wall. The only thing she remembers for absolute certain was begging an ER nurse that she didn't want to die."

"She's quite alive and well today."


Well let's all be happy to be alive.

It seems to be all we have.

Man's waist line
Santhosh Vaithiyanathan/Unsplash

Trying to lose weight is a struggle understood by many people regardless of size.

The goal of reaching a healthy weight may seem unattainable, but with diet and exercise, it can pay off through persistence and discipline.

Seeing the pounds gradually drop off can also be a great motivator and incentivize people to stay the course.

Those who've achieved their respective weight goals shared their experiences when Redditor apprenti8455 asked:

"People who lost a lot of weight, what surprises you the most now?"

Redditors didn't see these coming.

Shiver Me Timbers

"I’m always cold now!"

– Telrom_1

"I had a coworker lose over 130 pounds five or six years ago. I’ve never seen him without a jacket on since."

– r7ndom

"140 lbs lost here starting just before COVID, I feel like that little old lady that's always cold, damn this top comment was on point lmao."

– mr_remy

Drawing Concern

"I lost 100 pounds over a year and a half but since I’m old(70’s) it seems few people comment on it because (I think) they think I’m wasting away from some terminal illness."

– dee-fondy

"Congrats on the weight loss! It’s honestly a real accomplishment 🙂"

"Working in oncology, I can never comment on someone’s weight loss unless I specifically know it was on purpose, regardless of their age. I think it kind of ruffles feathers at times, but like I don’t want to congratulate someone for having cancer or something. It’s a weird place to be in."

– LizardofDeath

Unleashing Insults

"I remember when I lost the first big chunk of weight (around 50 lbs) it was like it gave some people license to talk sh*t about the 'old' me. Old coworkers, friends, made a lot of not just negative, but harsh comments about what I used to look like. One person I met after the big loss saw a picture of me prior and said, 'Wow, we wouldn’t even be friends!'”

"It wasn’t extremely common, but I was a little alarmed by some of the attention. My weight has been up and down since then, but every time I gain a little it gets me a little down thinking about those things people said."

– alanamablamaspama

Not Everything Goes After Losing Weight

"The loose skin is a bit unexpected."

– KeltarCentauri

"I haven’t experienced it myself, but surgery to remove skin takes a long time to recover. Longer than bariatric surgery and usually isn’t covered by insurance unless you have both."

– KatMagic1977

"It definitely does take a long time to recover. My Dad dropped a little over 200 pounds a few years back and decided to go through with skin removal surgery to deal with the excess. His procedure was extensive, as in he had skin taken from just about every part of his body excluding his head, and he went through hell for weeks in recovery, and he was bedridden for a lot of it."

– Jaew96

These Redditors shared their pleasantly surprising experiences.


"I can buy clothes in any store I want."

– WaySavvyD

"When I lost weight I was dying to go find cute, smaller clothes and I really struggled. As someone who had always been restricted to one or two stores that catered to plus-sized clothing, a full mall of shops with items in my size was daunting. Too many options and not enough knowledge of brands that were good vs cheap. I usually went home pretty frustrated."

– ganache98012

No More Symptoms

"Lost about 80 pounds in the past year and a half, biggest thing that I’ve noticed that I haven’t seen mentioned on here yet is my acid reflux and heartburn are basically gone. I used to be popping tums every couple hours and now they just sit in the medicine cabinet collecting dust."

– colleennicole93

Expanding Capabilities

"I'm all for not judging people by their appearance and I recognise that there are unhealthy, unachievable beauty standards, but one thing that is undeniable is that I can just do stuff now. Just stamina and flexibility alone are worth it, appearance is tertiary at best."

– Ramblonius

People Change Their Tune

"How much nicer people are to you."

"My feet weren't 'wide' they were 'fat.'"

– LiZZygsu

"Have to agree. Lost 220 lbs, people make eye contact and hold open doors and stuff"

"And on the foot thing, I also lost a full shoe size numerically and also wear regular width now 😅"

– awholedamngarden

It's gonna take some getting used to.

Bones Everywhere

"Having bones. Collarbones, wrist bones, knee bones, hip bones, ribs. I have so many bones sticking out everywhere and it’s weird as hell."

– Princess-Pancake-97

"I noticed the shadow of my ribs the other day and it threw me, there’s a whole skeleton in here."

– bekastrange

Knee Pillow

"Right?! And they’re so … pointy! Now I get why people sleep with pillows between their legs - the knee bones laying on top of each other (side sleeper here) is weird and jarring."

– snic2030

"I lost only 40 pounds within the last year or so. I’m struggling to relate to most of these comments as I feel like I just 'slimmed down' rather than dropped a ton. But wow, the pillow between the knees at night. YES! I can relate to this. I think a lot of my weight was in my thighs. I never needed to do this up until recently."

– Strongbad23

More Mobility

"I’ve lost 100 lbs since 2020. It’s a collection of little things that surprise me. For at least 10 years I couldn’t put on socks, or tie my shoes. I couldn’t bend over and pick something up. I couldn’t climb a ladder to fix something. Simple things like that I can do now that fascinate me."

"Edit: Some additional little things are sitting in a chair with arms, sitting in a booth in a restaurant, being able to shop in a normal store AND not needing to buy the biggest size there, being able to easily wipe my butt, and looking down and being able to see my penis."

– dma1965

People making significant changes, whether for mental or physical health, can surely find a newfound perspective on life.

But they can also discover different issues they never saw coming.

That being said, overcoming any challenge in life is laudable, especially if it leads to gaining confidence and ditching insecurities.