Pregnancy Pact or Just Young Black Girls Comparing Bellies? Does It Matter?
I was presented with the picture below and asked to take a stab at making some type of social commentary from it. A group of young black girls with their pregnant bellies distended, smart phones in hand, in a bathroom somewhere rocking khaki’s and button downs.
Are these girls part of a Pregnancy Pact, which I hear is some nonsense when chicks in high school (it is still high school, isn’t it?) allegedly make a promise to their besties that they will all intentionally get pregnant. Back when I was in school that was called ‘just a matter of time’ but we I guess we evolve.
These girls could be students of a public school somewhere who all happen to have been occupying the bathroom at the same time and decided to snap a ‘Awe…look at us’ precious moment photo.
The answer is that I don’t know.
And I don’t know because I didn’t look close enough to discover details nor did I blow up the picture or try to play detective to determine who these girls are and what circumstances may have caused them to now appear here, in digital form, on my dusty laptop.
The answer is that I don’t care about their circumstances. By that I don’t mean that I don’t care about these young Black girls, because I do.
My lack of concern has to do with the details that led them to be here with their individual stomach’s swollen with new life.
I don’t need to know the details of their circumstances when I know young women are more celebrated for the functions their vagina than for the women that they will become/are.
The evidence is everywhere; in media, in society, in religion, and in lack of education…they all say ‘fuck, ladies…….and have us some babies’.
Of course, there is a preferred order of events but the outcome is pretty much the same.
We do not encouraging young women to be responsible with their bodies and their ability to give birth.
We tell young women that children are a ‘blessing’ without letting THEM know that THEY are not BLESSINGS and their parents work tooth and nail to support them..and will have to work equally hard to support another mouth. Or maybe they’re just the fertile children of dead beat parents who welcome the swollen stomach as another much needed state check.
Or maybe the smiling girls in this picture may have been raised by the type of parents who think it productive to make more trips to church to admonish God to provide for this ‘blessing’ no one can afford. Money is placed in the collection plate in hopes of purchasing a successful life plan via God’s good graces.
Children are not a blessing.
Children having children are even less of a blessing.
Maybe, sometimes but…maybe not.
We throw these babies baby showers.
We celebrate tween’s becoming mothers by showering them with gifts of miniature corporate brands so that they may grow up to be properly indoctrinated into a world of self destructive materialism.
We encourage the father’s to get in real close to the baby faced mother we snap the ‘family photo’ for Facebook.
We perpetuate symbolic traditions saved especially for the celebration of additional life when it was introduced to families of means; or families in need of an extra pair of productive hands back when we ate what we killed and live on the fat o’the land.
We still practice celebration without taking into consideration that the ‘gift of life’ is an expensive one to maintain these days.
There is not much assistance, nothing is guaranteed, and a young woman’s partner may be unwilling or unable to participate in responsibility.
We have sex education that only goes has far as discussing the basic biology of humans but not the outcome of using those same body parts.
Do kids even know what Fallopian tubes are? Do they have no idea that when a woman becomes pregnant she becomes a matter of legal debate and political discourse instead of a person? Shouldn’t someone tell them that?
We insist that denial, shaming by magical ghosts and hope are forms of birth control in the face of a society of young people that are actively engaging in sex.
Contrary to the picture above, it is my personal opinion, that young people are more open and responsible then this photo implies.
Many young people are more responsible then we give them credit in light of our refusal to accept sex as a basic social health issue.
We’re ashamed and hiding but luckily there is Google, books, condoms and personal responsibility; some teenagers do take advantage.
We shame some young women into ignorance and silence about their sexuality and value.
We turn our heads as some young women are courted by grown men in inappropriate relationships.
Some young people are allowed to have over night guests.
Some young people are left with boredom and hormones while parents work around the clock for the man to scratch out a survival.
These girls are in the pictures smiling because we encourage our young people to be in ‘committed’ relationships; we discourage them from dating or have options and choices.
We push our young people (along with the rest of Western civilization) into the servitude that is parenting by promoting reproduction as some form of a contribution to society at large when in reality it’s not.
At all. Society could give a fuck about a black teenage mother; the baby does not make them special. Someone should tell these girls that.
These girls are here smiling in this picture because sometimes there is no future to lose when there was no future to begin with. So you instead revel in the lack of direction and focus, you look forward to a big change, you take pictures in the mirror with peace sign fingers because being pregnant is cool.
The celebrated self sacrificial perception of motherhood satisfies a need to be needed in some Black females place in society.
These girls are smiling in this picture because they accomplished the pleasure of having their bodies consumed by public demand.
These girl are here pregnant because we don’t discuss that sometimes abortion, which is phrased as the killing of an unborn child, is an option for a woman when she and her partner decide that a child is not conducive to her/their life plans without fear of condemnation when she chooses herself.
If a baby isn’t convenient or conducive, affordable or doable, possible or wanted. Why is it here?
These girls are here smiling because we don’t allow some girls to have life plans or to realize there is a such a thing as a life plan.
There is such a thing as decisive, logical, assessed days of options and choices and prices and regrets to be had by all.
Does it really matter if this was a Pregnancy Pact or a group of young, anonymous random black girls?
Does it matter if they are students at an alternative school working on furthering their education in spite of being pregnant (you go girl!)?
These girls are here smiling because short sighted moralistic cocoons protect young women from realizing that the crowd leaves after the newborn baby pictures OR the abortion procedure.
They are here smiling now before they will be left alone to deal with the consequences of their actions; but there will be no group picture of that.
I promise you.