Popeater: Teens are getting pregnant to get on MTV’s ‘Teen Mom’ show

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If you’ve ever seen Teen Mom, you know that it in no way glorifies teen parenthood. Those young moms and dads are struggling, and despite the rumors that MTV pays them around $60,000 a season, (which MTV refuses to comment on) many of them are shown relying on government assistance to get by. The young women on the show, as much as their lives are put under the microscope, do get famous in their way. The money they earn from appearances and from the show probably does help them to make a much better life than they could afford just barely out of high school or dropping out. According to Popeater’s Rob Schuter, teen girls are becoming pregnant just to audition for MTV shows “16 and Pregnant” and “Teen Mom.” I really hope this is speculation and isn’t true at all, but it sounds likely:

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Now that ‘Teen Mom’ cast members like Amber Portwood are in their twenties, MTV is looking for a new crop of teenage girls to keep its monster hits ‘Teen Mom’ and ’16 and Pregnant’ alive, and [surprise!] industry insiders tell me young ladies are so eager to be on reality TV that they are actually getting pregnant just to score an audition. OK, not much of a surprise. Simply take a spin around the various Internet forums filled with young girls inquiring about what’s required to score a role.

“This is yet another example of the desperation of fame,” Matt Titus, a relationship expert from TheLoveConsultants.com, tells me. “The sad state of reality television has created a lowbrow vehicle for untainted train wreck personalities to display their private lives. Getting pregnant to be famous is like eating as many cockroaches as possible in a one minute period.”

(Didn’t they do that on ‘Survivor’?)

Casting any reality show right is essential to whether it is a hit or not. Networks spend top dollar auditioning throughout the country to make sure they get the right mix. However, what makes ‘Teen Mom’ and ’16 and Pregnant’ both so difficult to cast is that, thankfully, the “talent pool” of potential stars that are both pregnant and teenagers is relatively small.

Mommy expert Beth Feldman, creator of RoleMommy.com, says it would be “horrifying” if teens are actually getting pregnant for a TV show. “Becoming a parent is a responsibility that no one should take lightly, and for a teenager to think that a pregnancy could lead to instant fame and fortune is absurd. Parenting is a lifetime commitment and teens have there own lives ahead of them. Let them grow up before they take the responsibility of caring for another human being.”

[From Popeater]

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If this is true, it’s not like MTV is going to pull the plug on these shows to discourage any girls from becoming moms before they’re ready. Teen Mom and 16 and Pregnant are a big ratings draw for the network that once was known for showcasing music. We have women pulling each other’s hair out, pooping in public and getting extreme plastic surgery in a bid to be famous. What’s bringing another life into the world and being completely unprepared to raise a child compared to all that? That said, it’s not like teen pregnancy wasn’t a problem before MTV came around.

Teen Mom 2 is currently filming, with teens featured in the last season of 16 and Pregnant.

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52 Responses to “Popeater: Teens are getting pregnant to get on MTV’s ‘Teen Mom’ show”

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  1. Delta Juliet says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me in the least. 16 year old girls aren’t known for being the smartest. Sorry but it’s true.

    Reading this really pissed me off although I can’t say I’m surprised. It’s no wonder we have so many f-ed up kids being “raised” now. Too many people having babies who just want babies and have no real interest in raising the next generation to be productive well-adjusted members of society.

  2. Stronzilla says:

    And their poster child, Bristol Palin, was on DWTS. What better way to legitimize teen pregnancy than by putting a teen mom on prime time TV and calling her a ‘star’. At the other end of the spectrum they see Kate + 8, single mom who has her own TV show and all the perks and think, hey, its the gravy train. You need a license to vote, to hunt, to fish, to drive a car, even to get married but any idiot can have a baby.

  3. irishserra says:

    The show does not glorify teen parent-hood, but this is the new celebrity, Reality. Gone are the days of criteria being talent. It is so sad and frustrating.

  4. Tammy says:

    If this is true, it is a very sad commentary on reality shows and how they influence our society.

  5. Obvious says:

    This is sad. Teen Mom and 16 & Pregnant were never meant, nor do they glamorize the situation. Most of these girl are really struggling. The fact that girls may b stupid enough to try to get pregnant to have a chance to appear is sickening.

    I’m curious about the new Ten Mom. I never connected with any of thee other girls the way I did with the fist group. All my friends say the same thing.

  6. gg says:

    Not surprising?

  7. becky says:

    if this is true these girls are so DUMB i can’t even feel bad for them, just their poor babies. Watching that show makes me think having a baby is so damn hard I don’t ever wanna be a mom. but i always cry when Teen Mom is on, half out of sadness for those girls, half out of relief its not me. my boyfriend thinks its the funniest thing in the world to watch me watching teen mom.

  8. becky says:

    @ obvious
    I couldnt agree more- but this is season 3 – season 2 had a couple of girls I would have really liked to see what happened to them. like the girl who had twins and the adopted girl.

  9. brin says:

    @irishserra….totally agree with you.

  10. Sara says:

    I called this the FIRST time I saw an episode of this crap. MTV are a bunch of idiots!!

  11. Lemon Drops says:

    I could have told you that from day 1.

  12. bellaluna says:

    These shows absolutely glamorise teen pregnancy/motherhood by their very nature (by putting these stupid girls on TV). THIS is the new “celebrity” and it’s disgusting.

    Being a parent (at ANY age) is not glamorous, it’s not easy, and it’s not always fun. And before we start calling me a self-righteous bitch, remember I was a teen mom myself. But I got pregnant by someone I had been with for a long time (birth control failure), not someone I’d known a month. And while he was 4 years older than me (like most of the guys from Season 1 of 16 & Pregnant), I was 18 when I got pregnant. (Seriously, the guys were consistently 4 years older than the girls, which is called Statutory Rape, dumbass boys & girls!)

    EDIT: Yes, I’ve watched the shows. And I stick by my statement: They glamorise it by their very existence. A girl isn’t going to want to get pregnant to get on TV if a show centred on teen pregnancy/motherhood doesn’t exist. And it’s obviously not been a deterrent. (See headline above)

  13. Anastasia says:

    I watched one I had never seen last night (and no, I don’t thnk it glamorizes teen pregnancy or teen parenthood–if you watch it, you’ll quickly see it’s quite the opposite).

    Of course this girl lives near me in a southern state. So of COURSE the family fits every single damn stereotype of a family from around here: they’re poor, they live in a manufactured double wide, they’re at the race track every chance they get and their front yard is literally littered with busted up drag cars and car parts. AWESOME.

    The girl was 16 and the boy was 17 and the girl’s parents insist they get married, which they did. Ug. The boy wore a racing uniform to get married in. So now when the relationship goes sour (not IF, WHEN), they will not only have a baby to deal with, but a divorce, too. Nice.

    The parents of the girl are younger than I am (I’m 40). I do have a 16 year old daughter, but she’s barely been kissed. The soon-to-be grandma explains she doesn’t know how this happened, because she’s always kept condoms in her daughter’s bathroom and once showed her how to put one on a cucumber.

    Lord.

    Anyway, it’s a mess. I hate to say this, but the boy is just super special dumb. He has to take this final exam six times to pass it and graduate high school. He mops floors at a convenience store/gas station.

    They look at buying a BARN, an ACTUAL TWO ROOM UNFINISHED BARN to put on her parent’s property to live in, but they can’t even afford that.

    Baby comes, they give him a name that is a combo of their names. Brooke and Cody equals Brody. So now the dad and son have rhyming names. Again: LORD.

    (Although I’ve heard of worse.)

    Why is every SINGLE girl always shocked when her life is so different and she can’t just hang out with her friends anymore? Why are they never fully aware of what an incredible time suck a baby is? Does no one clue them in to this beforehand, or is it straight-up denial?

  14. guesty says:

    the accidental fame of the first teen moms was just that…accidental.

    purposeful teen pregnancy for fame is all kinds of no.

  15. Bubbling says:

    They can’t possibly be that unaware.
    “16 year old girls aren’t known for being the smartest” I agree, but this is too much, I was 16 once and tho a lot of shit came to my mind, that back than looked like the best idea ever, but this is just…..

  16. rheba says:

    from a former teen mom .. please tell me this is a joke? ..i thought we would have wised up since I gave birth 27 years ago but apparently these CHILDREN are not using their brains or condoms

  17. MissyA says:

    Yup.

    Given the asinine reasons why most teenage girls have babies, it’s not hard to speculate how easily fame and fortune can factor in.

    Ever see the movie Idiocracy?

  18. heatheradair says:

    I take anything Rob Shuter writes with an entire shaker of salt. this is the guy that wrote that the MAIN difference between Kate Middleton and Lady Di was just a matter of virginity. the MAIN difference? REALLY?

    But tangent aside, I struggle with this. I feel like there should be a clause in any sort of MTV contract that says these girls are NOT to be featured in the tabloids, if for no other reason than “fame” (whether fleeting or otherwise) is a huge DISTRACTION to their primary purpose as moms….stick cameras in their faces and they WILL be distracted. Stick those faces on In Touch and L&S and People and they will get interesting ideas about what’s important. They’re KIDS, fertheloveofpoptarts, if they’re saddled with children so young, news and media outlets at least owe them the courtesy of staying out of the way while they raise their babies.

    The more they’re in the gossip forums, the more other kids will get ideas about the best way to a quick paycheck…

    But either way, I can’t help thinking Shuter is full of it…..

  19. Kristin says:

    100% agree with Celebitchy on this one– if you’ve ever seen the show, you know it does not glamorize anything, as many of these girls are down and out because of the pregnancy.

    That being said, there’s no way that girls are getting pregnant to get on this show. 16 year old girls may not be the brightest in the bunch, but when I was 16 (just 4 years ago), I wanted to get a job so I could buy clothes to fit in and all the other latest accessories. I was able to get a job fairly quickly though, and from what I hear from my friends back at high school is that only a handful have jobs, so my question is why would a 16 year old girl want to get pregnant in a situation like the one we have today?

    secondly, even if they were all getting pregnant for MTV, if they’re under 18 their parents need to approve filming — it isn’t up to the 16 year old. So, yea.

  20. fancyamazon says:

    @Bellaluna

    I totally agree. The act of putting teenagers on television will glamorize it for many girls, who think they will immediately have a better life by the sheer virtue of being on television. The only way to stop encouraging it is by not watching the show and/or writing the advertisers who have ad space on the show or showcase products during the episodes through product placement.

  21. Johnny Depp's Girl says:

    This is stupid. IT IS NOT EASY TO TAKE CARE OF CHILDREN WHEN YOU ARE A CHILD YOURSELF!!!

    You will not save money, go to college or make much of yourself unless you sacrifice a hell of a lot to do that, but these days, kids are so selfish, I dont see many of them succeeding.

    The TV show will end. GO TO SCHOOL!

  22. valerie says:

    lemme tell u guys a lil story..i have a little ten year old-cousin who watches this “show” and guess what? she thinks im a loser because im 27 years old and do not have a baby like she sees on “teen mom”!! she thinks its “cute” or “fashionable” to have a baby..maybe in her childish mind its “glamorous”!! maybe for us adults we may know its stupid to be a teen mom but trust me these kids cannot process this the way a mature mind does..so it dont matter if the show doesnt glorify teen pregnancy..its still a show and kids get famous and are on magazine covers because of this so…thats all kids absorb! this show is NOT good for kids at all!not a good example and i now know this as a fact!

  23. Relli says:

    I have not connected with any of the new girls on the 16 & Pregnant either, maybe because the first season was a novelty.

    But no one one this thread is saying anythign they haven’t already stated in their personal views on this show or own experience in being a teen mom. While its really easy to say MTV is the devil for promoting teen pregnancy for purposes of being a star. Teen pregnancy is on the rise across the country as a whole. I think you need to account for the use of “Abstinence” as a sex education tool and the way religion is used to prevent woman from having abortions in this country.

    Maybe these other girls who have been propelled to “stardom” by being on the teen mom show think this is their ticket to fame and fortune. But i cannot think of one reality star who has been able to foray that into a legitimate entertainment career (i do not count hasselback becuase she has yet to “entertain” me). The other connection that almost every girl has on 16 & pregnant and teen mom show is a lack of a decent parent(s). There were a few exceptions but those situations seemed like sex ed was not a household topic.

  24. TaylorB says:

    Not to nitpick but do they even play music videos on ‘Music Tele Vision’ at all anymore? Or does the acronym MTV now simply stand for Moronic TeeVee?

  25. Cheyenne says:

    20.fancyamazon: I totally agree. The act of putting teenagers on television will glamorize it for many girls
    =======================================

    Absolutely. And MTV is full of it if they say this is not their intention. These girls get on the tabloid covers, for God’s sake, and for what — for having a baby they can’t take care of?

  26. Sigh. says:

    It’s like a “Chicken or the egg?” argument…

    Until he can show documented PROOF that a large number these girls are stating that they’re WILLFULLY getting pregnant SPECIFICALLY to get on these shows, I doubt the validity of this piece. Teens were getting knocked up well before these shows, and will be well after, for a number of stupid reasons/mistakes.

    Teens have been proven to not yet possess the actual physical brain growth needed to fully foresee/process “consequences,” therefore they lack LOGICAL judgment skills. In other words: teens are truly dumb, in this respect. They can’t see the whole picture (I can’t explain away why some adults are like this…). So I believe they get pregnant, THEN go “Hey, let’s see if we can get on that show,” as if fame/money will make up for their easily avoidable “accident,*” and will have no further negative consequence.

    *I put that in quotes because I saw that episode where the mom seemed disappointed in her pregnant teen cos she had condoms at her immediate disposal. She didn’t have to buy/hide them. So, in my mind, she CHOSE not to carry/use them – that is NOT accidental, by definition.

  27. bellaluna says:

    And another thing: I was a child/teen of the 80′s, when AIDS become a known STD and fear & panic reigned. As a teen, I didn’t have unprotected sex until I had been in a relationship (with someone I’d known for a long while) for over a year. What is wrong with these stupid kids? And don’t say “Well, you answered your own question: they’re stupid kids!”

    Is there no sense of fear of STD’s? What with HPV, HIV/AIDS, herpes, and all the rest, (not to mention pregnancy) you can’t honestly tell me these teens are completely ignorant to the consequences of unprotected sex. I REFUSE to believe ANYONE (except maybe Sarah Palin & her ilk) is THAT STUPID!!!!

    Our teens were told about SAFE SEX at a very young age; we bought condoms (which the Mr. & I don’t use) and made sure our teenage sons AND daughter knew where they were. Anyone who thinks kids will “wait” is naive. So teach your kids to protect themselves. It’s not worth the risk. I’d much rather have a sexually active teen than an STD-infected/pregnant teen any day of the week and twice on Sunday.

  28. melinda says:

    I hope this isn’t true. I’m 30 and married and watching this show makes me think twice about reproducing!

  29. slymm27 says:

    is it really mtv or where are the parents of these girls who so desire to get pregnant???? I still believe it has everything to do with how you were brought up…….i mean at 16 how stupid are you really??? Its all on the girls, please do not blame anyhting on mtv…or maybe i am just old fashioned, after all i lost my virginity at 23.

  30. Jeri says:

    TRAGIC

  31. bluhare says:

    This is where reality shows have taken us. People now do stunts to get a show so they can be famous. It makes me sick to my stomach to read all this shit about that one gal, her kid and her ex. PLUS if they are getting govt assistance and pulling down $60K a year at the same time, then the govt assistance should stop.

  32. Randomness says:

    Pretty sure this isn’t true. My bet is that more teen moms are entering to be on the show, not getting knock up in order to do so. In any case this is sad.

    My niece had a baby at 16 and was on welfare for years, just like her biological mom. My sister tried everything in her power to try and teach her about safe sex, but bio mom’s logic won in the end. Can’t help but think, maybe the ‘rents aren’t doing such a fab job.

    Even more so in this age of reality television stars. I just cried a bit for humanity.

  33. Laurie says:

    I believe these girls are getting pregnant to be on tv. It’s not like MTV shows anyone homeless or starving – there is always money for cell phones & baby gear. The govt provides welfare & WIC/food stamps. Most of the girls don’t even finish high school and if they do, college is not in their future (no matter what they claim while pregnant). Thanks MTV – just what society needs…another crop of undereducated kids. Gotta go pay my taxes to support these kids & babies!

  34. cherryberry says:

    Gotta give a big ol’ “Well, dUh!” on this one.

  35. Aries_Mira says:

    I weep for the future of humanity. We’re in so much trouble…

  36. Trippin says:

    And they just figured this out??!!!! I can’t get thru one episode listening to the whining, bitching teen mamas with their super-sized hormones. Any way you slice it, this show, Bad Girls Club, all the Housewives shows really, they all exploit women in a way. I prefer RuPauls Drag Gace and Drag U too all of them!

  37. Kim says:

    Ive banned MTV since they started airing this show. 16 year olds DO NOT watch the show and think wow that looks hard like adults do. Especially with the backgrounds & lack of education these teens have.

    They think hum quick money and fame if i get pregnant. Very irresponsible of MTV to continue airing this show (unless they start paying the girls in food or diaper coupons or the money HAS to go into a trust for the baby) or for viewers to watch/support this trashy show.

  38. bellaluna says:

    @ valerie – I’m 40, and it absolutely horrifies me to hear that. When I was in high school, some girls thought it was a status symbol and others were horrified. The girls who thought it was “fun” were idiots; the ones who were horrified were the 14 or 15 year old girls who were in “arranged marriages” with men at least twice their age. (And these girls’ friends.) Pregnant girls were sent to continuation school (you know, teen pregnancy is contagious, so you can’t leave the pregnant girls in school with every one else) or never heard from again. I held my 14 year old (freshman) friend in my arms while she cried, because her parents arranged her marriage to a 30 year old and she was pregnant and had to leave school. (I will never forget how she cried and awful I felt for her; she truly believed this was the end for her, and she was right.) THAT’S WHAT MTV NEEDS TO SHOW!!!

  39. Emily says:

    @bellaluna, I’m not sure about other STDs, but the incidents of HIV/AIDS in straight people is rising quite dramatically lately, much more quickly than in the gay community. The gays have had “use a condom or get AIDS” drilled into them since the 80s, so no one has random sex without them anymore. Since so much of the information about AIDS has been aimed at the gays, straight people don’t have the same awareness of the disease.

    It’s why sex education is so important. When I choose schools for my future children, sex education will be one of the most important aspects that I’ll be looking at. I’d much rather have a kid who’s screwing half the high school safely, than one who has unprotected sex once, even without consequences.

  40. Hakura says:

    Of *course* girls are getting pregnant intentionally. If girls in high schools all over the country thought it was ‘cool’ to enter into ‘pregnancy pacts’ with each other “Just because”, why on earth wouldn’t they do it to get on a tv show?

    @Emily (#40)- I so wish more people agreed with you on that. It frustrates me no end how many parents reject realistic sex education classes in favor of ‘abstinence assemblies’ run by religious groups. They’re just doing their children a disservice by preventing them from obtaining information everyone should have access to. Abstinence IS a choice. But as you say, better to be sleeping with the whole school responsibly than sleeping with one person without protection and paying the price for it, possibly for the rest of their life (or *with* their life.)

    I just can’t believe how many people get pregnant accidentally (not just kids, either), and yet continue to get pregnant repeatedly without planning simply because they can’t use protection. It frustrates me NO end.

  41. Isa says:

    Eh…Teens will get pregnant for a lot less.

  42. CandyHeart says:

    Yeah, I think whoever wrote this is not full of crap.

    I’m sixteen and I know a lot of girls and guys that laugh at this show (and they have not really watched it) because they know how irresponsible it would be to have kids at sixteen.

    However, my S-I-L’s sister is my age and pregnant. And she did it for her boyfriend who wanted a baby. Even after a pregnancy scare. So with the audacity of that…this does not surprise me. If girls are having sex to get pregnant, why would it be so shocking to have a baby for fame?

    And while you women are crying for humanity, I will be crying for the decrease of intelligence, the death of common sense, the increase of dysfunctional families and those poor babies.

    P.S. Even without 16 and Pregnant, Teen Mom or Juno I have come across teen moms. Luckily, it wasn’t a lot. Even so, they should adopt an animal from a shelter before they’re euthanized instead of having a kid.

  43. jc126 says:

    Of course they are. I knew putting these girls on TV was a mistake.

  44. Emily says:

    @Hakura, ITA. If you have straight sex without a condom, I see nothing “accidental” about any pregnancies. I mean, I’m gay, but because I’m occasionally attracted to guys, I keep condoms for just in case. I just don’t understand how in the 21st century people can still have unprotected sex, when we’re so lucky to have all the contraceptions we do.

  45. Persistent Cat says:

    I just wish people would stop watching ALL these idiotic shows.

  46. bellaluna says:

    @ Emily, et.al.: That’s exactly what I said. If you’re going to have sex, for God’s sake, do it safely. Wear a condom; fuck anyone you want, just use protection. Just wear a fucking condom. And if you don’t, please don’t have the nerve to act surprised by the outcome.

  47. Justez says:

    Yeah, teen girls getting preganant isn’t MTV’s, any of the starts of those MTV series, Bristol Palin’s faults… it’s the girls and guys who have sex as teens… duh

  48. Micki says:

    If not “glamorizing” the teen pregnancy this show makes it a kind of “norm”.I don’t think a teen girl is ready to put a baby FOREVER on first place.I know 2 teen moms and by their mid-20s they were completely fed up with parenthood and their children were left more often than not with relatives, while mommy dearest went to party, rusing eagerly to catch up…

  49. constance says:

    Ive watched 2 episodes and maybe they dont think they are glamorizing it, but to me they are. They are showing that without having money or any fucking sesnse, you too can be the proud owner of a taxpayer paid for baby. I was a teen mother twice before 18, and I worked multiple jobs and took out a family loan to pay for my bills. I was emancipated at 17 to live on my own and I graduated with Honors. I even went off to Pharmacy school.

    Would I take my kids back? no, but I sure the hell would have delayed them. I have a wonderful husband and I’m as stable mentality as I have ever been.

    I see girls who werent teen moms turned into 20 something moms with nothing. No man, no job, nor future… just a baby they accidentally-no-really wanted.

    It disgusts me to no end. I stayed off the taxpayers debt. I didn’t have my mom and dad to spoon feed me. (I paid back my loan to my grandfather although I think Im still disinherited.)

    Fuck MTV and fuck all these retarded ass little girls who need a therapist- not a baby.

  50. Hakura says:

    @Constance – I salute you for going through what you did, and picking yourself up and doing what needed to be done for yourself and your children. I can’t even imagine how hard that must have been, especially not having parents around to help you out. I wish stories like yours were the rule, and not the exception.

    @Emily – Even not always being with guys, you were responsible enough to make sure you had protection on hand if the need ever arose. A lot of people don’t seem to get that ONE TIME can result in pregnancy or STDs. It’s not like you have to do it unprotected 2 or 3 times for pregnancy to take ‘hold’. In some documentaries of ‘surprise’ pregnancies in young people, I so often see the guy saying “But that can’t be mine. We only did it ONE TIME!” God, idiots.

    Everyone should be as smart as you are to keep condoms on hand ALL THE TIME, so they’re never tempted to go without ‘just this one time’ because they didn’t have any, but didn’t want to stop ‘getting busy’.

    @Bellaluna- As usual, we agree entirely. =) It doesn’t qualify as an accident when someone knowingly goes without protection.

  51. Vixles says:

    Wow, what people do these days!

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