Welcome back to week #11 of the #YoungMumsProject. I cannot believe how fast the time has gone! This week we are welcomed by my lovely friend Amy from Mama Mighalls.
“Hi everyone, My names Amy, I’m a stay at home mum to Jack 13, Ava 17 months and I’m currently pregnant with another little girlie. I blog our family life at www.mamamighalls.com and I also vlog over on my YouTube channel, search for Mama Mighalls.”
Q1. Can you describe your personal experience of life as a young mum?
I fell pregnant at 16, I was homeless at the time and not with my sons dad, it was all a bit of a mess and not how I had expected life to turn out! Thankfully everything was sorted by the time I had him and since then my life has really turned around.
Q2. How did you feel when you found out you were pregnant?
I felt completely mortified of what people would think of me and terrified of how I would cope, I had never even held a baby before let alone changed a nappy or fed one.
Q3. Do you feel like life has been harder because you had children at a young age?
I don’t think my life has been harder, in fact I think it pushed me to create a better life for myself and my son, I didn’t want people to think I was a stereotypical teen mum so I worked my ass off to prove that I could cope as well as any other mum regardless of age. Yes I missed out on further education and holidays with friends but there’s no age limit on learning and holidays, I’ve got plenty of time for those in the future if I want.
Q4. Did you ever feel judged by anyone? If so, how did you deal with it?
All the time, in fact even though im 29 now and probably older than some of the mums at playgroup I can never shift that feeling that im being judged, especially when people presume Ava is my first and then I tell them no, I have a 13 year old! I never used to go to groups with Jack, I was too scared of what people would think of me, when I had jack being a teen mum was something people really looked down on you for, thankfully people’s perceptions have changed a bit over the years, there’s still a way to go though I think, to get people to realise that young mums are just the same as every other mum.
Q5. Do you think there are any advantages to being a younger mum?
I actually always wanted to have children whilst I was young(ish) my parents were older and I felt I missed out on doing things because of their age. I love the fact that by the time my kids are grown up I will still be fairly young and can enjoy any holidays I may have missed out on in my teens.
Q6. What are the best and worst things about being a young mum?
The best thing is having plenty of energy to keep up with them, I definitely find it harder with Ava now I’m older. The worst thing is feeling like everyone is judging you and making assumptions on how you are as a person.
Q7. How do you think we can challenge the stigma that surrounds young mums?
I think we need to continue spreading awareness that being a young mum doesn’t mean you are any less of a person or parent.
Q8. What are the main issues that young mums have to deal with, and how do you think they could be better supported?
I think being constantly judged is the main issue and being made to feel inferior by other mums. More support groups aimed at young mums would be good, I always felt very alone as I didn’t really know any other young mums at the time.
Q9. Do you think that the support for young mums has improved over time?
Not really, although I definitely think people are more excepting of young mums and its becoming more common place to have children young.
Q10. If you were approached by a young mum asking for advice, what advice would you give them and why?
As long as your baby is happy, clothed and fed that’s all that matters, ignore what everyone else thinks! Id give that advice to any mum, too many people these days like to give unnecessary opinions on your baby, but your baby is exactly that, YOURS, you know them best.
Thanks for reading,
If you want to learn more about Amy and her family, you can find here.
You can also find her on Instagram, Twitter and Youtube.
If you would like to get involved with the #YoungMumsProject and write a Guest Post for us please contact me: firstname.lastname@example.org
YOU CAN READ MORE POSTS FROM THE #YOUNGMUMSPROJECT HERE.