Teen dads are often overlooked in the big picture of teen pregnancy. We often focus on the mom and baby, who need support and help, but we neglect to think about the impact of fatherhood on a teenage boy. Teen fathers are affected by parenthood, too; they need help, advice, encouragement to take responsibility both for the babies they have fathered and for their own education and future.
Teen fathers are less likely to earn a high school diploma, according to the New Mexico Teen Pregnancy Coalition. Both teen mothers and fathers are much less likely to graduate high school than their non-parent counterparts. The failure to graduate can be due to financial pressure resulting from having a baby to take care of; teen fathers and mothers may drop out of high school to get a job in order to earn money and take care of their child. They may also be unable to find adequate support and help with caring for the baby during school hours and feel there is no other choice than to drop out.
Teen Shelter organization finds that teen fathers are nearly always older than the mother. It may be only by a few months, but often teen fathers are older by a year or more. In fact, in many cases, teen fathers could be charged with statuatory rape due to the age difference.
One out of every fifteen American males will father a child while in his teens, as stated by the Family Education website. That means one out of fifteen males is even more likely to drop out of high school, be unprepared to enter the work force, and be unable to complete higher education.
Only 20% of teen fathers marry the baby’s mother, according to Lifeline Family Center. Many teen mothers continue to live at home with their parents; teen fathers may continue a relationship with the baby’s mother, but it’s common for the relationship to end and when it does, many teen fathers don’t have much interaction with their children.
High percentages of both teen girls (75%) and guys (over 50%) say that teen girls have sex because their boyfriends want to. Most teens and adults also think that teen guys themselves feel pressure to have sex in order to fit in, according to the DoSomething website. The teenage stratosphere of Western culture puts a heavy emphasis on sexuality, and many teens feel like they can’t fit in or maintain a relationship unless they begin to be sexually active.