This week’s discussion will focus on incidence rates and interventions related to teen pregnancy.
Use the internet or other resources to find the incidence and frequency rates of teenage pregnancy in your community or in your state,. Mine is New York State.
What do you think are the primary factors that contribute to these rates (whether they are high or low) and influence high risk sexual behaviors?
How does positive relationships with parents associate with low
er teen pregnancy?
Review the case study in Box 9.1 on page 199 of the textbook.
What do you think were the greatest influences on her situation? How would you advocate for Susan? What referrals would you make or resources would you recommend? What ethical interventions would an advocate need to consider when working with Susan?
BOX 9.1: Daddy’s Girl
When 16-year-old Susan and her father came for counseling to work on their relationship, she appeared sullen, depressed, and angry. When I met with her alone, she explained that her father had tricked her into coming by telling her he was taking her shopping. She confided that she was pregnant, that her father did not know, and that she hadn’t been able to hold down food for three straight days. Susan’s mother had “run off years ago.” Susan reported that she had had one abortion already and was very reluctant to have another one. When I saw her father alone, he told me that he knew she was pregnant—“Well, that’s why I brought her to you.” He emphasized several times, “I’m a hundred percent behind her. I support Susan all the way.” He told her the same thing when the two were brought together and she acknowledged her pregnancy. In the same breath he told her, “The decision is totally up to you. But, of course, if you decide not to get an abortion, you’ll have to live somewhere else.”
Susan did not show up for her next appointment. She sounded tearful when she answered the phone.
“Couldn’t you make it in today?” I asked.
“No, I’m sick. Well … I had an abortion this morning.”
Despite repeated calls and letters to her father, he would not bring her in for additional counseling. So far as her “supportive” father was concerned, Susan no longer had a problem.