I can’t say that falling pregnant weeks before my 16th birthday was a total shock…
I was always desperate to be older than my age and at the time was not at all focused on school and what I was going to do with my life.
After peeing on that little white stick, however, my life turned upside down.
Being pregnant in school, as many know, is not the best experience a girl can have.
I heard the names people called me, I heard the whispers and the unkind things people would say, and I absolutely noticed the time when I walked into the cafeteria and I felt the whole room quieten and hundreds of eyes glaring in my direction. I felt like a freak.
So after being told by a teacher that I would ‘amount to nothing in life and achieve no GCSEs’, and hearing the snide remarks that come about with the stigma of being a teen mum, I decided that I really needed to be able to provide a stable future for my son and myself, and prove everybody wrong.
I worked hard and studied, took my GCSEs in slow labour at 9 months 2 weeks and achieved mostly As and Bs.
Not too shabby for a girl with ‘no prospects or future’, hey?
After further years of study in A-levels and university, I am now a fully qualified primary school teacher.
I am proud of what I have achieved. However, it has not been an easy ride.
I have had to balance being a student, now a career, with tears and tantrums (mostly mine!) and trying to be a good mother to my son Joseph. But I made it and survived.
And I honestly believe if I can do it, anybody can.
The secret is to set your goal, stay focused and motivate yourself to get there.
More advice on being a young student parent from other mums like Charlotte
Young mum Richelle is studying midwifery, works in retail and is a full-time single parent to one-year-old Zac. Here she tells us about the ups and downs of her journey and gives her advice on how to manage your priorities — read the full post here if you can’t watch the video.
Find more advice and stories on our other blogs from student mums below: