University of Massachusetts Amherst

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Kassandra’s parents had never talked to her about sex and relationships. When she became pregnant at the age of 15, her family judged her, her father disowned her, and the baby’s father refused to be a part of their lives. But after a while, her mother came around. Now she also has a partner who is a father figure for her son. “He’s been there since day one,” she says. “He treats Josiah like his own.”

Video Transcript

When I got pregnant, I was 15 years old. My mom had never talked to me about sex, or what it meant to have a boyfriend. I didn’t really know anything about being a mother, or what it takes. Or maybe I did, but at first it was hard not to believe what others said about me. When I told my family I was pregnant, they judged me. My mom said, “You’re just a baby. You can’t take care of a baby, you’re just a baby yourself.” All I can remember is her yelling and screaming and slamming things.

The only person that actually disowned me was my father. He told me, “I’m not going to accept it. I’m not going to be part of your child’s life.” He gave me the cold shoulder. All this made it more frustrating when my son’s father left me when I told him I was 3 months pregnant. I showed him the pregnancy test; he said, “That’s not my baby.” He didn’t want anything to do with me. I found out he was 24 after I had Josiah. He had told me he was only 19. I don’t even want to get into what other people said to me. There was that guy on the street, the lady at the corner store.

After a while, mom came around, and now I have a father figure for my son. He’s been there since day one. He treats Josiah like his own. We’re expecting a child together. Every morning Josiah rubs my stomach, kisses it, and says, “baby.” This time, I know what to expect. And I know I love being a mother.