All chldren have complicated relationships with their parents, but what about when your parents aren’t even that much older tahn you?
Children of teen parents on Reddit were asked: “What was growing up like?” These are some of the best answers.
1/21 My mother was 15 and my father was 18 when I was born back in 1983. My father was physically abusive towards my mother and they ended up getting a divorce a year after I was born.
My mother (17-18 at the time) worked 2 jobs and I spent time with a sitter. I remember when we finally got a mattress to sleep on at night and how hard she worked to keep [our] poverty hidden from me. I never really felt like we were poor but looking back it was obvious.
I think I was lucky because I’ve never seen anyone her age work that hard to provide a seemingly normal life for their child. I’m 30 now, and when she was 30 she was worrying about how to get me my first car. It blows my mind.
2/21 My mom had me when she was 14. She was raped by her dad. My life wasn’t bad. I grew up with my mom’s grandma and so did my mom (My dad was arrested and is still in prison today). I didn’t even know she was my mother until I was 10, I thought she was my sister. My mom went to college and managed to get ahead. I moved in with her when I was 11, she took great care of me. Obviously she had trust issues and never got remarried or even dated. I guess my dad kinda messed up relationships for the rest of her life. I missed out on lots of stuff, my mom was in school my entire childhood and my grandmother was on disability so we had some financial issues.
After I was 13 my mom was financially stabled and had a decent job. Things turned around after that and when I turned around 14 I had a pretty normal childhood. No financial issues, pretty easy going life. It could of been much worse than it was, luckily my mom was able do what lots of teen moms can’t (Which is get ahead).
3/21 Mom had me at 16. For a while, my mom did what she could to provide for me. Somewhere down the road she decided that partying and having fun were more important. I spent my childhood living with my grandma and being supported by both her and my grandpa. They did/do everything parents should do for their kids. This may sound mushy, but they really are my heroes.
My mom went down a really bad path, and I would have been right there with her had my grandparents not stepped up. They helped pay for college, bought me my first car, gave me a place to live rent free, raised me from day 1, and never once asked for anything in return. I just got my degree, just bought a new car, and landed an awesome job. And now, nothing will make me happier than to walk the stage at my graduation ceremony with them watching.
4/21 My mom had 3 kids by the time she was 20, and 2 more by 26. I guess we had a normal life. We were not raised by our grandparents because she married my brothers’ dad at 16 and my dad at 19. She did ‘check out’ of being a parent when we were older though. At 12 years old I could come and go as I pleased. Her and my dad got a divorce and she was single for the first time in her life so she wanted to ‘be selfish’.. we had food and clothes and stuff but we made all decisions for ourselves because she was ‘tired of being a mom.’
We were treated as adults from a very young age just [because] she didn’t want to deal with it. We all turned out really good and responsible. None of us smoke, or drink, and dont use drugs. She put as on birth control as soon as we told her we wanted to have sex. Guys were allowed to sleep over no problem.
5/21 I am a child of a mom who [gave] birth to me at 16 years old. My relationship with my mom is unsteady but we love each other. My mom tells me story’s about when I was a baby and how she worked 3 jobs and lived on her own after her parents kicked her out. My dad didn’t stay in the picture very long and I rarely speak to him. My mom is frequently [worried] about me and at times tends to be a bit overprotective because she doesn’t want me to go through what she did. Overall my life is no different than many others and having a teen mom has not changed who I am.
6/21 Mom had me when she was 18, Dad was 19. I think the only thing that differentiates me from the norm is just the reaction I get when I say how old my parents are. Dad didn’t do anything illegal, and they married when they had me. They’ve been together ever since. I never grew up thinking it was weird or anything.
Only thing that was probably different was that when I was 4 or 5, I rarely saw my dad, as he was in college. He’d always come home quite late. Other than that, I’d say it was a good life growing up. Both sides of my family get along really well. Main thing to get out of this is just because you have a child at such a young age doesn’t mean your life is ruined.
7/21 My mom was 16 and dad was 17 when I was born. My parents are still married, 31 years this year. Mom was kicked out of school for being pregnant, and dad joined the marines. The military really helped, when dad got out he got an apprenticeship and a good job. But he did have to sell his Judge GTO because of me, so one day it’s a dream to get one for him.
As far as being poor we were for a long time, but my parents were almost exactly like characters in Dazed and Confused. Same cars, same hair, everything. They grew up quick and I owe them a ton.
8/21 My mom had me when she was 15 years old. I don’t know much about my birth father. With a great support from my grandmother and other friends and family, turned out really well. My mom is a great individual who for as long as I have known has never not worked. She is incredible and along with my grandmother, We never went hungry, always had a roof over our heads, and everybody got something for birthdays/Christmas.
9/21 My parents were 16 when they had my older sister, and 23 when they had me, 25 when they had my younger sister. Both my parents finished high school, and went on to get middle class jobs so money was tight but not awful. My mother was in foster care at the time so her only other family was a brother a year younger. My fathers family however ran an apple orchard and farm. So although they weren’t rich by any means we always had plenty of homegrown food. We were also given about 30 acres to build a house on by my father’s family when my parents were in there late 20’s so that helped immensely. We always raised animals so that just added to the healthy food we had access to.
I always noticed my parents were a little different from many of my friends since they were usually younger than their parents. They were weren’t strict at all and I can’t honestly remember ever having the restrictions my friends did growing up. Stuff like curfews and what not. They were also very open about sex and drugs with us. They eventually divorced when my younger sister turned 18. My dad said he was sticking it out for us kids. They didn’t really have any problems but they had learned over the years that they didn’t really love each other and had decided when the kids were grown they would split you [up] and pursue more fulfilling relationships. My sisters are still pissed off about this, but I was just like, meh, you’re grownups make your own decisions about your life. I still see them and am not bothered by it.
10/21 My mom was a teen mom (17 when pregnant, 18 when I was born) and it was just fine growing up. The only problem was my dad developed alcoholism when I became a teenager so that was a lot to deal with. However, as far as childhood, we did not have the most money but we got by and could still do things. My mom and I have the closest relationship, we are like best friends. I think theres something to be said about a responsible young parent, because they can relate to their kids so much easier than when they are 30-40.
11/21 My mom was 19 when she had me. Something happened when I was a baby that involved me getting hit in the head with something. My mom and her boyfriend went to court and they never found out who did it. I was put in foster care and then my Gramma got custody of me. She raised me. My mom would call periodically and every time she did it just kept getting worse for me to deal with. She would say that she’d call in the next few days but not call for years. Basically I developed really bad trust issues on top of feeling like the one person in the world who was supposed to care about me, didn’t. So I had and still have issues with depression and trust. I don’t know who my dad is, she doesn’t remember. My Gramma is my hero though. She didn’t have to raise me but did and I am so thankful for her.
12/21 My mother had me when she was 16. My dad was 19. She dumped me on anyone that would take me. My dad was an over the road truck driver. When I was 4, they had another little girl. A year later, another little girl. When the third child was still an infant, my mother started having an affair with a guy, and she did it in front of me. I told my dad. They got divorced.
She found out she was pregnant again- tried to pin it on my dad. Little boy came out a spitting image of her new lover. Her boyfriend was abusive to [her] and me. CPS got involved after a while and told her that the boyfriend goes or I go. She told them I could go since I didn’t pay the bills. My dad told me he couldn’t care for me, so my aunt and uncle raised me.
I have nothing to do with my mother. Haven’t seen or spoke to her in over a decade. I have a lot of trouble coping in everyday life situations, as I feel everything is always my fault. Everything seems to come back to me in one way or another. I suffer from bipolar disorder and an anxiety disorder. I’ve started to develop agoraphobia over the last several years. I can’t commit to anything. Haven’t had a steady job. Didn’t [complete] high school or college. shrug I try though. I don’t think I would still be here if it weren’t for my amazing husband. The man has a heart of gold and patience like you wouldn’t believe.
13/21 My Mom was 15 when she had me and 16 when she had my brother. My dad was 20 when she first got pregnant. After my grandfather was talked out of pressing charges and/or killing my dad for statutory rape, my grandmother had a chat with my mom to discuss options: abortion, adoption, being raised by grandparents, etc. My parents decided to get married and try to make it work.
I’ve heard stories about how when we were very little, my parents threw parties with us underfoot and made poor decisions. But around the time I started making memories, they’d cleaned up their act a bit. We were never well off and my parents divorced when I was 10 (there were 3 kids by then.)
The only thing to stand out in my mind as a difference in my childhood is that they almost never took us to the hospital. Split your lip open? Put some ice on it. Split your scalp open? Dad’ll sew it up with a needle and thread. You can’t see the chalkboard in class? Sit closer.
We beat the statistics that say teen parents will have teen parent kids… I was married at 21 (still young but 8 years later still happily married) and my brother is happily single at 28.
14/21 My mom got pregnant with me when she was 16, had me at 17. We were extremely lucky that my grandparents were supportive and did not kick her out (we’re a somewhat religious clan, so it was certainly a possibility). She dropped out of regular high school, went to night school instead, and worked during the day, so she didn’t just leech off her parents. My biological father split pretty much immediately after he knocked her up, and I have no idea who he is. I really don’t care.
Mom met my stepdad when I was around 5, and we moved in with him. A few years later, they got married, and when I was 12, had two kids of their own. It took 12 years and joining the Army for my mom to realize that he was a lazy, selfish, spoiled, temperamental a**hole and finally divorce his sorry a**. He made my life suck most of the time, and the divorce made me realize that I’m much happier fatherless.
Interestingly, I found out a couple years ago that when our church discovered that my mom was pregnant with me, they tried to force her to go up in front of the congregation and read a written apology saying how sorry she was for her mistake. She told them to f*ck off.
15/21 My gf at the time got pregnant our junior year of high school, lets call her Tracy (she was 17 and I was 16). My parents didn’t take it well and kicked me out of the house. I mostly blamed Tracy for the whole situation and denied I was the father to anyone who asked. When my parents heard I was denying I got her pregnant they decided to let me come back, so I was not exactly keen on telling the truth after that.
The night Tracy had our daughter (let’s call her Sammy) I got a call from her father saying even though I didn’t like the situation tracy and I were in, I needed to step up and take care of Sammy. I went on a rant about how she was probably sleeping with someone else and no one really knew if it was mine or not. He hung up and I didn’t hear from them until my sophomore year in college.
Tracy called me out of the blue to tell me she could not forgive me for abandoning her but Sammy at least deserved me in her life. I agreed to a visit and we decided to meet in a diner not far from their house. I can’t even describe the emotions I had when I saw Sammy walk through the door. Tracy sat across from me but Sammy asked me to move over so she could sit with me. Then she hugged my arm and said she was happy to meet me. There is a certain feeling you get when you realize all the decisions you’ve made up to that point was a mistake, I had that feeling x10.
This outgoing, smart, funny angel of a girl wanted nothing else but to be with me. Through that whole dinner she stared at me while hugging me like I was a star. I had only one thought after that “I don’t deserve this”. From that night on for a couple months I would call tracy weekly for a visit. After I graduated college Tracy decided she didn’t feel like being a parent was for her anymore and said “you’re more suited for it anyway”. The first year with Sammy was not the smoothest because of my schedule but once I realized Sammy was my number one priority and changed jobs it’s been nothing but amazing. I’m happy I’m there for her now and that she’s happy to be with me. Things never go as planned but sometimes going through the hard times make the good times even better.
16/21 My mom had me when she was 17 at the very beginning of her senior year in high school. My dad was never in the picture. The way I see it, I grew up with her. I was there when she graduated high school, her first job. I remember when she turned 21. I was there when she got married too young and then got divorced. I remember when my grandma was diagnosed with cancer and I watched my mom take care of her every day until she passed. I even remember the moment I realized she was broken. I was 8.
But I watched her rebuild and create a life for us. I saw her fall in love for real, and then get married again. I remember when the doctor told her she couldn’t have any more kids, and I was lucky enough to be the person to tell her that the pregnancy test looked positive while we stood outside the bathroom not entirely understanding the gravity of the situation. I was holding her hand when she gave birth to my brother.
I’m 21 now and living at college now. I really feel like I’m writing this from the other side of things. It’s amazing to see her have the life everyone hopes for. Happy marriage, cute kid. I’m not saying everything is perfect, but i’m so grateful I got a front row ticket to her life. I attribute everything I am to her and the tough choices I’ve watched her make. Also, perhaps more important than anything, I remember the day she got reddit gold. The woman is truly my hero.
17/21 My parents were 18 when they had me. Neither of them had their high school diploma or spoke fluent English. They started a house cleaning business together when I was six months old. They would often work 10 hours a day. When I was 3 they sold that business and opened up their first restaurant. By the time I was 11 they were multi millionaires. They beat the odds.
18/21 My mom was 18 when she had me. She was friends with the wrong people and made some decisions she now regrets. My father was/is on drugs and was affiliated with a gang. My mom wanted nothing to do with him and this pissed him off. He repeatedly threatened our lives to the point where we couldn’t leave the house. My family (grandma and two uncles) moved to a small town with my great grandparents when I was one.
This drastically changed all of our lives for the better. My grandma and great grandparents played major roles in my life. Especially while my mom was going to school and getting her degree. My mom has been open with her experiences and has guided me to do the opposite of her. We’re extremely close and I consider her to be my best friend. To this day, she reminds me that I was the best thing to ever happen to her.
19/21 My mum was 17 when I was born, my dad was 22. I don’t have much to say because I have a good life, I always had everything I needed and wanted and can’t complain. All I know is my father was with my mother because he thought my mother’s father was rich (he jokes about it all the time but he loves my mother) and when he went to tell my grandfather he got his daughter pregnant he just said “You are going to marry that girl” and they did. They are happy now and they like to say I’m an “Undesired Miracle”.
20/21 My mom [turned] 16 a couple of weeks after I was born. My biological father dipped before I turned one and I grew up while my mom grew up. Since my mom was a teenager, I had the luxury of growing up in a house with my mom, grandparents, and uncles- so despite not having a father, there was no shortage of people in my life to fill that space. When I was nine, my mom got married to a man who has ultimately been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. Granted I didn’t feel like I missed anything by not having a father, it was really great to actually have one.
The only really sh*tty thing is that my biological dad (his name is Jaime) had a sh*t ton of [other] kids that all call me their brother, and I hate that sh*t. I ran into Jaime once at a Sam’s department store when I was about 12, and he said: “You know who I am, don’t you? I’m your daddy.”
He f*cking said he was my daddy. I told him I did know he was, and that he absolutely wasn’t my father, and bore no relation to me in any way. My parents then went ahead and signed the papers to have my step-father legally adopt me, and made legal actions to make sure Jaime had to avoid me in every way possible.
In the end, it all worked out, really. My mom went to school and took care of me the best she could, and now she’s the president of the radiology department at a big orthopedic center here in GA. My step-father, who I refer to as my dad if anyone asks, is a flight-medic on a helicopter, which is bada**. I’m very close to my grandparents and uncles, and plan to name my first son after my late uncle Alex. I now have a kid brother by my mother and step-dad, which is cool. My parents are 32 and 31 now, I’m 17 and they’re wildly strict. For fair reason.
21/21 I was born when my mom was 16 and my dad was 18. My relationship with my dad was always strained. From what I’ve been told he was a pretty carefree guy before I came along, and he had to grow up practically overnight. It’s alway felt to me like, whether he realizes it or not, there’s been some level of resentment there because I was the cause of his life changing. Like if it weren’t for me his life would have been more fun for longer.
On the other hand, I wouldn’t trade my relationship with my mom for anything. It’s always been almost more of a friendship than a mother/son dynamic. She trusts my judgement, and I trust [her] advice. I know I haven’t made her life easy, but I know I couldn’t ask for a better mom.