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Teen Pregnancy
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May 08, 2008

Mystery of a 37 Year-Old
Teen Pregnancy

Posted in: ADVICE, LIFESTYLE, RELATIONSHIPS, SEX

Consider this a cautionary tale shared only to prevent the “if only” disease. If only I’d worn a seat belt, I wouldn’t need this wheelchair. If only I’d just walked away, I wouldn’t be in jail. If only my friend Dick had worn a condom, then his girlfriend Va’Gina, (don’t laugh, her momma named her that) wouldn’t have mysteriously and accidentally gotten pregnant.

You should know that although I often cry like a girl, I prefer beer over a Cosmo. I have no qualms about being late to the party because the game’s still on. And have no worries if you don’t stay the night, because it saves me from having to cook you breakfast in the morning. In short, I’m kind of like a dude, only smarter. And I hope, prettier. Hence my pal Dick has called, hoping I can lend a sympathetic ear to his Va’Gina situation.

“I just can’t believe this is happening! She said she was on the pill.” Something about the way he said said, bothers me. “You don’t believe her,” I ask. “What part of she’s pregnant don’t you understand, Tamara?”

I explain that he is the one in need of understanding, because even under optimal circumstances, the pill is only 98% effective. And while a two percent risk factor seems incredibly low, I paid attention in Sunday school, and when I learned that Mary got pregnant without even having sex, two percent might as well be a thousand.

Va’Gina (or…whomever) could very easily have her diligent pill popping efforts thwarted by, say the stomach flu, which causes her to throw up the pill before it could be absorbed into the system. Or maybe on vacation, Va’Gina’s luggage, the one with her pills packed in them gets lost for two days. Or the pharmacy closes one minute before she arrives.

Point being, if Va’Gina made “best efforts” to take her pill, then this is not her fault. Which leads me to ask, “So, Dick, how can you possibly be upset when Va’Gina got pregnant while on the pill and you used a condom? This is like a miracle baby!” Since condoms are also 98% effective, I’m thinking any baby that defies hormones and a rubber deserves to be here.

More silence. “Oooh, so your girl didn’t mysteriously and accidentally get pregnant, she simply got pregnant!” A not so rare event when an unprotected Dick hooks up with an ovulating Va’Gina, or so I was taught in health class.

“Why are you sweating me? We usually see things the same way,” Dick whines. “Yeah, on things that make sense. But you, a grown man acting like that thing between your legs isn’t in fact a baby making machine, is insane!”

“Fine, I made a mistake. But did I tell you she’s keeping it?”

Again his surprise at this throws me. She’s 37. Any moron knows that any 37 year-old woman who gets pregnant while on the pill, is keeping that sucker.

“Isn’t the sole reason women take the pill because they don’t want to have a baby?” Dick asks earnestly. I laugh so hard I almost lose consciousness. Women take the pill for all sort of reasons, some of which are so they can land a man long enough to stop taking the pill and have a baby. Some take it to keep their PMS under control. Some to make their boobs bigger, or clear up chronic acne. And yes, some take it because they don’t want to have a baby, right up until the stick turns pink, then all bets are off.

So, the moral of this story? Whenever Dick meets Va’Gina, he should dress for rain or be prepared to graciously and humbly accept all consequences that come his way (FYI, some STDs are waaay worse than an unwanted pregnancy, something I also learned in health class).

Before hanging up, I let Dick know that if things were reversed, and men were the ones who got pregnant-and all that stood between me spending the next 18 years tied to some fool I was kind of feeling right up until he decided to keep a baby I wasn’t prepared to help raise-was a condom- I wouldn’t be go near Va’Gina without one.

Tamara T. Gregory is a writer/producer/traveler. Happily single (yes, there really is such a thing), she is an expert on the dating game. Her debut novel, “Passport Diaries,” is an LA Times bestseller and is soon to become a Hollywood motion picture. The book is available at www.passportdiaries.com.


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Teen Pregnancy