Originally Answered: How you young is too young?
I was 18 and that was too young. All my friends started clubbing when we turned 19 (legal age at that time) and guess where I was? Sitting at home in sweats on a friday night or saturday night while they were getting their hair and nails done, putting on cute clothes and going out. I couldn't afford a babysitter every weekend night. My daughters are all grown up now, but it was awful the first few christmases and birthdays when money was tight. Do you know how it feels to get a package of crayons from the dollar store and 1 coloring book and that is your only presents? My kids do. Do you understand how hard it is to finish high school, get a college degree and find a job paying more than minimum wage (it was 3.35/hour when I was working then) just to supplement the food? Food stamps on average right now are about 180/month and WIC only gives you around 12 cans of formula per month. I think the state cash program is around 350/month (at least in Illinois). Even if you manage to get into subsidized (state funded) housing, you are still looking at spending that whole cash allotment on rent and utilities. So there you are without any extra cash for necessities like diapers and tampons or toliet paper. Babies on average cost about $ 7,000.00 in just the first year with a total cost over 18 years being around $188,000..
That is paying for just the basic needs. That doesn't include any fun stuff or anything for yourself. My advice is just wait. It is so much easier down the road when you have a husband or a good job to help you out. It isn't unusual to want a baby when you are a teenager. Most girls do. But it is so much better for both you and the child if you just wait until at least your early 20's. Also from a medical standpoint, teenagers are more likely to have toxemia, gestational diabetes (to the point you have to inject yourself daily with insulin just to remain pregnant), and a higher mortality rate (death during delivery to either the mother, the baby or both). I had toxemia (it sux). Toxemia is where your body retains fluid and causes you to have extreme fluctuations in your blood pressure which is hard for both you and the baby. I injected myself daily with insulin. (i only had diabetes during my pregnancy and it only happened when I was a pregnant teen and not during the pregnancies I had in my 20's). I also had placenta previa which meant that the placenta was lying under the baby nearest my cervix and would have killed the baby had I not had a c-section. I also had pre-term labor which started at 5 months into the pregnancy and caused me to be on bedrest the final 3 months. Imagine peeing in a bedpan when you are 8 months along. that sucked too. And since my baby had to be born by c-section and since she was premature and they didn't have a lot of time, I had a c-section without any pain killers. While I was awake and could feel them cutting me open. She was born premature and she darn near broke my pelvic bone during the labor because my hips didn't spread like they should due to my age. She was severely jaundiced and had to be under lights to correct that the first week of her life while she was in an incubator.
It all worked out in the end and she is now a mother herself, but she waited. Waited for marriage, finished college, got a good job and now she is ready to be the type of mother a child truly deserves. She is financially stable, has a husband who helps and is able to give all her love, attention, time and money in order to assure that her child will never have to go without. Good luck, sweet. Lisa