#NoTeenShame #Repost @mahogany_mommies with @get_repost
In a letter to her younger self and reflecting on becoming a mother a 17. Solange wrote “Some people will count you out because of the decision you’ve made to bring another life into the world so young, but you made the decision out of love and will live with the decision in love”. ❤️
#mahoganymommy #solange #youngparent #motherslove #beautiful #motherson

Sound ON for this one. Swipe to see part one and two. Warning: it's personal. .
The moment when an idea you’ve been sitting on comes to life RIGHT before your eyes. Let’s take a second to remember the magic of the camcorder. I don’t know about you guys, but my dad followed me around with ours. I loved looking back on those videos + hearing our voices, seeing how much I’ve grown, and of course laughing at my ridiculous 90’s/early 2000s fashion sense. .
I call these Living Portraits, and I am so excited to begin offering them to my clients. Portrait sessions are amazing, but let’s take it up ten notches. You deserve to capture your memories in a whole new way. These are perfect for: .
✨Your small business and showcasing what your company does
✨Capturing your family, especially the sweetness of your child’s laughter and voice ✨Your graduating senior, where you share your hopes and dreams for her as she gets ready to embark on this incredible new stage of life ✨Your brand new baby while you share your birth story or a letter you wrote for them.
Living Portraits are like walking into a memory. Reach out to inquire about scheduling yours. PS – I have something else up my sleeve, also dropping in the next few weeks, so stay tuned. Thanks for watching and supporting me on this crazy journey.

POLICY UPDATE: We are thrilled to announce our sponsored bill AB 2289 (Weber), was signed by Governor Brown yesterday!

AB 2289 protects young parents' right to bond with their children and continue with their education. Research shows that children who bond with their parents have healthier outcomes. We know that when young parents and their children thrive so do our entire communities.

At CLRJ we believe young parents are part of the fabric of our communities and that their journeys alongside their children should be supported. Thank you Assemblymember Shirley Weber for continuing to be a champion for our California youth.

#ReproJustice #YOUngParentsMatter #J4YF #NoTeenShame #AB2289 #Justice4YoungFamilies

When it comes to pregnancy, we automatically assume that “congratulations” from loved ones, family and strangers is part and parcel of being with child. That is, unless of course, you're pregnant at a young age that society deems unacceptable.

But do you know what? I think young mums have every right to celebrate their pregnancies. And most importantly, they should.

One of the things I hear the most about a young mother experiencing pregnancy in her teens to early 20s is how many times she is denied the right to celebrate it. She isn’t celebrated. She’s judged. Frowned upon. Interrogated with incredibly invasive (and rude) questions about her situation that women much older aren’t subject to in pregnancy.

She feels weary and untrusting towards health care givers because those interactions become another source of interrogation or criticism.

She is constantly told by society and during pregnancy that her prospect of a good life is slipping away and she’ll amount to nothing worthy.

And the only thing this kind of severe judgment and criticism serves a young Mum is to perpetuate feelings of:








which in turn affects her parenting ability and significantly contributes to higher rates of perinatal depression and anxiety disorders.

That’s pretty messed up right?

Celebrating your pregnancy is not sticking a fuck-off sized neon sign to your head saying “HUGE TEEN PREGNANCY ADVOCATE RIGHT HERE.” No. It’s not telling people that you think pregnancy at a young age is a brilliant idea and you’re encouraging other people to do the same. No.

But it IS giving yourself permission to celebrate something that is incredibly sacred and special. Children are a gift to this world. They are literally the future generations and have so much potential in them from birth and beyond to be amazing contributors to our planet. You are a gift to this world as a mother. Being a good mother and role model to these younger generations plays a HUGE part in that – you play a huge part.
NEW ARTICLE UP ON THE BABY MAMAS BLOG NOW✨ Click the link in my bio to read 💕

If anyone was wondering what I’d like for my birthday, it would be anatomically correct models of the male and female reproductive organs please and thank you! • • •
#Repost @knowyourvulva with @get_repost
“Sexuality is a fundamental part of who we are; to deny that is to deny a person’s humanity. That’s why we, as sexual and reproductive health, rights, and justice advocates, must promote sex education not just as a health need but as a human right. Ensuring that all people- and especially young people- have a complete and accurate understanding of how this core part of their identities can shape and affect them is a necessary and moral thing to do.” -siecus.org #sexeducation #sexed #healtheducation #healtheducationworks #humansexuality #knowyourvulva #siecus #humanrights #humanright #medicallyaccuratesexeducation #realsexed #noteenshame #evidenceoverideology #comprehensivesexualityeducation #comprehensivesexeducation #sexedisahumanright

“Sexuality is a fundamental part of who we are; to deny that is to deny a person’s humanity. That’s why we, as sexual and reproductive health, rights, and justice advocates, must promote sex education not just as a health need but as a human right. Ensuring that all people- and especially young people- have a complete and accurate understanding of how this core part of their identities can shape and affect them is a necessary and moral thing to do.” -siecus.org #sexeducation #sexed #healtheducation #healtheducationworks #humansexuality #knowyourvulva #siecus #humanrights #humanright #medicallyaccuratesexeducation #realsexed #noteenshame #evidenceoverideology #comprehensivesexualityeducation #comprehensivesexeducation #sexedisahumanright

#NoTeenShame #Repost @blackgirlsrock with @get_repost
The magic is in the air! BLACK GIRLS ROCK! Week is here! Salute to LeBron 'King James' (@kingjames)for this ode to Black women. Kings recognize queens. #WeAreRoyal!

Guess who’s on track to graduate from @ucdavis at the end of this school year? • #j4yf#ClassOf2019 .
#killenit #collegekid #norcal #ucdavis #timeflies #backtoschool #motherhood #noteenshame #live #laugh #love #celebrate

Happy #YoungParentsDay !! Join us on twitter today as we celebrate #youngfams and the communities that support them in a twitter chat hosted by @youngwomenunitedfilms and the California Latinas for Reproductive Justice! See you there 😘
#SupportYoungFams #YOUngparentsmatter #noteenshame #noshamenostigma #justloveandcommunity

“I support and celebrate young parents because the children of young parents grow up to become college graduates, health professionals, reproductive justice advocates and more despite the challenges posed by systems who want to see us fail.
I celebrate my parents who despite shame from family and school systems, followed their dreams to a better life for us. It wasn’t easy, they juggled work schedules, leaned on family, and found every resource available to ensure our survival. I felt the pressure growing up too because everyone expected me to “fail”. I worked hard to prove everyone wrong and make my parents proud, I owe them everything.
Here is a beautiful picture of my parents and I celebrating at a family wedding in Mexico. I’ll always be their baby. 🙂” - From our Chingona Community Engagement Manager, Christina Lares.
Why do YOU celebrate young families? Share your pictures and use #YoungParentsDay #J4YF. Don’t forget to tag us!
#ThisIsRJ #YOUngParentsMatter #NoTeenShame #RespectYoungFams #Justice4YoungFams

I support young parents because though we might not look like parents when we start off, we are ones. And combating stigma should be the least of our worries. I wish you knew then what I know now. #NoTeenShame #J4YF #YOUngParentDay #YoungMomLife #BabyJack #BabyAmy #TBT

I celebrate young parents because - when supported, validated & celebrated - our potential is limitless. • #J4YF@latinas4rj .
#YOUngParentsMatter #J4YF #RespectYoungFams #NoTeenShame #YoungParentsDay @youngwomenunitedfilms

" I celebrate young parents because we enjoy the messy moments that last a lifetime." - Manuel, proud young father of two and Young Parent Leadership Council member.

Are you or were a young paret? Why do you support / celebrate young parents in your community / life?

Let us know by posting and using the hashtags: #YoungParentsDay #J4YF #YOUngParentsMatter

Let's celebrate young parents in our communities by uplifting and loving on them. Join us this Saturday August 25th for a tweet chat with @youngwomenunitedfilms crom 12pm to 1pm PT.

#ThisIsRJ #ReproJustice #RespectYoungFams#NoTeenShame

We celebrate young parents because they are resilient, fearless leaders, and amazing advocates!

Why do you celebrate/support young parents? Let us know by posting and using the hashtags: #YoungParentsDay #J4YF #YOUngParentsMatter

Help us celebrate young parents in our communities by uplifting and loving on them. Don't forget Young Parents Day of Recognition is this Saturday August 25th. Join us for a tweet chat with @youngwomenunitedfilms from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. PCT.

#ThisIsRJ #ReproJustice #RespectYoungFams #NoTeenShame 📷: @christinaixchel 💞

We had an amazing day of training and advocacy with 15 young parents and Latinx leaders in Sacramento today!

We want to thank everyone who donated to our crowdfund to get us here. A special shout out to the @womensfoundationca and @latinocommfdn for your continued support. We could not do this work without you our community!

Stay tunned and help us uplift the young parents in our communities as we celebrate this year's California's Young Parents Day of Recognition on August 25 🙌. You can join in the celebration too.
Check out -----> bit.ly/CLRJ_J4YF_BLOG

#CAlatinasPresente #J4YF #YoungParentsDay #YOUngParentsMatter #RespectYoungFams #ReproJustice #NoTeenShame

MYTH NO.9 - If You’re A Young Mother, You’re Promiscuous.

So TRUE STORY. I once parked next to a group of eligible bachelors with a nice red P plate wedged into the corner of their back seat window. Their windows were down slightly and I’m sure they were discussing something important like how damaging the patriarchy is or what they can do to minimise the impact of climate change or you know, how to save the white rhinos from extinction. Instead of something like working out how many bongs they could smoke with the weed they had left or how many chicks they’d have (most likely bad) sex with on the weekend. ANYHOO.

They watched me pile out of my car with my three little ducklings (one after the other) and then said in very Beavis & Butthead-like sounding voices:

Voice 1: woahhh look how many kids she has
Voice 2: woahhh.
Voice 1:( Now I’m not sure what exactly was said here but I’m sure it was along the lines of ‘dude. Check out how big my penis is’ before yelling SLUT at me as they courageously drove away in a flurry of burnt rubber). Don’t worry, I gave them a single finger salute behind my little ducklings backs who were more concerned about the exciting park that was in front of them than eligible bachelors calling their mother a slut.

I was married at 21. Had two babies by 22. And a third by 28. Which means I've had sex at least three times with my husband 🤷🏼‍♀️ Regardless of whether someone sleeps with a lot of people or not (you do you!) I just have one thing to say here about how many times someone has to have sex to fall pregnant;


Just once, if it so happens you do the deed while you are ovulating (and it's unprotected sex or your contraception fails). I'm totally backed by science on this one you guys.

There's no question that the only way to completely prevent pregnancy is to NOT HAVE SEX AT ALL. You have much higher odds of falling pregnant with no contraception being used and contraception is pretty good at preventing pregnancy. Unfortunately however, no contraceptive is 100% reliable (a young Mum I know fell pregnant with twins at 22 while on the pill!) It's the frequency of how often you have sex, not the amount of partners.

✨10 Myths About Young Mums Series✨
MYTH NO.8 - You’ll Never Have a Social Life Again 🌻

Bars and nightclubs have been around a long time. They're not going anywhere (I promise. I checked). There are lots of ways to inject a social life back in as a Mum; find other Mums who feel the same as you and organise a night out together. Join a Mother's group. Arrange a play date with another Mum. Join a club or volunteer or go back to study.
You'll find new friends who are in a similar boat to you and you can still have a social life as a mother. It takes military precision planning sometimes but if you want to go out every now and then - the power is in your hands!

The only thing I would note is once you become a Mum, don’t be surprised if tequila shots at a random midnight bar aren’t as appealing to you anymore as snuggling up in bed with your warm and cuddly baby (and can I just say; Baby. Smell. Nothing like it). #BabyMamas #YoungMotherhoodMyths

It’s time to sign up for Writing YA from the Margins! An 8-week online course on writing rich, character-driven stories that people care about. Tony Morrison said, “If there’s a book you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” Come with an in-progress manuscript, or start from scratch. Leave with a solid start on your ground-breaking young adult novel. Link in bio. #youngadultbooks #queeryouth #queerya #noteenshame #teenmom #youngadultfiction #ninapackebush #girlslikeme #yawriter #hipmama

✨10 Myths About Young Mums Series✨
The biggest problem with the belief system around young mothers is that there is this negative mindset and constant reinforcement of failure from society that they already suck at being a mother.

Imagine turning up to the doorstep of one of the biggest moments in your life, you're about to embark on one of the most important roles anyone can ever have and before you've even had a chance to begin you're labelled shit. A failure. Not good enough. A burden.

And people wonder why young mothers have some of the highest rates of pre natal/post natal depression? And suicidal thoughts? And anxiety? It makes me f*cking mad. How can you expect someone to be the best they can be when everyone around them tells them they're bad and have made a mistake?

Another factor to consider is the role of parents or parental figures to young mothers themselves. If a young mother has an overbearing presence telling her how she should parent or how she needs to raise her child, her parenting outcomes are going to be even more strained, even more stressful and even more difficult than having someone support and mentor her to figure it out herself. Remove the potential for co-dependancy and the constant telling someone how they should parent.

Have a little faith that a young mother can do the right thing if she's encouraged to trust her own instincts and to develop a sense of self reliance. She will if she has the right, supportive environment.

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