Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Pregnant Teenage Neighbor Has Mother Worried For Her Own Daughter

[Editor's Note: The pseudonym "Jezebel" was chosen by the letter writer; the pseudonym"Carrie" was chosen by Tazi.]

Dear Tazi:

My daughter "Carrie" is seventeen. I have done my best to raise her with solid, Christian morals that are lacking in today's world. Carrie has always been a good girl, who has never given me a lick of trouble, but I am concerned about the kind of influence the girl across the street is on her.

Carrie's best friend "Jezebel" is not the good Christian girl my daughter is, as evidenced by her unplanned, pre-marital pregnancy. Jezebel's mother is thrilled that she is going to be a Grandma, and cannot stop beaming about this horrendous news. I have heard from Carrie that Jezebel's mother is redecorating a wing of her house to create a suite for Jezebel, the baby's father, and their bastard child. She is also talking about hiring a nanny to assist with the care of the child so Jezebel can finish high school and go to college.

Tazi, I have always warned my Carrie that premarital sex is an abomination in the eyes of the Lord, and would result in pregnancy, which would result in a life of poverty. In one fell swoop, Jezebel's mother has destroyed all that I have tried to teach my daughter! I have informed Carrie that if she were to come home pregnant not to expect the same welcome that Jezebel has received from her mother. I have told Carrie she is no longer allowed to hang out with Jezebel.

My husband travels frequently for work, so he is not here to assist me with Carrie; raising a child alone is hard enough when you are married! Knowing this, I have altered Carrie's allowance structure. She still gets the same $100/week, but only $20 of it in cash and the rest is on a prepaid debit card. This way, I can track her purchases and see what she is buying. (Condoms? Birth control pills? An abortion?). Carrie is upset about this change, saying it is proof that I do not trust her to behave, and my husband thinks I am over-reacting; both argue that I have raised Carrie to be a certain kind of woman, and that she is not going to turn her back on that upbringing. I, however, am not convinced. Carrie suggested that I write to you, and we have agreed to abide by your decision. Tazi, am I over-reacting?

High Moral Mom

Dear High Moral Mom:

Your decision to raise Carrie to believe in an angry, vengeful God over a loving, forgiving God is your business - not your neighbors' business, so please climb down off of your high horse and stop judging them because they do not conform to your standards; let go of your anger over your neighbor's decision to support her daughter in her time of need, to welcome the birth of her first grandchild. Would you rather see the young couple dropping out of school, living in an inner-city apartment, and collecting welfare just to prove a point to your daughter? This does not sound like a very Christian attitude!

You cannot isolate your daughter from the world, so you must trust that you raised her well enough that she will want to make you proud and be the type of person you raised her to become. Jezebel (did you really have to call her that?) is going to need all the love and support she can get during a time that is bound to be stressful. However, between completing her senior year of high school, studying for her SAT's, giving birth, applying for colleges, and caring for a newborn I doubt she is going to have a whole lot of free time to hang out with her friends. Seeing this may be enough to reinforce that which you have taught your daughter about the side effects of having sex.

Your decision to keep a closer eye on Carrie's spending is one I can get behind, if only because I believe that a parent should monitor their children's spending habits, in order to help them learn responsible spending habits. Since a debit card cannot be used everywhere, and can be inconvenient for small purchases, Carrie should have some money in her pocket. It is your reasoning for switching Carrie's allowance from all cash to minimal cash and a prepaid card is, to put it bluntly, insulting. If your daughter wanted to purchase any of the things you think she might be purchasing she would find a way to do it without alerting you, by either going through friends or squirreling away money each week. For the record, on $20 cash per week, she would have to save for the duration of her pregnancy to have an abortion, which makes this worry moot.

I think you need to dial back the control you seek to have over your daughter and have an open and honest conversation with her about the fact that she will soon be an adult, off at college and on her own. Will you give her the chance to show you that she is ready to accept the challenges of being a Christian adult in a secular world?


Ask Tazi! is ghostwritten by a human with a Bachelors of Arts in Communications. Tazi-Kat is not really a talking feline.

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