Jendella Benson: What I Learned From Teen Mom UK
What a brilliant series it's been, eh?
And just like that, the first season of Teen Mom UK has come to an end!
There have been some memorable moments over the last eight weeks, as well as a few lessons learned along the way. One useful lesson to remember is that horses are really expensive - and who knew that guys could be trained to straighten hair?!
But one serious thing that I've been reminded of whilst watching this series is how important it is to have a good support network around you.
If I'm honest, I don't like asking for help. As mums, we can feel like we have to play up to the ‘SuperMum’ myth because if we look like we can't cope for a split second, then it must mean we are terrible mothers.
There's no shame in asking for, or accepting, help. Watching Teen Mom UK has reminded me that none of us can go it alone, and there's no reason we should try to.
When Mia didn't know how to bathe Marliya for the first time, she asked for help, and when Megan and Dylan needed money for a new caravan, they accepted the generosity of her mum and stepdad.
Sometimes help is just having someone willing to listen while you talk through your dilemma, like how Naomi and Amber’s friends have been ready and available when the mums needed to vent. There may also be times when we need professional help, like when Chloe got support for her depression, or when Amber and Ste went for relationship counselling, and that's not just OK - that’s actually a really smart thing to do.
The importance of having a solid support network cannot be stressed enough, whether you're a young mum, an older mum, or not even a mum at all. It can be tempting to allow your pride to block you from seeking help, especially for teen mums when it can feel like so many are expecting them to fail, but ultimately, as long as you know who is truly there for you, you know where to go when you need a hand.
Finally, one lesson that I hope we’ve all learned is that we can't judge teen mums by the stereotypical ideas we may have about them. No two mothers’ lives are the same, and because of that, we should take young mums for what they actually are, not what we think they may be.
This series of Teen Mom UK has introduced us to five amazing teen mums who are experiencing motherhood with all its joys and challenges like any other mum. If you can't see that after nine episodes, then you've been watching with your eyes closed.
Words: Jendella Benson, Young Motherhood
WATCH The best bits from the FINALE of Teen Mom UK RIGHT HERE: