By Paige Whipple of the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy
Are wedding bells going to ring for Maci and Taylor? The Tennessee mom sure hopes so.
"We’ve been together for three years. We have a child together, we own a house together," she said during tonight's "Teen Mom OG" episode. And a formal union certainly makes sense -- she and Taylor are in love, and their families and friends want them to make it official. So what’s the holdup?
Only Taylor and Maci can answer that question. But it’s interesting to note that Maci’s situation -- being a mom without being a wife -- is pretty common. By age 25, 44% of women have had a baby, while only 38% have gotten married. Overall, nearly half of women (48%) have their first child when they are unmarried and in their twenties.
But as common as this is, it isn’t what most teenagers say they plan on doing. Most teens say they want to get married and then have a baby. On average, they plan to get married at age 25 and have their first child at age 26.
Teens also seem much more confident that they’ll get married than they are about having kids. Although 75% of teenagers plan on getting married someday (17% aren’t sure and 7% don’t plan on it at all), only 43% say they plan on having a child. One-quarter of teens (24%) don’t anticipate having kids at all, and 29% aren’t sure if they will. Of course, many teens will change their minds (multiple times!) about kids and/or marriage – which is another reason why jumping into parenthood as a teenager isn’t a great idea.
But Maci and Taylor aren’t teenagers. As they get more settled into their family life, will we see a proposal? We know how Maci feels, and Taylor says he has a plan…
In the meantime, if you’re a teenager who wants to get married someday (or not) and you don’t want to have a baby until you’re ready, find some good info about how to prevent pregnancy right here. And be sure to catch "Teen Mom OG" Mondays at 10/9c!