'16 and Pregnant': Samantha
If you're like me, you probably thought Tuesday night's episode of "16 and Pregnant" was the "Scared Straight" edition. And it worked. I. Was. Scared. I may have cried while watching Lori's story, but Tuesday night I cringed. I used my "mute" button. I even left the room. More on that later.
In Tuesday's episode, we're introduced to Samantha from Rosenberg, Texas. She finds herself pregnant --or as her younger brother so eloquently calls it, "the shortest fat person in school" -- with her boyfriend Eric's baby. They appear to have a somewhat healthy relationship -- if that's even possible as teens. There's no yelling. No angry texts or Facebook blasts.
And although there's the requisite scene in which the teens discuss pregnancy prevention (uh, can someone please line up a sex-ed class for the girl who said there's no real way to prevent pregnancy), there's more to the couple's story. Samantha is the product of teen parents. So when her mother, Soledad, found out she was having sex, she made her switch schools and move in with her father in an attempt to prevent history from repeating itself. But Eric's mom would help the teens sneak around. And now Samantha finds herself responsible for something other than her hamster.
To help her with this new responsibility, Eric wants Samantha to move in with him and his family. When Samantha told her dad, he wasn't thrilled. He was worried it would only lead to another pregnancy. But he also wasn't too quick to stop her, saying that it was her decision. Uh ... say what? But Soledad wasn't about to have her teen daughter become yet another statistic. Moving in with Eric was not an option. Plus, with the tension between her and Eric's mom, she wasn't about to pay that house a visit. And it seemed Eric was having second thoughts about the idea too: "I don't want to be in our 30s and 40s tired of each other." Exactly. That's supposed to come much later.
With the living situation figured out, it was time for the baby to arrive. But first, the waiting game: 14 hours ... 21 hours ... 24 hours ... and she was barely dilating. But she was definitely screaming. The baby's head was pushing against her back, and the way she was shrieking, you'd think the baby had spikes on its head.
It didn't help that her body wasn't responding to the labor-inducing drugs she had taken. So while she was experiencing contractions, she was only dilated about 2 centimeters -- you need 3 to get an epidural ... and 10 to start pushing. Yikes! So she screamed. She moaned. In her fit of pain, she told Eric she hated him -- yep, I would have too. She eventually ended up having a C-section -- the image of which was enough to make me shriek.
Once the little family leaves the hospital, the work begins. Eric spends his days going to school, his nights making sandwiches and the time in between feeding the baby (or trying to) and spending some time with her.
Samantha, meanwhile, spends all of her time with the baby -- that is, until she's back to doing school work. But she questions whether she and Eric will last ... and she questions her decision to have sex: "I don't regret anything, but it would have been nice to wait a while. ... This was not how it was supposed to be. ... Everyone thought I was Little Miss Perfect. ... [They said] 'you don't even do stuff like that,'" she said into the camera. "I am a good girl."
And then the reality of it all. The part that unites every single one of the girls featured in the series: " I just made a decision to have sex that had consequences."
So Show Trackers, what did you think of the episode? Was the labor scene too much for you to watch?
-- Yvonne Villarreal
Photo: Samantha and baby Jordynn. Credit: MTV