Teen Moms Anonymous
A Community-based Support Group for Teen Mothers.
Teen Moms Anonymous
Who We Are
We are a Christ-centered, community-based support group program for teen mothers who are trauma survivors. We are a safe place in the community where current and former teen mothers can meet with their peers, find emotional and moral support, and begin their journey of healing.
Participation is open to teen girls 15-19 who are currently pregnant and parenting (with written consent from a parent or guardian) and adult women who were teen mothers and are still living with unresolved trauma.
Why We Exist
We exist to support teen mothers along their journey of healing from trauma. We know that each teen mother has her individual story, but teen mothers collectively have a tale of violence and abuse.
Two-thirds of teen girls who become pregnant were sexually and/or physically abused either as children, in their current relationship, or both. No fewer than one-fourth (and as many as 50%-80%) of teen girls who become pregnant are in violent or abusive relationships before, during, or after their teen pregnancy.
It is critically important for parents to heal from their trauma, so they will have a better quality of life and so that they can support the healthy emotional development of their children. We exist to support teen mothers along their journey.
We focus heavily on education as a means of healing from trauma. Knowledge is access to change.
What We Offer
We offer virtual/online support group classes that meet once a week for 90 minutes. There is no cost to participate. Our weekly meetings aim (1) to offer a safe space where current and former teen mothers can meet with their peers, (2) find emotional and moral support, and (3) begin their journey of healing from trauma. We accomplish these goals by providing a group facilitator, group rules, and weekly readings, reflections, and discussions.
Ways to Get Involved
- You can register for one of our support group classes. Classes meet virtually/online once a week for 90 minutes. Click here to register for one of our Meetings.
- If you believe in our cause and want to come alongside us, partner with us as we serve teen mothers, we are grateful for those who support our work. Your contributions will go toward helping teen mothers heal from trauma and break the cycle of violence, abuse, and teen pregnancy with their children. Donate Now.
Trauma in childhood is often referred to as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). ACEs are events that occur in the first 18 years of your life. ACEs are divided into three primary categories with subcategories, and they include:
- Abuse - emotional, physical, sexual
- Neglect - emotional, physical and
- Mother treated violently
- Substance abuse in the household
- Mental illness in the household
- Parental separation or divorce
- Incarcerated household member
The Centers for Disease and Control (CDC) has found that having these kinds of traumatic events happen in your childhood can have a lasting impact on your physical and mental health. A person with an ACEs score of 4 or higher is 2x more likely to develop depression and 3x more likely to develop anxiety disorders. Click HERE to learn more about ACEs and how they impact brain development, body, and behavior.
ACEs are Prevalent in the Lives of Teen Mothers
Research by The Healthy Teen Network in a report on Interpersonal Violence and Adolescent Pregnancy notes that ACEs are prevalent in the lives of teen mothers.
- Many (as many as two-thirds) of young women who become pregnant as teens were sexually and/or physically abused at some point in their lives–either as children, in their current relationship, or both. This includes only the ones reported. The numbers could be higher.
- A substantial number (no fewer than one-fourth and as many as 50-80%) of teen moms are in violent, abusive, or coercive relationships just before, during, or after their teen pregnancy.
Impact on Children of Teen Mothers
The report, Interpersonal Violence and Adolescent Pregnancy, notes children of teen mothers are "at a high risk for difficulties stemming from the pervasiveness of violence and abuse in their parents' lives. They are at direct risk if they continue to be raised in abusive and violent settings or if their parents continue to form unhealthy partnerships and/or have few safe living alternatives (a serious problem for adolescents with children).
Their parents' ability to provide for them can be compromised by education or employment sabotage (where the controlling partner limits parent's ability to go to school, look for work or keep a job) and/or by substance abuse, anxiety, depression, and other symptoms of trauma, violence, and abuse."
Parents Must Heal from Their Own Trauma
Research concludes that "there is increasing evidence that parents need to heal from their own violent experiences in order to support the healthy emotional development of their children.
Without healing, it can be challenging for parents to attach, offer consistently nurturing interactions and respond appropriately to their children’s needs and demands.
In terms of risk, it is tough to be a child of an abuse survivor, even an aware and recovering one. It is not easy to be the child of an adolescent who is likely to be struggling to complete his or her own education, earn an income, and manage a family. Evidence suggests that it may be especially difficult to be both."
— Interpersonal Violence and Adolescent Pregnancy, The Healthy Teen Network
Healing From Trauma
Parents can begin healing from trauma (ACEs) by taking the 10-question ACEs quiz below. The ACEs quiz lets you know how much trauma you were exposed to as a child. Knowing this is a good starting point to know what you need to heal from.
To take the quiz, you answer yes or no for each question. Each yes counts for a 1. At the end of the quiz, the number of 1s is tallied and that is your ACEs score.
The higher your score, the more childhood trauma (ACEs) you were exposed to, and that trauma has a direct impact on your physical and mental health. It also has a direct impact on how you parent your children.
Knowing your ACEs score and then attending one of our support group classes is a great place to begin your journey of healing from trauma.
Take the ACEs quiz now.