Summer shares a lesson learned from her memoir on not knowing as much as she thought about life, sex and pregnancy.

If you had told me I would join the teen pregnancy statistics at age 15, I would have called you a liar. After all, I was book-smart and knew-it-all. Yet a series of actions and decisions on my part showed me I didn’t know as much as I thought, and I hadn’t made smart decisions that day. A week after my 15th birthday, I ended up in a dark bedroom with a young man who told me I was pretty. You’ll recall from my earlier lesson learned, I struggled with self-love. There I was with a young man I didn’t know well, I let him touch me and he took it further and didn’t stop when I asked.

That one choice to go into a dark bedroom with a young man and allow him to touch me, led to a teen pregnancy. In just one week, my life changed from a baptized, carefree 15-year-old girl to a soon-to-be teen mother. We can either pay for our decisions or be rewarded for them. In my case, I paid for my decision. From that moment on, my life changed forever. Let’s not forget that I thought I knew everything. I thought I knew about sex, but I didn’t. Because I didn’t feel penetration wasn’t sure if it had happened. In any case, I could always pee it out, right? And I tried that which of course didn’t work.

My Advice to Parents and Teens

I had not realized how much I didn’t know about the causes of teen pregnancy, sex, and its implications in the life of a young girl like me. I was about to discover – the hard way through pain and confusion. My advice to parents: talk to your teenagers, don’t assume they know. For teenagers like I was back then, listen to the adults in your life. Or at the very least, ask questions so you are armed with the tools you need to make smart decisions about your life. If you could take-away three lessons from my that I share in my memoir to my 15-year-old self, let them be these:

Once Satan sees that someone is on God’s team, he will surely bring on the trials and the tests. Get armed with the Word of God.

Make smart decisions. I never should have been in a dark bedroom with a person I had just met, and I should never have let him touch me at all. I paid the costs for those decisions for the rest of my life.

Teenagers don’t always know as much as they think they do. I thought I knew everything, but I was so ignorant about sex and its implications on my life. My ignorance brought unnecessary pain and confusion. 

But remember this: Even if you are a teen parent, even if you are the parent of a teen parent, this is the best advice that I would now look back and tell my pregnant teen self.

And it’s the advice I told myself as well as my son when I became the parent of a teen parent.

It will be okay.