Learning to parent at a young age

MOVING FORWARD

Allen said a lot of her peers no longer associated with her when she became pregnant.

“I lost a lot of friends even though they could have easily been in the same boat,” she said. “It was OK until I started showing, then it was like, ‘Oh, now we know you really are pregnant.’”

Allen was seven months pregnant when she started her freshman year at Pelham High School. Now a junior, she plans to graduate from high school before attending Jefferson State Community College and transferring to the University of Alabama at Birmingham to study pediatric nursing. Allen said her family, especially her father, has been a necessary support as she learns to mother her son.

“I’m young, so we’re growing together,” Raven Allen said of Carson. “I hate the negative thing — that girls who get pregnant are trashy. I hate it. It’s like saying every blonde is dumb. I’m a good mom.

“This is a blessing. I’m so lucky to be able to have a child, no matter when it comes,” she added. “My life isn’t over. My life has just begun.”