My 16-year-old son impregnated my 14-year-old ward!

Written by Monica Taiwo

Dear Taiwo,
I have never found myself in a state of utter helplessness before in my adult life. I have always been the stronger one in our marriage and my husband always left the decision making on issues to me. Without prejudice, I always handled my issues well but this present issue is too much for me to handle.

My 16-year-old son has beaten more than he could chew and you know the way it is in the African set up; a good child is the father’s, while the bad one belongs to the mother. It has now become an issue of “sort out the mess your son created”. This for the past few weeks had been my husband’s slogan, but when he came out with distinction in his Senior Secondary School Certificate Examinations (SSCE), he was his proud father.

I really cannot say what pushed my son into this, because I have always been careful with all of them. I have four children; three girls and a boy, who happens to be our last child. He came as an afterthought which explains why his immediate elder sister is a lot older than him; she is 23.

While the girls are away in school, he was always home and got all the attention he needed. Like the tradition in our family, he had to stay in the boarding school in his final year and that was the only time he left the house and it was good for him because he made all his papers.

When he left for school and I was left alone at home, I asked one of my church members, a widow who needed assistance with her children’s education to allow one of her girls to live with me. She gladly did, I enrolled her in school, and took care of her like my own child.

When my son returned home after his examinations, they both relate like brother and sister, and I personally do not see a reason I shouldn’t let them play together. Despite the fact that Grace, the little girl who is 14 told me that her mother had already spoken with her on sex education, I made it a point of duty to do the same with her. I didn’t bring her into my household to treat her like an outsider, I took her as my own daughter and I am really pleased that she is well behaved.

Few weeks ago, I noticed that Grace was looking very pale; I asked if she was ill and she said she was feeling a little feverish. I then took her to the hospital and it was then that we were told she was six weeks pregnant. I was shocked because she doesn’t leave the house and she was always with me. I kept my cool until we got home; I couldn’t have done otherwise because as soon as she heard the result of her test, she started crying so hard that I was scared.

As soon as we arrived home, she told me my son was responsible. I was shocked. I couldn’t ask him immediately as he was away to his father’s office. When he came in later and I asked him, he didn’t deny. I didn’t know what I was expecting but his confession shocked me to my bone marrow. When I succeeded in calming Grace down, I assured her that I would take care of the situation, but sincerely I didn’t know how I would handle it.

When my husband came, I told him all that happened; his response shocked me. He told me to handle it and clean my son’s mess. I am still at a loss for a solution. I did not take Grace from her mother to truncate her education. I also do not have the heart to send her back to her mother or get her to have an abortion like people have suggested. What if she is my daughter? How would I tell her mother what happened?

As for my son, I would treat him the way he should be treated after sorting Grace out. Please, Taiwo help me as I am really confused and at a loss. Schools will soon resume and her pregnancy is becoming older by the day. In no time people would begin to notice. Kindly help me out.


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