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Teen Pregnancy Prevention - Essay Contest

Stage of Life - Teen Pregnancy Prevention Writing Contest

Teen Trends - Teen Pregnancy Prevention

This is the formal writing contest summary report from's Teen Pregnancy Prevention Essay Contest.  Below you'll find our contest poll results along with over 190 of the featured Teen Pregnancy Prevention essays from students participating in our monthly national teen writing contest.

The idea for this essay contest came from a CDC report...

  • According to the latest teen pregnancy statistics from the CDC, U.S. teen birth rates are at an all time low. 
  • But the last report still showed a total of 367,752 babies were born to teen girls aged 15–19. 
To pay homage to National Teen Pregnancy Prevention Month, wanted to hear from teens and college students about why they think teen pregnancies are dropping.  So in May of 2012, we asked 4,065 teens and college students who visited our writing contest page that month to answer the question: 

What do you attribute to the decline of teen pregnancies?


Before submitting their essay, teens were asked to complete a short survey that asked them to pick TWO reasons why they think teen birth-rates are at their lowest rate.  267 teens answered the survey, and the students listed 1) contraceptives, 2) knowing a classmate with a baby, and 3) reality TV as the top three biggest deterrents to teen pregnancy (scoring much higher than the bottom three influences, i.e. abstinence, parents or friends. 

Here's the data.  The percentage correlates to the number of teens who selected that particular reason for the decline in teen birth rates...

  • Stage of Life Teen Birth Rate Survey Results52.06%:  More sexually active teens are using contraceptives.
  • 38.95%:  Teens know someone who had a baby and realized they do NOT want that to happen to them.
  • 32.96%:  Young adults are getting scared by shows like MTV's Teen Mom. 
  • 32.31%   Students have better health and sex-education at school now.
  • 9.74%:   Teens today are focusing on academics and activities.
  • 9.36%    More teens are practicing abstinence or waiting till marriage.
  • 7.87%:   Parents are more involved in teen's lives and serve as positive role models.
  • 6.74%:   Teens are seeing a positive influence from friends to not get serious in a relationship during high school.
  • 10.11%:  Other
PRINT PDF results of the teen pregnancy survey data


After the survey, students then submitted their essay to the writing contest.  From the teen essay submissions, several trends emerged about how students feel about teen pregnancy:

  1. Sex Education and Contraceptives: Teens overwhelmingly agreed that comprehensive sex education in schools and availability of contraceptives are the main reasons for the low teen pregnancy rates. No matter how much you try to scare them, teens will always want to have sex—what’s most important is protecting and informing them. These teens also felt that, while it is a fine personal choice, teaching Abstinence in schools adversely affects the teen pregnancy rate.

  2. The Media: TV shows like 16 and Pregnant, Teen Mom, and Secret Life of the American Teenager proved to be successful scare tactics for teens as a deterrent for not getting pregnant.  Viewers watched these young moms struggle to maintain healthy relationships with their “baby daddies,” find jobs, make enough money to support themselves and the baby, and finish high school, let alone start college.

  3. Friends/Family: Teens have it hard enough as it is; no teen wants to be called an outcast (or any other bad name) for getting pregnant while still in school! These teens rely on their friends to keep them in check, and spoke of close friends that have gotten pregnant while in school. Similarly, teens are more open with their parents on subjects like sex and pregnancy—or for some teens, they were the result of a teen pregnancy.

  4. Long-Term Goals: Many teens correlated the recent low pregnancy rates to something much simpler: teens these days are too busy with school, sports, and getting into college to have sex or get pregnant. Academia is no doubt extremely important to all teens, and it motivates them to avoid getting pregnant.


Immediately below, you'll find links to the winning essay, our runners-up, semi-finalists and over 190 other essays from college students and teenagers about teen pregnancy prevention.  Please take a few moments to read an essay or two. If you have the time, make a comment on the responses you enjoyed the most.  We know the student writers will love hearing your positive input (they'll get an email notifying them if you comment on their writing contest entry).

Essay Contest WinnersEssay Winner:

Four Runners-Up (in no particular order):
Six Semi-Finalists (in no particular order):
  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: A New Generation by AnnaCheyenne (Sex education scares people from wanting to get pregnant)
  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why is it declining? by mangmcflang (Teens are afraid to have unprotected sex—and rightfully so)
  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why start your life so early? by delaneysue (Sex education is making teen girls wiser)
  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: No one wants to be the pregnant girl by MaddieKaye (You wouldn’t want to be the girl everyone makes fun of)
  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Have teenagers changed their habits? by tanyarosii (MTV reality shows educate audiences about the perils of teen pregnancy)
  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What scares teens away from becoming a statistic by missvictorzzz (MTV shows and ABC Family’s Secret Life may make teens be more careful about sex)

Featured Teen Pregnancy Prevention Essays

190+ other essays grouped by pregnancy prevention theme:

Sex Education

  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Fear of Fate by MikkiB326 (Sex is more openly discussed)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: A New Generation by AnnaCheyenne (Sex education scares people from wanting to get pregnant)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: A sudden drop… is this surprising? by mvsoccermidd (The state of the economy, in addition to effective sex ed, is the reason for the low teen pregnancy rates)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Sex Education by aoconnell135 (Some STDs are life threatening)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I Think by asdfghjkl (Sex ed is being taught to younger and younger people)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why is it declining? by mangmcflang (Teens are afraid to have unprotected sex—and rightfully so)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Let’s Stay Protected by seanterrific (It is important to have safe sex)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Male’s Point of View by jroehig (Teens are more willing to use contraception; contraception is more available to teens, too)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: 100% preventable by Laura Cheyenne (Always use protection when having sex)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by mellshannbee (This teen knows girls who are having their second children already)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why start your life so early? by delaneysue (Sex education is making teen girls wiser)

  12. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by bootylicious (Teens have learned from the burdens of others)

  13. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Be a Teenager, Not a Mom or Dad by VinnyP37 (Preventing pregnancy is an important public policy)

  14. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by twins57 (Media encourages safe sex)

  15. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Rates have declined by adriela1 (Contraception is very easy to receive)

  16. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Rates on the Drop by Tana.K (The internet holds tons of information on safe sex)

  17. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Decline of Pregnancies by baylorbearben (The media portrays other ways to have sex that don’t involve intercourse)

  18. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education on Contraceptives by AshleyRA (Birth control is cheap and can make you look and feel better)

  19. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What is to blame for the declining rates? by tylerkay94 (Planned Parenthood is a great organization for sex education)

  20. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why the Numbers Are Lowering by Brianaxlove (Marriage is going out of style)

  21. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Media to Blame? by 123sinjin456 (More teens are using contraception)

  22. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Teens are scared of pregnancy by samnmacy (Teens don’t want a risk to become a reality)

  23. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Possibilities of Technology and Help from Society by peggii (This teen doesn’t believe the statistics that pregnancy is at its lowest)

  24. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Don’t Throw Your Life Away by LMurillo32 (Teens are taught the risks of sex)

  25. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education & Positive Peer Pressure by clairereichley (Teens are wiser about the choices they make)

  26. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Reasons for this Trend by mVira (Sex education and a public spotlight on teen moms is halting the teen pregnancy rate)

  27. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Well Educated Generation by zpeterson7 (Health education is hugely important)

  28. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Both Sides of the Story by wedmage96 (Abstinence education doesn’t work)

  29. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by luke webb (Contraception and abortion are the main reasons why teen pregnancy rates are so low)

  30. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Too Smart to Have One by basketballbeast (More teens are afraid of STDs than before)

  31. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Having a kid when you’re not grown up yourself by andrew (Schools hold assemblies on teen pregnancy)

  32. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Planned Parenthood by _Contreras (Planned Parenthood is a great resource for sex education)

  33. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Sex Education and Reality TV by rob9ers (Many teen moms qualify for WIC and have trouble making payments and affording insurance)

  34. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Recession and Birth Control by Maury33 (The recession has inspired teens to be thriftier with their money)

  35. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Economy and Birth Control by Leslie (The Hispanic teen pregnancy rate is the highest)

  36. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Contraceptives by jonathansosa97 (Teens are taught the consequences of unsafe sex)

  37. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Wiser Kids, Harder Economic Times, and Sex Education by rtiongson (Planned Parenthood provides free or low cost treatments)

  38. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Contraception, Education by khw0716 (A decline in rapes have contributed to lower teen pregnancy rates)

  39. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Birth Control by Deonh10 (Birth control is easily accessible)

  40. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Responsibility by Cindy.D106 (Teens may be experiencing miscarriages because they do not take care of themselves when pregnant)

  41. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Reality TV, education, and the change in time by ethompson (It is no longer cool to be pregnant at a young age)

  42. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Rise of Birth Control and Sex Education by brandonbb7 (Teens have taken the initiative for safe sex)

  43. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Prophylactic Availability by StudentWriter (Sex education in young children has prevented teen pregnancy)

  44. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Contraceptives by ChloeA123 (Teens are no longer ashamed to have safe sex)

  45. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Reality TV by Rickymeija (Society has taken action with sex education in addition to schools)

  46. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Decline of Teenage Pregnancies by reannmarie (The school dropout rate has also decreased)

  47. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Inventions by tristo (Teens can play Temple Run instead of having sex)

  48. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Reality TV by Val (Guys can’t handle the pressure of being a dad so they take care to have safe sex)

  49. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Birth Control and Media by jason (Teen pregnancy would be much more rampant if it wasn’t for birth control)

  50. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Appeal of Contraceptives by clementine221 (Birth control is now socially acceptable)

  51. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Invisible Hand of Society by dyu (Education in general breeds less babies)

  52. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Decline by geolop7 (Information about sex can be found anywhere)

  53. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Easy Access Protection by danielle.sumii (Planned Parenthood is free and confidential for all)

  54. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Mind of a teen by Jupiter_Hadley (Teens are more careful during sex)

  55. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Heightened Consciousness by wewillreturn777 (Many factors contribute to low pregnancy rates)

  56. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Are Teens Getting Smarter? by ml.servantez (Teens don’t like being told what to do)

  57. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Educational Effects are Evident by glasseshughman (This teen was deeply affected by her sex ed class)

  58. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Birth Control is No Longer a Social Taboo by Alexa34 (Birth control was illegal up until the 1960s)

  59. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Is Technology the Answer? by nicholascaris (Teens look for information on sex online)

  60. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Condoms and Sex Ed—Who would’ve known? by bazinga99 (MTV shows only glorify pregnancy)

  61. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Advancement of Knowledge and Access of Contraceptives by annafrichards (Teens are much smarter about sex)

  62. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Prevention and Awareness by Gabrielle_J7 (Teens are better aware of the adversities that accompany having a child so young)

  63. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Kids Aren’t Dumb Anymore by joshwade22 (Education, both on sex and in general, prevents pregnancy)

  64. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Videos can influence by esoojungk (This teen’s school offers a child development class)

  65. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Awareness by davidpu (Planned Parenthood offers comprehensive sex education)

  66. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: It’s Not Sexy and You Know It by kevinlau (Teens can’t focus on school if they get pregnant)

  67. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: A Greater Education by sharonsu (Education and “morally right” decisions lower pregnancy rates)

  68. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: State Provided Contraception by cpan257 (State governments and Planned Parenthood offer contraceptives at low prices or for free)

  69. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Sports and College > Baby by katrinalogemann (Planned Parenthood offers fantastic alternatives to parenthood)

  70. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by Jenna Thomas (Teens aren’t having less sex; they are having safer sex)

  71. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Knowledge + Fear of Responsibility = Success by minikat14 (Sex ed classes are required in most schools)

  72. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Advertisements and Personal Experience by alexandra909 (Her town has ads for free clinics and sex education on billboards all over the place)


  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Family of Teen Moms by lizzybeth (Being a teen mom runs in this teen’s family)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Early Procreation by skyles34 (Her family has a history of teen pregnancies)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why it’s declining by mars (Families have open dialogues about safe sex)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by Rylee11 (This teen was put up for adoption)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Lesson Learned From Uncle by bf5163 (This teen’s uncle had a child very young)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: An All Time Low by renee103 (Family interaction and personal experience prevent pregnancy)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Live Your Life by foohy101 (Open communication between family members is important)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Cult of Self-Esteem by apage344 (Teens are taught to fear pregnancy)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The decline of teen pregnancy by ripmerritt45 (Parents are more involved in their children’s lives)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What is working? by hunterbcurry (Teens could be responsible for taking care of infant siblings)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Yeah, so, Parents… by Prince-of-the-Enigma (Her parents instilled a fear of sex in her)

  12. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Enjoy Your Teenage Years by KTkopf (Parents teach their kids to do the right thing)

  13. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: An important topic by Jake Rezner (Parents are more open about sex)

  14. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Parental Support by Maressa Rosales (Parents want the best for their kids)

  15. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I Was a Teen Mom Baby by vixterm.14 (This teen’s parents struggled with having children so young)

  16. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Facts and Birth Control by Orapun (Parents are more willing to speak to their teens about sex and birth control)

  17. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Kid That Changed My Life by AutumnE (When her drug addicted mother failed to care for her new baby brother, this teen stepped up to the challenge)

  18. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: When I Was Your Age… by sharolldamron (Teens listen to parents and grandparents for advice)

  19. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Scared Teens Come to Their Senses by jordanbarbosa (This teen watched her older cousin struggle to care for a baby)


  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Abstinence by kymurphy91 (Teens should focus on other activities besides sex)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Positive Role Models by charliekittrell (Celebrities urge abstinence)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why are the rates dropping? by struax77 (This teen hopes teens are learning the value of abstinence)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: My point of view by Rilee-K (This teen and her friends won’t “lose” abstinence)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Wait If You Can by Robert (The risk of pregnancy and STDs is too high to have sex)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Abstinence by Abbiluvsmusic (This teen was surprised to find that there aren’t laws preventing minors from buying contraception)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Abstinence and Contraceptives by iesha (Statistics on teen pregnancy)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Abortion and Birth Control by Belinda (Getting pregnant at a young age can ruin your future)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why now? by sophianukuto (Women are too strong to fall under men’s clutches)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Preventinon: The Longer You Wait, The Better it Gets by hotwheelsearl (Women don’t need to prove their independence by getting pregnant)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Save your love for marriage by Alexa143 (Love is greater than sex)

Long-Term Goals/Other Activities

  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: No surprise rates have dropped by runnergurl262 (Teens have higher goals and work harder in school now)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: It’s Prom Season! by duhveekuh (Teen girls wouldn’t want to be pregnant during prom anyway)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Competition for Success by Autumnmall (Many teen girls are focused on getting into college)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: My Life is too Hectic to be Pregnant by taylorkhickman (This teen has too much on her plate to worry about babies)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Lower Rate Reasons by Wilson12 (Most girls prefer money to babies)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: We’re getting smarter by billenba (Education is more important than sex)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by tst663 (If you finish school, you make more money)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I Want A Career in Dance by tlm1018 (This teen doesn’t want to distract herself from her life goal)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by kinyonchevy1 (Teens are busy with sports)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Academics and Sports by vanderlindehanna12 (Doing sports made this teen more disciplined)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I’m Too Busy by ninascott2013 (Why have sex when you can play Farmville?)

  12. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Busy Being a Teenager and NOT a Mom by MerrittGambino (A girls’ future will be ruined if she has a baby)

  13. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Future by bjh0203 (Teens are finally realizing there is no future with a baby)

  14. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education, Technology, and Parental Stress by MeowBlanc (Teens needs to do work in order to succeed)

  15. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Think about the consequences by Paolacardenas_8 (Getting into college requires a lot of focus)

  16. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: An Emerging Reality by dmrdj (Teens busy themselves with tough schoolwork and work)

  17. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I spend too much money on clothes to afford a baby by Alexisarroyo (This teen wants to break into the fashion industry)

Friendship/Peer Pressure

  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Do you really want to start your life this early? by chandlerharris1029 (In the 1700s, teen girls were expected to have babies)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Living in a world of fantasy by amblife (Men look down on women who are “impure”)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Numbers keep on dropping by hoskins (Teens love their freedom and social life)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by zhannahoe (A girl in her school “removed herself from the internet” after becoming a teen mom)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Because Kids Shouldn’t Have Kids by lizzfulton04 (Teens have sex because of peer pressure)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: No one wants to be the pregnant girl by MaddieKaye (You wouldn’t want to be the girl everyone makes fun of)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I would rather date Link by jmasters (Social media deglamorizes sex)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Deterioration of Teen Pregnancies by LOLSmileyFace (Reputation is at stake when a teen gets pregnant)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: My friend’s a teen mom by dhowe629 (This teen’s friend struggles with her child)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Teen Moms with Bad Reputations by htindle (Teens who become pregnant are not as accepted at school)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Yes, I’m a Teenager. No, I’m Not Pregnant by camdenbradford (Role models preach about not having babies so young)

  12. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Reality is Setting In by madisontiona97 (Teens watch teen moms struggle to survive)

  13. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why teen births are decreasing by addycox (Statistics about teen pregnancies and births)

  14. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by AnthonyGarrard (Teens get info on sex from many different sources)

  15. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Knowing the Consequences by Biancaa C (Caring for a child is not an easy job)

  16. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What’s Changed? by madilisak (Plain fear has inspired teens to be more cautious about their sex lives)

  17. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Shift of Consciousness by Emin7 (Teens don’t want to grow up just yet)

  18. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Support, Contraceptives, and Saving Virginity by Damaris (Teens cling to sex to feel loved)

  19. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Learning Through Example by katylella (Friends see their friends get pregnant, and then they don’t get pregnant)

  20. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: A Dynamic Social Climate by JoshLange (Teens don’t want to be social outcasts)

  21. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Empowerment by artfreak889 (Teens are realizing the power in individuality)

TV Shows/Media

  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: It’s No Wonder There Has Been a Decline by segoodwin (The two MTV shows focus on the hardships of caring for children at such a young age; combined with comprehensive sex ed, teen girls are being more careful about sex)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I’m Remaining Baby Free by Sar-Bear (Teen Mom shows the difficulties of caring for a baby combined with the pressures of teenagedom)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Have teenagers changed their habits? by tanyarosii (MTV reality shows educate audiences about the perils of teen pregnancy)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why is it declining? by starpower (By watching Teen Mom, teens see how good they have it now)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by shaina13 (The MTV shows actually promote pregnancy)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by Vanessa (Teen Mom gives tips on how to prevent pregnancy)

  7. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Living Young, Wild and Free by ellabee (Being a teenager is hard enough without a baby)

  8. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The reality of being a teen mom by VannaBelle (Being a teen mom is difficult)

  9. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What scares teens away from becoming a statistic by missvictorzzz (MTV shows and ABC Family’s Secret Life may make teens be more careful about sex)

  10. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: At an all-time low due to all-time low desirability by katieusiak (TV shows how life-changing pregnancy is)

  11. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by qpoyer (True stories from real life teens are influencing the show’s viewers)

  12. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Dropping numbers by ksi498 (Getting pregnant while young is not cool)

  13. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I’ll Wait to Have a Child by haleyhochstein (Teen Mom doesn’t glamorize teen motherhood)

  14. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Now It Seems Real by morningowl200 (The publicity from these shows have prompted parents to speak to teens about sex)

  15. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why is it declining by akashr318 (Teens are beginning to understand the responsibility that comes with having a baby)

  16. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Worries of Being a Parent by carlos_murillo01 (Teen girls are realizing that they most likely will end up single moms)

  17. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I Spend Too Much Time With My Friends To Have a Baby by margaret.adams10 (Rates are declining because of awareness)

  18. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: It’s completely up to you by nellyfloyd (Teen moms on the show wished they would have waited)

  19. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Teen moms in decline by iain.patrick0425 (Teenagers get scared when they see the teen moms suffer)

  20. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Realizing the Risk by evangeline_s (TV shows open up conversation about teen pregnancy)

  21. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Harsh Reality of what Education Prevents by OCinthya (Teenagers want careers, not babies)

  22. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Fear by Reiprifti (The media makes teens fear pregnancy)

  23. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Great Depression by brova0619 (There is currently a “depression” of teen pregnancies)

  24. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why I Think Teen Pregnancy is Declining by sammi_96 (Wait until you’re married to have sex)

  25. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Cognizance is Key by pizooks (Social media allows teens to “observe” the lifestyle of a teen mom)

  26. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Reality TV and Education by rm0924 (These shows have a clear message on the wrongness of having a baby young)

  27. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by ChrisBott (Movies like Juno show the struggles of teen moms)

  28. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: What’s Happened? by jackiejackie (When teens understand the depth of their decisions, they make better choices)

  29. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education by izzy (Education should come first)

  30. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Ethnically by reneisha (Television shows contribute to the decline of pregnancy)

  31. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Realities of Teenage Parenthood by jenni.asaro (Scare tactics work to prevent pregnancy)

  32. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: No More Attention by kylie.carolino (By watching teen moms on TV and in real life, teen girls stray away from pregnancy)

  33. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Knowledge is Power by davidzepeda (Classes and TV shows show the harsh reality of being a teen mom)

  34. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Awareness of Options and Consequences by jennifertang (American society provides teens with the tools and information they need to protect themselves)

  35. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Can’t Waste My Precious Young Years Raising a Baby by Elleena1 (Temptation to have sex is strong)

  36. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Media Distractions Lead to Fewer Pregnancies by cassidy (Teens spend more time on the internet)

  37. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Steady Increase of Knowledge and Care by a_starr (Society spreads awareness)

  38. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The More You Know by Acrom (Scare tactics work)

  39. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Realizing the truth by moonlightstar (Teens are scared by the aftermath of having a baby)

  40. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: I don’t want that to happen to me by KylieVari (After watching these shows, many teens are choosing to wait to have sex)

  41. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Contraceptive Media by a.yue (Teens spend an average of 106 minutes a day on Facebook)

  42. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: We don’t want to be next by queendom (Fear prevents pregnancy)


  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Hardest Thing Is Wanting To Keep Something You Can’t Have by Ninlite (Her friend was faced with a difficult decision after getting pregnant)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention by Mf2185 (More teen girls are getting abortions)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Offering other options by OliviaZZZ5 (Rates are slowing thanks to safety nets)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: From Abstinence to Abortion by jfajardo (America is “immoral”)


  1. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Fewer Teens Pregnant Due to Driving Deaths by littlechotes (While the teen pregnancy rate has declined, the rate of teen deaths in car accidents has risen)

  2. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: The Decline of Teen Pregnancies by brookeslade (God influences some teens’ decisions)

  3. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Why the downfall? by Jonesy1106 (The Church of Latter Day Saints prevents teen pregnancies through strict guidelines)

  4. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Video Gaming by awesomeness of awesomeness (Boys are paying more attention to video games than girls)

  5. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Reality TV, Video Games, and Education by jose616o (Video games are more realistic and more fun than girlfriends)

  6. Teen Pregnancy Prevention: Education and Reality TV by LuisAcevedo7 (Statistics on teen pregnancy)

Of the essays received, on thing Stage of Life noticed is that most teens avoided discussing a very controversial birth control issue: abortion.  Nearly every person has a personal (and in some cases very visceral) reaction to abortion.  There are two passionate camps on each end of this issue, i.e. the pro-abortion/pro-choice movement or anti-abortion/pro-life movement. 

To honor both sides of this issue, consider the following...


Watch the video called “Abortion in the United States” produced by the Guttmacher Institute, an organization that focuses on advancing reproductive health.  Additionally, consider the following statistics...

  1. One in Three: One in three women will receive an abortion sometime in her life. Three out of four of these women claim religious affiliation.

  2. Not Teens: Teenagers only account for two out of ten abortions in the United States, which suggests that teens are more actively using contraception.

  3. Relief: Most women feel relief after they receive an abortion. While some women may feel depressed or stressed, there is no such thing as “Post-Abortion Syndrome” (Planned Parenthood).

  4. 12 Weeks: Over 88% of abortions occur before or at 12 weeks of pregnancy, when the fetus is two and a half inches big. Any abortions past 12 weeks are generally threatening to the mother’s life (Guttmacher, Planned Parenthood).

  5. Safe: According to both the CDC and the Guttmacher Institute, there is absolutely no link between abortion and breast cancer, infertility, and future miscarriages. Of women who receive abortions at 12 weeks (or before), only 0.3% of patients receive complications that result in hospitalization. The Guttmacher Institute confirms that abortion is completely safe to a women’s physical and mental health. In fact, pregnancy is more likely to kill a woman than abortion is.


On the other side of the abortion debate, there are a wide variety of Pro Life organizations and resources out there.  Here are three sources our research uncovered...

LAST WORD has always and will always be a welcoming community for arguments on both sides of any issue.  We leave it up to our blogging community to craft the dialogue on our writing contests each month.  This topic was a particularly sensitive issue, and we appreciate all of the student writers who participated.

Writing Contest Archive - Students

Writing Contests and Teen Trend Reports Student Writing Contests

Below you will find all of the monthly writing contests and teen trend reports from the last five years hosted by  Our dedication to digital literacy efforts have reached over 1,000,000 students and teachers in the last half decade, received mention on, and features in the news.  Feel free to click through and read the top essay submissions from any given month. is honored to be one of the most-visited writing contests for students in the world.  We love working with you as we celebrate the journey as life-long readers and writers...

2016 Writing Contests

Writing Contest for High School Students

2015 Writing Contests

2014 Writing Contests

 2013 Writing Contests

2012 Writing Contests

2011 Writing Contests

 2010 Writing Contests

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