Teenage Pregnancy; The Yorubas Perspective

Teenage Pregnancy

Teenage pregnancy to many and their tribe is a thing of shame. The Yorubas, however, are a more supportive and forgiving tribe. Their daughter will get pregnant before getting married and what the family is more concerned about is how to take care of the mother-to-be.

The Yorubas will not disown their daughter because she got pregnant out of wedlock. They accept that a mistake has been made and they look for how to move forward.

Read: My Friends Lacks Good Moral Values But They Are Nice

Now, this does not imply that the family of the pregnant girl is not hurt by their daughter’s actions and neither does this generalize that every Yoruba family readily accepts a daughter who gets pregnant out of wedlock. Of course, there are exceptions.

Some time ago, the story of an 18-year-old girl who was beaten to death because she was impregnated by her Yoruba boyfriend surfaced and circulated the internet for a while. The boyfriend’s family had already accepted the girl and unborn child and according to the story, were already taking care of the girl in whatever way they could. The girl’s family, an Igbo family, however, tortured and constantly subjected the pregnant girl to the physical abuse that led to her death.

Disclaimer: This is in no way to judge the wicked actions of a family by their tribe. This is a thought of a writer who has lived amongst Yorubas and is elucidating this one defining characteristic of the Yoruba family.

As stated earlier, there are some Yorubas who may take their daughters to a clinic to have the foetus aborted but such a thing is usually done in a hush-hush manner because their neighbours will judge them the worse for it.

To show you how the Yorubas move forward from the shame of their daughter getting pregnant out of wedlock, as soon as the child is born, they plan a naming ceremony as though it were another normal naming ceremony of a baby born to a married couple.

The new mother may go and live with the new father’s family with her baby or she may remain with her own family.

The Yoruba family will not kill their daughter because she got pregnant before marriage. The worst that could happen is that motherhood may interrupt her formal education or put a total stop to it or not, depending on the family she comes from while she goes out to make a living to take care of herself and her new baby.


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