Conference Contribution Details
Mandatory Fields
Maria Dempsey
PSI Annual Conference
Title: Teenage pregnancy in Ireland: Constancy and change
Oral Presentation
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The study aimed to explore whether lived experiences of teenage pregnancy in contemporary Ireland are similar to experiences recorded ten years earlier. It was situated in, and contributes to, a developing shift in academic and public discourse on early aged pregnancy. This grounded theory study comprised 11 individual interviews with participants who had been pregnant between the ages of 14-19. Three categories identified ten years ago namely ‘embedding and contextualising teenage pregnancy’, ‘journey through pregnancy’, and ‘becoming a teen mum; adjusting to a new identity’ were reflected in the current data set. However, participants had advanced their abilities to verbally unpack issues and utilise technology to support their experiences. Lived experiences of teenage pregnancy and motherhood as an individual developmental journey was reiterated through this follow-up study, though participants considered issues at a deeper conceptual level. Such development suggests a greater sense of personal agency in this cohort than was evident ten years ago. The experience of teenage pregnancy in Ireland has expanded such that it warrants consideration through a lens of cultural diversity.