These days it is extremely difficult to find any kind of television that isn’t ‘reality’ oriented. Since the arrival of Big Brother in the early 2000’s, reality TV has become a staple part of our viewing necessities, tapping into our voyeuristic needs. But why the huge obsession with other people’s lives? You would think our own lives were awful enough, but that’s exactly it. It’s the plain old fact that other people, no matter what background or where they come from, all have the same worries, laughs and anxieties that we ourselves suffer. And you no what? It makes for great viewing.
So when MTV debuted their new reality TV show in 2009 that promised controversial characters with an added shock factor, the world was intrigued. What they didn’t expect however was a documentary format that focused on a number of under age teens who also happened to be pregnant. Yes 16 and Pregnant, as it came to be known, followed the lives of an array of pregnant teens and the woes of impending childbirth. Hugely popular and making a variety of its ‘characters’ stars, the reality TV show even spawned a number of spin-offs: Teen Mom, Teen Mom 2 and Teen Mom 3. However, not everyone was happy, with the show often being accused of ‘glamorizing teen pregnancy’ by lauding its pregnant teens as celebrities. From gracing the cover of people magazine to launching sex tapes, the stars have most definitely become famous in their own right, giving the impression that yeah, having a child at 16 years old is pretty damn cool.
Whatever the case, there is no denying how popular the show has become and it is often credited with actually lowering the teen birth rate rather than increasing it. So, to celebrate its success, let’s find out what exactly happened to the stars who helped give insight into the teenagers of modern America.
11. Megan McConnell
Appearing on the highly successful second series, 16-year-old Megan was shown to have become pregnant by her then 19-year-old boyfriend, Nathan. With the relationship an unhappy one, the couple surprisingly married but divorced a year later due to Nathan’s lack of help or involvement. Moving on, it was later revealed that Megan had welcomed her second son in 2015 with new beau Chase Eubanks. With a future wedding in the horizon, Megan was actually introduced to Chase by fellow 16 and pregnant star Kayla Jordan! Recently declaring her love, the tattooed beauty stated that “we want to get married, but we don’t know when.”
10. Felicia Cooke
Famed for her turbulent relationship with ex beau and father to her daughter Genesis, Felicia certainly cooked up a storm on the second series. Different from most of the other stars of the show, Felicia showed a keen interest in her stories and graduating from high school. With cheating scandals often rocking the couple, the pair eventually split, however both seemingly got back together when Felicia gave birth to girl number two, Giselle, in 2014. However, recently it was reported that Felicia had somewhat regretted her turn on the successful show and was quoted as saying, “I really regret being on MTV, worst mistake ever.” Oh dear!
9. Maci Bookout
Probably one of the most successful stars to come out of the show, 16 year old Maci was the first to be seen, on the very first series. Residing in Tennessee, Maci became pregnant by her then boyfriend Ryan Edwards, however the pair split and Maci welcomed another baby in 2015. Now pregnant with her third child, Maci has even generated popularity with her very own name, with reports stating an increase in use over the past few years. Going on to star in the spin-off, Teen Mom OG, Maci is now planning her upcoming marriage, with no plans for anymore children, stating, “there are going to be some permanent birth control decisions made immediately after birth.” Well, there is always ‘Adult Mom?’
8. Brooke Smitherman-Tarrant
Texans Brooke and Cody made history when they became the first couple to get hitched on the show. Shotgun style, the pair quickly married before the birth of their son and happily went on to have another in 2012. However taking a turn for the worse, Brooke and Cody divorced in early 2015 after a solid six years of marriage, yet seemingly have remained on good terms and are often pictured together on social media. However don’t get your hopes up for a reconciliation as it was recently reported that Cody was happily involved with another woman.
7. Catelynn Lowell
Along with her long term boyfriend, Tyler Baltierra, Catelynn’s story saw her give up her baby for adoption, resulting in a very public dispute with her mother. Still with her boyfriend, the pair had a second child in 2015 and were married soon after. However after admitting to suffering from severe postpartum depression, Catelynn checked into a treatment facility in early 2o16. On the mend, Catelynn recently tweeted, “For everyone that thinks I’m so ‘strong’ I’m really not… one day you will know why. I also can be very weak.” The plot thickens.
6. Jenelle Evans
One of the most memorable cast members, party girl Jenelle Evans shot into the spotlight for giving her mother temporary custody of her son in 2009, and is said to still be embroiled in a bitter dispute. Marrying in 2012, Jenelle eventually divorced a year later but was then revealed to be pregnant the same year, but with another man’s baby. Giving birth in 2014, Jenelle became engaged to the baby’s father, Nathan Griffith but broke off their engagement due to claims she had tried to commit suicide. Alive and well, Jenelle is currently involved in another bitter custody battle and has gone on to star in Teen Mom 2. Never mind that, this girl needs her own show.
5. Aubrey Wolters
Marrying boyfriend Brandon Akerill prior to the birth of her son, Aubrey and Brandon later divorced in 2011. Later that same year, Aubrey was diagnosed with non-cancerous thyroid tumors in her throat and was also arrested for shoplifting in everybody’s favorite store, Walmart. Going on to have another child in 2014, Aubrey is reported to be extremely happy and in very good health. Good for her!
4. Lori Wickelhaus
In one of the most heart wrenching episodes, 17-year-old Lori was seemingly swayed into giving up her son for adoption by then boyfriend Cory and her own family. Later admitting that she never truly got over the adoption, Lori continues to be a staple part of her son’s life. Going on to have a baby girl in 2013 with her then fiance Joey Amos, it was confirmed that they broke up later that year. Having given birth to a third child in 2014, there are currently no claims to who the father actually is, however Lori is still as private as ever and has yet to comment further.
3. Whitney Purvis
Featured on the very first season, 16-year-old Whitney Purvis and her then boyfriend Weston Gosa were seen to be preparing the arrival of their first child. With the couple having their fair share of ups and downs, they were eventually arrested for criminal trespassing in 2012 with Gosa again arrested for a DUI later that year. However things seemed to have taken a turn for the worse when Purvis was incarcerated for allegedly attacking Weston with a metal broom handle in 2015. Three kids later and now happily engaged to someone else, Whitney has vowed to never go back to prison.
2. Summer Rewis
Pregnant to her then boyfriend DJ Rewis of three years, Summer had a variety of struggles at home and with her mother’s addiction. Giving birth in 2013, Summer and DJ quickly married before the birth (a common theme) and are expecting a second baby in 2016. However with reports that Summer allegedly walked in on DJ with another woman, the couple have gotten back together and are apparently stronger than ever. Rather you than me, Summer.
1. Farrah Abraham
Where do we start! Notoriously the most famous cast member, Farrah is also the most scandalous. Making more than a splash in the first season, 16-year-old Farrah begins the program by not telling her ex boyfriend about her pregnancy due to threatening text messages. Later revealed that he had died in a car accident before the birth of the baby, Farrah also had a turbulent relationship with her mother. Going on to star in the spin-off Teen Mom, Farrah was also a contestant on Celebrity Big Brother in which she got into a heated argument resulting in the hospitalization of another contestant. Quickly working her way to the top as the queen of reality TV, Farrah also released a sex tape in 2013, which she later claimed was leaked. Whatever the case, love her or loathe her, she sure knows how to work the wonderful world of showbiz.