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Thread: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

  1. #611
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Ohhh that makes more sense. Sorry I didn't see it!

    I'm not really sure that Frances (is that her name? I don't know) is mentally ill. I don't think she is, but I do think she also needs to learn how to communicate with Farrah.

    Sometimes, though, I think we attribute things to a mental illness or we assume the solution to a problem is therapy, when really it's not. Don't get me wrong, I'm a huge supporter of and believer in psychotherapy, but for people who are seeking attention, or believe the world revolves around them, sometimes therapy simply reinforces that belief, that they are the "victim" and there's a reason for the things that have happened to them that isn't them.

  2. #612
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Gary bugs me to no end. This guy is a lazy slob who acts like the world is supposed to take care of him, and feel great doing it. When he was talking to the people they were visiting saying this is what they needed a vacation, I almost puked. You are what nineteen, do not work, barely take care of your child, and you need a vacation. Try being me having three children, a marriage, a full time job, going to school, and being about fifteen years or so past needing a vacation. What a pathetic loser this guy is.

    Maci is beyond her years wise. She truly learned from her mistake of sex too early. She is a wonderful mother to Bentley. I applauded her for being so mature about Ryan and his new gal. She actually only cared about how it would affect Bentley, and I loved how she told her new boyfriend that they way she told her about the fall made her know she was ok. Most girls her age, and older, would hate the new girl no matter what. She definitely has her priorities straight.

    Farrah is beyond a mess. Sophia should be in foster care at this point. Her mother leaves her in sinks, in hallways, and she obviously does not have her priorities straight. She has an expensive cellphone, has a regular hair stylist, and can go out? She wants everyone to feel for her, and does not care about what is best for her child. It is not about you anymore, and it is time Sophia's needs came first. Shoot even the District Attorney knew Sophia needed her grandmother.

    Catelynn and Tyler just have no story left. I feel like we are watching the same show played week after week with them. I honestly think that out of all of the stories these two's only chance of staying together would have been if Carly was with them. I think that is all that ties them together at this point, and if they were to move beyond it, she would need to be with them to see if there was more. I think Leah and Sophia should have for sure been adopted to a more stable family situation.

  3. #613
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Sometimes Gary seems like a marginally better parent than Amber is, but he doesn't seem all that upset that he doesn't have a job, and I can't believe that he keeps going back to Amber, or that she continues to want him back, when all they do is whine and argue. Heck, they got into an argument about how he should ask her to marry him in the middle of his proposal. If they can't even refrain from fighting during a marriage proposal, perhaps they really don't belong together. As it is, they both spend way more time talking about their own relationship and their own problems than they spend discussing anything having to do with Leah. I really liked that Ryan's new girlfriend thought he should introduce her so that Maci would be comfortable having her around Bentley and that she told Maci that Bentley had hit his mouth on that table when Ryan didn't. It was the responsible thing for her to do, and Maci obviously appreciated it. What I don't understand is why either young woman would ever have dated Ryan, considering that they both appear to be a lot smarter and more mature than he is. Of the three children we see regularly, Bentley's the one I worry least about (I'm not counting Carlie, since we don't know much about her daily life, though I'm happily assuming her adoptive parents are seeing to it that she is loved and cared for, since everything we do know would indicate that). I don't know that Tyler and Caitlyn's story is so much done as that it's now more like what a lot of young couples go through. Most teenage romances don't end in marriage, and that's fine, because whom you choose at sixteen is probably not whom you'd choose at twenty or thirty. In fact, if they didn't have a common concern in Carlie, they'd probably have broken up long ago. I'd like to see them work with a counselor and come to the conclusion that they need some time apart, and that doesn't mean that they care any less about Carlie--or even each other--but that their relationship is simply moving in a different direction than an eventual marriage. Even if they break up, that doesn't mean they can't do so without continuing to care about the other person. Farrah is just a mess, and frankly, she and her mother need some kind of couples counseling too, since their fractured relationship affects Sophia, who had bonded with her grandmother and clearly misses her. And yeah, if Farrah doesn't wake up, something bad could happen and Sophia could suffer for it, and she could lose custody. I still don't understand why there seems to be no involvement on the part of her baby daddy's family. Do they not know about Sophia or do they just not care? You'd think they might at least like to meet her, especially since she's the last link they have to their son (unless their own relationship with their son was such a mess that they're estranging themselves from his daughter as well...or unless he simply had no family to speak of in the first place).

  4. #614
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Earlier, I said that Leah was a crier, by nature. I think I should have said that Leah has been taught/raised to cry.
    "...each affects the other, and the other affects the next, and the world is full of stories, but the stories are all one." - Mitch Albom, one helluva writer

    When you throw a rock into a pack of dogs, you know which one you hit by the one that yelps!

  5. #615
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Leah may be somewhat fussy naturally, as some babies are, but both her parents whine as well, so she's had them right there as an example. In particular, when Amber whines, Gary tends to capitulate to her, so Leah's undoubtedly picked up that whining and crying gets you attention and often gets you exactly what you want as well.

    I have noticed that when Leah's around other people, as in when she's in daycare, she's not nearly as fussy, but I'm not sure if that's because they set better examples for her or because she's just more comfortable away from the stress of all of her parents' nonsense.

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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Amber and Gary just have VERY limited views of the world and their capacity to function. Remember when they were desperate for money, but she forced Gary to go to the party store to get birithday party decorations when neither of them had the money. She focused on buying worthless trinkets instead of something Leah really needed. Amber really had no insight. It must be so sad to grow up with a mother who as selfish and immature as Amber.

    Gary is a little better, but he doesn't understand how their behavior and conduct is harmful to Leah.

    Did you see them on the reunion show when discussing the prospect of having another baby? Gary pretended to be upset, but not Amber. I don't think Gary was either. They acted relieved on a recent episode, but I don't buy it.

    Honestly, I'm not sure what could be done to alter Amber and Gary. I think it's as good as it's going to get with those two. They are just clueless.

  7. #617
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    I think the problem with Amber and Gary is Amber and Gary. Their relationship is toxic to them, their daughter, and everyone around them (I can't imagine having to listen to the two of them argue and whine all day long). I don't know if they'd be any better with anyone else, but Amber has clearly figured out that if she whines and cries enough that Gary will just give in, no matter what he's just said. On Valentine's Day, he was on the verge of moving out, she throws a crying fit, and he turns her old engagement ring into a promise ring. When he doesn't propose in exactly the words she wants, in exactly the tone she wants, in exactly the way she wants, he gets upset, but he does what she wants, and she manages to whine even while accepting the proposal. I don't know if Gary simply has no spine or self-respect or if he only behaves that way around Amber. I don't know if Amber would do better around someone who wouldn't just cave into her emotional outbursts or if she's simply that self-involved. But I do know the combination of the two of them is just awful. They're clearly not making each other or their daughter happy, even though they somehow think that as long as she has both her parents together, Leah will be happy. I don't know why they think that, since Leah is almost constantly crying, but they do. Their relationship is a virtual daily train wreck, and yet they seem to be insistent on boarding the same train every single day.


    Someone needs to wake those two up, if that's at all possible.

  8. #618
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    I just finished watching this week's episode, and I'm beginning to believe they should rename the show, "Teen Mom: The Most Exhausting Hour on TV."

    I know we were supposed to feel sorry for Farrah at the end of the episode, and I suppose I felt a little bad for her, but really....she referred to when she used to be immature. Used to be? She doesn't know where to sign a check! How could you not know that--and even if you didn't, how hard would it be to figure out? She doesn't realize that you need to check the validity of a check for a huge on-line purchase BEFORE you go through with the rest of the deal--and certainly before you send any money to the purchaser. She doesn't know better than to leave a squirmy one year old on a bed unattended and walk out of the room. Did anyone not know that Sophia was going to fall off that bed the moment Farrah left the room? Anyone besides Farrah, I mean. Oh, and she takes a baby out in the rain without a jacket or a diaper bag. Who does that? She just seems so completely unprepared for life I'm surprised she can make it through doors and around corners.


    I don't know that Caitlynn and Tyler have much of a chance to make it as a couple, but fortunately, if they, like many people their age, do end up going their separate ways, Carlie will not be in the middle of their mess. Those two have their problems, but they do have enough flashes of maturity that I think in the long run, they will grow up to be okay, especially since they're willing to ask for the support they can't always get at home from appropriate counselors. I do think Tyler's mom was right about pointing out that his dad failing to make good on promises may be one reason Tyler has a particularly hard time with anyone he cares about not telling the truth. Not that most people wouldn't have a problem with it, but it's especially difficult for Tyler to handle.


    Maci is just doing such a good job of stepping up to the plate as a mom and balancing what she wants to do with what Bentley needs that she's the show's one consistent bright spot. Loved her laying it all on the line for Kyle and making it clear to him that she and Bentley are a package deal and that because Bentley can't be having people walk in and out of his life that anyone she gets involved with has to be mature enough to make a commitment. Better she should scare Kyle right up front than find out later he can't handle it. For his part, Kyle did a pretty good job of handling all that. He even changed a diaper, though it clearly wasn't something he was used to doing. I also liked that he gave Bentley some time to hide in the corner and gradually got him to come out by playing ball with him. Honestly, it made sense that Bentley was a little apprehensive. This unfamiliar guy who had to look like a giant to Bentley comes in, gives his mom a huge hug, and then plunks himself down next to her, while she insists he come out and meet the incredible hulk. It had to be kind of scary for a little guy. By the way, I couldn't help noticing how generally happy Bentley seems to be. Even when Maci thought he was "freaking out" in the little race car, he was so much more even-tempered than the ever crying Leah. Gee, think it could be that he has a more stable home life?

    Speaking of Leah....is it just me or does anyone else want to reach through the screen and shake some sense into Amber? Gary bothers me too, but she really bugs me, because she's constantly creating drama and berating Gary or anyone else who happens to cross her path. Yes, what Gary's brother said at the dinner table wasn't very nice, but just let it go. Sometimes people are going to say stupid, rude things that it's better that you don't react to immediately. Amber reacts in a huge way to everything and never, ever sees that her behavior may make it very hard for others, including Gary, to be around her. No matter what anyone says, she picks it apart to make it an enormous insult directed at her. I also couldn't believe the condition of their apartment. They actually went off on vacation to Florida and left a bathtub full of water behind. Who does that? Believe me, I'm not a neat freak. Far from it. But I have never, ever "forgotten" to drain the tub after a bath, and unless I suddenly have to pack a bag and take off because it's an emergency, I straighten up the house before I leave to go out of town, just so I don't have to come home to a mess. I couldn't help noticing this week that Leah watches those two and when they start to fight, she tenses up. I don't think it's coincidental that she's fussier than, say, Bentley. I think her parents are making her anxious, because she never knows when the next emotional explosion is going to occur.

  9. #619
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    I think the one thing I have to say in criticism of Maci (and believe me, I really think you have to search hard for something to fault her on) is that it probably would have been better to introduce Bentley to someone new in his own home. I think a lot of the reason why he was likely a little shy at first was because he was in an unfamiliar place and meeting someone for the first time. Kyle, however, did the right thing in letting Bentley take his own time and he honestly seemed to pick up fathering instincts a lot more quickly than Ryan.

    Farrah is awful....I think she absolutely deserved losing $3000 if she was going to be that dumb about selling her car and the only problem with her learning a hard lesson is that it is going to affect Sophia too. I can't believe she would leave a baby alone up on a bed or not even remember to take a diaper bag. And she needs to suck it up and apologize to her mother. Her mom made some mistakes, yeah, but she honestly has Farrah's and Sophia's best interests at heart and Farrah needs all the help she can get.

    Gary and Amber....man, I'm not saying Gary is a catch, but it just hits me every time they start to argue that Amber just fights dirty. Instead of discussing the issue they have, she immediately starts screaming, cussing, and going for hits below the belt. Those two will never make it unless she finds a way to get her point across without all the low blows.

  10. #620
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    Re: MTV's 16 and Pregnant

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...they should rename the show, "Teen Mom: The Most Exhausting Hour on TV."
    With most reality shows, we can laugh and enjoy it all as pure escapist entertainment as much as we enjoy speculating about how much of the drama is spontaneous and how much was hammered out in a production office.

    What sets "Teen Moms" apart is that no matter how it's edited or arced or whatevered, its core content consists of 100% undeniable, unescapable, and unpleasant reality.

    Those are real babies, and those really are their moms.

    You don't have to be a parent to feel a primal urge to leap up and snatch little Leah off the floor and get that dirty chocolate out of her mouth. You just have to be human.

    I think that's the reason I (and skimming over this thread, I'd guess some of you, too) get so "invested" in this show.

    We don't have the luxury of smirking knowingly to each other that Tara on OchoCinco, or Wes on the Bachelor, are just actors developing their reality show personas - or making impassioned declarations that oh yes, they really are like that.

    Instead we are obliged to acknowledge, whether we want to or not, a whole mess of disagreeable reality, the ugliness of a big picture whose brush strokes are our own societal choices.

    We can't avoid that because Teen Moms is personal. There are very, very few of us who can say that no one we love is or was either a "teen mom," a babydaddy, or the parent or the child of one or both.

    It's especially difficult for those of us who have been around awhile, because we are more likely to have seen not only those early years documented on the show. We know how the story plays out on into Season 23, all too often well into Teen Moms: The Next Generation.

    I think that's why so many of us have such strong opinions about the show, the characters, and their situations, why it is so hard for even the most optimistic among us to forsee a happy resolution to the girls' stories.

    It's because we know those stories. We've seen every one of them - and more - played out, had our lives touched by them.

    We know that for every one of those stories that does "end well," for every teen mom who beats the odds and overcomes the obstacles and goes on to live a happy and productive life filled with loving relationships and raise a happy, healthy child, well prepared to embark on his or her own life's journey, there are many, many more that just implode in an endless loop of unceasing trainwreckage.

    It's just like that old saying about Hollywood - for every star with her name in lights, there are a thousand shattered dreams.

    Sometimes I think - what a sick attachment to schadenfreude we must have, that we keep watching it week after week!

    Or is it that we are unable to resist the temptation to engage in Magical Thinking, to raise our reality show suspension of disbelief to dizzying heights, hoping we can persuade it to morph into hope, into some kind of collective whoosh! of positive energy or something that will materialize into some sort of fairy godbeing and rescue these little families from their plight?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...I know we were supposed to feel sorry for Farrah at the end of the episode,...but really....she referred to when she used to be immature. Used to be?...
    We are, they say, the only species that does not learn from its mistakes.

    We nod to each other, oh Farrah learned an important lesson this week, didn't she?

    Sadly, probably not. But if we listened to her lament, if we heard the subtext of which she was almost surely unaware, there was an important lesson there for us.

    If we, as a society - and by that I mean a global society, had learned from our mistakes - pick your favorite from the jumbo basketful of the ones we have been consistently repeating for the last few thousand years - little Sophia would not be born until around 2020 or so, by which time Farrah, along with all her fellow cast members from Season One and Season Two would have grown up, established a career and formed a loving and stable relationship with another grownup, and though there would be no danger of anyone mistaking the the world into which little Sophia was born for anything even vaguely resembling a Utopia, if that world even included a Teen Moms show, it would be about people coping with a very unusual set of circumstances, and would be cancelled after about 3 episodes because the only people watching it were a handful of social anthropology nerds.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...Caitlynn and Tyler...will grow up to be okay, especially since they're willing to ask for the support they can't always get at home from appropriate counselors...
    Did you catch the shots of Catelynn's mom, as she listened, just out of sight of Catelynn, but not the camera, while her daughter called a counselor to help her get through a fight with her boyfriend?

    I think it was the first time I've sincerely felt sympathetic toward her.

    I guess in a way it's one of those similar-but-different situtaions, that we see with her and with Farrah's mom.

    The reasons, their problems and issues may be different, but there must be some of the same emotions going on. Neither can help their daughters. If those daughters are going to get any help, it's going to come from somewhere else.

    Farrah's mom may be in some degree of denial about it still, while Catelynn's mom, in that eavesdropping scene, was the picture of sad resignation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...does anyone else want to reach through the screen and shake some sense into Amber?...
    I wish that she and Gary were able to make the choice to let Leah be adopted, before any more time passes. Or that Gary's mom were able to step in and raise Leah, but I'm going to give her credit and assume that if she could, she would have just quietly taken her home a long time ago, and since she hasn't, it is because she knows it would not be best for the baby, for her, or for her family.

    If we went away for ten years and then came back, I think we might find that Gary had grown into a good and responsible man.

    The problem is, Leah would be almost eleven by then, on the brink of puberty, if she hadn't already tumbled over the threshold.

    Amber, I don't know. Her comment about how she would be the one expecting Easter candy sort of said it all.

    The reason I have more hope for Gary, maybe than some people do, is all because of a Season One scene. He had just spent $400 or something on a video game, and when he was reminded that now he had a baby on the way, it was just one of those Moments.

    You could just see it all happen on his face, and then they showed him calling the store to arrange to return the game.

    That was, I think, a pivotal point in his development, the proverbial "growing up overnight."

    The problem is, while he was able to grow up in the sense of understanding that it's not about him any more, and he has responsibilities, he is - just really, really clueless. About pretty much everything.

    That part of growing up where you realize that if you don't have any common sense, you better get some from somewhere, just hasn't happened.

    It's kind of like he is stuck at a developmental age of about 14, and Amber has not quite made it to 6.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...They actually went off on vacation to Florida and left a bathtub full of water behind. Who does that?...
    Children.

    Quote Originally Posted by pretlitdev;4041135;
    ...Farrah...needs to suck it up and apologize to her mother...
    We'll have to agree to disagree on that one. About the only sound and healthy parenting decision Farrah has made is to get herself and her baby out of that environment.

    Quote Originally Posted by pretlitdev;4041135;
    ...Her mom...has Farrah's and Sophia's best interests at heart...
    About that, you may be right. We can't know what is in peoples' hearts. What I can say is that anyone, of any age, who for whatever reason, be it illness, lack of resources, or, as in the case of Catelynn and Tyler, still being children, is unable to provide the kind of nurturing and healthy environment that a baby needs, cannot show greater love for that child or nobler spirit, than to put the well-being of that child above their own desires and wishes.

    Quote Originally Posted by pretlitdev;4041135;
    ...Farrah needs all the help she can get....
    Well, on that we are definitely in agreement! Farrah is still very much a child, her grasp of reality is tenuous at best, and she - and Sophia - are both in desperate and urgent need of the guidance of a loving, functional, stable adult - who can provide that nurturing and healthy environment!

    Frances is, through no fault of her own, unable to provide that guidance or that environment. She wasn't able to provide it for Farrah, now an adolescent and "troubled" in her own right, and now there is also a little baby...

    As Tilden pointed out with reference to Gary and Amber:
    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...Leah watches those two and when they start to fight, she tenses up......
    Children, even infants, pick up on a whole lot more than we grownups sometimes realize or give them credit for.

    They can sense when there is love and affection between the people upon whom they depend for their survival, both physical and emotional, and they can sense when there is hostility and discord.

    We can all hope that recent events will have been a "wake-up call" for Frances, and that motivated by having, as you say, the best interests of both children at heart, she will get the help she needs and do the hard work of recovery so that one day she might be able to be that nurturing and loving presence - neither Farrah nor Sophia will ever be too old to need that!

    But for now, I've wondered about Farrah's grandma - and her sister. At least from the bit we saw in the first season, they both seemed to be pretty functional. Maybe the best compromise might be for Farrah and Sophia to live with one of them for a while, to give Farrah that guidance and a chance to grow up and become able to take care of herself, which will, in turn, put her on track for one day being able to care for Sophia.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tilden;4041113;
    ...Maci is...the show's one consistent bright spot...
    She is probably what makes the show watchable at all!

    We see her, and here comes our old friend Magical Thinking cranking up!

    Maci gives us that that glorious relief of the possible, and we want to project that onto all of them, and hang onto that hope that they will all have this Great Epiphany and undergo a mystical and instantaneous Macification - or that at least the love they have for their babies will mature enough, even if they can't, to give them the strength to throw the baby off the moving train in the blinding, agonizing truth that the child will be better off in the arms of those strangers than it will where that train is going.
    Last edited by bahurupiya; 08-18-2010 at 09:06 AM.
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