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Dear Coleen I'M A mum of four and I have recently found out my 14-year-old daughter is 12 weeks pregnant.

I'm absolutely distraught and haven't stopped crying for a week.

My daughter is a straight-A student who had aspirations of going to university and becoming a midwife. Now I feel her life is ruined.

The boy who got her pregnant is the same age, a known tearaway from a questionable family, and I know for a fact he will not stick around for long.

My husband and I know that looking after this baby will fall to us and at 42, with four kids of our own, we believe we are too old.

I am totally and utterly devastated beyond words.

I honestly wish I could force my daughter into having a termination, as I believe she will regret having the baby. What should I do? Coleen says I REALLY feel for you and I would be upset, too - mostly because I'd feel devastated for my daughter.

My daughter is also 14 and at that age they think they know it all when they're obviously still kids.

I know a lot of 14-year-olds who think a baby is a lifestyle accessory to dress up in nice outfits and wheel around in a fancy buggy.

Of course, you and I know the reality is very different.

However, you can't force your daughter into making a decision because it's what you want. As her mother, you have to be supportive but you can also be honest about what it's going to be like for her.

It will massively change her life and she'll need to face up to the responsibility of caring for a child.

When she gets to 18 and her friends are going out having fun and leaving home for uni, her life will be very different. She needs to know that while you'll support her, you won't be surrogate parents - she'll need to step up and be a mum.

I get why you're devastated but crying all day won't help. Focus on where you go from here.

Visit the GP with her and get her pregnancy dated and discuss the options. But be very careful you're not bullying her into a decision because, later in life, she might resent you for it.

And if she keeps the baby, she might astound you all and go to uni when her child starts school.

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Title Annotation:News; Opinion; Columns
Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Jan 4, 2016
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