ABC Family originals, The Secret Life of the American Teenager and Make It or Break It, have always relied on the over dramatized life of teenagers to make their shows work. Lately, they seem to be heading in the direction of one teen pregnancy after another.
The Secret Life of the American Teenager began on in 2008 on the premise of teenager, Amy, having sex one time and becoming pregnant. Later, writers decided that the promiscuous character of Adrian was just getting off way too easily. Suddenly a one time sexual excursion between Adrian and Ben, Amy’s sometimes-boyfriend, resulted in a pregnancy.
In both storylines, each girl considers abortion but decides against it. Did the network crumble under the pressure to put on a pro-life persona?
Now on Make It or Break It, as if gymnast Emily doesn’t have enough problems and threats of failure, she has had sex once and now faces pregnancy. It’s obvious that if Emily goes through with the pregnancy, it will end her career so the question now will be how ABC Family will push the writers. Will Emily abort the pregnancy, leaving ABC Family at risk of losing millions of pro-life viewers?
When will pregnancy stop being a major storyline for the ABC Family network? If not, who is next? On The Secret Life of the American Teenager, it could likely be Grace and on Make It or Break It, if Emily’s plight doesn’t scare Lauren straight, it could be Lauren’s turn.
While ABC Family has good intentions in trying to educate their teen viewers about the dangers of being sexually active, they are ultimately glamourizing it, telling teen girls that their guys will stand by them and even want to marry them when those odds are terribly low. Those viewers also don’t see the endless hours of sleep deprivation and crying. But as long as it’s entertaining, right?