4 Nigerian Women On Getting Pregnant In Their Teens

June 10, 2021

I read a lot of books growing up about the consequences of teen pregnancies and it was always interesting to me how teenagers were treated without a care in such conversations. Nothing about how they feel or how it happened and how to prevent it — just age-old fear-mongering. In this article, four Nigerian women talk about getting pregnant in their teens. 

consequences of teen pregnancies


One night, I was at my friend’s house. Some of my other friends were there. There was another guy who was a friend of my friends. I noticed him staring at me while I was dancing. Later that night, he came to talk to me. We talked till 12 then we went to my friend’s room, where he kissed me. While we were having sex, I felt pain and asked him to stop but he didn’t. I had to pull myself away. He asked what’s wrong and I didn’t know so I suggested we tried again. I was still uncomfortable, so we stopped. I asked him if he came inside me, he said no. I never saw him after that. 

About a month later, I travelled to Lagos to see my uncle. I had sex with someone else and we didn’t use protection. Shortly after, I noticed I had a vagina infection so I took drugs for it. One day, I was in an Uber on my way home and I noticed I was nauseous but I ignored it. The next day, I noticed my breasts were heavy and painful — I couldn’t even touch them. My left leg was swollen and I realized I was always tired but I stayed in denial until I went to see my sister. 

One night at my sister’s place, I was texting my friend about how I haven’t seen my period for almost two months and I started crying because I realized I was pregnant. My sister noticed I was crying and asked what was wrong? I didn’t want to tell her at first but I’m glad I did.  The next day we confirmed it with a urine and blood test. She started crying and I cried too because I felt like I had disappointed her. 

At the hospital, they told me it was two months old, that’s when I realized it was the guy I met at the party that got me pregnant. I was anaesthetised for the abortion. I could feel that there was something going on in my vagina and it was painful but at the same time I felt numb. I remember hearing myself screaming and crying, I just wanted it to end. I don’t know how long the whole thing lasted but I fell asleep immediately after. I had a lot of drugs to take. I bled nonstop for months with severe cramps. My mental health was shit — my depression became worse because I was disappointed in myself. Every time I closed my eyes, the scene would flash so I had problems sleeping. 


I was raped when I was 12. I think it made me more sexually active. I was so excited to be free so I neglected my books for my first semester. I had a boyfriend and we had sex. I noticed I felt sick every time I woke up and hadn’t seen my period in two months but I was praying the symptoms would go away on their own.  

One day, my stomach started hurting badly so my mum took me to the hospital. The doctor advised us to do a scan. The scan revealed that I was three months pregnant. Long story short, my mum made me abort it. I became depressed after that. I couldn’t concentrate at school and had to do an extra year because of it. I wanted to die. I don’t know if I ever got over that period of my life. I am currently trying to reach out to a therapist. 


When I was 15, I was a chorister at the church I used to attend. The keyboardist was on my case but I kept telling him I wasn’t interested. One day, his girlfriend, who was also a chorister, warned me to leave her boyfriend. I was confused and told her to relax, that I only liked women. That wasn’t enough for her because she went to report to the pastor that I was dating her boyfriend and that I was lesbian. I was called out and suspended from the choir. 

The choir was my safe place because I was being abused at home. The suspension messed with me and I decided to hurt her back. I went to visit her boyfriend and had sex with him. It was an unpleasant experience and the worst part was that I got pregnant. I didn’t know what to do. I knew I couldn’t tell my parents because they would kill me. I told the guy and he told his girlfriend. She was very upset but when the anger passed, she started giving me concoctions to abort it. 

At first, it was small stout and alligator pepper. When it didn’t work, she brought some black smelly liquid. That didn’t work either. My cousin eventually found out and took me to a chemist. The chemist said he had to finger me to insert the drugs so I let him — I was desperate. I was home alone when the effect of the drugs kicked in. I had severe cramps and was bleeding heavily. I had to sit on the toilet throughout the day because pads weren’t helping. I was getting too weak so I called my friend who rushed me to a hospital where I eventually did a dilation and curettage procedure. The nightmares, the pain and the infection that followed are not things I speak lightly about. I had to repress the memory for a long time. 


I was already sexually active at 18. I knew all the right things to do. I read a lot. I would take pills after sex but one day, I didn’t. I simply forgot.  I went home for Christmas and in between meals, I was throwing up. When it was time for my period, it didn’t show. That’s when I realized I was pregnant. I waited till the holidays were over, struggling to hide the symptoms from my mum. When I returned to school, I confirmed it with a test and the next day, I aborted it. I try not to think too much about it.

Subscribe here.

consequences of teen pregnancies

consequences of teen pregnancies

consequences of teen pregnancies

Mariam Sule

Join The Conversation

Bring a friend.

You'll like this

Women Stories 2020
December 30, 2020

This year, we documented a wide range of experiences from women of all backgrounds. In today’s What She Said, we highlight some of these stories. From the divorcee dating again to the first-class law graduate, these are stories of women living life on their own terms — our 2020 must-reads! 1. What She Said: What […]

December 9, 2020

The subject of this week’s What She Said is a 36-year-old woman who has no plans to get married or have children. She talks about how she went from wanting to get married and have children to never wanting any and why she loves getting older.

June 17, 2020

Half the time when we see women on screen in Nollywood they are either chasing after marriage or fighting off a wicked mother in law while married. It’s like even in on-screen fiction women have been reduced to the demographic of people whose biggest ambition and the ultimate goal should be conjugal bliss. Thus making […]


Now on Zikoko

Recommended Quizzes

February 26, 2020

Are you all set for marriage, or are you still figuring it out? Well, if you’re curious to know the answer, then this is the quiz for you. All you have to do is create your own ideal Nollywood wedding film, and we’ll tell you if you’re ready to say “I do”. Go ahead:

how much of an ajebutter
February 12, 2020

Are you an ajebutter or not? Well, if you’ve gone through life blissfully unaware of its harshness, then you probably are. Now, we want to know just how high you rank on that ajebutter scale, using your food preferences as a (very accurate) measure. Take to find out:

What are you like in a relationship?
February 7, 2020

Your taste in music can say a lot about you, and this time, it’s going to reveal what you are like in a relationship. So, pick a few of your favourite Nigerian love songs, and we’ll let you know if you’re typically a distant, passionate or unbothered partner. Here you go:

April 3, 2020

While the rest of the world loves to treat our continent like a country, there are actually 54 African countries. So, in a bid to test your knowledge (and educate you), we’ve created a quiz to see how many of their capitals you can correctly name. Go ahead:

More from Her

October 13, 2021

The subject of today’s What She Said is an 18-year-old firstborn who has already raised three children. She talks about spending her childhood raising her siblings, her dad’s obvious favouritism towards her brothers, and how she wishes her parents were more involved in raising their children.   Can you tell me the earliest memory of […]

What she said: Biwom
September 29, 2021

The subject of this week’s What She Said is Marytonette ‘Biwom’ Okudare, a 26-year-old singer & songwriter. She talks about growing up as a tomboy, failing at convincing her parents to support her music career & struggling with being taken seriously because of her style.


Trending Videos

Zikoko Originals

December 14, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
November 2, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
October 26, 2020
A collection of videos documenting some of the events of the EndSARS protests.
June 22, 2020
'The Couch' is a Zikoko series featuring real life stories from anonymous people.
June 22, 2020
Hacked is an interesting new series by Zikoko made up of fictional but hilarious chat conversations.
June 4, 2020
What happens when a group of chatty young Nigerians talk about things they're passionate about? You get Nigerians talk. A show that discusses very familiar struggles for the average Nigerian. From relationship deal breakers to sex education with Nigerian parents to leaving Nigeria, be prepared for a ride.
June 2, 2020
Quickie is a video series where everyone featured gets only one minute to rant, review or do absolutely anything.
May 14, 2020
Isolation Diary is a Zikoko series that showcases what isolation is like for one young Nigerian working from home due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
March 12, 2020
Life is already hard. Deciding where to eat and get the best lifestyle experiences, isn't something you should stress about. Let VRSUS do that for you.

Z! Stacks

Here's a rabbit hole of stories to lose yourself in:

Zikoko amplifies African youth culture by curating and creating smart and joyful content for young Africans and the world.