The Weekly Ringer

The University of Mary Washington Student Newspaper

That's What She Said

2 min read


Bristol Palin told her mother she was pregnant and made headline publicity. Then again, not every 17-year-old girl has Republican GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin as her mother. Though such retaliation from an abstinence-free lifestyle may get some Republicans howling, it does seem that young Palin’s standing in support of strong family values has given conservatives a reason to coo, and Democrats to fume.

The point is, regardless of parties, young women like Palin aren’t trying to make a political statement with young pregnancy, the media is. Women are making a statement about sexual liberation. Pregnancy is often what happens a couple weeks later, a stressful afterthought while a girl bites her lip and stares at the purple EPT test lying on the bathroom sink.

Youth pregnancy is, hopefully, a responsible decision, made by women like Palin who believe they have the time and energy to commit to such a decision.

Maybe I didn’t go into labor, but recently I’ve been feeling the stress, the headache, the sleeplessness, the consumption of body, mind, and time with my own beautiful, little six-week-old baby–puppy.
She howls, she whines, and she terrorizes the cat. She won’t eat her food, certainly not her pills, but will eat anything she finds on the floor. She doesn’t understand “No” until the 30th try. She hates her crate, she tells me every night, so loud in fact that she announces her agony to the residents downstairs (I ignored the late-night knock on my door and let her out of her crate that night so the cops wouldn’t come rolling by). Best of all, when it’s time to pee, which I believe is every 20 minutes or so, this little German Shepherd doesn’t have luxuries like Huggies and she finds the cushy bathroom rug and kitchen floor more comfortable on her bottom than the grass outside–every time.

For a brief moment, I had forgotten my life was already consumed as 24/7 puppysitter.

“Want to see a movie?” my friend asked.

“Sure,” I said happily, then I felt little teeth chewing at my pant leg.

“Oh, nevermind,” I said. “I forgot I have a puppy.”

She laughed. “One day you’ll say that about your kids.”

As far as I’m concerned, I’ve already had one.

Kudos to Palin for standing her ground despite the obnoxious heat of politics, for taking responsibility as a woman should, whether through pregnancy or abortion, despite the angst of the public eye.

Speaking in political terms though, I’ll admit that after one puppy, may it be dog or child, reliable birth control is my high-profile platform for many, many years to come.