This study questions the findings of most research claiming that teenage pregnancies are generally unwanted, unplanned and unintended. It starts with the question of why most sexually active teenagers put themselves at risk of becoming pregnant if they do not desire it. The hypothesis is that sentiments of "love" and "aspirations for marriage" are related to starting sexual activity and subsequent pregnancy. The sample is 123 school-age mothers.
Feelings of romanticism and self-esteem among pregnant adolescents, adolescent mothers, and a control group of nonpregnant, nonparenting adolescents were investigated. The Bachman Self-Esteem Scale (Bachman, O'Malley, & Johnston, 1978) and the Dean Romanticism Scale (Dean, 1961) were distributed to 649 U.S. female adolescents--255 pregnant adolescents, 121 adolescent mothers, and 273 teenagers in the control group.