On last night’s 16 and Pregnant, we are introduced to a couple who wasn’t a couple.  The two had a few hook-ups before learning they were expecting.  However, the pair managed to defy most odds (after an early-on freak out by mohawked dad) to become a loving, self-sufficient couple with a newborn.

Hope Harbert is from Lee’s Summit, Missouri where she lives with her mom and two younger siblings.  She fancies herself a party girl who has just graduated from high school.  She met Ben, who also enjoyed going out, and after hooking up a few times, Hope found out she was pregnant.  She actually got pregnant the first time she ever had sex.  When Hope told Ben about the impending baby, he said he wanted nothing to do with her or his child.  Hope reveals to her mother she lost her virginity to Ben, and although they only had sex a couple times, they never used protection.  Her mother is very disappointed, but she is supportive.  After two months of no contact, Ben has a change of heart and invites Hope to come move in with him before the baby is born.  She thinks that is the best idea for the new couple.  Of course she does.  When will these girls learn?

After chatting with her friends, Hope admits that she thinks Ben will be a good dad even if he’s not a good boyfriend.  Her folks have never met Ben, and her mother is beyond perplexed that her daughter is in this situation having never had a boyfriend before.  Ben isn’t quite ready to meet her fam, so he only comes by to visit when no one is home. Winner!  Ben has gotten a new apartment, and he is willing to move in all the baby stuff.  However, he’s not keen on moving in Hope’s belongings.  Ben is quick to let her know that she’s welcome to spend the night whenever she wants.  What a charmer.  He also admits that he was frightened off from her when he found out she was a virgin who got pregnant after only having sex the first time.  Perhaps he missed the day in sex ed when you learn that anytime you have sex you can get pregnant…you don’t have to practice for months before it can happen.


Hope is working a lot to save money for the baby, and spending her free time with her friends before they head to college.  One pal asks her plans had she not gotten pregnant, and Hope replies that she wanted to attend Arizona State, which she touts as the number one party school in the country.  Do they have graduate program? Sign me up, please!  Hope shares that she’s worried that Ben is only with her because of the responsibility he feels towards his child.  You think?  Her friend urges her to ask him the tough questions about their relationship, but Hope doesn’t want to incite an argument.  Her wise friend (who is channeling an LC braid) relays that if he cares about her, it won’t be a topic which starts a fight.

Hope’s mom is shocked at the announcement that her daughter will be moving in with her baby daddy.  That’s weird–it’s not like she’s never met him.  Oh, wait…Her mother is worried about his staying power once the baby is born, and Hope mimics these fears.  But hey, let’s move in with Ben!  Hope is having major foot swelling (hello preeclampsia!  Not good!), so she goes to her doctor to see if there is anything that can be done to reduce it.  Ben doesn’t attend her doctor’s appointments as he isn’t ready to meet her family.  Classy.  Her mother can’t assist financially with the baby, but Hope’s job can’t be flexible with allowing her to elevate her feet when needed.  She quits.  Here’s hoping Ben’s bartending gig will bring in enough money for the new couple.

Hope takes some ultrasound pictures to Ben.  He’s totally psyched about the baby, but Hope is worried he’s not totally stoked about her.  She tries to discuss it with him, and she keeps asking him if he’s happy to be with her.  Ben seems to say all the right things, and Hope is giddy.  With her impending move-in date approaching soon, it’s time for Ben to meet Hope’s family.  Ben is confident and polite, but he’s faced with final round Bachelor-type questions from Hope’s mom.  He answers them correctly, and Hope’s mom may be just as smitten as Hope.  I hate to say I don’t think that’s a good thing.  Hope is packing for her move into Ben’s apartment, but she’s sidetracked by all of her friends who are packing to go to college.  Hope gets a pedicure with one of her friends and laments about missing out on the college experience.

Hope and her mother discuss her plans to move an hour away to be with Ben.  Her mom is quick to warn her daughter to keep her guard up because she’s worried that Hope will have her heart broken if Ben’s not in love with her.  Hope’s mother truly hopes he is, and she believes that Ben made a great impression.  But was it sincere?  I hope these ladies are right putting their faith in a boy who just thought he was hooking up with some chick to find out he’s about to be a father and is expected to be in love with his child’s mother.  That is a tall order.

It’s moving day for Hope, and mother isn’t impressed with Ben’s living quarters.  Hope’s mom is very emotional about the move.  Ben continues to be beyond polite to Hope’s family.  Hope and Ben’s mohawk get excited while shopping for last minute baby needs.  Her friends take her to the lake in hopes of taking her mind off what is to come.  Hope’s friends are wary about how Ben will handle fatherhood.  Hope admits that she thinks Ben will be great to start, but she’s worried that he’ll start to disengage.  Hope is having major body issues, and I have to say that Ben is saying everything that a girl would like to hear.  After a doctor visit, Hope learns she’ll be induced in a week.

A cheerful Ben holds Hope’s hand as he escorts her into the hospital.  Ben is beyond supportive…I am starting to second guess my initial feelings towards him.  Once Hope has been induced, she waits through ten long hours of labor.  As nothing seems to be progressing, her doctor is concerned.  He determines that Hope should have a C-section.  MTV shows far more of a C-section than this girl EVER needed to see.  If that’s the network’s way of scaring teens out of getting pregnant, bravo to the channel that used to exclusively show music videos.  Finally Tristan Blaise comes into the world.

Ben takes quickly to fatherhood, and the couple heads home.  Hope is in a great deal of pain.  Ben is a champ, changing diapers and making bottles. I take back all my former negative thoughts towards him.  I’m finally happy to see a teen dad stepping up to the plate.  When he heads back to work as a bartender, Hope is forced to get up with Tristan on her own.  After a month of motherhood, Hope is feeling very trapped.  She lives the college life vicariously through her friends who are navigating their freshman year.  Hope approaches Ben about going back to work.  He hates that she feels so disconnected, and he’s happy to watch Tristan while she gets out of the house.  Wait?  What show am I watching??

After six weeks, Hope starts interviewing for new jobs.  She scores a job hostessing at a local restaurant.  Hope will be able to mold her hours around Ben’s so that no one has to sacrifice time at work.  She loves working, but it’s not the same as being at college–she has yet to make any friends at the restaurant which is disappointing.  Hope decides to take Tristan on a road trip to see her best friend at school.  Hope just digests all the fun and parties and campus life she can without bursting into tears.  She knows she is clearly missing out on things.  Her friend prods about how much fun she could have parenting and working at a restaurant.  Sadly, the two former pals seem very disconnected.

Ben and Hope have gotten into a good routine, so both can work and spend time with Tristan.  I am beyond impressed with Ben.  He’s even grown out that mohawk!  Ben is quite the mature young man.  Hope expresses a desire to someday go to college, and Ben is worried because Hope is concerned about making friends.  She is very stressed, and she realizes she gave up a lot to be a mom.  All of Hope’s friends have gone off to school, and she rarely talks to most of them.  Ben is very supportive, and Hope has a positive outlook on their relationship.  According to, the couple is still together and hoping to Tristan a sibling.

Next week, Sarah is mistreated by her boyfriend and struggles with being a young mom.


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