MTV’s Controversial New Show

In the past decade, MTV has evolved from a network that aired mostly vapid shows that relate vaguely to music to one that tackles some of the most serious issues facing today’s youth. Often the focus of these programs are controversial in nature: we’ve seen specials on polyamory, cross-dressing, and body dysmorphic disorder. One of the networks most popular shows deals with teenage pregnancy.

But all of these topics seem tame and simple in comparison to the one they plan on looking at next. Recently we learned that MTV plans on airing a show that deals with teen abortion.

I for one have to applaud MTV for choosing to go ahead with a project that will inevitably elicit a lot of criticism. It’s important for teenagers to be faced with the reality of the situation: that people get abortions every day – in fact, 35% of women have an abortion at some point, but this issue is rarely discussed on television.

The special will be called No Easy Choice, which is telling. The assumption seems to be that women who choose to have abortions are quick to jump to that decision, but in reality, this choice is almost always a difficult and intensely painful one. This shows gives MTV a chance to show real girls what it’s really like. On the one hand, it may reach people who deem abortion as cruel and wrong (to our readers who are pro-life: I’m not suggesting that you should change your own beliefs, just that the show may present the issue in a way that makes you see others who choose to have abortions in a different way.) On the other hand, MTV has tremendous power to teach pro-choice women an important lesson: that even though abortion is an option, it is a tremendously difficult one, and that it is so important to be careful and safe.

MTV is doing something incredibly brave and important with this show. It’s time someone faced this very complex issue head on – rather than skirting around it the way so many other shows do (when is the last time we’ve seen someone actually go through with an abortion? The fact is, it’s rarely even mentioned as an option – and when it is, creators are so quick to avert the issue, usually by writing in a miscarriage for the character). By countering its hit Teen Mom, MTV is showing real girls the realities of their options. Controversial and difficult as this issue may be, it is so important that someone finally presents abortion for what it really is.

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  1. Charlsie - Hollins University says:

    I am SO happy that MTV is taking the next step in its mission to highlight teen pregnancy. I will definitely be watching!

    1. natarodri says:

      I agree with you. They have touched the issues of adoption and teenage parenting and abortion was missing. I think that it is important to show people that the issue is not as black and white as some people make it see. This is a great opportunity to bring light to a very controversial issue, and I'm glad MTV is taking a stand.

  2. Nikita says:

    Okay, I was wondering why they hadn't shown any girls on 16 & Pregnant making this decision. I'm glad that they're doing this show. Sure, it might be controversial, and people may not agree with it, but at least they're getting the info out there.

  3. Charlotte- University of Birmingham says:

    Part of me thinks this is a really good idea.

    Charlotte http://www.girlnextdoorfashion.net

  4. fd10801 says:

    will there be any mention of the possible life long depression that may follow? Or the PTSD? I doubt it.

    1. Nicole says:

      Probably not, because the overwhleming majority of women who have abortions experience relief, not depression, afterward. In fact, many pro-lifers use "PTSD" and "life-long depression" as scare tactics to prevent women from having abortions. Get your facts straight!

    2. Nicole says:


  5. Stephanie says:

    I'm pro-choice because the same law that allows a woman to choose abortion also provides legal shelter for women who don't want to be forced to have an abortion. An unplanned pregnancy is a difficult emotional situation no matter what choice you make.

  6. amy says:

    if you look at the credentials of the people who authored the study you cite, it's obvious they all work for or are deeply involved with organizations that seek to limit choice.

  7. Roxy says:

    Gross. I don't want to see that on tv. That's almost pornographic.

  8. ..... says:

    Why sugarcoat murder? Just say it straight up and say they f*cking kill their own.

  9. linda says:

    'An unplanned pregnancy is a difficult emotional situation no matter what choice you make.' Oh, but I'm sure it's an easy situation for the baby to get tortured and trashed.

    1. Olivia says:

      Grow up.

  10. Jeff says:

    This is a brave, strong stance that MTV is taking to further prove that they are serious about shedding light on the teen pregnancy dilemma in this country. The small town I live in was the "teen pregnancy capital" in the country a few years ago. Literally, this tiny town in Western NY State had the most teen pregnancies per capita of any city/town in America. Shows like this NEED to be seen by teenage girls AND guys. They need to understand the gravity of the choices they are making or are thinking about making. Life is not a game…these choices could become very real for many young people out there and IMO, they're better off being educated on it beforehand. Maybe we'll convince some girls that a pregnancy pact ISN'T a good idea…maybe those girls can convince others and so on. Bravo to MTV for being brave enough and having the conviction to do this!! To those of you throwing out empty statistics to support your position of Pro-Life, get over it!! This isn't about Pro-Choice vs. Pro-Life…it's about REAL LIFE!

  11. Richard says:

    How long after distributing Condoms in schools would it take for them to realize that Condoms are no fun. The fun is in the risk, the fun is in doing it because its wrong. The fun is in doing it because you know the morning after pill is there if they need it.

    1. Dominique says:

      How old are you, 12? Don't be an idiot, wrap it up and prevent bringing something in this world that you obviously wouldn't want to take care of.

    2. Chelsea says:

      The morning after pill is only supposed to be used in emergencies, idiot. Using it so often can have serious consequences, not to mention it's not as effective as a regular pill. Do the research.

      And condoms aren't meant to make sex fun, they're supposed to make sex safe. Even if you relied on morning after pills, (unsafe btw) you still have to worry about the other guys your partners have been sleeping with and what they caught from them. So have fun running the risk of getting a girl pregnant, or even getting an STD,

      Afterall, that's the fun of it, right?

  12. Lori says:

    Watch the video "Silent Scream". It's an abortion done while ultra sound. You can actually see the baby moving away from the instuments as it's being torn apart.

    1. Chris says:

      Pure rubbish. A fetus at that age doesn't have the capacity for sensing anything. And to call it "being torn apart" is a false exaggeration.

      While I would probably be against an abortion if I had to make the choice, I remain pro-choice because I can't tell other people in that situation what to do. And even if it wasn't legal, it would be happening just the same, only under more dangerous conditions. Just like before Roe v. Wade.

  13. Jane Haschoices says:

    Pro-Choice is the only way to go…FREEDOM to choose to have a baby and FREEDOM to choose not to have a baby. Thats the American Way…FREEDOM!!! KEEP GOVT. AND WHITEWING NUTS OUT OF MY FREEDOM TO CHOOSE.

    1. Part of the 65% says:

      Don't forget that you also have the freedom to choose not to get pregnant and the freedom to choose not to have sex unless you're sure there is absolutely no possibility of pregnancy.

  14. I watched the show, The girl made the right choice for her but it could have all been avoided if she had gone for her Depo shot instead of blowing it off. I think no matter what else might be going on I would rather interrupt it and inconvinence myself a little to get the shot than to create a life and then end it.

  15. Tom says:

    pro-life, pro-choice ..I don't really care ..but everyone knows what happens when you have unprotected sex

  16. Sara says:

    I am pro-choice but also very thankful it is not a decision I ever had to make

  17. Lauren says:

    This is kinda making me nauseous just reading about it. I don't think they are doing it for the educational value for young girls. I HONESTLY believe that they are using this for what it will be most USEFUL in doing. Which is getting a ton of free publicity. Everyone knows that having those handful of reality shows are what really keeps MTV going anyway. Goodness knows it's not about the music anymore. I also think that if they show (and for me I see it as a type of support of) abortion "choices" being made on TV then they should be obligated to ALSO show what happens to that "fetus" once it was aborted. More often than NOT little girls are having sex that they shouldn't and are using abortion as a form of birth control when in reality they should have just kept THEIR LEGS SHUT. Please feel free to start tearing apart my comment at any time…

  18. Jess says:

    SO Happy Mtv is showing another responsible but extremely difficult choice that all women have and will continue to have because Roe vs. Wade will never be turned over. Thank God. For the girl stating abortion causes PTSD. Wrong- just a scare tactic that pro life psychos use, all the data you listed are from pro life psychos. And abortion videos are all entirely fake.

    Love the pro choice comments, even for those against it morally, remember that punishing women for having sex by forcing them to keep their child is never a better option. You can be against abortion personally but still be pro choice. Prevention is key, abstinence isn't realistic, schools need to focus on birth control and condoms. My body, my choice. :))))

    1. Part of the 65% says:

      Responsible choice? Getting pregnant was not responsible…getting rid of something because it hampers your lifestyle or you can't afford it or you just don't want to be a responsible person is not responsible. Your body, your choice? What about the guy you laid down with? What if he wants to take care of that baby, with or without you? Where's his choice?
      Responsible people don't get pregnant when they're not ready to raise that child.
      One last thing – how do you know, for a fact, that abortion videos are "all entirely fake." You read that on a pro-choice website? BTW – I'm not a "pro-lifer," just pro-intelligence.

  19. Ann says:

    I am happy to see MTV exploring the other side of pregnancy. Abortion is safer than having a baby in labor. To all the Pro Lifers: Its okay to have an opinion but do not fabricate illnesses and horror stories to make Pro choicers feel guilt. We as women should be proud we have a choice!

    1. Part of the 65% says:

      Wow…I just don't know what you're smoking, but you need to stop.
      Abortion is safer than having a baby? We should be proud to have a choice?
      How about being proud to keep your legs closed or smart enough to not get pregnant if you don't want a baby? You are a disgrace to women.

  20. Trousers says:

    How are you this ignorant? All shows like these do is encourage young girls to get pregnant in order to get their own reality show. You would be surprised how many young girls will have a child in order to get on 16 and pregnant, or have an abortion to get on this new show. All you are doing is helping to spread that idea, so consider yourself guilty.

    1. Part of the 65% says:


    2. Somebody says:

      I have to disagree. Have you ever seen 16 and Pregnant? The number of girls that are fame-hungry enough to get themselves knocked up is infinitesimally small, especially considering how many girls are encouraged to practice safer sex after watching lives implode on screen every week. Because, for the most part, that's what happens. It's heartbreaking, really. The girls go in with such high expectations: they're still planning on going to college, marrying their underage baby-daddies, and having it all. Then reality sets in, and they end up dropping out of college since their boyfriends rarely help with any child-care.

      Also, the abortion special is just that — a special. It's not going to be an established show.

  21. Linda says:

    I'm all for them educating on this option. I just think that having a whole TV series on it is too much, and it's just a way to make money.

    Seriously, a documentary would have been enough

  22. Steffany says:

    This is really getting disgusting. MTV is just going for ratings anymore, the more controversial, the more viewers. So let's start by teaching teenage girls that they're ready to get pregnant and be a teen mom. Now let's show them that they can get pregnant and solve the issue by having an abortion. Regardless of whether or not you're prolife, you have to know that abortion can leave horrible emotional scars, not to mention physical ones that can keep you from ever having a baby again. So let's teach teen girls that they can be super stars by getting knocked up at 16. Great. Let's not educate them about condoms, the pill, or (Society forbid) abstinence. This is why our world is going to shit and we're just along for the ride.

  23. Carrie says:

    If you are pro-choice, thats your own decision to make, but for all those who talk about being "proud to have a choice", that kind of attitude is flat-out disgusting. The entire matter should be looked upon in complete seriousness, not shouted out like its eqivalent to freedom of speech or something. It is not something to be PROUD of.

  24. Tara says:

    I think MTV has avoided the issue of abortion because of pro-lifers. Some pro-lifers are really cut throat about this (George Tiller, Anyone?) And I don't think MTV wants young girls getting death threats. But I think they've gone too far with this teen pregnancy stuff.

  25. anya says:

    I think this show is good for both pro-choice and pro-life advocates. Pro-life people should be glad that this show will likely show the devastating emotional toll of this decision. Pro-choice people should be glad that the show will give women a clear picture of abortion. In the end, it is so important for women to know everything about their options in dealing with an unwanted pregnancy. If this show helps any young women make informed and responsible decisions, we should be thankful for the show. Abortion is not an easy decision for any woman to make, I think we all need to remember that.

  26. Bridget says:

    Having made this choice myself as a 17 year old high school student I'm glad that they are showing the other side of teen pregnancy. At 30 I'm the mother of 2 beautiful little boys, but couldn't of handled that kind of responsibility 13 years ago. I can honestly say it's a decision I've never regretted or looked back on in shame.

  27. Lisa K. says:

    I'm very glad that their doing this show. Because i think it will also show girls who watch it that its not easy to make that decision, and there is alot of emotion to go with that even over the next couple months. For all the people who are aganist it, you can have your opinion but the way you express it makes you look like a ass. You don't know what these kids went through or anyone else, so untill you walk in someones shoes then you can judge.

  28. Holly says:

    Terribly written in my opinion. What exactly is abortion??? You never actually say what abortion is, it is never defined in your story. To show real girls what its really like, so what's it really like? Its obviously a hard decision, that's common sense. No point to this article.

  29. Valerie says:

    I recently had an abortion at the age of 33. My boyfriend was lying to me cheating on me and stealing from me. I wanted to keep that baby but the reality was I was already a single mother of a 12 year old, have a job, my own home and my own car and get no alimony, child support, or welfare or any other financial help. I hated what I had to do, but Im not gonna be one of those chicks you bitch about having to support and my bastard child. I didn't ask for this, it killed me, I do blame him, he did this to me, I mad the choice to abort for mine and my daughters sake and future. And now everyone in my family is pissed at me for doing it, but they didn't want the responsibility of taking care of another child. I know I couldn't handle it on my own. I was devastated all around. I left him, my family no longer speaks to me, and I lost a baby I was planning on keeping. She would have been born March 27. I think everyone situation is unique, and don't judge me or categorize me. I know I did the right thing for me. It still hurts no doubt, I wish I could have changed things, but it is what it is.

  30. Olivia says:

    It's ridiculous that there is so much shame that goes along with having an abortion.
    I had one last year. Yes, it was a tough decision to make. But no, I do not regret it. Girls need to know there are other options out there, other than keeping the baby or giving it up for adoption.

  31. Char PSI Tutor:Mentor says:

    I like the title, hopefully this will reflect the direction they will take the show. It is an issue that needs to be talked about, women's rights over their bodies and the right for children who are brought into this world to be wanted, cared for and valued.

  32. ol bob says:

    ABORTION……. the height of SELFISHNESS . Nearly all the comments were only about self! Surely our country is better than that,

  33. Jessi says:

    A woman has a right to her body. Even if she still is in the womb. As a pro-life feminist, this show is very offensive to me

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