Former Child Star Recounts Choosing Life After Parents Pressured Her to Get an Abortion As a Teenager

Posted: Oct 26, 2021 3:00 PM
Former Child Star Recounts Choosing Life After Parents Pressured Her to Get an Abortion As a Teenager

Source: Jack Plunkett/Invision/AP, File

Hollywood is dominated by celebrity activists who champion abortion as "necessary" and a "woman's right." But, despite the staggering number of public figures who proudly support abortion, and, in some cases, boast about having an abortion, one child star who famously became pregnant as a teenager has opened up about her decision to choose life, though her inner circle pressured her to terminate the pregnancy.

Jamie Lynn Spears, who starred in the Nickelodeon series "Zoey 101" from 2005 to 2008, opened up about her experience of being pressured to have an abortion after becoming pregnant at age 16. In excerpts of her upcoming memoir, "Things I Should Have Said," Spears claims that her parents tried to convince her that having a baby was "a terrible idea," but she ultimately chose life for her baby.

Passages from the book, obtained by TMZ, claim that Spears' parents "came to [her] room trying to convince [her] that having a baby at this point in [her] life was a terrible idea," as well as telling her to take abortion pills to "take care of this problem." Spears reportedly states "everyone was certain that termination would be the best course of action" and that "everyone around me just wanted to make this 'issue' disappear."

At the time, Spears had wrapped up filming "Zoey 101," but the show, which was aimed at children, had not completed airing. Her pregnancy sparked a huge controversy. Despite this, Spears decided to carry the pregnancy to term and raise the baby, though her parents reportedly pushed her to put the baby up for adoption.

Spears gave birth to her daughter Maddie Aldridge in June 2008. Following her birth, Spears stepped away from the spotlight for many years and moved to her home state, Louisiana, to raise her daughter. She is now 13 years old.

In the years that followed, Spears got married in 2014 and gave birth to her second child, a daughter named Ivey Watson, in 2018. She also converted to Catholicism in 2018.

Though she's maintained a relatively private life since her Nickelodeon days, Spears gave a rare interview in 2020 with TODAY Parents where she spoke about her decision to have her child as a teenager.

"I needed to step up," Spears said in the interview on her pregnancy. "I never wanted to let my age be an excuse for not being a good mother because that baby doesn’t care what age you are." 

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