Follow TV Tropes


Headscratchers / The Secret Life of the American Teenager

Go To

  • It bugs me that this is played as shocking to everyone. To her parents? Yes, it's very realistic they'd be shocked. Her friends? Considering Amy's personality, I can understand their shock. Some of her teachers? Again, yes. However, everyone seems shocked. People who don't even know her are shocked. I grew up in a small, conservative town that prided itself on being a bible-belt town. Teenagers got pregnant every year, some younger than Amy. Sometimes, a girl everyone thought was a goody-goody or too smart to screw up got pregnant and people were surprised. However, most of the time, someone being pregnant was gossip for half a day and it was along the lines of, 'I heard she's hoping for a boy/girl', rather than, 'Omigod, we have a pregnant girl in school!'

  • Why does the show take place in an alternate universe where Planned Parenthood doesn't exist?!
    • And what about the morning after pill? It's like it don't even exist! At least Adrian should have heard of it.
    • The whole show seems to be geared towards the simple view that teens are uncontrollable idiots who simply stick their sex organs wherever they can, and sends the message that sex is bad and abstention is the only non-evil option that won't leave you with a kid. Putting in resources like Planned Parenthood or the morning-after pill would take away from that message.
    • The show was created by Brenda Hampton, whose previous show 7th Heaven never mentioned abortion, and its portrayal of birth control was extremely inaccurate.

  • Why is it that adoption was seen as the worst option ever to these people? Anybody who advocated for it was treated like they just said they wanted to bring back Hitler or something. What really bugged me was how the main character was treating her parents like the baby should mostly be their responsibility because she's their daughter. When her mom told her she needed to get a job if she wanted to keep the baby, she acted like the victim as always. I get that teenagers are whiny by really? I'll stop now before I get into a rant about Amy and the show in general.
    • I think that's geared more towards abortion. The characters can't even utter the word without fear of the earth ending or something! If you even think about abortion or utter the word, you're a monster. Case in point- Adrian and her dad.
    • Advertisement:
    • Wasn't there some kind of subplot where Amy was thinking of letting the gay couple adopt her child? But of course, we can't have that on national television. I'm pretty sure they disappeared already. Urgh.
    • The gay couple changed their minds and said they would fight for their original fosters kids—poor John.

  • Amy's spiel about "I deserve to go out tonight because I'm a responsible adult! I have my own child!". Even if her father wasn't an idiot, this is the stupidest thing she could've said. At this point I think her parents should have her sent to an all-girls boarding school.

  • Why is everyone up in everyone else's business on this show? I know that small towns and communities like these tend to close-knit and all, but they take it too damn far. And in a recent episode, when Grace's step-dad tries to suggest that maybe she focus on her own life (medical school) instead of Adrian's (her decision to have an abortion) and she rejects this with a flat "Because I don't want to" when asked why, I managed to facepalm so hard that a knot formed on my head. It goes beyond excessive gossip and nosy behavior, it's the fact that these characters seem to have no interest in their own lives.
    • Because the writers couldn't come up with a real way to have the character comment on what's happening in the show. I think someone just said "let's make a show about a teen getting pregnant" and they just made it up as they went from there.
    • Advertisement:
    • Once again, check Hampton's other show 7th Heaven, since none of the characters from that show ever heard of the word "boundaries" since sneaking into everyone else's business there was an Once an Episode event. Goes to show that not everyone learns from their mistakes.

  • Why aren't Adrian and her mom more pissed off about the fact that Reuben was willing to walk out on them both if Adrian went through with the abortion? Personal opinions and beliefs about abortion aside, that's his family. Though I guess I shouldn't be surprised, given he walked out on his other family to be with Adrian and her mom.
    • Well... you can applied 'personal choice' to a man's right not to have the role of father just as easily as you can to Adrian's right not to be a mother. Either way it's most likely that they knew he was as about as likely to up and leave them and she was in actually having the abortion.

  • Amy telling her friends that 'didn't know it was sex till it was too late', um what? she does know what sex is right? and did know what she was doing and consented to it, right?
    • That bugged the shit out of me as well! I mean, the only way for that statement to make sense is if Ricky had given her a date-rape drug of some kind and she had woken up while he was raping her. As it stands, she just comes off as a naive twit trying her damnedest not to take responsibility for having unprotected sex.
      • It would had been a saved throw if she would had gone with I initially understood, that she didn't understood he was climaxing inside her until it was too late, but no, they made it so it wasn't even that, like you said, she's just trying not to take the blame even for consensual sex.
      • Granted I have never watched this show but that sounds more like she just thought they were making out and got so into it that by the time she realized that they were taking off their clothes she didn't really think to object. Is this considered rape or not because if this happened then clearly she didn't fight it but it does seem like she wasn't really sure where he was going with this.
    • The flashback shows that it wasn't rape. Basically, they were making out, and Ricky started dropping hints that he wanted a little more. He offered her a chance to leave. After a moment of thinking, she decided to stick around because she wanted him to like her or something like that. So basically, she probably told her friends that because she felt stupid for going along with it. Especially since the sex was apparently terrible and she got knocked up.
      • So how the hell did she not know what was happening? he gave hints, even gave her a chance to leave (another reason why I hate this show trying to make us feel sympathetic for him for some reason) and she stayed, she should had known full well the situation.
      • I think she did know exactly what was happening. When he offers her the choice of staying or going, you can tell by the look on her face while she's thinking it over that she knows exactly what he's suggesting. I think she initially said she "didn't know what was happening" because she was angry and scared about being pregnant and found it easier to blame it all on Ricky and play the "I'm so innocent" card instead of accepting that she needed to take part of the responsibility. She even tells him later that she knew what was going on and actually goes to the other extreme of taking the full blame. (Though it seems now they both agree that it was a mutual poor decision)

  • Just Say Me. How is it that these girls get to live to be 16 years old before finding out about masturbation from none other than their christian friend? Some of them seemed to know what it was about but still acted like it would be somehow weird, shameful and disgusting. And why are the guys surprised that girls do it too? Or is this a culture thing, are American teens really that clueless?
    • Because every male is an idiot in this series, what really bugged me is that they actually didn't send the message they said they were gonna give, the girls try it everyday for a week and at the fifth day they are so bored with it they don't even try anymore, kinda giving girl viewers the idea that sex is the only option since masturbation is a dull experience.
    • I was surprised that it never occurred to any of the guys to try masturbating as well. Apparently this show thinks it's just a chick thing.

  • Is it just me, or is the shipping on this show poorly justified? Ben loves Amy so much, but does he really say why? Does anyone? Or can I just not remember why, given the nature of the show?
    • His friends essentially told him "she's a band geek, so she'll probably be easy to get into bed". Seriously, that's about it. And she was basically desperate enough to reciprocate the interest. Not that any of the other pairings are any better, either. People only like Amy and Ricky together because they have a child together.
    • Plus, they're 16. That's essentially how shallow most 16-year old couples are with each other really.
      • Not really, no. It's just the writers have absolutely no idea how teens interact. Most of the pairings make no sense and the characters don't really have any reason to do half of the things they do.

  • Amy proposing to Ricky in the latest season promos. What. The. Hell. How old is she supposed to be, like 16, 17? I can't foresee any reason for them to get married other than Rule of Drama.
    • Let me elaborate on that, they're underage teenagers (not even under 21 but under 18!) they are still very dependable, they don't have a full time or well paying part time job, do I need to keep pointing things out? I mean the first thing is that who the hell wants to marry someone so young? They had a kid and didn't do it then, so that reason is out.
    • This show has always had trouble with that whole "plot" thing.

  • Ok it's been addressed several times but not fully in here, or at least some of you don't grasp the full scale of the situation. I think the idea was to make Adrian the slut, a role not unheard of before and actually pretty common, but I don't know what the author's idea of a slut is, I mean she is not a slut, she is a NYMPHOMANIAC! She literally thinks about nothing but sex, she wants to get it on literally with everyone that has a penis, no matter how young, old, ugly, sane or whatever, I mean seriously who in the hell gets turn on and tries to flirt with their gynecologist like that, does her pussy gets wet upon exposure to oxygen or something? take all the complains about her character that have been pointed out here, and see how a person like that can't be mentally healthy, I mean there is a limit, but it's like her mind works in a way where it gives slight moments of different thoughts and ideas to live like breathing, eating, talking, etc. but everything else is sex, who to have it, when to have it, how long to have it. I can only think that she is smart because she managed to remember the answers by thinking of them as innuendos, mmmmmn that big, erect, light house was used to avoid those big long ships filled with salty long sardines by letting out all that white light.

  • What on earth was supposed to be funny about Grace nearly getting raped?! I think someone praying and defending them self is a fairly reasonable response being potentially "violated". Did they have something against people defending themselves against rapists? Its bad enough that her friends and classmates laughed at her, (even Jack her boyfriend at the time was more like "I told you so" than being concerned about his girlfriend). Its out right insane that even the newscasters treat it like a joke. The behavior of the newscasters was more like Tom and Diane from Family Guy than like professionals.

  • Anyone else but me a little bit off that the show seems to be trying to say that people who have a baby together need to be married, no matter how young they are? I mean Amy and Ricky are married and this is treated as a good thing!? Also this is the second time high-schoolers have been married. What the fuck is wrong with this show?
    • You really want that question answered? We might be here a while. The writers obviously don't have kids of their own and possibly have never seen teenagers interact in real life, because teens are, believe it or not, more responsible than portrayed in the show, provided that they're given access to the proper resources. I was fifteen when this show finally got out of development hell, and everyone in my school who knew what was going on in the show was - to put it mildly - offended by how teens were portrayed. Teens are dumb, but not THAT dumb, for chrissakes. If anything, it comes off as confirmation bias-based bullcrap.

Example of: