School girl Amy Crowhurst made headlines in 2002 when she fell pregnant with son Alfie aged just 12.
Originally published: 7 October 2012
She raised him with the help of her mum, but at 16 left home, had a brief reunion with Alfie’s dad, and fell pregnant again unexpectedly with her daughter Destiny.
Alone with two kids, Amy was no stranger to controversy as she struggled to cope – getting convicted for growing cannabis, and evicted from her council home for throwing “wild drug-fuelled parties.” When Closer spoke to her in April 2011, she was back home with mum Rose, 54, and coping well – and now Amy reveals she’s living independently in a three-bed council house and is returning to college to get her GCSEs.
She’s so happy, the 22 year old insists being a mum at 12 has its advantages – and, shockingly, she’d be happy if Destiny, now seven, fell pregnant at 12 too.
She says: “Having kids young was the smartest thing I ever did. I’ve had lots of energy for them and life’s beginning for me now at an age when I can enjoy myself – I have the freedom to meet mates and go clubbing when my mum babysits.”
“Having sex at 12 is fine if you feel ready and aren’t pressured."
Worryingly, she adds: “Having sex at 12 is fine if you feel ready and aren’t pressured. I wouldn’t encourage Destiny to plan pregnancy at 12, but if she did have a baby I’d be happy – it’d be fun being a gran at 27!”
Single Amy, from Crawley, West Sussex, fell pregnant after having sex for the first time with an unnamed boy she met at a local leisure centre. She says: “We didn’t use protection – I didn’t know much about sex. Mum wasn’t happy I was pregnant, but I didn’t agree with abortion and felt I could handle parenting.”
Amy, who has eight siblings aged 10 to 25, gave birth in March 2003 aged 13. Explaining she was home-schooled initially, but couldn’t keep up the commitment, she reveals: “My mates were having sleepovers and I was at home changing nappies. But being young helped me cope with the sleepless nights.”
Aged 16, craving independence, she moved into a council home and fell pregnant again, after a brief reunion with Alfie’s dad. She explains: “It was a one-off – we didn’t use contraception. I went through with the pregnancy as I wanted Alfie to have a sibling.”
Amy, who is no longer in contact with the father of Alfie, now nine, and Destiny, admits she struggled as a single mum and went off the rails. But last May, she moved into her new home and says she’s now back on track. Amy – who hasn’t had a serious relationship since being with her children’s dad – admits: “I’ve made mistakes, but I’ve always been a good mum.
"I’ve got lots of energy for the kids and can relate to them because I’m young."
“Whatever I’ve done wrong, I’ve got lots of energy for the kids and can relate to them because I’m young. Me and Destiny both love The X Factor, MTV and go shopping for clothes like sisters.”
Revealing she’s going to enrol at college to gain qualifications in maths and English, she adds: “When I see girls I went to school with having babies now, I’m so glad I got it out of the way. They’ll be at home and up in the night for the next 10 years. Plus they’re fat and I’m a size 6! I missed school, but I can catch up – and I’ll appreciate it more.”
And Amy – who claims benefits, but wants to become a healthcare worker – adds: “Destiny will get sex education at school, although if she asks me questions, I’ll do my best to answer them. If she had a baby at 12, I know she’d cope and I’d be happy for her. Women shouldn’t put off having kids young – it makes you a better mum.”
Child psychologist Margaret McAllister says: “A 12 year old may be physically capable of having a baby, but is not emotionally ready to bring up a child. A parent draws on their own life experience to guide their child and, at 12, you are only a child yourself.”