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Bristol Palin is not the first teenager to become a young mother and Sarah Palin is not the first mom to find out that her teen daughter is pregnant or to hear of her daughter's re-engagement after others have. But, they may be the first mother-daughter duo to experience these growing pains so publicly, and to have handled them with so much class.
Sure, Sarah was upset to find out that her unwed teen daughter was pregnant. No mother wants to see her first baby having a baby of her own at such a young age. As an advocate of abstinence-only education, Bristol's pregnancy must have been an embarrassment, but Sarah, true to her pro-life beliefs, stood by her eldest daughter, stating, "Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. As Bristol faces the responsibilities of adulthood, she knows she has our unconditional love and support."
At just 17, Bristol was thrown into the national spotlight as America's most famous pregnant teen. Instead of curling up and hiding, she emerged at the 2008 Republican National Convention with her burgeoning baby bump as the father of her unborn child, then-fiancé Levi Johnston, stood by her side. By Bristol sucking it up, smiling and putting on an openly brave face, she gave mom Sarah her full support for her candidacy. The family structure and mother-daughter bond was undeniable.
As public as Bristol's unexpected pregnancy was, the news of her (first) split with Johnston in March 2009 was even more shocking -- the mother of a 2-month-old infant would remain unwed. Sarah once again stood proudly with the mom of her first grandchild and said, "Bristol is doing great, just great!"
A little over a year later, Levi Johnston, whom Sarah Palin had dubbed "Ricky Hollywood" on Oprah for his lewd behavior, became re-engaged to her daughter. Instead of blowing up, bashing Johnston or putting down Bristol's plans to become Mrs. Johnston, Sarah took the high road and praised her daughter. In a statement, she said, "Bristol, at 19, is now a young adult... We pray that, as a couple, Bristol and Levi's relationship matures into one that will allow Tripp to grow up graced with two loving parents in his life."
Now that Bristol and Levi have split for a second time, Sarah is once again supporting her child, telling People: "I wish for Bristol to be able to move forward in life with her same forgiving, gracious, optimistic spirit, but from henceforth she'll know to trust but verify. Bristol is strong, she is independent, and she knows what is right for her son."
Like many of us mothers, Sarah Palin seems like she will continue to be there for her daughter Bristol, who will most definitely need her mom during this difficult time. Say what you will about the Palins' politics, but when it comes to matters of the heart, Sarah and Bristol are role models for all mothers and daughters.
Do you think Bristol and Sarah Palin are good role models? Chime in below!
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