The Graduation: From Girlfriend to Baby Mama…Still No Ring


Proclaiming to be a “smart,” “different from all the other chicks,” “never want to be a typical negative statistic,” “I will never trap a man,” “I will never settle,” “I want the best future,” “I deserve a great family,” shouting woman who becomes head over heels in love with a “God-fearing” man, “man of my dreams,” family man, etc, ironically is unwed; and after years of being in a relationship.  However, the worse part in addition to being unwed while living with their non husband is giving their uncommitted boyfriends something more valuable than sex, but a child.  The so called “God-fearing” man is one having children out of wedlock.  How ironic? Such women have held themselves up to high standards and yet have become the same negative statistic they never wanted to be…contradiction indeed.

It is perfectly understood there are countless individuals engaging in sex before marriage, whether it is in the name of love or so casual where first names are unknown, either way they must expect consequences; planned or unplanned.  Those whose intentions are to become pregnant in a relationship can be one of few things; either the woman may have wrong motives such as having a child or even children solely to keep the man around with hopes that her man may marry her, or those who carefully plan on having a child because they think for it to be a step forward in the relationship when really they have totally done things backwards.

Clearly, things are done differently today from how our grandparents and generations that came before them did things when it came to building a relationship. Relationships were had from separate residences.  For example, your grandfather after a date with your grandmother would drop her off at her place and go to his own, instead today when the date is over the two take off their shoes to put them inside the same closet.

Perhaps the cliché, “First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage” strikes a familiar melody.  Those words, in that order, represent the ideal steps every parent wants for their children.  No parent wants to raise their children in broken homes; visiting daddy or mommy elsewhere, or growing up with parents who aren’t married-though with the example of married parents absent from the home, history tends to repeat itself.

To give a man a child is giving him the ultimate gift (life) one can give, therefore commitment should come first.  In order that a woman give a man child, that man she calls boyfriend should first sincerely commit through marriage proving he is ready to spend his life with the women he claims to be the one-the one he is in love with.

Does the baby shower with all the gifts, smiling faces, food and music make the woman forget how backward she has done things?  In their defense they may say, “We don’t need a piece of paper to prove our love.”  And what they need to hear is…shut up!  You want the ring, 40 acres and a mule.  It is a woman’s dream to be married to the man she is in love with and would certainly take pride in flaunting her wedding ring to the world.  That expression is pure hopelessness.  She has convinced herself that although she may not have the ring, she has beautiful kids and her boyfriend of over five years who is “like her husband” is comfortable with the way things are and that is what works for them.   Nonsense!

Women need to stop with their, “I’m too smart of a woman to be a fool” attitudes when they do not mean it.  They promise themselves they would never trap a man by getting pregnant, and they would need to see a ring first before giving their man certain privileges, so on and so on.  That kind of woman comes a dime a dozen; they birth a child out of wed lock, not as a wife, but as a girlfriend.

The standard they’ve set in regards to having the perfect family isn’t so perfect.  The” God-fearing,” family man they label, “soul mate” hasn’t put a ring on it despite sharing a child together.  The strategy in having a child to prompt the man to ask for a woman’s hand in marriage is not by force.  Maybe he’ll marry you, maybe he won’t.

Women start making wise decisions and live up to the standards you swear to live by.  Lead by example and think carefully before giving your boyfriend’s, children.

By: Ashley I. Okonkwo

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  1. Wow, what a phenomenal article that hits close to home. It is truly a shame that a lot of women today have that mentality. I'm sorry, it just is not acceptable. Claiming all the labels of what one desires in a man and thinking that sex is the only way to prove love and affection. If he really loved you, he would put a ring on it. I really wish women get the picture that and understand their worth before engaging in grown folk business.

    Smart women should not do dumb things because at the end of the day she is still a "baby mama" and who truly wants that label with them for life. I know a couple of people in this situation and they are content because they "think" they're giving their innocent child the best life. That situation is not always the greatest for the child or children because they grow up with the resentment towards the parents. Nobody benefits in this at all, it just leads to dysfunction.

    Overall, both parties are to blame but of course women are frowned upon for having children before marriage. I know in church a lot of women feel uncomfortable because they are judged by the older generation. If women practiced the ways in which they were taught, this would not be an issue. Every ethnic group deals with a similar issues but the African American community needs to get it together. Stop believing he is going to marry you, guys want girls who will wait, but don't want to wait and that is when girls become swindled by love, stop it, you a worth more than sex in his car. Get it together!

    • So what if she is a baby mamma as you call it, do you think marriage is that easy or has the prestige that our parents painted it for us. Talk what you want to but please don't be myopic..

  2. Not sure if this was supposed to sound one sided, but it does. Not all believe in marriage and these strong opinions make people believe that all females would agree with you. You are misrepresenting several categories of women! Smfh

  3. Another interesting article Ash.It is quite true that a lot of ladies settle and becos they do,the guys cannot be bothered with the hassle."why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free".

    There is however a small percentage of women who truly do not want to get married,which could be due to a number of reasons,maybe they have had horrible experiences in the past, maybe they look at the marriage and divorce statistics today and are afraid,maybe they want to try out living together first;whatever their reasons

    Most times though,the lady desires it though and the guy is the one not wanting to commit.

  4. So i was reading this and i was just nodding my head.. nodding my head… then it came time to write a comment and i was like.. what should i say… so i read it again.. and it just blew me away… like this is just to sweet to put into words… like idk how to just say what i have to say

    You brought up so so so many good points… so many girls are blinded by the term "love" he "loves" me… this and that… that they lose they head and give up their most precious gift they have to offer… and they think ohh just because he loves me… even if i get pregnant he wont leave me…but give something so serious as that to a man not ready for that role… and he'll be out in a minute… and you'll be stuck askin yourself how could he do that… i thought you "loved" me…. and then..he'll simply say… i dont see a ring or legal document that binds me to you

  5. Well, this is indeed a very interesting article; it touches on a topic that desperately needs to be discussed. Apparently, today, the courting process is much more convoluted than it used to be and I really think that's due to how the idea of sexuality has changed in the 21st century. Women are allowed more social freedoms with their sexuality and consequently men has responded to that. As for marriage, I think that there are a multitude of women who are actually not into the idea of marrying at all. Believe it or not, the dream idea is not a house, 2.5 kids, and a white picket fence anymore. I think that idea is a commitment for those who are more accustomed to preserving tradition.

    Furthermore, marriage does not guarantee a solid home and I think this is why so many women–and men–have decided to dismiss that idea. Despite the wonderful way in which society presents marriage, the latter has been responsible for ruining children, women, and even some men in the long run. The difference between marriage now and marriage then is that divorce is very possible and legalized. Love and family-building is one of the most complicated and yet most normalized tasks that we are forced to deal with. I think that the reality of the matter is that this process is subject to its own vices and nothing but the convoluted nature of society is really to blame for it. However, that's just my opinion.

    On a side note, I am very distraught with the overwhelming amount of "baby mamas" in the "black" American community; it's rather unnecessary.

    • Absolutely, there are woman who do not want to get married and there are also those who have always imagined the idea of being a married woman. And yes, marriage does not guarantee a solid home but there was an attempt made to commit. Not all marriages work, we know that, kids often have to witness divorce but as for the parents they got married. They both made a commitment to eachother before having kids, they tried. In some cases, it just doesnt work untill death do them part. Thank you for your feedback.

  6. I feel that ify was speaking about traditionally. But if females feel that the ring isn’t important and fall victim of what society has to say about them. Women can do better, cause they deserve a whole lot better than what they are settling for.

  7. Its deeper than a ring to be honest. The ring is a public symbol, many dream of the big wedding with princess dress but as a result of them engaging in intercourse and not thinking of the repercussions they end up in this situation.

    @ lulu, how many women do not want to get married? I’m not even talking about a big wedding but know that they are apart of a union.

    Get it together!!!

  8. As a guy I wouldnt want to be in a situation whereby I would have a girlfriend as a baby mama. First of all my parents wouldnt even accept it and its against my culture and religion. If I was to have a girl friend who feels like she needs to “trap” me by trying to have kids before we marry. If that is her motive, then I would tell her right away if she cant be patient with me to wait when I am really ready to marry her instead of rushing things. I might just kick her to the curve, but if she really loves and trust me, then she will know that I will do the right thing after our years of dating. Sometimes I dont even blame the girl because some guys would just waste their time and the girl might feel the only way to get him is by “trapping” him. But at the same time that wouldnt be of any benefits, because its like she is trying to force herself into marriage. Just know the kind of guy your dating before you get into all this. NICE article Ash, now I would be able to tell in the future if a girl wants to “trap” me…haha

  9. My friend Dom, told me to check this website out because the article is truly beautiful. I agree with her, this article addresses issues that face the present day African American woman. I wish these young girls and woman realize their worth. Do not settle for the backseat, you deserve the RING and everything that comes along with that.

  10. 😮 interesting article, quite true also. I’ve heard chris rock and other comedians talk about the same type of things. And it seems scary as a guy. lol
    Nice job and keep it up

  11. Interesting read. The birth of a child is one of the most phenomenal experiences that a couple can ever have with one another whether they are married or not. It is more risky for the latter however because the commitment from the boyfriend is not as strong as a married man. For unmarried couples the birth of a child is more likely to repel a man away than draw commitment. This statement does not go for all unmarried couples because there are always exceptions. In general, women who are in an unmarried relationship need to understand that there are more practical ways to look for commitment in a boyfriend. Trust, love, and time will help to build genuine commitment rather than rushing to get pregnant just to say “We did it”. Very insightful article Ash. Great job.

  12. This is a beautiful article indeed,so interesting that I had to comment. Well done to the writer. Following up on previous comments by some; its quite obvious that some will understand this article to it's points and some don't and rather feel offended one way or another! Pls don't be.

    I would say that this article doesn't mean that women are the only one's that have such motives of trapping a man down in this sense,its happens the other way too; Some men do the same thing,and some not only do it for the genuine reason but in order to get other means of survival however. I know some guys will comment on this as if they're better than that, don't be surprised! But its wrong for any Man or Woman to feel that trapping someone down with a child is the best way around things; its not Godly.

  13. so essentially what you're saying is that the couple that has been together for 10 years and have 2 children, but are unmarried are less than the couple who have been married have a child, but will probably get divorced.

    judging the relationship of others to match the relationship you want for yourself is extremely backwards. you don't know these people, or their situations, thoughts or feelings. just because you want some man to come wife you doesn't mean it is the dream of every woman

    • G,why are u taking this write up personal?I find your statement most amusing and myopic,'so essentially what you’re saying is that the couple that has been together for 10 years and have 2 children, but are unmarried are less than the couple who have been married have a child, but will probably get divorced'. Talking about being judgemental,the writer simply stated facts,you are rather the one being judgemental.How do you define backwards?Being truthful and preserving self esteem?Please get real with life and I suggest you get help if you are in the situation the writer described.

    • No she is saying women should do better. The woman with 10 yrs of girlfriendship and 2 children is a baby-mama. If the woman is truly not interested in marriage…kudos to her. No one is saying she is less than the married woman. I just don't understand why people especially in our culture would want to stay that way. Let's take love out of the situation, your children will be better protected (financially) when there is the marriage bind between their parents.

      If you are a baby mama and your baby daddy decides to get married, your children are SoL unless their step mother is a nice woman.

      If we look at the black community, long term couples of that nature are usually women who are hoping and wishing and praying that their man will come around.

      I am all over the place but I need people to stop being selfish and think of the children that they are bringing into the world. Children in a happy home with their 2 HAPPILY married parents fare better. People, don't get married because it is shacking you. The infatuation will wear off pretty quickly and your offspring will suffer from the lack of love between their parents.

      If it is not your goal to get married, considered what would happen if you had children and your partner decides to up and skidaddle.

      • It does not take 1 person to make a child, it takes two and it takes two of those partners to raise that child in a loving environment. I have seen successful products of single parent homes but there is always a resentment towards the fact that one parent is missing. Give your children a tried and tested model of the highest form of human interaction and affection (if that makes sense). We have tried to incorporate modernism into everything and we see how that's working out for us :/

  14. i found this to be very profound, and wonder how these ideals that were kept by little girls of yesterday now are lost. only a question women can answer

  15. Today due to de moral decadence in our socciety its the norm for people who are attracted to each other to perform in unprotected sex without even gettin to know who the other person really is,the other persons background ,family,ideals,morals and so forth.people forget the way the right thing to do .which is gettin to know the individual better,his or her likes ,the dislikes,their morality,their family and so forth then when this is done then comes the proporsal,the marriage and then the lil rascals runnin all over the place….

  16. lol i def need to write a response article on this one day…but overall another good one keep it up ash..

  17. Great article…..

    the picture is well painted here…..

    I wouldnt want to have a child outside wedlock or have a baby mama as we all know it now…..

    People have now turned serious issues into little things…. even our language says it all…..

    Child outside wedlock = baby mama

    Abortion = Ovarian examination

    HIV = Hi five

    Cheating = Fiaking/Having fun

    Dating older men = Aristo

    Language says it all…..

    Humans often take the most serious things and quantify them with words that have little meaning so we are able to justify them or make them look like thay carry less weight……

    Its the world we live in…..

    We can all make a difference……

    Great read….

    u hit the nail right on the head……


  18. As a guy, i dont think i can get trapped cus i wont even have a baby mama in the first place. it just doesnt appeal to my person. As for the ladies, we must understand that the modern world has changed so much that people are very untrusting these days..e.g as a successful young lady, you'd be scared of getting married esp. if you've had bad experiences before. so most would rather be a single mum and be successful, than have a guy who'll cause pain and be a leech. As for the guys, i would say having baby mamas are mostly unplanned and could as well be as a result of one night stands and the like. The simple plain truth is that people are getting scared of getting married by the day…enlightened minds know that "happily ever afters" are so scarce these days. Divorce stats say it all. We should also look at the profligacy of casual sex. That should be looked at if you really wanna tackle baby mama-ism. lol.

  19. girls should be smart and ought not to be thrilled by gifts. A guy who has tasted you would likely not marry you. After enjoying the honey, he would get tired & desire fresh blood. Girls, use your head.

  20. I find myself in the situation of being a so called baby mama. Yes i indulged in sex before marraige and gotten pregnant. I loved my man, didnt trapped him. We not together anymore. That does not make me a lesser person, only smarter.

    The most important is rasing my daugther. We were pressurised to marry. Before we broke up, I really saw the real person. I would have being a miserable wife , probably ending in divorce.

    I rather raise my daughter , him along side. Working on me as a person, great mum. The right man will come along. Marriage will come when it' s suppose to.

    • Appreciate and respect your strength. Its a breath of fresh air to see it in a Nigerian woman, respect again. Hold your head high and my best wishes

  21. Interesting piece. I;m totally not in support of this baby mama drama. But when it happens, it happens. Society put so much pressure on ladies of a certain age to get marry and start having children. If a successful, independent woman is not married, the society frowns at her and either start calling her names or praying for her deliverance from "spirit" husbands. The pressure to have close relationship is definately there where two people in love are concerned. If a man truly love and respect you as a woman, he will do the right thing and put a ring on it. Love goes both ways, when you go and cook, clean, iron, sleep and "give it up" , what do you get back in return? Are you just worth the material gift? if any is given? You;re worth much more, you deserve the emotional commitment too. Unfortunately, most men are either too scared of commitment, but they want to have their cake and eat it. Where are the real men, this day? Ladies be smart, beware of the non-committing men, time wasters, players etc. you deserve the best, you deserve it all and you;re worth waiting for.