(CBS Local)– A new season “16 and Pregnant” is going down right now on MTV and tonight Springfield, Illinois teenager Shelby Stults will share her journey with America. The 18-year-old is the mother of a baby girl named Alaya and her episode shines a light on what life is like for her as a new mom, navigating relationships with friends, family and her baby’s father and building a life for herself and her daughter.
CBS Local caught up with Stults to preview the episode and discuss what she wants people to take away from her story.
“It was all really exciting. For me, it was just a lot because it was filming, being a new mom, COVID and the holiday season,” said Stults, in an interview with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith. “There was a lot going on, but it was a really fun experience. Time management as a mom is something nobody told me about. It is so hard to get yourself ready and your baby ready. Then I had to film and go see family and everything.”
Stults says that things have calmed down a lot since the early days of becoming a mom. In tonight’s episode, viewers will learn about Stults’ background as a teenager in Illinois, what happened with her baby’s father AJ and the importance of familial support throughout her entire pregnancy.
“It definitely changes your life, it’s obviously not about me anymore,” said Stults. “That’s a big change in everything. I love it. She [Alaya] grows so fast. I love when she smiles, it’s the cutest thing. Relationships don’t matter as much as I thought they did. Those whole nine months were a huge growing up process. When he [AJ] wasn’t around and everything, things just changed in my mind. I’m happy that they did.”
“16 and Pregnant” airs tonight at 9pm EST/PST on MTV. The series has made a major impact on multiple generations since it first premiered in 2009 and Stults hopes that people young and old can learn from her story.
“The biggest things I want people to take away from this are that I wouldn’t idolize teen pregnancy at all,” said Stults. “I like how this show has lowered teen pregnancy rates and all of that and shows the reality of it. Nothing about it is super easy. I’ve been blessed with my situation and the help and everything. Live your life a little bit. I love how all the girls have different stories and it helps girls who aren’t pregnant. It shows you what to expect and everyone can take a little away from it.”