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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — We’ve taken a lot of heat the last few months for covering Oak Island’s Jenelle Evans. The 19-year-old and her problems have become the star of the MTV reality show “Teen Mom 2” and tabloid covers everywhere.

Some of you have asked about more positive role models. Well, here you go.

Eryn Williams, 17, of Wilmington has worked hard to be successful as a mom and in life in general.

Like Jenelle, Eryn is a teen mom, too. But Eryn’s not featured on a television show. This is her real, everyday life, and she says it’s not easy.

“It was hard at first when I had her, because I was so used to doing my own thing, being a teen, sleeping in,” Eryn said. “And it was hard at first, but I knew that I had a responsibility as a person and as a mother to take care of my baby the right way.”

Eryn got pregnant when she was a 15-year-old freshman at Laney High School. She says she was not excited about her pregnancy at first, but knew she had to deal with the consequences of her actions.

“I know that this was a wrong decision for me to do, but it’s done, and there’s nothing I can do about it now, so I need to make the right decision for me and my daughter,” Eryn said.

Eryn says it is not easy being a teen mom. A lot has changed since she had her daughter Allysa. Unlike the young mothers featured on MTV’s ‘Teen Mom 2,’ Eryn says she had to refocus herself and is committed to success for her daughter.

“I set my mind to I’m going to be a mom and that’s just how it’s going to be from now on, because I made the choices I made when I did,” Eryn said.

Since getting pregnant, Eryn graduated from high school two years early, started classes at Cape Fear Community College, gotten a job at Once Upon a Child and even finds time to volunteer at the hospital.

Eryn’s mom Tammy Craig says she is proud of her daughter. She says she holds Eryn responsible every day.

“She’s 100 percent the caregiver, and she still has to be an adult herself,” Tammy said. “She has to work. She has to go to school. She has to maintain her own livelihood.”

With help from her family and focused goals, Eryn hopes to go far. She says although her baby wasn’t planned, she wouldn’t change what happened for the world.

“I just can’t imagine my life without her now,” Eryn said about Alyssa. “It’s just a blur to me how it used to be, and right now, it’s everything I look forward to in the future with her.”

So now we know not everyone who has a baby at a young age is a train wreck.

Eryn says she wishes she could talk to Jenelle about getting her priorities straight and her life in order. Eryn says she thinks Jenelle could be a good mom if she tried.

Comment on this Story

  • WilmingtonMAJ

    ABORTION! Why any girl under the age of maybe 20 would choose to have a child when there are better options is beyond me!

  • Guest

    This is against god! Sex before marriage is a sin! You should not be encouraging teens to have kids because they are kids! This is just a disgrace to America! If my daughter got pregnant at 16 I wouldnt give her a show I would kick her out and she would really see how she messed up her life. You are a child living under your parents roof. They do everything they can to teach you well and you go behind thier backs and have sex with teens that you ‘love’. You should be ashamed you whore!

  • Avarie Hands

    I love eryn and alyssa. she is the best sister and mother i know. she would do anything for alyssa, that is her life. she works so hard to provide for her. there isnt a thing eryn would not do for her. she loves that little girl so much. eryn is a better mom then most 30 year old i know. her whole life is centered around alyssa, everything she dose is to better there life. Alyssa has so many people around her that love her. she is the luckest little girl i know, she has 2 loving parents and many people that would do anything for her. Alyssa couldnt have better parents then the one she was givin. and anyone that says shes not doing a darn good job dosent really know her.

  • Disturbed

    I am completely disturbed over the poll as to whether or not WWAY should continue running stories about the Teen Mom. Although I do not support many of Jennelle’s decision as a parent it is not the job of the local media to insult her the way you have. What kind of credible media outlet says things about how a young girl shouldn’t be reported on again until her death? Or calls her lifestyle “trampy”? Yes she’s a irresponsible teenager, but she’s still a person and doesn’t deserve to be regarded in this way. Leave the trash talk to the blogs and act like an actual news source.

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    When you aspire to be a public figure, you invite public comment.

    When you live a life like hers, the comments usually aren’t very warm or admirable. And remember one of the basic tenets of TV and movie folks – even bad publicity is better than no publicity at all.

    You’re right about one thing, however – you are “completely disturbed.”

  • Catherine Greene

    Alyssa is a blessing from God, & for all these people that want to put their opinions out there- I bet they did not know that there are 4,000 babies aborted everyday… Eryn chose LIFE & by doing so she took on the responsibility as a Mother before everything. I admire her & love her dearly. God knew what he was doing, & isn’t he wonderful. All the blessings that come in disguise are the best ones (: Eryn whether or not this article was posted, I knew you were & are a good mother & you work hard for Alyssa! May God be with you forever & even on the hardest days* For all these ignorant people, I just wish you wisdom & strength to see beyond this as a mistake- because Alyssa is far from it!

    Love always,
    Cathy & Brennan (:

  • Not Okay

    Just because this girl seems to have everything together, still doesn’t make it alright that she had a child at 16. The not-so-happy ending stories are the ones that need to be followed and published because it is not okay for a child to have a child, no matter the circumstance.

  • Guest

    Its not “ok” by some stated social standard, but its OK to just abort a child at any age? This story is not to try and make a moral statement that its “ok” for teens to have babies. Its more to show that just because a poor decision is made doesn’t mean you have to continue making poor decisions. This story is to show that a teen doesn’t have to wreck her entire life and that she can still be a successful contributing member of society and a good parent regardless of the age she birthed a child. Mary had Christ at age 14, remember?

  • Guest I AGREE

    I have to agree with you on this one. These girl’s need to have to worst picture’s painted for them when it comes to teen pregnancy. Getting pregnant at any age when you CANNOT support yourself isnt a good idea. So what if she has went on to college somebody had to make sacrifices so she could do those thing’s. I’m sure the child is getting some sort of state assistance and the mother is probably getting grants. This young lady is just doing the best with her situation but in no way should we praise her.It’s a struggle to be a good parent period. We should commend the grand parents or maybe even the tax payer’s for helping her get to where she is at today….

  • Guest

    Good to see that she is taking care of her child and not really depending on anyone, but we shouldnt glorify teen pregnancy. People need to see the negative side of having kids at an early age. I would love to know where the parents are while thier children are out having sex?!?

  • Guest

    While I do agree with you about teenagers needing to see the negative side of teen pregnancy. I don’t agree with you on the part of where the parents are at when the teens are out having sex. We all were young once and I know that I can remember saying I was going over to a friends house and wind up somewhere new. Teens in the 60’s and 70’s were doing this teens in the 80’s and 90’s where doing this and the teens of today are doing the same thing. We as parents need to be teaching are teens about abstinence, and if that is not realistic then using condoms and birth control to prevent unwanted pregnancy and STD’s.

  • Guest

    Or rather the sperm donors? It takes TWO to make a baby and it seems like the boys never are held responsible. Maybe there should be some consequences and these stupid kids would think before bringing another child into this already overcrowded planet!

  • Guest

    I am the mother of this teen and I can tell you for sure she doesn’t receive any tax payer assistance. We didn’t qualify due to income criteria. She works to pay for most all her child care expenses. She received a grant for her first year at college but most students do that. It wasn’t anything greater than another student due to her situation as a mom. She declined child care assistance from DSS as a matter of fact. I fully understand the feelings and comments but some of them are truly out of line. She is working and doesn’t receive any assistance from taxpayers.

  • Guest

    maybe u are out of line for allowing your child to get pregnant u are probley a main cause in the situation. did it happen at ur house or away from home? i have heard some facts regarding and maybe u should have tought her better

  • Claire

    It isn’t Eryn’s mother’s fault. Why are you suggesting this? Teens WILL go out and have sex even if they have a talk with their parents about sex. What do you want her mom to do? Chain her to the back door and forbid her to ever go out again? Yes, she made a mistake and got pregnant. At least she is living up to her mistake, and actually taking care of Alyssa rather than doing what half of America does and abort or adoption. She’s actually a strong individual for going through with the pregnancy and graduating, going to college, and even keeping a job. That’s miraculous to me. What have you done miraculous lately?

  • Guest

    That would be “taught”…

  • Guest

    It sounds like your grandmother was out of line for allowing your mother to get pregnant with you.

  • Nate B.

    Seriously. I don’t find it coincidental that all of the negative comments left here are horribly misspelled and grammatically incorrect.Don’t knock people in a comment box on the internet if you can’t grasp the simple grammatical rules of the english language. And the comment box has auto correction for spelling errors. This saddens me. Regardless of the situation, this girl is making the best of what was, at best, a bad decision, one that has similarly been made a million times by others. She works. She goes to school. She seems to be at least more educated than the people who are knocking her. Good luck to this girl and her child. May she grow up to be smarter than all the people who left negative, comments on this article. But maybe I have set the bar to low.

  • madelyn

    you need to calm down. i know erin personally, yes alyssas father is there, and she is a great parent. and erins mother is a great mother. you people need a reality check, because i can almost gaurentee you yalls children arent where they say they are at. i mean i was sneaking out my window at the age of 11, so its not in any way the parents fault, and no matter whos fault it is, its not effecting out. erin has taken responsibility for her beautiful alyssa.

  • Guest

    Misreable life you must have as to only offer negative comments. Hopefully it is just your “brave” internet ego and not your everyday glorious self.

  • Guest

    I do not know if you are an adult or a teen but as the mother of a 17 year old, I can assure you that most parents do their best to keep tabs on their kids. Unfortunately, most teenagers know how to do what they want and how to cover their behinds to try and keep their parents from knowing what they are up to. And most parents do not “allow their kids to get pregnant”. The kids do that on their own. I have taught my kids right from wrong, but I cannot be with them 24/7. And to accuse the mom of Eryn that it is probably her fault is just plain wrong. Evidently if you are an adult you don’t have teenagers. When you do, then you will know what it’s like and be able to understand. If you are a teen, I’d be careful judging – you never know when it could be you. And don’t say NEVER because you may have to eat those words someday.

  • GuestV

    I find it so pathetic how the very same people who are saying Eryn was not taught well, etc. are the very same people with atrocious spelling and composition skills. Apparently these are the same type of persons who cannot stand to see someone doing better than them when faced with adversity. The same type of trolls who crawl back under thier covers and whine to God about why they cannot succeed in life by just holding out thier hands, forgoing anything requiring effort. Digustingly miserable people who sit in mommy and daddy’s garage with delusions of granduer festering away at their social skills.
    Eryn, I am proud of you and it took alot of courage to put yourself out there, share your story, and go with adventure of motherhood. It shows great personal character!
    As far as her mother helping her out, so what, there is an old addage- “it takes a village to raise a child”. Having a supportive network of loved ones and peers make a huge difference and Eryn is very blessed to have such a positive influence in her life; a mother that helps, but still expects her to be a successful, self-supportive adult. Keep up the good work ladies! The more these people hate on you, the stronger you shall become; use that hate as fuel to feed your fire.

  • LB

    You know while I do not condone teen pregnancy, I think it is absolutely horrible some of the things that people are saying about that poor girl. I was raised to treat others as you would want them to treat you; well would you all wanting someone putting you down for making a mistake. It was once said, “let he who is without sin cast the first stone,” so apparently we have a lot of perfect people in this area and I was unaware of it until now.

  • Eryn Williams

    Thank you so much Kaite I love the story! You did a great job! Thank you so much for taking the time to talk to me and hear my story! I hope that helps Jenelle and other teen moms in some way!

  • Guest

    Yes its wrong for teens to get pregnant but NO it’s not right to not encourage them to better themselves.

  • Guest

    i know this girl, she doesnt do it on her own by any stretch of the imagination. and she def. doesnt have to deal with the problems the other girl does. i think ppl need to get real and stop playin games that way when eryn is on her OWN she can handle that. where is the father mentioned he is a prominent part of the childs life?

  • Guest

    well i no eryn and the father of alyssa why wasnt he mentioned eryns does not do it on her own her mom does most of it eryn should not be talkin about this jenelle girl cause with out her mom she would be a terrible mom

  • Guest

    Well I know eryn personally and see her almost everyday and although you think she would be a bad mom without help your wrong. Eryn is the best teen mom I know and believe me I know alot of them. Why would she mention the father when the article is clearly about her and Alyssa. Yes Alyssa’s da is a big part of her life but eryn is the one that has to be the mom and do the stuff she does. Alyssa’s dad is there and does what he can but for the first fee years it’s basically all on the mom. And yes eryn has help from her mom but her mom has limits she makes sure eryn does what she needs to and when eryn needs a lil break like all moms do her mon is there because she understands that it’s hard on eryn. So personally I think your in the wrong for saying this and eryn is a great mom! :)

  • Commonsensenotcommontoday

    You need to wake up to some hard, brutal facts about life.

    Eryn and Jenelle made some bad choices. They both have a difficult row to hoe, but many women face the identical situation and eventually build a successful life. One of the most talented photographers in America had her first child at fifteen.

    Eryn is studying to be a nurse; Jenelle is on TV and like many before her, may find that a role on a silly reality show leads to a lucrative career in TV or movies. However their lives turn out, their children will be grown and on their own in twenty years. Both Eryn and Jenelle will be young enough to do what they want to do.

    You however, will be handicapped for life by your total lack of spelling and composition skills. Yes, having a child as an unmarried teen is easier to overcome than a lack of education….and likely not caring about it.

    What employer is going to hire you when you write on your application, “I no computers?” What boss has time to re-read your note three times to mentally insert periods and capitalization so that he can ascertain what you’re trying to say?

    Life is not one big tweet. Go back to school, learn how to write, and make something of yourself. Right now, you’re further behind life’s eight-ball than either Eryn or Jenelle.

  • guest

    thank you for your educated words i think thats the problem with all the comments and trash talking not educated. This story is a great story and Im glad it was reported. They say that it takes many bad happings to put someone in a bad mood but just one single one to put someone in a great mood.. maybe if wwaytv3 reported on great things instead of neg their viewers would be happier….


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