Teen Mom Has No Regrets for Having Her Baby at 17
| LAST UPDATE 08/05/2021
The road to motherhood wasn't easy for 16-year-old Cheyenne. But when her pregnancy test came back positive, her life was turned upside down. From her family's disapproval to being shamed online, this is Cheyenne's story.
Cheyenne Pedrotti was in many ways a normal teenager from the Midwestern state of Missouri. But the 16-year-old had her reality flipped upside down when she learned she was about to be a teen mom.
However, Cheyenne's story was much more than just the pregnancy. The young teen had already finished school by the age of 16 and with a distinction at that. She was well on her way to getting a college degree, which she funded on her own dime through a full-time job. She had quite a lot on her plate already.
And close by in Cheyenne's hometown of St. Louis lived Donye Peace. Just like Cheyenne, he lived a typical teen life. But despite their close age and shared area code, there was a point where Donye and Cheyenne weren't in touch. However, up until they met, life was looking pretty normal for the fifteen-year-old.
His days were packed with a busy social life, passion for sports, and of course, school. But even at the age of 15, those around him could sense he was mature beyond his years. And many suspected it had to do with experiencing the loss of his dad at the young age of 11. But that didn't stop him from being open to love.
Their Initial Spark
Between studies, extracurriculars, and work, both Cheyenne and Donye still managed to make time for a social life. And in fact, the two busy teens actually had some mutual friends. But despite the one degree of separation, the two first "met" on social media, like so many other couples their age.
It was 2019 when Cheyenne and Donye had their first online exchange. "We met through mutual friends mainly on Snapchat," Cheyenne recalled. "We just randomly like added each other." Donye remembered it clearly. "I was like, 'Dude, she's hot.'" And this initial spark would grow into something much bigger.
The Moment They Met
It didn't take long for Donye to realize he was drawn to the 16-year-old. And equally, Cheyenne found herself intrigued by her new online friend. In the weeks that followed, the pair of St. Louis teens spent their days exchanging messages and pictures on Snapchat. The attraction was there, but what about in-person?
So, Cheyenne and Donye decided to move from apps to IRL. The teens met up in St. Louis, and to both of their relief, the vibes they felt over Snapchat were just as strong in person. One thing led to another, and soon they found themselves spending a lot of their free time together. But where would it lead?
Cheyenne Made a Move
Neither Cheyenne nor Donye could deny that the feelings were there. And the 16-year-old didn't shy away from showing him how she really felt. Cheyenne decided to shoot her shot during one of their many hangouts. "I remember the night you had kissed me for a TikTok," Donye remembered.
Cheyenne knew exactly what he was talking about. "I kissed him first," she said. And that was that. Cheyenne and Donye were attached at the hip from that moment on. "We started hanging out alone like every day," Cheyenne shared. However, the carefree honeymoon period didn't last long.
An Accident Happened
From cute dates to intimate sleepovers, it didn't take long for Cheyenne and Donye to find themselves deeply in love. And everyone around them could see it too. Most nights, the lovebirds were sharing a bed, which is where they decided to take their connection to new heights.
However, on one fateful occasion, their method of contraception failed. "But we didn't really do anything about that because we knew there was like a chance [to get pregnant], but then we also thought, 'We're fine,' you know, 'I'm not gonna get pregnant,'" Cheyenne recalled of the lapse in protection.
They Were in Denial
For the time being, the boyfriend and girlfriend were in denial. "We thought we were being safe and all of it and I was like, 'Teen pregnancy, that's just something you see like on TV or in the movies, it's not gonna happen to me,'" said Cheyenne. And her boyfriend felt the same.
"You don't think about it that way until it actually happens to you," Donye said in agreement. And even though she thought she was in the clear, Cheyenne wanted to double-check. "I waited a week after the possible conception or whatever and I took a test. It was negative," she remembered. She kept taking more tests to be sure...
Her Test Came Back Positive
At this point, Cheyenne had a handful of negative pregnancy tests. But she decided to check one more time just for good measure about a month later. She picked up a bulk package of at-home tests one day after her shift. And to her surprise, something had changed. "I ended up actually getting pregnant," Cheyenne shared.
"I was 16 years old, and I saw the positive pregnancy test," Cheyenne remembered. "There was a million thoughts going through my head. I was like, 'Okay, what do I do? How do I go about this? How am I going to tell my mom? Like how is this going to work?'" Her mind was racing 100 miles an hour.
Telling Her Boyfriend
Cheyenne experienced the shock of her life when she was alone. She was overcome with what-ifs and fears. v"Am I going to be able to keep the baby?" the pregnant teen recalled asking herself. "I was just overall like confused." But Cheyenne was only half of the equation. She knew she had to tell Donye.
Pedrotti knew time was of the essence and decided to tell her BF as quickly as she could. So she told her boyfriend about this latest development through a text. "I got the text, and it was like a picture of the pregnancy test," Donye said. "I was more scared than anything cause like I was 15, and I was like, 'This is crazy.'"
Turning to Family
Once she filled in Donye, Pedrotti reached out to the other person she'd learned to count on: Her brother. However, when it came to Cheyenne's unexpected pregnancy, he didn't have useful words to share. And so, the overwhelmed 16-year-old sought advice from her aunt.
"I call my aunt, and I basically told her what happened," Pedrotti recalled. "She told me I just need to go to the doctors and have them confirm the pregnancy and everything." Her aunt tried her best to calm Cheyenne down before asking if she'd considered terminating the pregnancy.
The First Ultrasound
Cheyenne felt like she didn't have a clue as to what to do. "I was like, 'I don't know I just found out like 30 minutes ago. Still freaking out,'" Pedrotti recalled of the conversation with her relative. "So she said she would go with me." After all, the clock was ticking.
It seemed like the best move to make. So, without telling anyone, she decided to follow her aunt's recommendation. "The next day I told my mom I was going to work but I actually drove down to where my aunt lives and we made an appointment to go see the doctor that day," Cheyenne said.
Cheyenne Told Her Mother
The ultrasound told Cheyenne what she had already accepted: She had a baby inside of her. It was the second time the teen was experiencing these firsts alone. First, with the at-home test, and now at the doctors alone due to lockdown restrictions. However, her aunt was waiting for her in the car when she left the doctor.
After the doctor's confirmation, living in denial was no longer an option. And Cheyenne realized that the time had come to fill her mother in. "I was terrified to tell my mom that I was pregnant," Cheyenne remembered. "When my mom found out I was pregnant, she was very angry." But this was just the start...
She Was Filled With Doubts
Cheyenne's mom wasn't thrilled at all by the thought of becoming a grandmother to her 16-year-old's baby. In fact, she urged Cheyenne to end the pregnancy altogether. "She wanted me to get an abortion," Pedrotti confessed. In her mom's eyes, this pregnancy jeopardized Cheyenne's entire life path.
And the reaction didn't help ease Cheyenne's doubts. "At first, I was like terrified. At first, I thought my life was ruined," the 16-year-old remembered. But she didn't agree with her mom's approach. "I don't understand why people think they have the right to tell girls what to do with their own child," she explained.
Cheyenne Made Up Her Mind
Sure, Pedrotti was overwhelmed. Her life had been flipped upside down in what felt like mere moments. And her mother's reaction had done nothing but add fuel to the fire. But despite all the chaos, one thing was certain: Cheyenne didn't want to end the pregnancy. And no one could change her mind.
As she put it, "If I wanted to give my [child] up for adoption, I would give her up for adoption." But that's not all. "I don't believe in that, so I'm not gonna have an abortion," she explained. However, not everyone would accept her bold decision...
"It Felt Like the End of the World"
With her mind made up about the pregnancy, Cheyenne started to feel the wrath from those closest to her. In fact, she was no longer welcome in her mother's home. "She kicked me out, so I had to go stay with my grandma," the 16-year-old recalled. "In the moment, it felt like the end of the world. Like it was not okay."
However, despite it all, Cheyenne remained determined to continue the pregnancy. All that she could do was hope that her mother would become more accepting. "After my mom kicked me out, I did feel like eventually she was gonna come around, it'd just take some time," Cheyenne said. But what about in the meantime?
Parenthood Had No Age Limit
It seemed like everywhere Cheyenne looked, she was met with disapproving and concerned opinions from others. Many argued that the 16-year-old and her boyfriend weren't equipped to become parents at their current age. "You're never like too young to have a kid," Cheyenne said in defense.
She went on, adding, "People say you're too young but like if you were capable of having the kid, if you're mature enough to go through with it, and actually be prepared, then I don't think you're too young." Cheyenne was determined to provide her future child with endless love and support.
Cheyenne’s Grandma Was on Board
Lucky for the soon-to-be teen mom, Cheyenne had the support of her grandmother. And Pedrotti couldn't have been more grateful, especially since she needed a place to stay following her fight with her mom. The 16-year-old relocated to her grandmother's home, while Donye struggled with acceptance from his own family.
Just like Cheyenne, Donye's family had a wide range of reactions to the news. "My grandparents are like 100 percent supportive," the soon-to-be father explained. "They're more supportive than like my actual family." And the young couple welcomed any support shown their way, especially as the due date approached...
Welcome Back Home
Even though Cheyenne felt relieved to have the support of her grandmother, she couldn't help but feel hurt by the rejection she faced from her mom. But for Pedrotti, her pregnancy was non-negotiable. And all she could do was hope that her family would turn around. And luckily, Cheyenne got what she was hoping for.
The 16-year-old's wish that her mother would have a change of heart came true. And so, just like that, Cheyenne packed up her belongings and returned to her mother's house. "Once I moved back in, [my mom] supported me and helped me," Pedrotti recalled. However, Cheyenne still felt backlash from others...
She Lost Friendships
Being back in her mother's house came as a huge relief for the expecting mom. But even with her mended mother-daughter relationship, Cheyenne still struggled with some other close people in her life who weren't handling the pregnancy that well. And for Cheyenne, that meant a shrinking friend group.
"I've had to cut off many friends," Cheyenne recalled of those who led a different lifestyle than hers. While many of her former friends still wanted to party and go out, the expecting mom had to make major changes. "I think some people didn't understand that and didn't understand like the responsibility I took on."
A Home of Their Own
Cheyenne and Donye certainly weren't living a typical teenage life anymore. Instead of partying like their peers, the 15 and 16-year olds were getting ready to become parents. And for them, that meant making moves to have a family home of their own. Sure, Cheyenne was happy to be with her mom, but it wasn't forever.
And with the due date approaching, the clock was ticking for the soon-to-be mom and dad. It was a community effort, but Donye and Cheyenne achieved their dream and moved into a place of their own. Luckily, Cheyenne's full-time employment helped pay the bills, and both families helped out too.
The Due Date Was Approaching
With their first family home sorted out, Cheyenne and Donye got to work preparing for the arrival of their baby. And time was absolutely flying by faster than they could even imagine. From stocking baby supplies to clothes and toys, the expecting parents were busy getting ready to welcome Baby Avielle into the world.
Pedrotti shared a photo in honor of her baby girl, saying, "I cannot believe I'm already 32 weeks." As she put it, "I'm going to miss feeling your hiccups, you squirming around & our little first bumps, but I'm so excited to hear your laughs and finally hold you." The due date was right around the corner.
From a House to a Home
Eager to start this new chapter in the best place possible, Cheyenne didn't hold back in making sure her baby girl had the best nursery possible waiting for her. And besides that, Cheyenne and Donye settled into their new apartment complete with a nursery, bedroom, salon, and kitchen.
But the nursery was definitely Cheyenne's prized room and she spent her last weeks of pregnancy setting it all up. From the crib to the storage space, the room was perfect for their little angel. Pedrotti even hung some gorgeous decals to complete the room. And documenting the experience led to another idea...
Her YouTube Premiere
From the second that pregnancy test was positive, Cheyenne knew she was no longer a typical teenager from St. Louis, Missouri. So why not document it? In fact, she first got the idea from a different platform altogether. "I was told on TikTok to start a YouTube channel," Cheyenne explained.
"I've actually been wanting to start one for years, but I just never have," the expecting mother continued. So, with the helpful push of a TikTok follower and her supportive baby daddy, Cheyenne started a YouTube page. From new channels to new apartments, life was looking different for the couple. But it changed more...
Welcoming Their Baby
In what felt like a blink of an eye, Cheyenne and Donye welcomed their baby girl nine months after the shocking positive pregnancy test. Avielle Legacy Peace was delivered on December 9th, 2020, in the mid-morning. And just as they imagined, they were in total bliss having welcomed their baby earthside.
And luckily, Cheyenne, who was now 17-years-old, had her mom in the delivery room to help her get through it. "During labor, [my mom] was the one person with me," Pedrotti shared. "Looking back... I do understand where my mom was coming from... Now I understand, like, she was just looking out for me." But what would come next?
Seeing Her Friends Again
Cheyenne and Donye were in absolute baby bliss after welcoming Avielle Legacy Peace into the world. But as the dust settled and the pair slipped into their new roles as mom and dad, Cheyenne couldn't help but long for some of her close girlfriends. So they all decided to get together and meet the little angel.
"I stopped talking to them mid-pregnancy," Cheyenne admitted. "They kind of just wanted to do normal teenage things, which I get. I'm pretty nervous to see them again. A part of me is nervous they're not even gonna show up." Luckily, Cheyenne wasn't stood up. But it wasn't the immediate click that she'd hoped for.
Did Cheyenne's Friends Accept Her?
Would things pick up where they left off when it came to Cheyenne and her friend group? "I don't know exactly how they feel about me," Pedrotti confessed. "They were some of my closest friends and them not checking on me [during the pregnancy], it really like is kind of upsetting."
But to Cheyenne's relief, her girlfriends were accepting of their friend's new life. "I feel like the friendship has not changed at all," Pedrotti's teenage pal admitted. "We just obviously don't hang out as much because she has a baby, which is understandable," a second friend elaborated. But online, it was a different story…
Trolls on Social Media
From the get-go, Cheyenne really cherished documenting her and Donye's path to parenthood on different social media platforms. But across YouTube, Instagram, and TikTok, the 17-year-old new mom was facing some backlash for her choices. "Use protection," one person wrote. Another added, "That is illegal."
"The guy will be the dad, but he won't be there anymore," another user predicted of Donye. But the hate wasn't just coming from Cheyenne's peers, but from people much older as well. "So freaking sad, parents must be proud," an adult wrote. How did Donye and Cheyenne handle the online shaming?
Defending Their Choices
Cheyenne wasn't afraid to stand up for her family. "I'm happy, whatever," the teen mom said in defense. And she had a special question for those hating on her lifestyle. "If you don't like what I post, then why are you watching my videos?" The hate didn't make sense to Cheyenne, but it kept coming her way.
But others' opinions were totally out of Cheyenne's control. All that she could do was focus on being a loving mother to Avielle and girlfriend to Donye. And things were looking good for the teen lovebirds. "I think our relationship works because... we both know that we have stuff to get done," Donye shared.
"Not Promoting Teen Pregnancies"
From the looks of their social media pages, Cheyenne and Donye seemed to be rocking the parent life. But it fueled some more hate, with people shaming them for "promoting" starting families at such a young age. But the mom and dad made it clear that it wasn't part of their agenda at all.
"We're in no way promoting like teen pregnancies or anything," the mom said in defense. "But if it does happen, then I don't think it matters what age you are; I think it's the capability. It's really nobody else's like business how you live your life. It's you and your family, your child."
It Was All Worth It
And the story of Cheyenne, Donye, and Avielle wasn't always as pretty as Instagram painted it. Cheyenne especially had some serious ups and downs along the way to becoming a mom, but she said that the lows pushed her to be better. "I just find it rewarding to like prove people wrong," Avielle's mom explained.
"Even though I've lost some friends and family along the way, like, I still have Donye and I still have Avielle… you literally cannot be upset or mad around a baby," Pedrotti said about her girl. If you want to keep up with this family of three, you can find them on Insta at @avielleswrld and YouTube at Cheyenne Pedrotti.