Posters in restrooms offer help to female students

Signs found in the womens restrooms offer help and guidance from counselors and the nurse.

Shea Johnson

Signs found in the women’s restrooms offer help and guidance from counselors and the nurse.

She sees them staring. She hears the whispers and laughs behind her back. She acts like she doesn’t notice all of the brutal things people say about her. She lives in fear of ridicule as it becomes more noticeable- the choice she can never take back. She hasn’t told her family of what is to come, terrified by the disappointment, the judgment. Most of us see these things in movies, but teen pregnancy is blatantly real.

But, unlike all of the movies where the pregnant girl is scared, totally alone and hopeless, there is help for any girl at Randall who thinks she may be pregnant. Signs hung in every girl’s restroom on campus offer information and security to anyone who fears she may be expecting.

Mrs. H. holds various jobs around the campus, but her main job is in pregnancy related services.

“When I was in school there were several girls who were pregnant,” Mrs. H. said. “I chose to hang the signs in the bathrooms because if girls think they are pregnant they will spend a lot of time in there hoping for a sign that they are not.”

Mrs. H. is the main support to pregnant students on campus. Mrs. H. has held the position for over 10 years.

“It is scary talking to someone that you have never met,” Mrs. H. said. “As we have visited, they have told me how scared, lonely and hopeless they felt. I do not judge. It is a very scary time and I want them to know they are not alone.”

The signs hanging in the restrooms inform any girl with these concerns to go see a counselor or a nurse.

“We use the counselors and the nurse as the first go to person because they are more recognized on our campus,” Mrs. H. said.  “From there, the girl is introduced to me.”

Not only is Mrs. H. a support system on campus, but she also educates girls on prenatal care, labor and delivery and postnatal care, and she helps them continue their education and move toward a postsecondary education or vocational path.

“[Some girls I have visited with] were pushed out of the school system and/or told they could not pursue their dreams and goals,” Mrs. H. said. “I am here to let them know that their goals and dreams do not end.  I help them find resources in the community that helps them in whichever decision they choose in regards to the pregnancy.  It is my goal to help, support and educate.”

Mrs. H. offers to help girls tell their families about what is going on.

“Usually, just knowing they have support gives them the courage to tell parents,” Mrs. H. said. “I offer to be present when the girl tells the family or I offer a neutral place for her to tell them here on campus. Something I have found is that the thought of telling someone is worse than the actual telling. There is usually a big relief when you tell someone because now you are not alone.”