The “hook” of this week’s 16 and Pregnant was that 17-year-old Hope Harbert was a big party girl before getting pregnant by a hookup named Ben. Aside from Hope’s need to go to Arizona State University (the party capital, apparently), we didn’t get too much juicy conflict as she changed her lifestyle. Still, there were some surprises, like the circumstances under which Hope got pregnant and how Ben actually stepped up to the plate. So, read on for five facts about Hope, Ben, and their cute little boy.
1. Last week I marveled at how Myranda Trevino was with her boyfriend for only three months before she got knocked up, but Hope and Ben take the cake on this one: They started hooking up because they worked together and would party after their shifts, and had sex maybe five times (by Ben’s count) before she got pregnant. Considering that their first time together — when Hope lost her virginity — he pulled out because they didn’t have a condom, it’s not surprising that it took only a handful of risky times for sperm and egg to meet.
But poor Hope’s mom Betsy, who tells her early in the episode what a shock it was for her daughter to have never dated anyone, and suddenly be carrying a fetus.
2. Ben surprises us over the course of the episode by proving himself to be a stand-up guy. In contrast to episodes where the babydaddy promises to be there from conception on but is usually out of the picture after the baby is born, Ben waits two months before getting back in touch with Hope. Not that I condone it, but it seems to show that he takes the time to seriously weigh the consequences of being in her life.
Because Ben and Hope don’t even start dating until after she’s carrying his child seems to already doom the relationship. As Hope confesses to her girlfriends at one point,
“I think Ben will make a good dad, he’s just not a good boyfriend.”
For a long time, he’s comfortable visiting her only when no one’s home. (And of course, right as Hope says this on the voiceover, we see Ben come through the door… and we’re watching the two through the cameraman’s lens. It’s a funny bit of irony.) But he eventually meets Betsy, and they seem to get along fine.