Literature shows how adolescent mothers can meet many adjustment and developmental difficulties. Early motherhood, in fact, is an interruption of young mothers’ normative development; at the same time they have to face new different and ambivalent developmental challenges. Moreover, the transition to early parenthood also implies difficulties in adjustment to the parental role, shown by a considerable increase of stress experienced during the practice of parenting in a significant impairment in parenting skills. These processes, however, can be properly understood only if it refers to the relational, ecological and contextual dynamics in which they happen and by which they are influenced. The present article examines some of these processes, focusing on the effect of variables related to the bond with the father of the child and the perceived support from the family of origin. Literature on this topic shows that, for young mothers, adaptation to parenting not always and not necessarily leads to negative consequences, even if it could be characterized by meaningful risk aspects. Mother’s resilience, family and contextual resources interweave indeed their influence to turn on possible protective processes. One of the main task of scientific research is therefore to study more thoroughly this particular transition’s dynamics to better develop preventive and clinical interventions.
Keywords: Adolescence, pregnancy, Self development, transition to parenthood, parenting, attachment