Teenage mothers are often shunned and stigmatised in our society, but sometimes becoming a parent is the catalyst a young person needs to break drug dependency and start afresh.
Lim was a teenage girl of Cambodian descent who had a serious heroin habit. She became pregnant at 17 and her youth worker at the time, Ipsita Wright, was initially worried about this turn of events. But the pregnancy ended up being one of the best things that happened to Lim. “The child was definitely the impetus for her changing her life,” says Ipsita. Lim stopped using drugs and became a wonderful mother, doting and dedicated.
One day, just before the second birthday of her son, Lim asked Ipsita to help her make cupcakes – little vanilla-flavoured ones with light blue frosting. Other mums would attend the birthday with cakes, sweets and biscuits, and Lim wanted to be able to bring along standard party treats too. “She just wanted to be normal,” says Ipsita.
The cupcakes were a success, and Lim kept in touch with Ipsita. When her son was eight, Lim called Ipsita and said she’d baked him a Pokemon-themed cake. All those years later, she still remembered the cupcake lesson and even attributed it to her becoming a caring and supportive parent.
Lim said, “I wasn’t very good at many things, but I’m a really good mum.”