Parent reviews for The Secret Life of the American Teenager

Common Sense says

Heartfelt drama tackles teen sex, pregnancy, parenthood.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 13+
Based on 82 reviews

Kids say

age 13+
Based on 183 reviews
Parent of a 13-year-old Written byIdiots April 17, 2012

A cute teen dramadey!

Sex: They talk about sex A LOT in the first and second season, and not nearly as much about the consequences. By the time Amy's had the baby it's a lot more focused on the consequences and talking about the baby, I think the later seasons are suitable for 11 and up.
Education: It shows the consequences of teen pregnancy, not as well as a show like Teen Mom but fairly well.
Drinking and drugs: Pot's been mentioned on earlier episodes and drinking on a few episodes. Not really a big concern and it DEFINTELY isn't glamourized.

This title contains:

Positive role models
Sexy stuff
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
Adult Written bymichellemom2AB&C September 4, 2011

Do not let your children watch this show!

Not appropriate for anyone under the age of 17 or 18. Although I applaud the writers for portraying these teenagers as intelligent and well spoken who actually use proper grammar the show is extremely sexually charged and unrealistic.
The theme seems to evolve around sex, sex and yeah, more sex. Not only are kids portrayed as very sexualized, but they are shown in bed with one another. Yes, it can spark discussion among parents and teens, but do you really need to watch something so salacious to open such dialogue? This show is misleading as well because it depicts an almost "Brady Bunch", like simplistic solution to the teenage drama and problems associated with sex. Everything seems to work out just fine for the teen mothers. They have family support, convenient jobs that seem to just appear and plenty of money. Yes, condoms are talked about, but condoms don't protect against herpes and other sexually transmitted diseases. This information is not discussed, furthermore no one contracts any STD's with is unrealistic given the amount of sex being had. If a teen on this show is not having sex, they are obsessed with having a boyfriend or girlfriend rather than academic or athletic achievement. The adults don't seem to be any better as they are focused on their own sex lives. What about oral herpes from the oral sex these minors are engaging in? Why is no one concerned about STD's?

This show does not take a realistic or serious approach to sex and it's consequences for high school age children. It glamorizes and idealizes the issue. In fact, so much time and effort is put into relationships and sex that I don't know how anyone actually has time to pass tenth grade. This show is pure entertainment and not appropriate for ANY children. It is so sexually charged in fact, I would not be surprised if pedophiles weren't the biggest supporters of this "family drama"

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written bycadiomals August 15, 2011

Blech....

SEX, SEX, SEX is literally everything this show is about. It sends mixed messages, is unrealistic, and just not a fun watch in general. It tries sending positive messages but just drowns them in excessive SEX.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byfirespinner July 22, 2011

Don't let your kids watch this trash

This show is HORRIBLE for kids. It doesn't show the realities of teen behavior and teen pregnancy. It GLORIFIES teen pregnancy and multiple sex partners but packages it in a Hanna Montana style of fake acting that makes it seem geared to preteens. I'm not a prude, my daughter is allowed to watch things like CSI and Law & Order (with the exception of SVU which she's too young for). I have no problem with shows which show the real problems of teenagers who engage in sex and get pregnant, but THIS show is banned in our house because it makes it all look like fun and games with everyone jumping into bed with everyone else and its all made to look funny and wonderful.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written bykriwar July 20, 2011

Young mother with a much younger sister.

I am a new parent but have a younger sister that was in situations like this. I watch this show with several of my girlfriends that I have had since high school and we talk about how we wish we had a show like this when we were younger. We had several girls in our high school that wound up pregnant at very young ages. We saw how difficult their lives were.
We also said how if this were around back then and we had watched it with our parents, maybe our parents would have pushed us more about succeeding in life and talking to us about sex. So many parents are afraid to have that talk. I will even admit that my husband and I dread that day already but we know how important it is. People in real life are exactly like they are in this show. Teens that are having sex young do get completely crazed with it so that it is all they think about. It is true and please don't live in denial.
I've even had discussions with my mother who agrees that if this show was around in her day, she would have had different views on sex as well. She thinks that it sends a great message to teens because it does hit those topics that most people are not willing to talk about.
Watch the show with your children. When a scene comes on that you think should be touched on personally with them, pause the tv or make a note if you don't have DVR. I don't know what else to say except stop judging the show because you're naive as to what kids think and talk about. I'm sure when you were in high school you were the same way.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written byJoanMcDoogle July 17, 2011

Amazing

It is an amazing programme. I am a parent myself and i understand not all parents will respect my veiws but I think it is suitable for ages 12 and upwards. I have a 12 year old daughter whom i watch it with, yes there are some scenes that made me cringe but I think it is good to let my daughter watch it because she learns from it. The programme carries out positive messages throughout. My daughter understands the difficulties of becoming a pregnant teenager. It is also good for my child because she learns sex education in 2nd year and 1st year so she understands. I would say its just fantastic!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written bynotateenager May 30, 2011

Where did they get these "Actors" or writers for that matter?

I'm not even going to go into a review of the story-line. They could have done so much more with it but for whatever reason they chose not to - everyone before me basically said it. Don't bother.

My question is why is still show still on?!? Like seriously...horrible acting is a gross understatement. HOW is this show not cancelled yet?
Adult Written bystevie rae May 21, 2011

no wonder

im 18. i dont have any kids, im not married. just a college student at the art institute. i started watching this show online only because i wanted to see what messages it was giving teens. this show has 16 year olds dressed only in their underwear having sex with everyone in the show. no wonder the youth of this country is starting to get pregnant so soon.high school is not the end of the world. if anyone under 17 reads this, YOU SHOULD NOT BE HAVING SEX. sex is a little thing in life. its not as important as this show makes it out to be.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byCR90 May 14, 2011

Something teens should watch.

As it deals with the pressures of being a teen and may very well help kids make age appropriate decisions in real life. Sure the show is a little cheesy, but it works.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 3 and 5-year-old Written byvannalynne May 9, 2011

Just awesome

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written byteenmom1 April 22, 2011

13 year olds are in sex ed. so why is this show not age approiate?

i love the show. yes the age limit starts at 13 but, why not? 13 year olds are having sex education in school, so how does this show come out to be bad? it shows life problems and that not everyone gets a fairytale. im a big fan of this show and always will be. yes it sometimes seems that its sending the wrong message but in the following episodes they fix situations. i love it!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Adult Written bymrs.mcdnld22 April 11, 2011

Not how teen pregnancy really is

So unrealistic, I was pregnant in highschool and it was nothing like this show made it out to be....happy, happy....cute little babies. On the other hand maybe thats how it is when u have rich parents

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Adult Written bydedra4 March 15, 2011

Not appropriate for children...or adults

While it may be true that a teenager who watches this show might think twice about participating in sexual intimacy, I think there are a lot of hidden message in the show that might actually peak the interest of a teenager who might not have been showing interest before. I can't believe the who only has 3 'lips' regarding sex because not a conversation passes in the show that sex isn't brought up. Sex is an all consuming topic on this show.

I am 33 years old and have had 4 children and I don't think this show is appropriate for me, let alone my children.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written byCorrine1028 March 2, 2011

Perfect for tweens and teens

I am so hooked on this show! I know sometimes they over do the sex thing. They also cheat and lie. They're human! The positive role models are Ricky, Adriana, Grace,and Amy. Adriana cause she decides to keep the baby instead of having an abortion!:) Grace wears a purity ring and talks to her mom about sex!:) Ricky loves John and tries his best to be a good father!:) He tells Amy when shes being wrong. The negative role models are , Ashley, Todd, and Grace's ex-boyfriend, and Ben!

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Sexy stuff
Adult Written byjtjslg February 21, 2011

Don't invite sex into your home

Completely inappropritate storylines for children that would be awake to watch this show. There is no purpose in exposure to these topics. Over time, a person, will become numb to the offense and not even notice that sex was mentioned over and over. When did engaging, or even disussing, sex become a middle school/high school appropriate issue?

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language
Parent of a 2-year-old Written bysarahs20 February 15, 2011

Why grow up so fast

I love this show to be honest. I wish a show like this was out before I ended up pregnant with my daughter. It's a way to show kids that being a single parent is hard. It get in the way of dating, relationships with friends and just being a kid and having fun! I never miss a show of the Secret Life of the American Teenager now that I have TV everywhere with DISH. I had it with Xfinity and realized I can't watch LIVE TV outside my home. So working with DISH I switched over and got TV everywhere is DISH and it's great I love watching TV at the gym and this is my favorite to see.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Parent of a 7, 12, and 12-year-old Written bymichelle06111980 January 30, 2011

Perfect for older teenagers, but not for tweens or young teens!

i think this is totally inappropriate for tweens and early teens! I think it is fine for the older teenage crowds. I have a 12 yearold and caught her watching this and feel it sends messages at too early of an age. While these may be issues that go on in a highschool, I dont feel junior high kids need to be exposed.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written by22LowBrass January 21, 2011

Perfect for tweens and teens

This show is the only show that disney (owner of abc family) that tells parents how the real world is for teenagers. Only MTV and Nick (Degrassi and Gigiantic) and Disney can say that have that type of programming. This how teens act.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 2, 4, 10, and 11-year-old Written bybpm01 December 11, 2010

Bad show, bad messages

All this show talks about is teens having sex. Not to mention the acting is terrible. I wouldn't let my 13 year-old watch it.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Adult Written bydrummerchic312 November 1, 2010

If you don't want your child watching something about sex. don't let them watch this.

The entire series is about sex. Any other issues are minor or not addressed next to sex. Sometimes sex is treated as being casual sometimes it is taken seriously.

This title contains:

Sexy stuff
Language

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