‘Teen Mom’: Who Were the Original Moms On the Show?

It was one of the most controversial TV shows ever to air, with critics saying that it glorified teen pregnancy. Still, Teen Mom was very popular, and as the first spin-off of 16 and Pregnant, attracted legions of frequent viewers.

Over the course of two series runs and multiple seasons, the show has introduced fans to young mothers who were struggling with the pressures of parenting in the spotlight.

Some have gone on to further reality show fame, while others have chosen to take a step back and live quieter lives. Here are the original moms of Teen Mom!

Farrah Abraham

Farrah Abraham
Farrah Abraham | Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic

Farrah Abraham has become one of the most notorious teen moms, but her life immediately prior to the show was mired in tragedy. Her boyfriend, Derek Underwood, the father of her daughter Sophia, was killed in a car accident just two months prior to the birth, in December 2008.

Abraham leaned heavily on her mother for support during her daughter’s infancy, but their relationship was tense. Teen Mom documented Abraham’s fights with her mother, but even after attending therapy sessions, the family had a hard time seeing eye to eye.

In 2013, Abraham was featured in a controversial sex tape. In spite of the backlash that Abraham received over the video, she staunchly defended her choice to appear in it and went on to have a thriving career in the adult entertainment industry.

As a result of her decision, Abraham was fired from Teen Mom in October 2017. These days, Abraham is reportedly pursuing a serious acting career and often promotes various products on her social media pages. 

Amber Portwood

After initially appearing on 16 and Pregnant, Amber Portwood was cast in the spinoff show, Teen Mom. During her time on the show, Portwood has struggled with drug addiction, jail, and problems with her family. Portwood went through a series of violent, abusive relationships before ultimately finding happiness with Andrew Glennon. 

Portwood and Glennon welcomed a child together in May 2018, and reportedly are considering getting engaged. In an industry that often thrives on drama and unhappiness, it is refreshing to know that happy endings can still sometimes happen – and this definitely seems to be the case with Amber Portwood.

Maci Bookout

Maci Bookout was instantly popular with fans when she started appearing on 16 and Pregnant and then Teen Mom. Her sense of humor and positive attitude was a refreshing change from many others in the cast and in spite of her teen pregnancy, is considered to be a good role model for other young women in similar situations.

Bookout got married to longtime boyfriend Taylor McKinney in October 2016, and the pair share three children – Bentley (from Bookout’s previous relationship), daughter Jayde, and youngest son Maverick. Today, the pair is reportedly happy with their family, while rumors persist that Bookout could be pregnant with a fourth baby

Catelynn Lowell

The final OG teen mom is Catelynn Lowell, who appeared on the show prior to her marriage as Catelynn Baltierra. Lowell has definitely experienced highs and lows during her stint with the Teen Mom franchise.

She and her husband (boyfriend during the early seasons of the show) Tyler Baltierra have struggled publicly with their relationship and even appeared on Couples Therapy

In spite of her mental health issues, including treatment in 2017 for suicidal thoughts, Lowell has met every challenge head-on. In March 2019, Lowell welcomed her third child with Baltierra, a daughter named Vaeda.

Lowell claims that their baby daughter is a “rainbow baby,” their reward after a particularly difficult time in their lives.