Teenage mum pays for childcare by creating TikTok videos for 400k followers

·4-min read
Saffron and Ivy-Mae <i>(Image: Agency)</i>
Saffron and Ivy-Mae (Image: Agency)

A schoolgirl who was “so shocked” to find out she was pregnant on her 15th birthday now has more than 400,000 TikTok followers, and uses her income from the social media platform to fund her childcare, saying she “wouldn’t change anything for the world”.

Saffron Kelly, 16, who lives in Preston with her mum Helen, 49, a civil servant, and her 10-month-old baby daughter, Ivy-Mae, was unsure if she was going to keep her baby until she thought she had miscarried and realised she “couldn’t cope with the thought of losing her”.

Lancashire Telegraph: Ivy-Mae
Lancashire Telegraph: Ivy-Mae

Ivy-Mae (Image: Agency)

The teenager finds leaving her daughter when she goes to school “difficult” but knows she is doing it for her and is “grateful” that she can afford childcare through her TikTok content – her most watched video has more than 23 million views and she has made around £2,000 so far.

Helen, who became a grandmother when she was 43 when Saffron’s sister fell pregnant at 17, was “absolutely devastated” when Saffron told her she was pregnant, but now says her granddaughter gives her “so much joy” every day.

Saffron can see a “future” with her boyfriend – Ivy-Mae’s father Jake Mercer, 16, an engineering technician – and is hoping to do a business apprenticeship when she finishes her GCSEs.

“I was so scared when I found out I was pregnant, but I wouldn’t change anything for the world,” Saffron said.

“I’m so grateful that my TikTok content gives me an income.”

Saffron found out she was pregnant on her 15th birthday on October 2 2021.

She said: “I was shocked, and I didn’t really know what to do.”

Lancashire Telegraph: Jake and Ivy-Mae
Lancashire Telegraph: Jake and Ivy-Mae

Jake and Ivy-Mae (Image: Agency)

She told Helen first, explaining: “It was so hard; I was really scared to tell her the news because I wasn’t sure how she was going to react.”

Helen said: “I was absolutely devastated – I didn’t take it very well.

“I was just worried about how the reactions would be from everybody.

“I was worried what people would think of us, and I didn’t want Saffron to get picked on or bullied.

“You just hear what girls get called and stuff, and I just thought that’s what she would go through.

“I cried for about two weeks – I was just really upset about it.”

When Saffron told Jake she was pregnant, he was in complete shock.

She said: “I think he was the same as me.

“I don’t think he knew what to say or think.”

At first, she was unsure if she would keep her baby, until she began bleeding at nine weeks.

She said: “I thought I had lost Ivy, and they had to do a scan, and I saw her on the screen.

“I think from that moment, I kind of knew I was going to keep her – I couldn’t cope with the thought of losing her.”

Saffron, who was in Year 10 at the time, was nervous about going back to school as she knew people would find out the news, and she was not sure how her peers would react.

But, to her surprise, none of her fellow students made a comment.

She said: “No one really said anything to me, so I think everyone was supportive.

“It wasn’t really a big deal at my school.”

Despite the support from her schoolmates, she felt like one of her teachers started treating her differently when they found out she was pregnant.

She said: “After everyone found out I was pregnant, it just seemed like they (the teacher) weren’t the nicest to me – I cried twice over it.

“It was hard because my emotions were so high.”

Saffron gave birth on May 16 2022, saying: “It went really well.”

A month after giving birth, while Saffron was on maternity leave, she began posting TikTok videos with photos of her baby, which soon evolved into day-in-the-life videos.

Saffron said she “struggles to pick” a favourite video she has created, but her most popular is an evening routine which has more than 23 million views.

She said: “The video is of me doing a night-time routine on a school night.

“It shows me putting her down for the night and giving her a bath.”

When she found out the video had gone viral, she said: “I just couldn’t believe it, it was amazing.”

Saffron explained the general reaction to her posts: “Some people completely disagree with me being a young mum; I think it might be because of how they were brought up or something.

“But others can be really supportive.”

When Ivy-Mae was four months old, Saffron returned to school full-time, saying: “I find it really hard to leave her in the mornings, but I have to think I’m going to school for her.

“I’m getting on really well at school – I’m still on track for my predicted grades.”

When Saffron is at school, she has childcare, which she has been able to afford through creating TikTok content.

She said: “I get money from TikTok, so that’s like a way that I get paid, and Jake has a job as well.

“I can see a really good future with Ivy-Mae and Jake.”