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Posted Wed, November 17, 2010 11:09am EDT

'16 And Pregnant' Star Markai Tells Us: I 'Wouldn't Change Anything!' Exclusive Interview!

Will James make a good dad? He had no job & cheated on Markai, but still managed to prove his commitment to baby Za’karia by the end of the episode!

Markai will probably go down in 16 and Pregnant history as the girl who craved soap during her pregnancy, a symptom that explains is actually somewhat common — and, thankfully, temporary. And as if that wasn’t enough for Markai to cope with, she also had to handle disapproving mother, Sarina, and her baby daddy Jamesshocking confession: He cheated on her!

Sarina has always had issues with men, stemming from her experience with Markai’s absent father, who finally showed up after Markai’s baby Za’karia was born. She didn’t want James around because he didn’t have a job and also because she saw that Markai was making some familiar mistakes. She even kicked him out of the house the first night the baby was home!

Soon enough, however, Sarina had to accept that James was there to stay. He didn’t want to stay away from his baby and baby mama, which is way more than we can say about most teen dads on 16 and Pregnant. As for the infidelity bomb? It was at the beginning of their relationship and, although hurt, Markai made the tough choice to overlook it for the sake of her family. James totally proved his love. He even admitted to his friends that he took ALL of the girls out of his phone when things got serious with Makai! C’mon ladies… KEEPER!

Keep reading to find out more about her life since the show in an exclusive interview with

What are the biggest challenges you have faced in being a pregnant teen & mother?
My biggest challenge is being scared that I’m raising someone at the same time as growing up myself, and I have to put Za’karia in situations that she shouldn’t have to go through, such as me going to school at the same time as her going to school. I haven’t grown up completely yet, and she has to grow up with me.

Who has helped the most with the baby?
My mom and Za’karia’s father, James help the most.  If I want to go out and have a break to have some “me” time, James will stay with Za’karia because he understands I need some space too. And when I want some alone time with James, my mom will watch Za’karia.

Tell us about your baby, any big milestones?
Za’karia’s a beautiful growing baby! She just started talking, and right now she repeats everything James and I say. Kari hasn’t officially started walking yet but is getting close. When she’s puts her mind to what she wants, she gets it, so I know she’ll be walking in no time.

How has your family been there for you?
They have been very supportive through every step in my life.  Even if they don’t agree with my decisions, they’re always there for me, whether I need a baby sitter or just someone to talk to.

How has the father been there for you?
James and I have been together now for almost two years. And he is just all around an awesome person, but he definitely has an opinion on everything, and we’ve been through a lot of rough patches together. But James is always there for Za’karia.. not like a lot of other baby’s fathers I’ve seen.

Has the father’s family helped out?
James’ mother isn’t really in our life but his father loves Za’karia and is always there for our family and he’s the best grandfather. He sees Za’Karia at least once a week and checks up on us every night.

Do you see a future with the father?
Of course! I don’t see myself with any other person but James. He’s the love of my life and finishes all my sentences. We definitely go through ups and downs like any other relationship, but we know now we have to learn from them to grow as a couple.

Would you do it differently?
Even though being a teen mom is hard, now that Za’karia is in my life I wouldn’t change anything. Za’karia is my everything and motivates me to finish school and to be a better person. But everyone’s circumstances are different.

What are your plans for the future, work school?
School is my priority first and then work. I’m going to college next semester to become a mammalogist so that I can have the job that I want to, training dolphins and sea animals.

— Brooke Peoples, with reporting by Alanna Finn