Through trials, tribulations, and three kids, they've survived it all
Mackenzie McKee wasn’t on television for long, but we haven’t forgotten about her or her adorable growing family. Mackenzie is the proud mom of three kids with her man Josh, and she’s a fantastic fitness guru. (Seriously, you have to see her six-packs abs.) It looks like she’s really living in pure bliss, but she revealed that it hasn’t been as easy as she made it look online. Her heartfelt diary entry reveals it all.
Their Love Story
Mackenzie appeared on 16 & Pregnant because, of course, she was a pregnant teen. She met her baby daddy in school and wound up with child not long after. She explained, “It all started back when I was fifteen and he was sixteen. A friend of mine took me to a high school basketball game that was a school near mine. When I walked into the gym, I saw one of my good friends talking to Josh. When I walked over, my friend introduced us and I shook his hand. I don’t remember a lot about what we talked about, but I do remember thinking it was love at first sight. We literally couldn’t stop looking at each other!”
She does remember the clothes that he was wearing and knew that he was the one for her. She continued, “The one thing I do remember is when I looked down, I noticed that Josh was wearing cowboy boots and a cowboy belt buckle! I instantly had a flashback to when I was a little girl, I remember I told my parents that I always wanted to be a cowgirl and that I needed a cowboy husband! I knew right then and there that I had to get to know Josh better.”
Mackenzie may still be young but early social media played a role in their relationship. Mackenzie explained, “The next day, he added me on MySpace. Yes, I know if you’re reading this you’re probably laughing because MySpace isn’t even around anymore! We got to know each other a little bit and we went out on our first date to a movie. I remember we went to the movies and saw Valentine’s Day. I remember feeling butterflies in my stomach whenever I was around him.”
Part of that apprehension came from her condition; she was worried her diabetes would scare him away. She stated, “I, like many other people when first getting to know someone, felt nervous to tell him certain things about myself. I remember waiting to tell him that I was a Type 1 diabetic because I wasn’t sure what he was going to think or how he would react. We got to know each other better and ended up having a serious relationship.”
Mackenzie was raised believing that she should abstain from sex until marriage but clearly that didn’t happen. She explained, “We loved each other so much, but we definitely did some things that we probably shouldn’t have. Looking back on our relationship, I wish I would’ve saved myself for marriage. I was the youngest in my family and all of my siblings ended up saving themselves for marriage. Josh and I had many obstacles when we found out I was pregnant at 16.”
Mackenzie and Josh were featured on 16 and Pregnant and Teen Mom 3; it gave them fame along with more stife. She explained how being on TV compounded their strife, “It was hard to let people in on our lives and it was extremely hard for both of us to be as vulnerable as we were at the time. I was sometimes jealous when I thought about my siblings saving themselves for marriage because they didn’t have to go through the heartbreak, the stress or the emotions that Josh and I brought upon ourselves.”
Being followed around by cameras just confirmed that they weren’t ready for this huge life change. She continued, “Like any other couple who gets pregnant at 16, we also were nowhere near ready to become parents. Josh and I both had a lot of growing up to do. Having our relationship and our child on TV for everyone to see was extremely stressful.
“Many people inserted their opinion into our lives and into our child’s life that it put a lot of stress on Josh and me as parents. We constantly asked ourselves if we were doing what we were supposed to be doing as parents, we questioned ourselves when it came to being together and we questioned our futures together.”
Ups and Downs
Mackenzie and Josh were so young trying to figure out how to be parents and how to get along with each other that they certainly had rough patches. Mackenzie said, “Josh and I had our ups and downs as parents and in our relationship, but somewhere deep within, we were still the same young couple that fell in love with each other the first night we laid eyes on each other.
“When we got to the chapel, Josh and I sat in his truck for a while and talked about marriage. We made sure that getting married is what we both wanted for our futures. I looked at Josh and asked him if I was the one that he wanted to be with forever.”
Josh said yes, and they had two wedding ceremonies: a smaller one for close family and a large white wedding. Still, they weren’t out of the woods yet. They had two more children and started feeling like they were losing their identities. They knew they had to make a change in order to feel happier.
She said, “We felt that maybe in order to be the couple that we needed to be, that we had to chase our dreams and support each other. I chased my dream and became an NPC fitness model. After I had Broncs, I struggled a lot with trying to be the wife and mom that I needed to be. I also had my worst battle with post-partum depression after I had Broncs.
“I ended up getting my tubes tied which didn’t help. I had so many emotions that Josh and I were still struggling with our roles as spouses and parents. I honestly considered leaving in order to change myself to be the wife that Josh needed and the mom that my children deserved. One day when I was by myself, I knew that something HAD to change or my family would suffer from who I was becoming.”