When Susan Tate’s 17-year-old daughter, Lily, announces she is pregnant, Susan is stunned. A single mother, she has struggled to do everything right. She sees the pregnancy as an unimaginable tragedy both for Lily and herself.
Then comes word of two more pregnancies among high school seniors who happen to be Lily’s best friends – and the town turns to talk of a pact. But criticism of the girls quickly becomes criticism of their mothers, especially of Susan, who holds a visible position in town. As principal of the high school, she is considered a role model of hard work and core values. Now her detractors accuse her of being a lax mother, perhaps not worthy of the job of shepherding impressionable students. Susan is still struggling with the personal implications of her daughter’s pregnancy, when she hears calls for her resignation.
But what of her close friendship with the two other moms? Are they any less at fault than she is? The friendships suffer – but shouldn’t loyalty trump community pressure? And what of a fourth friend, who has power enough to minimize the fallout but whose own daughter has a murky tie to the pact?
Set in a small Maine town that cherishes responsibility, Not My Daughter raises many issues, not the least of which is the age-old question: What does it take to be a good mother?