Bristol Palin's contention that former boyfriend Levi Johnston "stole" her virginity is no attempt to bash him for their first sexual encounter, she said on "Good Morning America" today.
"I'm not accusing Levi of date rape or rape at all," Palin said on "GMA." "But I'm just looking back with the adult eyes I now have and just thinking, 'That was a foolish decision.'"
"Absolutely. I think she's awesome," Palin, 20, said. "I think she's smart. I think she would be awesome for our country."
Palin, the oldest daughter of former Alaska governor and potential presidential candidate Sarah Palin, would take a lesson from the 2008 campaign, however, in which she describes her family as being "thrown under the campaign bus" by GOP running mate Sen. John McCain of Arizona.
"I think they could have stuck up for our family more," Palin said of the former presidential candidate's campaign team. "Because they never really did."
Palin is revealing much in a new memoir, "Not Afraid of Life: My Journey So Far," writing candidly about everything from the McCain family to her sexual relationship with Johnston, her child's father.
In the book, released Friday, Palin writes that she "had a sneaking suspicion I might need to watch my back," after first meeting the McCain family, and describes Cindy McCain, the senator's wife, as looking "like a queen" and holding "herself like royalty."
Palin writes that she was shocked when the senator's wife offered to be a godmother to her unborn baby: "I had just met her and I wondered why she wanted any type of guardianship over my child," she wrote.
But Palin saves her most biting words in the book for Johnston, the father of that unborn child, her now 2-year-old son Tripp.
Johnston was Palin's high school boyfriend who, she writes in the book, "stole" her virginity on a camping trip while Palin was drunk on wine coolers.
Palin's experience as a young, unwed teen mother led her to become a spokewoman for abstinence, making hundreds of thousands of dollars lecturing to young adults about abstinence, and come under fire from critics questioning whether she was the right person to spread that message to young girls.
"I hate the word 'abstinence,'" Palin told "GMA" in response to critics. "I'm not an abstinence teacher."
Palin might not want to be held up high, but she does hope that, through her book, young girls and women can use the lessons she learned the hard way to protect themselves in their own lives.
"I hope that other women with jerk boyfriends can read the book and be like, 'You know what? I don't have to be with this guy,'" she said.
"And I think parents can read the book and open up a dialogue to their kids."
Palin writes in her memoir she and Johnston soon became intimate again after their first encounter, and she got pregnant with their son shortly after. She writes that she was taking birth control pills at the time to treat menstrual cramps; she went through eight home pregnancy tests before she was convinced of the positive results.
"I talk about in the book how I was on birth control," she said. "Abstinence is the only way that you're going to prevent teenage pregnancy. But, if you're going to have sex, practice safe sex, very safe sex."
Bristol Palin Shares 'Tough Skin' With Mother Sarah
Palin refers to Johnston as a "gnat" throughout the book and claims he "cheated on me about as frequently as he sharpened his hockey skates." She writes that while her parents accepted her pregnancy, he wasn't so supportive, saying the child, "Better be a f**king boy."
Palin told "GMA" that even though her parents, Sarah and father Todd, were supportive of her pregnancy, the hardest part of the whole experience was the day she had to return home after Johnston told her he might have impregnated another girl, just as news of their engagement was splashed on the cover of US Weekly magazine.
"It was the longest drive of my life, driving down that driveway," she said. "It was the hardest thing to I've ever had to do."
But her family rallied by her side, which Palin told "GMA," made the experience worth the negativity and criticisms she faced.
"Having my family on my side, that's all that matters," she said.
The "tough skin" Palin told "GMA" that she shares with her well-known mom has helped her as she has become a celebrity in her own right, through her broken relationship with Johnston, her time as a contestant on "Dancing With the Stars" and, most recently, a barrage of negative media after undergoing what she labeled "corrective surgery" on her jaw.
"Whatever they say, it really doesn't bother me," Palin said of her reaction to critics. "Especially something like that."
Up next for Palin is an even bigger share of the Hollywood spotlight. She's now working on a reality-TV show of her own with her former "Dancing with the Stars" contestant, Kyle Massey.
In the book, however, Palin writes of not-so-happy memories from her 2010 stint on the show, where she and her professional partner, Mark Ballas, finished in third place.
"I noticed some of the contestants rolled their eyes when they realized we'd survived to dance another day," she wrote, adding that some of the contenders voted off "literally would not speak to us or acknowledge our presence."
"I knew that I needed to do something to provide for Tripp," she told "GMA" of her decision to put herself in the reality-TV spotlight. "I knew that we would financially gain from it."
Something not in the future for Palin, however, is following her mom into a political career, she said.
"We're both very independent," Palin said of the traits she shares with her mother. "We're both strong.
"But, no," she said of politics, "not on the top of my list."
ABC News's Sheila Marikar contributed to this story.