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the-pill

This week’s dilemma is as follows:

You and your just-turned-fifteen year old daughter are very close, and you usually trust that she’ll always try to do the right thing. She starts dating a 17 year old boy, who’s she’s really keen on.

young-love

A couple of months later, your daughter comes to you, and asks to go on the pill.

What do you do? Do you let her start taking The Pill, or do you tell her that she’s far too young to be having sex?

What would you do?

25 Comments »

  • Teenagers are going to have sex.

    I’d put her on the pill, and buy her condoms too. Then I’d commence with the lectures about waiting until it’s right and respecting herself. And then follow-up lectures about the importance of ALWAYS using a condom, knowing that it’s all right to say no even if you’ve said yes before and a reminder of how much better sex is when there’s love.

    Of course, MY kid would know all of this stuff already because I’d have been talking about it since she was nine.

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  • Hormonal/menstrual issues run in my family so I wouldn’t necessarily think that birth control would be the primary reason.

    That said, if that wasn’t a factor… yeah, I would. If she wants to have sex, she will regardless of what I want, and I’d rather she not get pregnant because I want to live in denial. 😛

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  • AnneD
    June 12
    11:32 am

    This one’s easy. Yes.

    And as Venus said, condoms would be easily to hand, along with information. I’d prob even talk with both of them 🙂

    But I will be that mother… you know the one that allows that permissive stuff beneath her roof. Because I’d rather know they were having safe sex under my roof than be having unsafe sex in an unsafe location.

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  • Better age 15 and she’s not wanting to get pregnant than age 13 and she already is.

    I would die a little inside but yes, I’d also get her on the pill, lecture, pray and hope she’s making the right choices.

    But ouch. My daughter is only 8 now and I dread that day. Why do they have to grow up?

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  • Actually, now that I’m raising my sister’s teenager, this came up–but not from her. She’s had a boyfriend for the last 2 years and…well, I had to ask. (They aren’t at that point yet, she informed me to my immense relief.) I told her straight out, look, no one in our family can point fingers. There’s enough teenage moms in our line to form our own soup kitchen. I just don’t want her to be one. I’ll happily make sure she’s protected and, like the ladies above, stress to her how waiting a little longer could be in her best interests. Plus she’s seen so well what the life of a teen mom is like that she’s got no interest in it happening to her.

    It is ALWAYS better to have them know it’s safe to talk to you about things than worry you’ll freak out and leave them in the dark.

    Dee
    who also has loud, obnoxious infants to remind her what can await if she’s caught unprotected, lol.

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  • Uhm both?

    Well and I’d have to give her condoms. Instead of mad money, I’d give her mad condoms. ANd pills. Yes and the “you’re too young talk”

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  • Marianne McA
    June 12
    2:46 pm

    In theory, my answer is yes, let them have the pill, because if they’re going to have sex, they’re going to have sex.

    In practice, with the two of my daughters who have passed that age (16 and practically 18) I would have done something else, because they weren’t mature enough to make that decision at just-turned-15.
    (I’m imagining them quietly wanting to die as I talked to them, and actually dying when I talked to The Boyfriend.)

    So, my official answer is that it depends on the child, and also on what your relationship with them is like at that point.

    But as a general rule of thumb, better safe than sorry.

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  • I’d be flattered that she felt comfortable enough to discuss it with me. I’d then make an appointment for her to see a gynaecologist and have her/him go through the options with her. I’d make sure to talk to her about the emotional side of sex, too, as this is so often forgotten in sex ed talks.

    While I’d prefer my 15-year-old daughter not to be sexually active, if she intends to be, I’d rather she be prepared and not see it as something shameful.

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  • Yes, and what Marianne McA said.

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  • I get her on bc. Might night be the pill-depends on whether or not I think she’d remember to take them. There are other options.

    However, I’d also try to have a heart to heart with her, make sure she realizes the pill only protects against ONE thing-pregnancy.

    *G* Plus I think I might take a page from Marianne’s book-and talk to the boyfriend, too.

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  • Simple answer – yes – and buy condoms for the disease factor

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  • Yes. I did.

    We did the gunecologist bit and the whole works. She’s 17 now and I’m not a grandmother.

    I understand that half of all kids have sex before they’re 16. I remember being that age myself.

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  • My daughter is almost seven, and I completely dread this whole situation. I know how I was at that age, and I waited until I was 18–I bought the condoms for my girlfriends (and a pregnancy test once), and generally didn’t involve my parents in any of it. They preferred to live in ignorance.

    Then my DAD gave me THE TALK. I can quote it for you. “I know, you’re.. you’re uh, going off to college, and there’s, uh, things, adult things, sexual things…” He coughed in his hand. “Be responsible. And if something happens, you come tell me, and we’ll take care of it.”

    Of course, I was standing on the stairs, about to go downstairs with my eleven year old cousin at the time, so it was doubly embarrassing…

    I can’t even imagine what it will be like with my child. At least I’ll wait and have “the talk” with her without any younger kids around…

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  • Gynecologist, not gunecologist. *headdesk* I plead tornado nerves (we’re having them tonight)

    My daughter complains her life is an ongoing Vagina Monologue. I have been talking with her about her body and how babies are made and what’s happening to her since she was a toddler.

    Of course the “sex with boys” talk we’re all kinda braced for. The long discussion of “Can she have girls visit overnight when she’s actively bisexual?” is one that most parents never have.

    My 9 year old has a pretty good grasp of male anatomy (she has brothers) and the general concepts of sex and childbirth. Of course, she’s all giggly about it, but she’s 9.

    Since this is a religious issue for us, we’re doing our best to raise kids who respect themselves and their sexuality.

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  • Sam
    June 12
    11:48 pm

    I would get her the b.c. My kids know I think abstinence is the smartest way to go. They also know I lived w/their dad before I married him and are not delusional enough to believe we were chaste.

    Sam

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  • Lorraine
    June 13
    12:32 am

    Yes to both. The parent in me would be concerned about her taking the pill..is it really safe at that age? The realist in me remembers that I took it at 15 and everything seems to be in working order for me. My concern is based on any long term side effects she may suffer rather than the fact she’s having pre-marital sex.

    I assume my kids will have pre-marital sex…I did, why wouldn’t they? Although I tell both my son and daughter to wait until they’re adults and to make sure they’re in love, I think it’s naive of me to believe that they will. I’d be shocked if they do. Those teenage hormones are powerful.

    So yes, I’d take her to get the pill. Would I prefer she wait rather than blithely giving it to some random boy she probably won’t be seeing in a few months? You betcha!

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  • Throwmearope
    June 13
    12:48 am

    My daughter is 16 and dumps every boyfriend after a week, when they do something stupid. (Boy, am I glad teen-aged boys are almost always stupid!) So no need for birth control yet. But definitely, I would get her birth control rather than raise her child for her most likely.

    As far as religion goes, most of my wild child patients take pretty good care of themselves. My good-girl patients are the ones who get pregnant, STDs, etc.

    I preach abstinence first, precautions second to my patients. If they can’t be good, they need to be careful.

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  • Louise van Hine
    June 13
    12:59 am

    i’ll be the dissenter. I went on the pill back in the old days when the dosages were heavy and the side-effects were equally heavy. The Pill is not the safest form of birth control around – condoms are. Less effective but perhaps less objectionable to potential partners is the diaphragm, but I would not permit a girl in the midst of puberty to take hormones, simply because there are risk factors with them, and girls get pregnant when they miss a few.

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  • Miki
    June 13
    3:10 am

    My mother had me at 16. Her sister was 14 1/2 when her first was born.

    I wouldn’t like it, but I can’t deny the likelihood of her doing what she wants! However, like Louise, I’d hesitate to put her on the pill. I’d want a good doctor’s opinion, but I’d also be concerned that she would “just-this-once” pass on the condom because “it’s safe, I’m on the pill”.

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  • I think, firstly, I’d be really touched that she came to talk to me about it. And then we’d have the safe sex talk – that the Pill only prevents pregnancy and that condoms prevent pregnancy AND STDs. (And that neither is 100% effective.) And I would emphasize that she has every right to say ‘no’ at any stage!

    And I agree that 15 seems a little young to be on the Pill, so I would suggest we discuss it with a GP, and that it would be important to discuss the emotional side of sex.

    I think I’ve pretty much agreed with everyone 🙂 Teenagers will have sex regardless of what they are told, so I would rather she be safe before anything else!

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  • @Throwmearope
    The wild children tend to take care of themselves, I agree. And most would class my oldest as one.

    I just said sex is a religious issue. I didn’t say which religion. We’re pagan. Sex is a vital part of the religion (and if you don’t think explaining fertility to a 9 year old is a trip, you’ve never done it) We are open to and embrace our sexuality, but accept the responsibility that comes with it. We discuss it openly.

    Good girls do end up pregnant and trapped more often. That’s why I don’t believe in “good girls.” I believe in smart girls. I believe in careful girls. But good? That’s someone’s value judgement on my kid based on whether or not she conforms to their behavior standards, which aren’t necessarily our standards.

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  • As Angelia, I’m a pagan, too, and what I consider a “good girl” doesn’t necessarily jive with the religious ideals of someone else. I’d be glad my daughter felt comfortable to come to me about the situation. I would also feel it’s better to be safe than sorry, so yes, I’d take her to get on b.c.

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  • Louise, I understand your concern regarding the potential effects of hormones on a still developing young woman, but I think current formulas are much safer than they were just ten, fifteen years ago. Still, I would definitely keep an eye on her, health-wise.

    I would also drone on and on and on about the proper use of condoms and the whys and hows of STD transmission, etc.

    But then I started talking with my kids about sexuality and their bodies around the time the first born turned eight and the second/youngest turned seven. I also urged my daughter to get the HPV vaccine when she was 13.

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  • sallahdog
    June 13
    8:17 pm

    I wouldn’t use the pill.. Girls that age are horrible about forgetting it… A friend of mine just went through this and her daughter ended up having an abortion… At this young age, there is no GOOD outcome of an unplanned pregnancy.. I would probably do the implant or have her get the depo shots…

    Hormones may not be the best, but having a baby at this age is not a risk free enterprise either…

    I am a Christian but I live in the real world, with real consequences and I believe in living with the facts, not what I HOPE my kid would do..

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  • @sallahdog, the trick is to have a parent dispense the meds until the girl is older and more responsible.

    Depo and the implant are also options. But all hormonal types need monitoring for break-through bleeding and mood effects.

    95% of people, regardless of faith, have premarital sex. And they have been doing so for 3 or 4 generations. So, let’s get over it already and be sensible.

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