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No, I’m not talking about war and soldiers–I’m talking about teenagers and sex.

I may be wrong–though it seems the CDC is leaning towards agreeing with me–but given my own experiences as a teen (and the fact that I have really vivid memories of many of those… *cough*) it never has made sense to me to say, “just don’t do it and you’ll be fine” and then actually expect teens to “not do it”.

Ostrich and sand kind of thing, I’ve always thought.

And a bit like saying to a young kid, “Don’t talk to strangers!” and then being horrified that the overwhelming majority of abuse comes from people close to the kids.

Teach them all they need to know, and then let them make their own choices–they’ll make them anyway, isn’t it much better that they be informed ones?

Arm your kids with knowledge.

12 Comments »


  • Sparkindarkness
    November 17
    12:11 pm

    Of course telling teens not to have sex will succeed. After all – teens have a great track record for not doing everything you tell them not to do. It’s not like teens have ever been rebellious or disobedient or anything!

    Count me in for the “educate them” camp!

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  • Las
    November 17
    1:17 pm

    I’ve always found it hilariously funny that the Bible Belt states–those states that teach abstinence only and are big on chastity rings and purity balls–have the highest teen pregnancy rates.

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  • SamG
    November 17
    2:29 pm

    Amen.

    I tell mine abstinence is best, but if you’re going ahead anyway, protect yourselves.

    They are 14 and I’d love to think that I don’t have to worry about this for 2 more years (at least), I know that’s delusional.

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  • sallahdog
    November 17
    3:59 pm

    I have been going through this a lot lately… I am a Chrisian and belong to a church that really loves the whole purity ball and just say no, line about sex…

    I have been fairly vocal that its naive and dangerous in these times of fatal or permanent diseases to hope and pray ONLY that kids will do the right thing…

    I have had several very frank talks about birth control and diseases and the psychological effects of having sex young, along with moral or spiritual… I pray for the best, but I prepare for them to screw up… because “HELLO” Thats what teens do… One of my kids is on birth control for other issues, and I have had people say its like giving her permission…which is a load of crap…

    She also knows that birth control won’t protect her from diseases… we actually did a little visual demonstration about how you aren’t just having sex with that one person, you are having sex with everyone they ever had sex with …along down the line….

    well lets just say, we all had a greater appreciation for the number of M and Ms in a bag…

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  • sallahdog
    November 17
    4:00 pm

    They are 14 and I’d love to think that I don’t have to worry about this for 2 more years (at least), I know that’s delusional.

    right there with you, mine is now 15 and most of her friends have already been sexually active… and she now has a boyfriend who has been…I am pretty much quietly freaking out..

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  • Arm your kids with knowledge. Now that’s a mantra worth remembering everyday, AztecLady, whether it has to do with teaching kids about sex, drugs, the dangers of text-driving or the world at large.

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  • I’ve told my son that the moment he gets a girlfriend or the opportunity for sex, he either needs to get condoms or tell me and I’ll buy them for him. I’ve shown him my emergency stash so he can pilfer if he needs to.

    My daughter? She’s 14, has an IQ in the high 140s but at the same time is very naive/immature socially and sexually. Unfortunately, she’s also good-looking and stacked. I’ve told her that once she starts having sex it’s condoms or else. I’ve also had her promise me not to have sex until she’s given herself at least one orgasm. Sexual agency, buckeroos. Probably my only regret about losing my virginity young was I didn’t know what pleased my body before I let boys have access to it.

    Find out how the buttons work before you hand over the controls to someone else. Boys start building agency from the moment they first stick their hands down their pants and discover something happy happens. Girls should know their bodies before they get naked with another person.

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  • Randi
    November 17
    8:27 pm

    This reminds me of my jury duty experience. It was a rape case and at the end, the ADA came in to talk with us. She said that the city does have a program that goes out to talk with teenage girls about what rape is and the various versions of it. I asked if anyone explained that to the boys. She said ‘no’ and that she had never heard of any group that did.

    So essentially, boys were not being educated about what constitutes rape, while the girls were. I suggested that perhaps it would behoove the city to also educate the boys.

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  • Oh, I’m all about educating. I’m hoping the more honest and open we can talk about it, the more she’ll trust me, and the more she’ll use common sense.

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  • eggs
    November 18
    1:19 am

    And don’t just educate them verbally. Buy a couple of boxes of different condoms. Get a some vegetables out of the fridge. Teach you kids how to apply a condom properly, show them how easy they are to tear so they’ll be careful with their fingernails. There’s no point in having condoms if you don’t know how to use them! This is also a great time to teach them all the condom party games, like blowing them up with your nose, etc.

    I would also suggest keeping a box of condoms in the bathroom cabinet just like you keep a box of band aides there. Check it regularly for resupply and replace when expired, just like band aides. Experience has taught me that knowing how to use a condom is useless if you’re young, hot to trot and just pooled the last of your cash to buy cheap wine.

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  • I guess I live in a more progressive place. They teach you how to roll the condom on in grade nine here–the health nurse even named the wooden phallus “Excaliber”, lol.

    My son (grade 10) came home the other day to say they just started the sex unit in career and personal planning. I asked what he’d learned. He said “Frankly, nothing you haven’t already told me.” But it was only the first day of the unit. I subbed at the school a few times and saw some of the handouts–they describe the risks and mechanics of various kinds of sex, complete with a “glossary of practical slang” like “blowjob” and “buttsecks”.

    They explore safe sex, peer pressure, and making sound choices–and the fact that it’s part of their lifeskills/planning course gives it a little balance.

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  • Kristen, I’m with you. My oldest had a Battery Operated Boyfriend before a human one.

    I have a sexually active 17. And my 14…well, he plans to build a clone to avoid the whole mess. But yes, condoms, condoms, condoms and PILL and anything else you can layer in. Our problem is sexual ethics. Sex is only immoral if it’s harmful to you or others, and Bun does not use her powers for good, alas.

    From the oldest: “I love Gay Pride. It’s like trick or treat for condoms.”

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