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Teach abstinence-only or comprehensive sexual health education?

California law states that public schools cannot teach or promote any religious doctrine when it comes to sexual education. Instruction must include the proper use of contraceptives and prevention of sexually transmitted diseases.
Given the high level of teen pregancies, the United States has a leading number among other modernized countries for teen pregnancies, I completely agree that abstinence- only is ineffective, wishful thinking. Teens are obviously having pre-marital sex. Let's educate them on how to be responsible about it.
That is my view.

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Bernie19

Asked by Bernie19 at 12:28 AM on Nov. 7, 2009 in General Parenting

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Answers (12)
  • Here Here !!! I agree with that... Abstinence Only is not working... So why not give our teens the knowledge to go out there prepared and more knowledgable about the consequences and how they can handle it. I've heard of HS bathrooms having condom machines in them. I know the idea sounds ludicrous... but perhaps if contraceptives are available to our yound kids then we can help fight teen pregnancy.
    bubblycute

    Answer by bubblycute at 12:32 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • I'm going to be a sex ed teacher....
    I do not think that teaching abstinece only classes is effective. That just raises questions that aren't being answered. Teens have sex because they don't know any better. If they are educated, they are more likely to understand the consequences of having sex. Not only pregnancy but STD's. I do not think, however that contraceptives should just be out there for kids-because they are kids in fact- to get. There's condoms, which are effective and safe. Putting birth control in a teenage girl can hurt her in the long run and a teenager isn't ready to make that decision. I think that if kids know that abstinence is what we should ALL practice-if we're not married- but also know the risks they are more likely to make better choices. I know that if I would've known the consequences of sex and how hard it is raising a baby, I wouldn't have done it anymore.
    SaraP1989

    Answer by SaraP1989 at 12:41 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • Thank goodness I had a mother who was on top of teaching me about birth control. I never had a sex ed class in school. I was smart enough to know that I didn't want to get pregnant or a disease and I knew I didn't want to sleep with someone who wouldn't mean anythign to me in 10 years. I was responsible and safe about it, and it was because my mom was open and honest. I would have had sex anyway, but I probably woudln't have been as responsible as I was about it.

    Studies have shown that teens who have been taught ab-only still have sex in teh same numbers, but they use protection a lot less. It's also been shown that Christian teens who decide to have sex diliberately DON'T use contraception because it's "like making a promise to do it".

    I would go so far as to say that we need to be teaching kids ALL about human sexuality, since it is such a driving force in our life.
    Ati_13

    Answer by Ati_13 at 12:47 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • AGREE AGREE AGREEEEE
    Anonymous

    Answer by Anonymous at 12:58 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • I totally agree that kids should be given ALL information regarding safe sex. I have personally talked to my 14 year old about it. I made it clear that I don't want her to have sex any time soon, but I am not in control of her body, so I'd rather have her well informed. Besides, when you are open like that with your kids, it makes it easier for them to trust you and open up to you in return.
    NightPhoenix

    Answer by NightPhoenix at 1:15 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • I live in an area in the country where sex education is not allowed in the schools with the exception of a brief segment in health class for high schoolers. During that time abstinence only is stated. They also show slides of what STD's look like and say this is what will happen to you if you have sex and are not married. I worked with many children/teens who were victims of sexual assault and this scared them. I educated the survivors I worked with on normal consensual healthy sex and the benefits of it. We discussed birth control and knowing when you are ready vs. not being ready for the responsibilities of a sexual relationship.  In my state we have one of the hightest rates of sexual assult, homocides due to domestic violence, teen pregnancy rate....IMO all due to a lack of education and resources available for teens and adults to make good educated decisions on their sexual health.
    frogdawg

    Answer by frogdawg at 6:47 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • As a mom of one grown daughter and two teens, I know that kids will have sex when they want to and not when we want them to. We'd all like our daughters to wait till they're 30 right? I've always tried to keep the lines of communication open and have stressed that sex shouldn't be looked at as bad if it's done safely and in a loving relationship. Kids need to be taught about respecting themselves and their bodies. We need to teach them about both the emotional and physical aspects of sex and hopefully when our kids do begin having sex it will be for the right reasons, in the right environment, and they will be emotionally ready to handle it. Sex education should begin at home.
    Sheila1970

    Answer by Sheila1970 at 7:21 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • I also think sex ed should begin at home but the reality is sometimes it doesn't and sometimes parents lie to their teens about sex and send them totally unprepared into the "real world" where like it or not a lot of teens are having sex. My own mother told me that sex is for adults so there is no reason to talk about it and don't even think about doing it! I am very open with my son about sex and have been since he started asking questions, in 7th grade he asked the health teacher when they were going to talk about protection and she said in HS. There were pregnant girls in his school but their district taught abstinance only in middle school, so too bad for those kids who unfortunately were having sex too young cuz the teacher was NOT allowed to even answer questions about protection!
    goaliemom93

    Answer by goaliemom93 at 10:30 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • Also I did a research paper about 2 yrs ago and found a study done in 2 towns in Mass. with demographics as close to identical as possible, one district taught ab. only the other taught safe sex and had condoms avaliable in school. The one that taught abstinance only had a higher pregnancy and STD rate over the length of the study which I believe was 4 years.
    goaliemom93

    Answer by goaliemom93 at 10:31 AM on Nov. 7, 2009

  • I agree, teaching comprehensive is the best way to go. My mother was a teenage mother in the 70's and she said she didn't even know you could go buy condoms. I was in an abstience only class in middle school and it was so pointless. The teacher gave us a list on the first day of things that we were and were not allowed to ask or talk about at all. Doesn't seem like a very good learning environment to me!!
    jedwards2009

    Answer by jedwards2009 at 12:04 PM on Nov. 7, 2009

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