by Deborah Condon
Teenagers are unlikely to delay having sexual intercourse or increase their contraceptive use, even if they have taken part in pregnancy prevention programmes, the results of a new study indicate.
Researchers reviewed 26 trials of adolescents aged 11 to 18 years, that evaluated pregnancy prevention programmes, including sex education classes, family planning clinics and community based initiatives.
They found that the prevention strategies did not delay the initiation of sexual intercourse or improve the use of contraception among adolescents. Pregnancy rates in young women were also not reduced.
The Canadian researchers conclude that future pregnancy prevention programmes should be guided by further research that examines issues such as the characteristics of countries with low teenage pregnancy rates. Suggestions from young people should also be taken into account, they add.
The results of this study can be found in the 'British Medical Journal'.
Meanwhile the Dublin AIDS Alliance has called for condoms to be made cheaper, in an effort to reduce unsafe sexual practises. According to the alliance, condoms are more expensive in Ireland, than in most other European countries, making it a prohibitive cost for young people, especially those still in school.
I really think we as a society shold look at the rapid changes in the marketing of products to teenagers and children when trying to prevent teenage sex resulting in unplanned pregnancy and disease. It is unwise to dismiss the amount of messages they are subjected to on a daily basis. Everything from music to mobile phones, icecream and chocolates are sold to people with the connotation that this will make you more sexually attractive. I am no prude but it seems that in popular culture everything is about being sexy and attractive. I suppose there is not that much new about that, but it is the way it is being used to brainwash younger people that upsets me. I think younger teenagers are being pushed into sexual activity before they have even had a chance to think about how they feel about these issues. Sex seems to be a maturity stumbling block they need to overcome to fit in with the peer group. Instead of being an expression of love between two people who care for eachother, know eachother, and can enjoy a helathy respectful and joyous journey together. It is very damaging for teens to engage in sexual activity before they are ready and most teens are overawed by the pressure on them to be able to say they have experienced sexual intercourse. Parents also need to get real and start telling their children the truth about sex. We need to give our children a gradual knowledge of procreation from an early age when they start to ask where babies come from. Then gradually fill in the factual information at an age appropriate or intellectual rate. As they become teenagers we need to teach them self respect, respect for others and also the emotional side of sexual relations. There is also a great need to teach them about sexually transmitted diseases. It is a society challenge that we are wellable to face if we just get serious about it and most of all talk about it.
OK...truth. These days advertisements are all about making yourself feel the need to be sexy by making anything and everything being sold about sex. Even though teens are constatly going to sex-ed classes,etc., they still feel the need to have sex. Yes, parents have a BIG role in this. The problem in that is that either the parents don't mind, don't care, or just want to be in the times and want to look the sexiest ever! That's why they allow their children to have boyfriends/ girlfriends all the time, one right after the other. Parents, another thing, WILL YOU F****** PAY ATTENTION TO WHAT YOUR KIDS ARE WEARING!!!! I DONT CARE IF ITS over 150 DEGREES, THEY DONT NEED TO BE WEARING ALMOST NOTHING!!!! But parents aren't the only ones to blame. Teens do to. And all of you you that think that teens don't know what they're doing, YOU'RE WRONG!!!! They know perfectly what they're doing, they JUST DON'T CARE! But also, please, PLEASE, don't think that ALL teens have sex just because they want to do it. I know and you all know that many are together and say that they,"love each other." Most of the times that isn't true, but other times it is. Many have been been together for years and years, almost al of THOSE cases have led to marriage. There is hope. For the others, what goes through their minds is: - "Damn he's fine. I'd like to have him." - "I love my boyfriend but the other guy said he loves me too." - "It's OK because all of my friends are doing it." - "It feels so good, but it feels better without a condom." - "I's OK, I won't get pregnant, he always takes it out before he 'shoots'." - "I love him, now we can be together with our new baby." I could just go on and on. I'm not dumb and I'm not making it up. How do I know? Because these quotes came directly from my friend's mouths. These came from many girls that I still know. Many are pregnant(or already have children) with or without boyfriends. The others are just having fun (or so they say) knowing that so many guys want them. Many get easily bored and brake up because sex isn't good anymore so they move on to the other.Another thing, they have no shame. Even if they already have a partner, they end up having sex with another. They constantly tell me about how they met someone at a party, etc., and was actimg sexy to attract the other. They got each other fired up, went somewhere and did it. They have no shame. All they say is that it felt great, the only thing is that they're afraid of pregnant. But a major thing to remember is that THEY ARE TEENS! Now is the time when hormones are raging and the need to explore is unstopable. That's why you need to know how to handle that. I shall end what I am writing because I bet many of you are angry at me for one thing or another. You may be asking yourself (or just yelling at the computer screen), " What the hell does this peson know?" Well ladies and gentlemen, I AM ONE OF THOSE TEENS SO I KNOW WHAT I'M TALKING ABOUT. If you want to get into the mind of a teen then you must BE a teen. If you're not then it just bugs us, trying to be our FRIEND. Don't think you know all. Yes, I have sex. I am a teen, this is one of the major things I do to releave stress that I get from arguing about me growing up with my parents. I's needed. A healthy amount that is and controlably. I have been with my first boyfriend for over a year now and iy's great! I'm not taking about the sex (even though it is a plus). Just being next to him, spending time with him, just HOLDING HIS HAND makes me the happyest girl in the world. Don't think that every teen only thinks about sex. WRONG! Well the good ones anyways. I admit i do to, but bot crazy like. sheesh.
I am a concerned aunt. My neice is only 12 and she has had a "boyfriend" for several months. Her mom allows her to wear very tight clothes and revealing shirts. She also allows her and the boyfriend to on dates with no supervision. One of the things that bothers me the most is he comes to thier house and they sit with thier legs over each other and lay under covers and her mom seems to not mind. I am very worried because I see a lot of the same behavior in her that I had when I started having sex with my first boyfriend in high school. I was a senior and 17, she is in the 6 grade and is 12. I love her and I don't know how to talk to her about this because her mother thinks her actions are okay. If anyone has anything to say in response please post something.
Anon the sexually active teen - I tried to read your post. You are trying to tell us that you have sex to relieve stress? Girl, why dont you wait until you are living in the real world paying your own way, living independantly before you claim you know what stress is. Im no prude & Im only 32 but normally a person will have sex out of love for that person or perhaps they will even have it out of pure lust and thats ok too because normally this person is an adult, not a teenager. You also think we patronise you and try to be your friend. Have you stopped to think that maybe we are genuinely trying to be your friend. We as adults cannot truely get into the mind of a teenager because that memory is pretty blurry so other than standing on a street corner with you texting till your fingers drop off or supping cider in a ditch, the only way we can communicate with you is to just talk to you as a friend. As a teenager, you tend to go with a guy because he is cool or because all your friends have boyfriends so you feel the need for one also. You may also really belive you are "in love" with a guy but the truth of the matter is you dont know what the meaning of love is at your age. Im not hitting hard at you Im telling you facts. You have lots of growing up to do first, then talk about love. Mark my word, in a couple of years time you will be echoing my sentiments to someone else.
Her mother needs a good kick up the bum. End of.
Fifi, Excellent, although since that teen posted last June.... I doubt she may ever see this responses! As regards to the mother who ignores who 12 year old Daughter's activities..well.. Mother needs a kick, as you said...and Daughter need some gentle talking to. Because she WILL be having sexual intercourse by the time she's 13. To the Teen: I'm not a teen, I'm 26 but I know a load of teens - guys & girls - and I'm the kind of person they are not afraid to tlak to - I know more about many of them than their parents. But they choose to listen to me & ask for advice, because I am concerned for their general health. Us adults do care...but it's just that some of us are better able to communicate with teens, but again..only with those who accept us. But at the same time, I know of a 16 yr old girl [nearly 17] who's been going out with her [1st ever real] b/f for about 5 months now...but she is intelligent..and her mom has always been very open with her - and only recently asked her mom if she could go on he pill. Her mom's advice? It wasn't to do with sex...but she explained the pro's & con's of the pill at that age. Mom explained that there are *other* ways they can explore each other without intercourse...and she asked her daughter if she could just hold off a little while longer..perhaps until she is at least 17. Her daughter has the upmost respect for her own body and I think she will choose to wait. Neither her mom or I think that she may already have done it. So in this case: proper, careing parenting with an open communication line has kept this teen off sex, but it wouldn't have happened if A. Mom wasnt' so open and B. the daughter didn't know what she was doing. She knows all the facts and decided to wait.
hey as i am a teen myself and i am sexually active
i think its your own choice and that teens dont all do it cause their friends are
doin it ...maybe people shouldnt react badly and tell teens to be safe as the sayin goes we want wat we cant have