Teenagers Should Practice Abstinence Because of the High Risks of Long-Term Consequences from Having Sex

Topics: Human sexuality, Sexual intercourse, Human sexual behavior Pages: 5 (1847 words) Published: May 27, 2013
Teenagers should practice abstinence because of the high risks of long-term consequences from having sex
The topic of sex is a unique issue because it’s one of those topics that are essential for a teenager to know about (like their changing bodies, needs, and aspects of gender differences, sexual orientation and the nature of sex). Yet, certain types of sex education topics are not discussed as much as they should be and/or by the right person. About one-third of teens had not received any formal instruction about contraception; fewer males received this instruction than females (62% vs. 70%) [15]. Among teens aged 18–19, 41% report that they know little or nothing about condoms and 75% say they know little or nothing about the contraceptive pill [15]. Many sexually experienced teens (46% of males and 33% of females) do not receive formal instruction about contraception before they first have sex [15]. 63% of parents say it is not acceptable for teens to be sexually active even if they take precautions [10]; so it can be assumed that they would agree that that limitation of sex education is acceptable without realizing the penalties of what it can do to teens. Yet, individuals such as 42% of teen females and 43% of teen males have admitted to already having sexually intercourse at least once [1]. Before leaning too much on one side of this topic, it is however, important to know why teens are having sex in the first place. Research has suggested that why teens have sex is that sexual behavior is influenced by positive motivations for sex, which may be physical (the desire for feelings of excitement or pleasure), relationship-oriented (the desire for intimacy), social (the desire for peer approval or respect) or individual (the desire to gain a sense of competence and learn more about oneself) [3]. Studies with late adolescents and young adults has found that perceived benefits may be at least as motivating as perceived risks in sexual decision making [3]. Young adolescents viewed intimacy, sexual pleasure and social status as important goals in a relationship, and many had strong expectations that sex would satisfy these goals [3]. Because adolescents consider parents, peers and the media to be important sources of sexual health information [7], understanding why teens are having sex in the first place may benefit everybody. It can help parents and the media to talk more about sex education topics, therefore helping teens and peers to be more educated and safe about sex. It has been shown that parents who talk about sex education topics with their teens have been linked to delayed sexual initiation and increase in contraception among teenagers who have been sexually active [2]. Although it’s ultimately the teenager’s decision to be abstinent from sex or not, 41% of teenage females and 35% of teenage males say it’s against their religion or morals for their main reason for not having sex [1]. While religion and morals may be the most common reason among teens for being non-sexually active, there are many reasons why teens should practice abstinence. The advantages are; it prevents unwanted teens pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases, it supports personal as well as religious morals and values (shown above), gives the option of waiting until they’re ready and/or finds the right partner, it prevents further physical and emotional vulnerability, and it doesn’t interfere with education or harm social reputation. Although birth control methods have a 99.9% rate of success if used properly, they can fail occasionally [4], their typical-use effectiveness is closer to 92% [12]. Abstinence is the only 100% effective way to prevent pregnancy and STDs [4]. When it comes to waiting until they’re ready or find the right partner; 57% of teen boys and 65% of teen girls wish they had waited longer to have sex. Overall 60% of teens who have had sexual intercourse wish they had waited longer [5]. The link between teens being...
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