Half Massed wrote:Coppermine wrote:Half Massed wrote:Coppermine wrote:I've long held that abstinence-only perhaps as the opposite effect on teens; that without knowledge of proper ways of protecting themselves, that it could actually lead to an increase in teen pregnancy. This of course was debunked not long ago with a study that indicated that not only is teen pregnancy at a 10-year low, but so is teenage drug use and violence.
What was the sample group for this study? I don't doubt that teen pregnancy has gone down in places where real sex education is actually being taught, but that doesn't mean that it couldn't have risen in areas where abstinence-only education has been taught exclusively. Taking a polling of the entire U.S. does not answer the question of whether abstinence-only sex ed has adverse effects.
It would make sense if it did. After all, if you don't know what you're doing or what not to do, it's a lot easier to accidentally get somebody pregnant.
I think teenagers have a lot of ways of gathering information these days. Some may be good or bad, but I think there is at least an openness about safe-sex and pregnancy that was not prevalent 40 years ago. I believe the sampling was random and wide spread; abstinence-only did not result in an increase in sexual activity, nor a decrease. It simply has no effect which implies 2 things:
1.) Abstinence only ed in schools is worthless
2.) Teens are not given enough credit for making decisions without us force feeding it to them
At least in my opinion; the perception is that teenagers are dumb animals that if not taught right from wrong, will ultimately do wrong. I know that low-income areas are hit much harder with teen pregnancy, but low-income areas also have higher pregnancy rates in general.
Besides, from the random sample, i think the experiment was to determine if students receiving abstinence only education had less sex. They do not.
Alright then, well that proves the point. If they're not having less sex with abstinence only sex ed, why not teach them how to have safer sex?
And obviously teenagers make their own decisions, that's how family conflicts happen and the stereotype of rebellious teenagers was established, but I'd be more comfortable making it as easy as possible for teens to make smart decisions, rather than just saying "They're smart kids, they'll figure it out on their own."
I mean, I knew about safe sex before I even reached high school, but not every teen does. And if they're taught the only safe way is none at all, or that premarital sex is wrong and shameful, they're less likely to seek out ways to protect themselves. There's the thinking of: If it's wrong to do in any form, it's not going to be any less wrong if you wear a condom.
I agree, and I'd also feel better if they received at least information as facts rather than a watered down "if you have sex you'll die" argument.
The problem with abstinence-only education is that it substitutes what teens need to know for what educators (and parents, and legislators) feel comfortable telling them.
And, since I love debunking the myth that fewer people had pre-marital sex "in the good old days" it turns out they were just better at hiding it. Thankfully, diseases like HIV/AIDS weren't around then.
Fox News.com wrote:NEW YORK — More than nine out of 10 Americans, men and women alike, have had premarital sex, according to a new study. The high rates extend even to women born in the 1940s, challenging perceptions that people were more chaste in the past.
"This is reality-check research," said the study's author, Lawrence Finer. "Premarital sex is normal behavior for the vast majority of Americans, and has been for decades."
Finer is a research director at the Guttmacher Institute, a private New York-based think tank that studies sexual and reproductive issues and which disagrees with government-funded programs that rely primarily on abstinence-only teachings. The study, released Tuesday, appears in the new issue of Public Health Reports.
The study, examining how sexual behavior before marriage has changed over time, was based on interviews conducted with more than 38,000 people — about 33,000 of them women — in 1982, 1988, 1995 and 2002 for the federal National Survey of Family Growth. According to Finer's analysis, 99 percent of the respondents had had sex by age 44, and 95 percent had done so before marriage.
Even among a subgroup of those who abstained from sex until at least age 20, four-fifths had had premarital sex by age 44, the study found.