Just as any other parent of a teenager, I have found myself obliged to talk constantly, and try my best to have the slightest piece of information on matters pertaining to teen sex. In the course of my research, some of the findings I find, however, so frightening with regards to the same. I am, however, quite positive that the information I gather will help me differentiate the actual facts from the added fictions, which may have been passed to help with guarding the teens. A fact that should be acceptable to all, both parents and the community, is that this topic poses a great challenge. It is thus, a worthy topic of discussion or debate. In my search, I touched on so many sources that helped me come up with an informed information: that helps in the understanding of the extents of this challenge, how it has impacted on the teenagers themselves, how it affects their families, learning institutions and the community as a whole. Another vital information gotten in the search, was, how sex is related to the other adventurous, otherwise considered risky behaviours, preventive measures as well as interventions in case it already has occurred.
According to the 2005 Wisconsin Youth Risk Behaviour Survey Executive Summary, an astonishing knowledge was that from the surveyed teens, 40% had already had sex, (Wisconsin 7). This was a survey, completed anonymously by 2389 students collected from 52 public schools. This is a very frightening statistic; however, a more saddening fact is that much more teens are in experimentation ordeal with sex. For instance, they try out oral sex, which has been gaining rising commonness that the actual intercourse in the recent past. “Oral sex is often viewed so casually that it needn’t occur within confines of a relationship . . . can happen at parties, possibly with multiple partners”, (“Teens” 1). Donna jolly is in agreement with the fact that this type of sex, oral, is on a very high rise amongst the teens. She expresses her concern that teens actually argue oral sex as having reduced risks, that the actual intercourse. The perception of teens on oral sex is very contrasting to that of their parents, thus making it a very tasking subject of discussion for the parents, with their children. This comes as a challenge to the parents as, the more they withhold from having such discussions with their children, the more the misconceived and wrong information.
Most teens believe that the only penetration is considered as sex: you are still a virgin as long as you do not engage in it, even if you practice oral sex, (“Technical” 1). The idea of being technically virgin has led to an increase of oral sex amongst the teens. “Half of 15-19 year olds teens have received or given oral sex and one quarter of teens who have not had intercourse have had oral sex.”(“Technical” 4).
According to Jolley, (3) the penalties of this type of sex are just as hazardous as those associated to the actual intercourse. Education on the sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) is mainly focussed on the pelvic region. The teens, therefore, fail to associate them to oral sex. Experts can only estimate a total of 9 million Americans who get infected annually, based on the fact that so many STDs yet remain undiagnosed. The STDs may be categorised under two main groups: bacterial and viral. Bacterial types such as gonorrhoea can be treated with antibiotics, but may cause pain and traumatisation throughout one’s lifetime. Viral STDs, however, may have consequences that can lead to a change in a person’s life, (4 Parents-Talk Topics 13).
Another major challenge is the HIV, human immunodeficiency virus, which is a viral STD. This is the most dangerous of the STDs, as it does not have any known cure. Instead, all that can be done is the prescription of that only help prolong such a victim’s life as well as suppress the activity of the viruses. With the teen’s misconceptions from oral sex, they are left at risk of living with some STDs undetected to a point in time that it can then not be possible to treat.
The consequences of teen sex affect all the families, communities and the learning institutions. Most parents tend to live in oblivion, and assume that their children are not in any way involved in sex, more so the oral one. According to 4Parents-Talk, the cost of treatment of STDs in America goes beyond 6.5 billion dollars a year. This translates to a financial strain on the respective affected families, as well as emotional destabilisation because of the stress that follows. Parents should, therefore, come out so clearly and get their children informed at all expense. Schools also play a very vital role in the educating the children on the same issue. According to Kelly (6), some schools spend only a maximum of two hours per year on sex education: others two hours in a semester. The school receives a better part of the blame as far as the topic of rising cases of teens’ engaging in oral sex is concerned. He goes ahead by mentioning that the American parents are pushing the schools into taking the full responsibility of educating the teenagers. This is under the old reasoning of taboos in discussion of such cases with their kids.
I am, however, very positive that there is a lot I can do to reduce the chances of my teenager becoming sexually active. Everyone must accept the fact that sexual activity in teens, not only affect the individual teens involved, but also the concerned families, the community, as well as the schools. Everyone, therefore, is called upon to embrace the practices that can help reduce teen sex and other risky behaviour
4Parents.gov. 3 Mar, 2006 “The Facts” “Talk Topics-Talk about sexually transmitted diseases” “Talk Topics-Other topics”. http//www.4parents.gov.
Jolly D., 2006. Personal Interview, 27 Mar, 2006.
Kelly K. 2005. “Just Do It” U.S. News & World Report. 17 Oct, 2005: Vol. 139, Issue 14, 44-51, 8p, 7c.
USA today. 19 Oct. 2005: “Technical virginity becomes part of teens’ equation.” Life 7d. MasterFile.
USA Today, 19 Oct, 2005: “Teens define sex in new ways”: Life 1d. MasterFile Premier. Badgerlink. La.
Wisconsin Department Of Public Instructions, 2005: Wisconsin Youth Risk Behaviour Survey 2005 Executive Summary. 2005. 6 Mar. 2006. http//www.dpi.wi.gov/sspw/yrbsindx.html.