Birds and bees

letter-to-the-editor

Sex Education

Pregnancy rates of United States teens, ages 15- 19 years, have continued to increase tremendously throughout recent years. In many places all around the world having children is common, but the statistics of teenage pregnancy in this day and age are very high. Teenagers are having sex, but unfortunately, for many, they are not protecting themselves and/or are not taking precautions. They could soon become unaware of the responsibility they could end up facing if they become pregnant. Teen pregnancy happens everywhere in the world for many different reasons. Here in the United States many are provided with education about the basics of the “birds and the bees,” and how a baby is born, but it is seen that many adults are not as approachable as they believe they are on the subject of sex. At an age where puberty, hormones, maturing is happening, teens need to have some idea why their body has so many different kinds of urges, a vital one being sexual. Many teens tend to have sex, and believe that if they are taking the simple precautions then they are perfectly fine. The media and other people’s opinions can be deceiving. Sometimes though, some teens end up getting pregnant or even having a STD, and not having a clue on what to do. All around the world teens are having sexual intercourse, but in the United States there is higher rate of teen pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases. The sexual education in the United States needs to be improved and fixed to a higher standard than it is at right now, so that risks can be decreased and so that sexual awareness is increased.
Here in the United States the high pregnancy rates are unbelievably high and it’s only from unmarried, uneducated teenagers. As early as ten and twelve years old, girls and boys go through puberty and develop hormones and as they get older they may start to have feelings toward one another in a sexual way. This is natural and only human nature, but unfortunately this happens at a young age. Adults, guardians and especially parents are supposed to guide and educate teenagers. They have a responsibility to make sure that teens with raging hormones know how to control themselves. One can see both parents and teenagers is not doing their job of keeping high rate of teenage pregnancy low. Why might this be? Yes, one may agree a health class is offered in schools and may be required to receive a credit. But what do you learn about sex? What are learning about responsibility if one become’s pregnant or impregnates? Are teens really being told much about it and made to spend time on this subject considering this is a major issue in the United States? I have taken three health classes and all we go over is how a baby is produced, not the before’s or after’s. As time passes, yes, our teenage society sees the effects of teen pregnancy and a young girl becomes pregnant and now has a child to tend to, but that’s not stopping anything; teenage pregnancy is still quite high. There are many factors on why they would be high. One would be that “I was drunk.” This for the most part is pretty self-explanatory, but it mainly means one was too drunk to know that they were hooking up, and having sex and were not using any protection. This also leads into the basics of not using protection whatsoever leading to the possibility of pregnancy. Even though when two do not protection that most likely leads to pregnancy, the two can also have malfunctions. The condom may break or the girl might be taking birth control, but it may not work effectively, both leading to pregnancy or an STD. As sex becomes more casual, the possibility of transmitting or obtaining an STD is highly plausible. Young adolescents have these raging hormones that may lead to sexual intensions, and are not always thinking ahead, and they just do it. As mentioned before sex is going to happen, but the sex education should come first. Teens should be aware of their surroundings and educators, so that an accidental pregnancy doesn’t become part of a statistic.
One major idea is that parents, adults, should be approachable to all teenagers. Adults believe that teens should not have sex until they are married, but there are teens that still will have sexual intercourse; parents shouldn’t hold that against their teens. An adult shouldn’t promote it, but definitely help to solve it. Adults tend to be scared to talk about the subject, and to allow their teen to be hearing that sort of thing. Adults should not be protecting teens in the sense of not telling them something, they should be protecting them in educating them and allow the teen to be aware. As teens we are more likely to say, “Just use protection and you’ll be fine, no big deal,” or “If the guy doesn’t ejaculate then you can’t get pregnant.” Unfortunately what these teens don’t know is these are not so true. Parents or adults who know of a teenager should sit down and talk with the teenager just so they know and want to take precautions. Yes, the teenager might object at first believing and saying, “Oh Mom/Dad, I know” but this can make a difference. Parents get to that stage where it might be an awkward subject and they don’t want to make their teen think that if they do this and that, which they have nothing to worry about. But the thing is parents need to set the facts straight and maybe give the details to their teen down and dirty and if they are going to have sex that it is their responsibility and they better be using all precautions to have safer sex. There are two kinds of parents: the ones who educate and set it straight to their teenager, and trust they will be taking care of themselves, yet the teenager knows that their parent is still approachable, and the ones who pretty much say you need to wait to have sex and it is always there and they’re really not approachable in that the teen doesn’t know if their parent would ever look at them the same. Having sex is a big deal in a parenting life, but there’s a point where parents should know that they need to show that they are there if their teen needs anything.
There are specific solutions to promoting sex education. In Germany, what they do to promote a sexuality education is enforce a policy, but the states can choose which curricula to use. In France, healthy sexual intercourse and promote “through national campaigns that encourage students to participate in safer sex and AIDS prevention poster contests. The winning posters then become an integral part of national media campaigns (Siecus).” They also are tested on national school exams for the proficiency in sexual education. The United States of America can definitely adopt these different influential and great ways of getting the point across and to get teens to understand and realize what they are in for if and when they have sexual intercourse. They need to make having a better sex education around the country a whole lot better. Sex and the education about sex is a major issue and one of the best ways to promote unplanned pregnancies is to start from the beginning.