No one can deny that sex sells. It does; however, raise some interesting questions. Why are people so fascinated with sex? It isn’t because it is rare. People today have sex at the drop of a hat. It isn’t because sex is hidden. It is displayed in every magazine sold and splashed across every screen, large or small. With all of its presence, you’d think that people would be tired of being inundated with it every single day.
There was, of course, a time when sex meant something more than just pleasure. It was a precious gift that took place between two people who were committed to one another. More shameful yet by today’s standards, it often wasn’t practiced until those committed individuals were married.
Of course I have heard all of the rhetoric about monogamy not being natural. I agree. It isn’t natural for some. That doesn’t mean the choice is wrong. It just means that some people don’t chose to fight the desire to cheat. All of celebrity cases we’ve heard about recently certainly prove that fact. No one wants to keep a vow that might take a little effort.
Before someone gets around to leaving a comment that I’m just repressed, I beg to differ. I just don’t choose to give sex away like a cheap gift. I think I am worth more than that as a human being.
If I have heard it once, I’ve heard it a million times: “What’s wrong with this up and coming generation? All they think about is sex.” That’s probably true because it is something they hear about or view constantly. We endorse their use of it by giving them free condoms and justifying the action with “well, they were going to do it anyway.”
I’m not saying we should not do everything we can to protect our children and certainly birth control and condoms are an important part of that. What I am saying; however, is that there may be a problem with “how” we deliver those items to them. Maybe, we need to spend a little more time talking with our children about the consequences of sex before we ratify it. After all, once they have an sexually transmitted disease (STD), get pregnant or worse, it is simply too late.
Secondly, maybe we need to delve a little more deeply into what our children are learning about sex in school. As parents, it is our duty to know what are children are being taught. We might not like it, once we learn what it is. After all, there is a reason that sex has moved from older teenagers and young adults down to elementary school children. Don’t we want to know why?
With two small grandchildren I certainly did so I took upon myself to do some research. I even interviewed a few local teens to see how they might shake up the statistics. What I found out was both startling and shocking for this grandmother. Some of it broke my heart. Let me share that information with you.
#1. About 50% of teens have had sex before their 19th birthday.
#2. Most of those same individuals have had sex more than once.
#3. A startling percentage of the same teens have had sex with more than one partner.
#4. The average age for a sexual encounter is now 16 and moving rapidly lower.
#5. Over 9 million teens contract STDs each year.
#6. Human Papilloma Virus infections, also known as HPVs, make up the largest STD numbers.
#7. Left unchecked, HPV can lead to cervical cancer.
#8. More than three-quarters of million teens get pregnant each year.
#9. Pregnant teens account for over 200,000 abortions ever year.
#10. The U.S. boasts one of the highest rates of pregnancy in the world.
Here is information I gleaned from talking with local teens between the ages of 12 and 17:
#1. 33% of the teens interviewed have sex because they think everyone else is doing it.
#2. 10% of the group admit they often have sex just because they are bored.
#3. 89% of the interviewed teens consider sex as intercourse. They don’t believe oral sex counts.
#4. 42% of the same group said their parents never had a sex talk with them.
#5. Only 11% of the group admitted to having self-esteem issues.
#6. About half of the interviewed teens used condoms for protection.
#7. Of the remaining amount, two-thirds used no protection at.
#8. More than 25% of the girls said they didn’t care if they got pregnant.
#9. Of the percentage in 8 above, most said they would just have an abortion.
#10. A whopping 90% of the teens I talked with said they would continue having sex “for fun”.
What startled me most in talking with this teen group, is that many of the younger girls had sex early on, before the age of 15. The boys, on the other hand, averaged out at 16.
While obviously such a small random sampling can be considered inconsequential to the big picture, it isn’t likely to be so among their parents. Since I promised not to disclose this information directly to them in order to get the teens to participate, let’s hope that some of them read this piece and take action.
I worry about the world in which my grandchildren will grow up. Not only must they contend with the changes taking place in our country, they must also contend with an ever changing set of moral issues. The fact that sex does indeed sell, will make their travels on the moral pathway a bit more difficult.
I contend that just because something works, that doesn’t necessarily make it a good thing. The things I hear and see on television today often appall me. How then are developing minds supposed to cope with the same information?
Clearly, the sexual revolution has given adults a freedom they enjoy. To each his own. However, I have to ask: Is there no one willing to protect the children? If not, I’m glad I won’t be around to watch the up and coming generations in action. It might be more than my poor heart could bear.