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teenage sex - Page 2

post #21 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

with teen pregnancy my personal gripe is that it is always coloured with a black hue, downfall of the mom, ruined life. is teen pregnancy really that bad. 

Yes. I suppose that whether you view it as bad or not depends on your expectations for your life. My mom got pregnant at 17, and it took her almost 15 years to finish college because she was working so much and trying to make life work as a single mom. She regrets that deeply. So do I. My mom is brilliant and would have had a very different life if she hadn't gotten pregnant. I did not have a stable or happy childhood because of the resentment and the fact that I just got in the way of her ambitions. If you don't have the desire to go to college or have a career, then you get a job and continue on your way in the same way that you would have otherwise (with the added expenses of parenting). I suppose that could be seen as less damaging in the long run. My mom was fanatical with me and my sister about sex and how much it could ruin our lives if we got pregnant (although I think she happily would have paid for either of us to get abortions). My sister and I are very different. She's conservative and religious. I'm progressive and very political. We both adhered to my mom's admonitions in different ways (her: abstinence; me: a zero tolerance policy on not using birth control). I don't want to use fear tactics with my children and want them to foster a healthier sexuality than I had in my early 20s, but I do want them to understand that having a baby changes the trajectory of your life. It's not a joke or fun or a small obstacle. 

post #22 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Adaline'sMama View Post

In some places....and that's probably not going to be the case by the time our kids are old enough to drive. 

 

 

I have a kid who is driving and 16 really isn't that old. And she's mature for her age!  Thank god she has no interest in dating. bag.gif

 

Some thoughts on Meemee original question -- I think your DD is a great age for these conversations because she will be less interested in having them with you in a few years. My main points on sex when I talk to my DDs are.

 

1. if two people want to have sex and they don't want to make a baby, they should use two forms of birthcontrol. One of those should be a condemn.  (I've said this so many times that if I start it, my kids roll their eyes and finish it)

 

2. Sex can make relationships more emotionally intense. They can make break ups worse, and they are pretty icky even without sex. There's no condemn for your heart.

 

3. Put the same level of thought into every single sexual partner as you do your first. Lots of people put a lot of thought into who should be their first, but I argue that there's no difference. Subsequent partners should live up to that same standard (whatever it is). Every person you decide to be intimate matters, because you matter.

 

4. I have your insurance card and prescription card, and if you want them to see a well woman provider, use prescription birthcontrol, etc. Just say so. The most important thing to me is that you make your own choices and take care of yourself. If you for whatever reason feel you can't talk to me, use Planned Parenthood. They are cheap and take confidentially very seriously.

 

5. What ever choices you make, I will always love you and be on your side.

 

My DH and I have discussed it and if one of our kids had a baby, we would help them. They could live here and continue school and we would make everything as easy as possible. It wouldn't be the end of the world for our child. It wouldn't be our first choice, obviously. What we've explained to our kids is that having a baby before they were really ready, financially independent, in a solid relationship and all that is that it makes life a lot harder. Raising kids is a lot more work than it looks like. They are time consuming and expensive. We've explained that our life style is possible because both DH and I got college degrees and work experience and didn't have kids until we were in our 30s.

 

None the less, our kids will make their own choices. And what ever they are, I hope to have peace as they unfold.

post #23 of 40

I don't think there is any question that teen pregnancy is difficult for all parties involved. My parents were 16/17 when I was born and while they are the tiny percentage that have actually stayed together all these years and thrived, they also had a lot of help. My dad's parents gave them a house and paid for college for both of them.... and helped watch me so they could finish high school and college. My mothers family both couldn't and wouldn't help. My parents worked their tale off too, no question but they didn't do it alone and they would never try to pretend they did. It's a harder life than they recommended to me certainly.

 

My mom gave me a very honest talking to at 16 when I first started dating. She didn't forbid sex. She just told me that it changes things and until it happens, you won't know if changes things for the better or for the worse. At that point, I'd already had some friends suffering the worse. Both girls were 15... one got herpes her first time, the other ended up pregnant and had an abortion her freshman year. I saw sex as a risk I wasn't willing to take until I was an adult and in a stable, mature relationship.

 

As parents, we talk pretty honestly about sex with our kids. While neither of us try and sell "wait until you are married" because we don't really believe in that, we recommend our kids wait until they are adults. My 15-year-old talks to us about her friends who are active and it's always with sorrow. In her case, her few sexually active friends aren't emotionally healthy and she is absolutely aware of that. Sex doesn't bring them joy and it doesn't fix their problems. What had the hardest impact on DD was that if a pregnancy occurs, those kids could be tied together forever. DD is just starting to tip-toe into the dating world and taking things very, very slow. In the mean time, she's learning a lot from the actions of others.

post #24 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by Linda on the move View Post

 

 

My DH and I have discussed it and if one of our kids had a baby, we would help them. They could live here and continue school and we would make everything as easy as possible. It wouldn't be the end of the world for our child. It wouldn't be our first choice, obviously.

 

This is where we stand, too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by whatsnextmom View Post

What had the hardest impact on DD was that if a pregnancy occurs, those kids could be tied together forever.

 

Yes, this is so true. My daughters and I talk a lot about sex  (well, moreso dd1 right now but dd2 sometimes listens in) and I share my belief that it should be with the person you want to spend the rest of your life with and make a family with -- but I also share that not everyone approaches sex in the same way. Some people think it's important to have more than one sexual partner in your lifetime. 

 

One thing I emphasize is that whomever we have unprotected sex with, we carry around microorganisms from their bodies forever, and those microorganisms can combine with our own in new and surprising ways (of course, we do also share microorganisms by breathing the same air as someone else or kissing someone else, but I'm sure we get more from sex) -- so, if you want to have sex before you're really ready to commit to one person, you definitely need to use a condom. I guess you can tell that I actually see disease as more quality of life-threatening, and sometimes even more life-threatening, than teen pregnancy.

 

I suppose the above paragraph sounds just awful to some people, but I just do really think that having sex with someone else connects you forever with that person, sometimes to a lesser degree, sometimes to a greater degree. And I don't think microorganisms are all bad. Obviously, my own precious dds started out as microorganisms. But it's important to me to know someone really well before sharing microorganisms to that degree. I do have a good friend who got sexually involved with her first husband when she was 14, and, some ten years later, discovered that she had pelvic inflammatory disease. She and her partner of today did finally manage to have a baby with medical intervention, after she'd had a couple of miscarriages about five months into the pregnancy, but what she had to go through was very stressful for her.

 

I certainly don't feel everyone needs to approach sex the same way I do, including my own daughters. And I agree with those who talk about the importance of it being enjoyed by both people. I think that for many girls and women, masturbation can be a big help in getting to know ourselves and learning what makes us feel good, and the girls and I have sometimes talked about how we have complete freedom to touch and explore our own bodies, and how those good feelings really are a good thing.

post #25 of 40
Thread Starter 

eeeeeeeh Linda. i have only had rudimentary conversation with dd. she is in the <giggle giggle> talk about crushes stage. she is not in the birth control stage at all. she's still a kid to talk about emotional aspect of sex. i am hoping her starting her periods might be the right time to bring it up. she has known the science of getting pregnant a while now so she gets the mechanic of it. 

 

but one thing she knows if she gets pregnant i will be there for her - with whatever decision she makes - whether i approve or not. eyesroll.gif she very proudly tells people its ok if i have a baby at 16. my mom wont mind. 

 

you know i look at this culturally. 50% of the teens in the hispanic community get pregnant. when you talk to a hispanic academic they say oh this has got to stop. when you talk to the teen mom, i am blown away by their maturity. they KNOW what they want. they are NOT interested in higher education. they want to get married and have kids and live the kind of life they want. i guess many see that as not forward thinking = as not progress. 

 

i have nieces who were teenage moms and they had a LOT of support. yes life is hard but it didnt stop them from doing what they wanted to do.  i also have family who chose not to go to college. she was smart as a whip and her father really struggled with it. but she is happy with her life as she has built it now. her dad has regrets that she didnt go far as she could have, but she is happy where she is. 

 

teen pregnancy is interesting for me coz i compare it with myself. i was alone with a 2 year old when i was 38. life was hard, hard, hard - not having any family or any support. for a teen to go thru that is mind boggling. 

 

but i have noticed at the high schools around me that most of these teens have so much family help. yes some say - wow my child helped me as i was spirallying out of control. others do feel a twinge that they cant just get up and go and do things they want to. but then i also know a single father whose mother does all, adn the son does the minimum. 

 

but i do think its absolutely important that one figures out sexually exactly what one likes before one goes ahead. 

post #26 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

 50% of the teens in the hispanic community get pregnant. 

 

If you are citing the statistic I think you are, I think it's important to note that this is a percentage of Latina women who get pregnant before 20. Yes, 18 and 19's are still teenagers but I think it's important to acknowledge that the stat includes legal adults... not just 15/16-year-olds. I think it's important to note that ones personal exposure to this will depend on where you live. We know tons of Hispanic girls who we watched grow and are now in college. In fact, we don't know any who have gotten pregnant in high school. I suspect the numbers would increase greatly in impoverished areas where unfortunately, can be highly concentrated with Hispanic and African-American girls.

 

My teen mom was half-hispanic, half- Filipino, impoverished and abused. She was also an honor student and absolutely wanted to go to college and have a career. She's from a family of 8 kids and she's the only one who had a baby in her teens.

post #27 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by meemee View Post

eeeeeeeh Linda. i have only had rudimentary conversation with dd. she is in the <giggle giggle> talk about crushes stage. she is not in the birth control stage at all.

 

.....

 

50% of the teens in the hispanic community get pregnant. when you talk to a hispanic academic they say oh this has got to stop. when you talk to the teen mom, i am blown away by their maturity. they KNOW what they want. they are NOT interested in higher education. they want to get married and have kids and live the kind of life they want. i guess many see that as not forward thinking = as not progress. 

 

 

First, my experience is that  it's easier to talk to kids about birthcontrol when it is something they won't need to know until some far off time in the future. It's up there with teaching kids than when they have their own car, they need to get the oil changed. When they get an apartment, they need to get renters insurance (which is cheap). When they have sex, if they don't want to have a baby they need to use two forms of birthcontrol, and one of them should be a condemn.

 

Its an easier conversation when it is theoretical for "when they are older" than when they know their peers are "doing it."

 

One of my neighbor's DD (upper middle class white chick living on the "right" side of town) told me that she believes that most teen pregnancy is intentional. Girls get pregnant (and continue the pregnancy) because they want to have a baby. That's what she sees at her school, and its one of those schools that people pay more for their houses for the advantage of sending their kids to a "good" school.

 

I see just making babies because one likes them as irresponsible unless one has a plan for paying for and providing the time and energy to bring up the baby.

 

I am also the product of a teen pregnancy. I wanted to get married and live the kind of life I wanted, so I got a college degree, traveled around, had a career, married someone with a college degree and a solid career, and then had 2 kids in my 30s. If I had skipped all the stuff in the middle, I wouldn't have the life I wanted. I'd have children with needs and no time or money to meet them.

 

I wanted a better life for my kids than I had for myself. So I planned and waited.

post #28 of 40

I think it will be interesting to see how the economic crisis plays out and whether it significantly changes how our economies work in the future.

 

Right now, or up until recerntly, the best economic time for many women in industrialized countries to begin having babies has been in their mid-to-late thirties or even early forties, which is not necessarily the best time for every woman, biologically speaking.

 

It seems like in less affluent countries or even less affluent sectors of the U.S., women are more likely to begin having babies at the most ideal time biologically and physically, because they don't see any real economic advantage to putting it off.

 

I think the world is undergoing a major shift right now and I have a feeling that this might change some attitudes regarding teen motherhood, as well as other things. What do you all think?

post #29 of 40
Abstinence only is a recipe for disaster IMO. I thought I knew a lot about sex as a teenager, but what they taught in school was not adequate. I remember getting unsolicited advice from teachers and coaches, too, about how "saving it is the best gift you can give", but teenagers aren't thinking about the future too much. I had plenty of sexual encounters as a teen, and by most accounts, I should have ended up dead in a ditch or with herpes at the least. But I had a screwed up childhood and years of sexual abuse under my belt by that point. My older dd is not interested in sex at all, and has actually ended all of the relationships she's had (one was almost a year even) because she isn't ready for anything sexual. Three boyfriends and I'm pretty sure she didn't French kiss any of them. My younger one asks more questions but socially boys are still weird so it's a non issue.

I do know a couple of former teen moms and they are successful in their pursuits and don't seem any worse off than anyone else. If you have support, you will do well, but that is almost always true in any case. A teen dad is way more likely to run than a grown man, but there's no guarantee they will still be a good father or a father at all if you wait until you're grown. We are TTC and I already feel like I've wasted too much time and the clock is nearly run out, and I'm not even considered advanced age for a mother. So who knows what hand you'll get dealt, I just think it depends on the character of the individuals and support network involved.
post #30 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsf View Post
  I remember getting unsolicited advice from teachers and coaches, too, about how "saving it is the best gift you can give", 

So your body's history is a gift that you give to someone? Does the same apply to your bowel movements?

 

 

 

 

 

Your body and your sexuality is yours. You can share it if you want, its your body. I believe informed consent is at the crux of this issue, and any girl menstruating is mature enough to get informed if she wants, thats where the guiding adults in her life have a role.

 

They should have given you the book,  Taking Charge of Your Fertility. I will give this book to my dd when shes ready, ill probably encourage my boys to read it too.

post #31 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by contactmaya View Post

So your body's history is a gift that you give to someone? Does the same apply to your bowel movements?





Your body and your sexuality is yours. You can share it if you want, its your body. I believe informed consent is at the crux of this issue, and any girl menstruating is mature enough to get informed if she wants, thats where the guiding adults in her life have a role.

They should have given you the book,  Taking Charge of Your Fertility. I will give this book to my dd when shes ready, ill probably encourage my boys to read it too.


I have similar feelings. We never talk in my house about losing virginity but rather in creating a shared, caring, consensual experience for you and your partner. There's something to be GAINED here.. not lost!
post #32 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by philomom View Post


I have similar feelings. We never talk in my house about losing virginity but rather in creating a shared, caring, consensual experience for you and your partner. There's something to be GAINED here.. not lost!

 

I agree with this, and yet I also think my daughters should be aware that there are some boys who pretend to really care about a girl in order to get sex, and then turn around and tell their friends how "easy' she was.

 

I think it usually does take some time to really get to know someone to the point where you can trust them at a sexual level.

 

I was really intrigued, a while back, to read about an indigenous culture in which there is no word to distinguish "virgin" from "non-virgin." If I'm remembering right, the children in this culture leave their parents' tents at around age 9 and go to live in a communal "children's tent" (in which the parents are not allowed), and in which they're free to experiment sexually, and often start doing so at what people in the U.S. would say is a pretty young age.

 

This is intriguing to me -- but since I am raising my girls to live in U.S. culture, I feel like I'd be doing them a disservice if I didn't protect them from having sexual experiences (with other people, I'm not talking about their own personal explorations of their own bodies) before such time as they really know the meaning of terms like "sexual intercourse" and "virginity," and really understand what loaded concepts these are for some people. In our culture, I think it can be very upsetting to a girl to learn about concepts like virginity (and about how some people really make a distinction between those who are virgins and those who aren't) AFTER they've already had sex.

 

I also think it would be really crass of me to decide "for" my daughters that the opinions of boys or others who might define them as "loose" don't matter just because "I" think people with double standards are real jerks and their opinions don't matter. I feel like they have a right to gain an understanding of some of the different points of view that are circulating around in our society, so that they can make their own decisions about what does or doesn't matter to them.

 

That said, I would certainly prefer for them to see sex as gaining something, and not as giving anything up.

post #33 of 40

In my opinion if you choose to get married you are choosing to have your body belong the other person (and they're giving you theirs), so it better be somebody you trust to respect you and do right by you. So there is something to that. Anyhow, our way will be continue teaching the biology of it, that it is pleasurable and great under the right circumstances, teach about the difficult relationship, unplanned pregnancy, or diseases results that could come of it, and how to be safer if they choose to have sex. I'd support my child and their partner if there was a pregnancy, while encouraging they work fast toward adult level responsibility I certainly wouldn't cut them off. But as for what's right they will know it is for within marriage only and besides those risks, morally we believe you are basically cheating on your future spouse if you do otherwise - not unforgivable but a problem nonetheless.

 

Susan's economic ideas are interesting to me. We married and started having kids young (I married at 18, first child at 19) and haven't really suffered from it, money was tight at first and DH worked hard to finish school and work at the same time so some semesters were rough time-wise. I finished my degree slowly too, as a sahm I only wanted to be educated not have a career. Seems like college education means less and less for income levels nowadays though, so it's almost a why wait thing. And being a one income family isn't too bad living frugally, nice to have the calm time together and things taken came of at home. Everybody else has to live frugally to get by too so it all works out as normal especially in the region we now live, where our household income is actually above avg.

post #34 of 40
Quote:

Originally Posted by mammal_mama View Post

 

This is intriguing to me -- but since I am raising my girls to live in U.S. culture, I feel like I'd be doing them a disservice if I didn't protect them from having sexual experiences (with other people, I'm not talking about their own personal explorations of their own bodies) before such time as they really know the meaning of terms like "sexual intercourse" and "virginity," and really understand what loaded concepts these are for some people. In our culture, I think it can be very upsetting to a girl to learn about concepts like virginity (and about how some people really make a distinction between those who are virgins and those who aren't) AFTER they've already had sex.

 

I had the unfortunate experience of losing my virginity before I knew what the word meant because I was raped when I was 10. Then I get to live through years and years and church youth group classes focused on how being a virgin was the most important thing a man looks for in a wife.

 

Not surprisingly, I ended up with a lot issues and spent many years in therapy. orngtongue.gif

 

With my own DDs, I'm not sure how I would keep such concepts as "sexual intercourse" or "virginity" a secret -- we have a normal life. We don't live in a cave with a rock in front. What I have skipped, completely and totally, is the notion that a woman's value is in any related to her status as virgin/non virgin. It is a deeply offensive concept to me, and one that was very destructive to my own emotional development. Therefore, I have ensured that my DDs have been brought up know that it doesn't matter. At all. It isn't any one's business.

 

I'm happily married and have been so for quite some time. My body is mine. I love my husband and I love sharing my life with him, but I still belong to me. I wouldn't want a man who saw it any other way -- I've had the experience of not having my body be my own, and I'll not do that again.

post #35 of 40

Linda, I'm so sorry about everything you went through!

 

I agree that I wouldn't want either of my daughters to feel like her sexuality belonged to anyone but her or that her experience, or lack thereof, in any way defined her value.

 

In my previous post, I was thinking about some of the ways that different people define what it means to be "sex positive." The indigenous culture that I was writing about does indeed sound very sex positive, and I think it's great that the concept of sex as "loss" doesn't seem to exist in this culture.

 

While I don't personally know any families in the U.S. who are quite this sex positive, I do occasionally read about people in the U.S. who think it's great for children to begin experimenting sexually with other children at a very young age. I'm not saying that anyone here was advocating this -- but I do think that too early of an introduction to sex, whether it is forced or not, can cause some children to feel like they lost something.

 

Maybe I feel this way because in our culture, sometimes one child pressures another child into something -- but this may not be the case in less aggressive cultures.

 

About the idea that some men are looking for a virgin to marry, I think this preference is very much tied to our society's tendency to see a couple's sex life as the man's responsibility. I think the idea that a girl or woman should take responsibility for her own sexual pleasure -- you know, get to know what she likes so she can tell her partner and sexual pleasure can be something they work on and create together -- still hasn't really taken root. There still seems to be a very strong emphasis on male sexual prowess, or lack thereof, in the media.

 

While I wouldn't say that many men these days are really looking for a virgin, I think that some still do hope their wife will have less experience than they do, simply because they don't want the pressure of having to compete with a lot of other guys, even if those relationships are just memories. Hopefully, the idea of sex as connection and communication will eventually become more prevalent than the idea of sex as a man proving himself. I have a feeling that when it does, a whole lot of other things will change, too.

post #36 of 40

I married someone who wanted a really experienced sexual partner. He didn't view my history as a problem or as something "taken away" from him. He views it as "I get to benefit from all this experience! Score!" It takes all kinds.

 

I'm sure my kids will pick up the term "virgin" at some point. I'm not planning to lock them in a closet. I think that sex is one of the best parts of life. I want my girls to believe that sex is a really wonderful thing they will probably have a lot of... once they are fully developed.

 

Linda, I was a "slut" before I knew what the word was. Or what the word sex meant. Or rape. But I knew how to perform the acts. I'm glad my children will not grow up believing that those acts are things that all girls and women are required to perform.

 

Trobriand Islanders were one culture that encouraged "pre-marital" or rather, pre-fertility sex. I think that such acts have to be contextualized. I think that part of the reason that youthful sex is so traumatic in this country is the degree to which children/teenagers have no agency. They have to take the negative consequences of decisions but they don't get the positives because they aren't adults.

 

I always feel kind of weird and like I "should" be pro-sex in all contexts for all people at all ages. That's the pressure I feel from the sex positive community. I feel like these things must be examined in context. In modern America... it seems like a better idea to wait for a wide variety of reasons. Not till marriage--I have no horse in that race. If my children never marry I'll be fine with that. I just want them to want sex before they have it. Not just kinda not say no.

post #37 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by rightkindofme View Post

 I just want them to want sex before they have it. Not just kinda not say no.

That's a really good way of putting it.

post #38 of 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by jdsf View Post

I remember getting unsolicited advice from teachers and coaches, too, about how "saving it is the best gift you can give",

 

I would absolutely freak if I found out that teachers or coaches were talking like that to my child. If one of them had said it to me, I'd have slotted them into the "creepy' category, and kept a close eye on them. That's just so out of line.

post #39 of 40

I think if teenagers are mature enough to handle it, it's fine. But that's a tough thing to call, and as parents we can't prevent our kids from having sex if they are not "ready". I was ready when I was 16, was in a committed/loving relationship, and it was a great experience for me. I thank my lucky stars that my mom is an amazing woman, and was very open with me about sex from a young age (my dad was, too). When I decided to have sex my mom took me to get on BC and also had a frank discussion with me about sex. It wasn't about STDs or pregnancy (as I already knew those things) but instead about emotional attachment and making sure that sex was pleasurable for me, not just my partner. When my kids get to the age when this is an issue, I will try to have a similar talk with them, but it will be a little different because they're boys. I will suggest that before sex happens that both they and their partners should know how they would feel about a pregnancy. I will make sure my sons are understanding of female pleasure (this is going to embarrass them but oh well!). 

post #40 of 40
Quote:

Hopefully, the idea of sex as connection and communication will eventually become more prevalent than the idea of sex as a man proving himself. I have a feeling that when it does, a whole lot of other things will change, too.

 

This is so what I want for my children. I have two teen boys who I hope don't feel pressured to prove themselves and two littler girls who I hope won't be dominated by a boy who feels the need to prove himself.

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