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Question
Posted by: J | 2011/03/03

Teen sexuality

My son is 16 years old. He is a very good boy and is well-behaved. Like any parent I am concerned about him and relationships, specifically about teen pregnancy. Please understand he is not sexually active or inclined to be very soon. But we all know the power of raging hormones. All it takes is one misstep, one moment of lost control. Every day there is articles in the media that say teens are sexually active, whether we like it or not. One of my colleagues at work suggested that I provide him with condoms –  just in case. I am a little bit conservative, and this just doesn’ t feel right. Don’ t condoms say that it is alright, you have permission? But to be honest, I would choose providing condoms over a teen pregnancy any day. A teen pregnancy can have a severe impact on his life. Should I provide him with condoms?

My daughter will be turning 15 in a year’ s time –  what should be the approach with her? Should I provide her with contraceptives or just hope for the best?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Its great that you are concerned, but try not to be too concerned, as that helps none of you. Especially if he is not yet sexually active or planning to be, this is an excellent time to have some warm, CALM, friendly chats about sex, what he thinks and hears about it, and how one can best handle the issues it raises. This includes isues of peer pressure and how they deal with that.
As Purple usefully reminds us, while frank sexual nformation ( from a good book, if necessary ) should be a part of sex education at home, it should also always include a discussion of issues of ethics and moral ideals of the family tradition.
Providing coherent ideal ( not just forbidding things ) and an open and frank relationship, are the best contraceptives
Providing condoms or contraceptives on their own is a bad idea, and may indeed give the wrong message - but after the recommended discussions have begin to become comfortable, suggest making contraception available, while making it clear this is meant not to encourage sexual activity, which they'll have many, many years to enjoy, so there need be no sense of urgency, but as a safety precaution in an appropriate situation
I rather like qwerty's suggestion, if it would work in your home ( some kids would shrivel in embarrassment on finding a bo of condoms, as they may feel uneasy about the idea that mom or dad "do it" or indeed have ever done it !

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Our users say:
Posted by: aninkBugsag | 2011/03/21

Reply to aninkBugsag
Posted by: cybershrink | 2011/03/05

Its great that you are concerned, but try not to be too concerned, as that helps none of you. Especially if he is not yet sexually active or planning to be, this is an excellent time to have some warm, CALM, friendly chats about sex, what he thinks and hears about it, and how one can best handle the issues it raises. This includes isues of peer pressure and how they deal with that.
As Purple usefully reminds us, while frank sexual nformation ( from a good book, if necessary ) should be a part of sex education at home, it should also always include a discussion of issues of ethics and moral ideals of the family tradition.
Providing coherent ideal ( not just forbidding things ) and an open and frank relationship, are the best contraceptives
Providing condoms or contraceptives on their own is a bad idea, and may indeed give the wrong message - but after the recommended discussions have begin to become comfortable, suggest making contraception available, while making it clear this is meant not to encourage sexual activity, which they'll have many, many years to enjoy, so there need be no sense of urgency, but as a safety precaution in an appropriate situation
I rather like qwerty's suggestion, if it would work in your home ( some kids would shrivel in embarrassment on finding a bo of condoms, as they may feel uneasy about the idea that mom or dad "do it" or indeed have ever done it !

Reply to cybershrink
Posted by: Happiness | 2011/03/04


Tell them to forget about sex and mean it. Be dead against sex before 21 and give them reasons why. Have an open relationship with your kids, this will make it easy for them to come to you should they doubt the abstinence route. It is possible to abstain, kids need to have principles in life.

Reply to Happiness
Posted by: Purple | 2011/03/04

Why don''t you speak to your children about your families morals and values and the choices they make. Speak about love and respect for their own bodies and others bodies.

If he wants condoms he can go and buy them at hte garage shop, he''ll hardly stand out amongst the other teenagers doing the same. Its a personal choice, but I wouldn''t provide my son with condoms, I would speak about them and the need to use them and where to buy them though.
Same with your daughter.

This is just my own observation, but I think that at about age 15 most people start having relationships with others that even if they don''t lead to sex, will have a sexual element to them, whether it is heavy petting or just hours spent kissing. When I was a teenager, this was definitely the case. I don''t think this changes much from generation to generation. I could be wrong, but I''ve never read any real research that contradicts this. The sex surveys that come out every now and then seem to say this too.

Pregnancy is not the only danger of sex, I think there is far more to worry about than pregnancy. Thankfully the precautions your children need to take to prevent aids etc will protect against pregnancy too.

Reply to Purple
Posted by: qwerty | 2011/03/04

It''s a tough one. On the one hand you don''t want to be seen to be encouraging him to start having sex, but on the other hand, you also don''t want him to get an STD or father a child if he does decide to have sex...

I once read this suggestion, and thought it was a pretty good one: Make sure that there are always condoms in the house. Leave a big ol'' box in the bathroom cupboard, big enough that he can help himself if need be without making it obvious. That way you are not giving him " permission" , but you are making sure he has easy access to condoms if need be.

And obviously discuss all the dangers of unprotected sex with him - there are some scary-looking brochures out there you could show him! If it doesn''t convince him to abstain, hopefully it will at least convince him to condomise!

Reply to qwerty

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