Is the Goal to Reduce Teenage Pregnancies or Teenage Sex?

You may have read in the news about the decision in New York City to make Plan B emergency contraceptive available to any public high school student without her parents’ knowledge, as long as her parent did not opt out of the program.

This program was rolled out in five New York City public high schools in January 2011.  By September 2012, the program had been expanded to 13 public high schools. Today, the program is in more than 40 public high schools in New York City.

Last semester, I decided to ask students what they thought about the idea of making Plan B emergency contraceptive available confidentially to high school students.  

At the beginning of each class on the first day, I passed out a slip of paper with the following question on it:

Do you think it is a good idea for high school girls to be able to get Plan B emergency contraceptive from the school nurse without their parents’ knowledge?

I explained the decision in the New York City public school system and asked them to answer the above question anonymously. We discussed the issue as a class after all the papers were returned, which often led to a debate among the students. It was always very interesting to listen to the various perspectives.

Some students thought making the contraceptive so readily available would be encouraging students to have sex. Others said they would be upset as a parent if the school usurped their authority, while others thought it was a good idea because at least they may be preventing a pregnancy.

When the classes ended, I was always anxious to tally the surveys to see if the votes reflected what seemed to be the prevailing sentiment among the students and they did. Two out of three of the students did not think it was a good idea for high schools to dispense Plan B emergency contraceptive to students.  

Following are the actual results of the survey at three high schools:

Out of 529 students surveyed, 67% (352) thought it was NOT a good idea, while 33% (177) thought it WAS a good idea.

I purposely did not share my opinion with the students prior to them taking the survey. But I did share it over the course of my time with them and I will share it with you now.

It does not take a rocket scientist to figure out that teens that have emergency contraception readily available will be less likely to use condoms, as confirmed by the following quote in this article by a student who has utilized the service.

I can hear the conversation now, “Baby we don’t need to use condoms because you can just go get that pill at school tomorrow.” Plan B provides 0% protection against STDs. Even if the number of pregnancies goes down, will we see the number of STDs increase since birth control is not disease control?

I am afraid that in the process of doing what they think will solve one problem they will likely create another problem, which is more STDs. That is not to mention Plan B’s lack of protection against the emotional consequences that often result from teenage sex. 

Education Matters!

At the end of class on the second day, I passed out an identical survey and told them to vote again to see if what they heard in the past two days had influenced their opinions on this decision.

Following are the results of the surveys after hearing me speak for three hours:

Out of 498 students surveyed, 81% (403) thought it was NOT a good idea for school nurses to distribute Plan B emergency contraceptive, while 19% (95) thought it WAS a good idea.

Though the decision made in New York City may seem to some like a great solution to the problem of teenage pregnancies, I think the bigger concern should be addressing the issue of teenagers having sex. In fact, most of the letters I receive from teenagers who have been devastated as a result of their sexual decisions have nothing to do with a pregnancy.

As a result, my presentation covers much more than the physical consequences of teenage sexual activity; and I believe that is one of the reasons the number of students who thought it was not a good idea to supply New York City public school students with Plan B, increased to 8 out of 10.

Before your talk I always thought that everything would be ok if we are safe and use birth control or a condom but now I view it in a different light. I now think that being abstinent is the correct choice because it’s not just about dealing with a teenage pregnancy or getting an incurable disease but instead a question of self-worth. 

Here is the bottom line: We must decide whether our goal is to reduce teen pregnancies or reduce teenage sexual activity.  

If reducing teenage sexual activity is the goal, who better to ask how to prevent behavior than those we are trying to prevent from participating in said behavior? In next week’s post, I will share with you what students say will reduce the amount of sexual activity among teens. So, make sure you have signed up to get future blog posts delivered directly to your inbox.

What do you think it will take to decrease the number of teenagers who are sexually active?
http://jackiebrewtonblog.com/is-the-goal-to-reduce-teenage-pregnancies-or-teenage-sex/

Advertisements

HB2 & SB1…”My Sex Organs”…

By Christine Kalmbach

Some may have heard about Katie Heim, an Austinite, who read her testimony -a poem to the Texas State legislators.  The poem, a slant on the gun issue in which she compares her vagina to a gun.

“If my vagina was a gun, you would stand for its rights,
You would ride on buses and fight all the fights.
If my vagina was a gun, you would treat it with care,
You wouldn’t spill all its secrets because, well, why go there.
If my vaginas was a gun, you’d say what it holds is private
From cold dead hands we could pry, you surely would riot.
If my vagina was a gun, its rights would all be protected,
no matter the body count or the children affected.
If my vagina was a gun, I could bypass security,
concealed carry laws would ensure I’d have impunity.
If my vagina was a gun, I wouldn’t have to beg you,
I could hunt this great land and do all the things men do.
But my vagina is not a gun, it is a mightier thing,
With a voice that rings true making lawmakers’ ears ring.
Vaginas are not delicate, they are muscular and magic,
So stop messing with mine, with legislation that’s tragic.
My vagina’s here to demand from the source,
Listen to the voices of thousands or feel their full force.”

You can read the article here: http://www.lifenews.com/2013/07/09/abortion-activist-reads-sick-poem-to-texas-panel-if-my-vagina-was-a-gun/

So, I thought, I would write a poem based on the consequences of premarital sex and abortion and the choice of choosing life!

“My Sex Organs” by Christine Kalmbach

If “my sex organs” were the most important thing,
what a delusion in my mind that would bring!
If “my sex organs” were the only thing that mattered,
how sad that my body and life would be so shattered!
If “my sex organs” were only for my pleasure,
then whatever my love wants, I would never treasure!
If “my sex organs” were only used for my desires,
then I could use others, hurt them and be a liar!
If “my sex organs” were to be used by others,
there’s no love, no joy, only abuse that smothers.
If “my sex organs” have a right over others to kill,
then life is snuffed out ‘cause I just took a pill!
If “my sex organs” were used whenever and wherever outside of marriage,
premarital sex gives lies, broken hearts and the hurt is a huge miscarriage!
If “my sex organs” held a secret, even at first, from me,
what if I aborted my daughter, who could have helped heal me?
If “my sex organs” were only MY right,
then I could murder and exterminate a life without any fight!

If “my sex organs” were seen as holy and sacred,
women and girls wouldn’t spew lies and hatred.
If “my sex organs” weren’t used by movies and TV,
then people wouldn’t be acting out in promiscuity!
If “my sex organs” were for the honor of Christ,
I would live a life of no regrets, for He paid the ultimate price!
If “my sex organs” were given respect and honor,
then my man would always love me and never be a goner.
If “my sex organs” were saved and protected for love,
there would be no disease and no need for a glove!
If “my sex organs” were meant to create life,
then one day I could have a husband, be a mom and a wife!
If “my sex organs” were to give me and my husband pleasure,
the total joy and bonding I could never fully measure!
If “my sex organs” were to one day to create a family,
then baby on the way would make us 3!
If “my sex organs” were uniquely created just for me,
I would be a treasured and precious gift of Thee!

We hear that abortion should be “safe, legal and rare”, however, in reality pro-death supporters want abortion on demand, “anytime, any place and paid by you-the American taxpayer”.   Planned Parenthood has paid supporters to come in and protest at the State Capitol. Texas HB2 and SB1 will ensure that abortion clinics are held to the highest standards, doctors will be trained and accountable and that no infant over 20 weeks can be killed or exterminated like a roach.  The pro-death supporters are all about women’s rights but they don’t recognize the right to life for everyone.  When did women become so out of touch with their maternal instinct and the desire to protect that life growing inside of them?  Are exceptions made for rape, incest and abnormalities? Yes, but again isn’t life about living and haven’t doctors been wrong in some diagnoses? Why punish a child for something they are completely innocent of?  Every person alive today, had at the very least a pro-life mom!

We strongly encourage parents to educate their children about how God created life and how life is to be respected and honored (and how they are a gift), then abortion will no longer be needed or at the very least be truly “rare”! Please contact your Texas State Senator and let them know you support SB1. They will vote on it on Friday, 7/12/13! http://www.senate.state.tx.us/

If you want to know more about local issues on sex education/curriculum, Planned Parenthood, protecting your children, Student Health Advisory Committees in your school district, Texas and federal legislation, then sign up for Texas Parents Care alerts and updates.

Texas Parents Care Logo Final RWB

Advice for Parents of Teen Porn Addicts (Part 3)

When faced with their teen’s struggle, most parents don’t know where to begin to get the helps he or she needs.

by Rob Jackson

With the advent of the Internet, parents are finding it increasingly difficult to shield their children from pornography. Now, in addition to the exposure kids might encounter from classmates who borrowed one of their father’s magazines, most school-age children and adolescents are spending large amounts of time online for homework or entertainment reasons. Attorney General John Ashcroft has estimated that nine in ten teens have been exposed to pornography. Unfortunately, many of these teens are susceptible to developing addictions or compulsions to these images.

The term “addict” may seem severe. Most parents will initially minimize the problem, hoping their son or daughter is simply “experimenting.” Experience has taught me that, in many cases, at least one of the parents will have faced similar struggles when he or she was younger. Today, however, Internet pornography is the fast ramp to sex addiction. Coupled with a greater moral decay in the culture and the fact that children’s minds are still are still in the process of developing to maturity, addiction can happen quicker than we parents like to think.

Not long ago, I was a guest on Focus on the Family’s teen call-in radio show Life on the Edge Live! During the hour, several adolescents called in to discuss sexual integrity. Even having previously treated adolescent addicts, I was surprised that the first four callers identified themselves as sex addicts – three of which were females.

My own practice and experiences such as those on the call-in show demonstrate that the problems of teenage pornography and sex addictions are real, devastating, and increasing. When faced with their teen’s struggle, most parents don’t know where to begin to get their child the help he or she needs.

Taking ownership

In many situations, the first reaction is to determine who is to blame within the family. It is important to realize, however, that bad things still happen to good families. This does not absolve certain parties from taking responsibility where it is needed. Everyone needs to take ownership of his or her piece of the puzzle.

For example, parents need to ask if they have provided a comprehensive sex education that truly equipped their child with the winsome truth expounded in the Bible. Setting proper foundations for understanding a Christian sexual ethic is a crucial step in protecting children from later sexual disorder.

Parents will also want to re-evaluate the types and amounts of media they have allowed in the home. People tend to absorb the messages that bombard them in popular media; more so with teens and young children. What have your children been listening to and watching? Is their media reinforcing respectful messages about sexuality and the dignity of the person, or is it working to erode these foundational principles in your child’s mind?

Another often-overlooked problem is the sad reality of sex abuse. Most sex addicts have suffered sexual abuse at some point in their lives, and treatment of sex abuse is foundational to overcoming sex addiction.

Read more here: http://www.focusonthefamily.com/parenting/sexuality/when_children_use_pornography/advice_for_parents_of_teenage_porn_addicts.aspx