What are your thoughts on the Abstinence Only Sex Education program?

NuMe NuMe
On one of today's SexIs Sex Feeds, Jeff Schult reported that the Midland ISD School Board decided to stop using the Abstinence Only program because since August over 150 students have gotten pregnant.

How do you feel about this program? Do you think they're making a good or bad decision? And what are your thoughts on sex education in the school systems in general?
03/30/2011
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YoungSpunkyLove YoungSpunkyLove
Quote:
Originally posted by NuMe
On one of today's SexIs Sex Feeds, Jeff Schult reported that the Midland ISD School Board decided to stop using the Abstinence Only program because since August over 150 students have gotten pregnant.



How do you feel about this ... More
They're making the intelligent decision. Teaching someone in school to not have sex isn't education- teaching them the facts about sex acts [consequences] IS education... which, I'm pretty sure, is what school is for!

Save the condemnation and teaching of religious beliefs [which is what most of the anti-sex crusade is about] for at home or in church.


Kids need to be educated so they can make their own decisions, not be told what NOT to do so they can rebel against it.

I wish all those pregnant girls and the babies fathers much luck and love!
03/30/2011
gone77 gone77
Abstinence only sex ed is a huge fail, as Midland TX discovered.

I wish there wasn't a need for sex education in school. I feel it's something parents should teach their children. But there is, so there you have it.
03/30/2011
tygrwmn tygrwmn
Quote:
Originally posted by NuMe
On one of today's SexIs Sex Feeds, Jeff Schult reported that the Midland ISD School Board decided to stop using the Abstinence Only program because since August over 150 students have gotten pregnant.



How do you feel about this ... More
bare facts: if you don't teach kids about the consequences of their actions, they won't understand why they should not commit the act in the first place. we teach our kids about violence, we show them violence in TV, in movies, in games, in advertising... and yet we're scared to death to teach them about sex and love and how their bodies work?

is it just me or is this really weird and backwards?

... and don't get me started about the tons and tons of peer-reviewed academic research that illustrates the failure of abstinence-only programs to prevent SID's and pregnancies. just don't.
03/30/2011
Sammi Sammi
Where I am they don't teach abstinence only, which I'm very glad about. However, they also didn't tell us about when they were starting to present it, so it was a bit of a surprise when my son came home from school and told us all about what they talked about in school, even though we had started bringing it up at home.

I don't mind that they teach sex ed, but I think abstinence only is a bad idea.
03/30/2011
burnbright4me burnbright4me
Being honest with kids is the key, as well as balance. It's okay to tell them that it might be a smart choice to wait on the sex front instead of jumping into it. But with that said, you also need to provide them with tools to make smart decisions. Because even if you make a great case for waiting, there will always be the ones who do what they want. With abstinence-only, those kids aren't being helped at all. But if you teach kids about how to be safe and how to make good decisions, then some might wait and some might not, but they will all be able to be smart about it.
04/01/2011
MaryExy MaryExy
I agree with making note of abstinence being the only 100% safe option. Teens are generally rebellious, though, so just telling them "don't have sex or you'll get pregnant/get an STD" at one of the high points of sexual development is pretty silly to me. This is one of the few things I feel strongly about. I only knew about condoms and the multitude of other birth control options because my parents told me. The Sex Ed books at school made them sound completely unreliable. Seeing that will make a kid determined to have sex think "oh, if they don't really offer any protection, why bother making the effort to get them?"

I also got annoyed because our books talked about how sex after marriage was the only safe way to have sex. You can still get pregnant after marriage, and if your partner has an STD it's not gonna be cured by a wedding band. There's even a chance that the partner could hide an STD from you. And honestly this would push some kids to get married way too soon in a relationship, because they think "hey, that's the only way we can have sex and be safe, and I've got some raging hormones"

Just tell them about condoms. Tell them spermicide/birth control/etc. only protect against pregnancy, not STDs. Then I'll be fine with telling them that abstinence is the only 100% safe practice. No one can deny this fact, but, cmon, most teenagers are crazy and irrational. Not telling them about protection is like telling them not to drink and then not telling them that it would be very dangerous to drive drunk (so they go out, get drunk, and drive without the slightest clue that they could not make it home)
04/01/2011
Dusk Dusk
I definitely do not believe in abstinence-only education. I think it's important to teach people about all of their options and also not to make sex such a hush-hush kind of thing. I grew up in TX at a school that had abstinence-only education and my friends (the lucky ones) learned how to protect themselves from STDs and pregnancy through our local Planned Parenthood. I was so lucky I had open parents and talked a lot to my friends who were having protected sexual activity.
04/01/2011
Jobthingy Jobthingy
You tell a bunch of tweens and teens not to do something... they are GOING to do it as is the case here. It does not take much to teach these kids about how their bodies work, what happens, and how to keep it safe.
04/01/2011
alliegator alliegator
Schools teach kids about alcohol and tobacco; both items with are illegal for anyone under 21/18 and therefore 'technically' age inappropriate. They teach them not to use either until they are of legal age, but they do more than just say "don't do it". They teach them about the bio-chemical effects that alcohol/tobacco have on the body, the long term health affects, the danger of driving under the influence, how to deal with peer pressure to drink/smoke, etc. Schools give students important, SCIENTIFICALLY CORRECT information and tools with which to decide, as a legal adult, how to live their lives. They should do no less for sexual health. Yes, parents should talk to their kids about sex/morals/family values, but our society has a responsibility to raise informed, thinking adults. Part of that responsibility is comprehensive sexual education.
04/01/2011
kendra30752 kendra30752
I honestly don't think the only reason the pregnancy rates have skyrocketted in the past year has so much to do with what the programs teach in school. I mean if the abstinence program was to blame, kids would've started getting pregnant a lot sooner. I am all for teaching kids that abstinence is ALWAYS the best option and I do not think that teaching about abstinence should be dropped at all, but maybe they could add a little more to it and teach that some kids are having sex, realize it and start teaching more on how to be responsible if you MUST have sex, but it shouldn't at all be condoned. I prefer teaching my own kids my own self, not putting it to the school to do it. I trust my self a lot more. Lol. Also, how kids are raised and having and showing morals and self respect, values as an adult does really make a difference. It did for me and my siblings growing up. Still, some will do it and I think that it should be discussed and kids should be taught about the consequences like disease and pregnancy. They should be taught how to be responsible although I am not sure that would make a huge difference. I hear so, so many young girls say they refuse to use birth control because they're afraid of gaining weight. Gaining a few pounds from birth control is much easier than gaining it from pregnancy and with birth control you may gain, but you don't have a child to raise from it. I know some girls who use condoms instead which is better than nothing, but most I know will be quick to tell you they have no interest in condoms either. I think it would help if pregnancy wasn't made to be such a wonderful thing in the eyes of children. I know girls who want to be pregnant because "it looked cool on that MTV show!" What?! I do think some of the tv shows and all the hype about parent hood being wonderful is giving them the wrong idea of what it really is. They simply don't see the hard, stressfull parts of raising a child. I prefer teaching my kids myself and have recently had to start. Parents should talk to them about it. I think being able to do so does make a difference. I still don't think there's ever going to be one simple solution. It will take work from every area and having good, healthy role models is a apparently a plus to teens from what ours has revealed.
07/18/2011
sweetcaroline sweetcaroline
I feel like abstinence only education isn't going to help hormonal teenagers-
I do think, however, that in the course of sex-ed classes that abstinence should be talked about, since it is the only way to not get pregnant/contract STIs. Not taught by itself for the stereotypical purposes of the radical religious folk out there, but taught for the purposes of safety, and safety only. Because it's good to know that abstinence itself can prevent pregnancy/STIs.
11/10/2011
sweetcaroline sweetcaroline
Quote:
Originally posted by kendra30752
I honestly don't think the only reason the pregnancy rates have skyrocketted in the past year has so much to do with what the programs teach in school. I mean if the abstinence program was to blame, kids would've started getting pregnant a ... More
When looking at pregnancy statistics, we normally see the numbers all bunched together (this makes the stat look more impressive, as it turns out.) You have to think beyond the number- how many of these women are under the age of 18? how many young adults? how many mature adults?
Automatically in this society we see a pregnancy rate poll and think, OMG kids are getting pregnant. But it's not true.
Side note: in my graduating high school class there were two pregnant girls...
But we had a huge class.
Anyways, that's my rant. I like your post, too. good points about social media.
11/10/2011
Lindsey123 Lindsey123
I hate abstinence only. it's stupid. kids have sex. they need to know what to do and how to protect themselves.
12/05/2011
Cherrylane Cherrylane
Beyond which type of program is more effective, religiosity etc, I think there are ethical reasons why comprehensive sex education should be the standard in this country.

The argument for abstinence only education is usually one of values, that in addition to preventing certain behaviors, the goal is to instill in them the "values" of our society, that sex before marriage is not accepted, etc. There are many problems with that, the first being that clearly, not everyone's values are the same. And on top of that, the values that the curriculum supports are more theoretical ideals than reality. Only around 5-10% of people remain abstinent until marriage. It's been that way since before the sexual revolution. Telling kids that it is not socially acceptable to do does not change that reality, and the discrepancy between what we preach and what we do does not go unnoticed.

I believe there is a moral argument to be made for comprehensive sex education. Ethical, and moral. The United States was founded on democracy. It is something we like to think we value. It is curious to note that sex education is one of the few subjects where the popular thinking is that less information = better choices. That the more the discussion is censored, the better things will be. When you separate the fact that this is education about sex, and the stigmatization that often goes with it, you are left with the guiding principle that not knowing something is better for you.

Accepting that, we have to ask ourselves whether that principle is valid. Whether it, not just the subject we apply it to, represents our values as a society. Is it not more democratic to give as much real information about a subject as possible, and then allowing those who receive it to make up their own minds as to how that information should be applied? It is not the schools place to instill personal values, it is the schools place to educate. Can we really expect someone to make an educated decision about something that can be as complicated as sex when they have received very little genuine education on the matter? Is the ability to make a healthy and educated decision not what we want from these kids?

Furthermore, if improving the standard of sexual hygiene in this country is a goal, as it should be, the issue NEEDS to be approached as just that. Hygiene. Healthful behaviors. Mentally, physically. STDs should not be presented as scare tactics, the oogey boogey of sex. They are, by and large, viral and bacterial infections that just happen to be spread by a mechanism that is highly stigmatized. This needs to stop. My university health center has to work extremely hard to promote sexual health among its students and change the perception about things like getting routinely tested for stds. You DO NOT have to be having "risky" sex to have an STD. Getting tested does not mean you are a dirty dirty whore. It means you are responsible. Medically speaking, even monogamous married couples SHOULD get tested. It's not a matter of not trusting your partner, having icky symptoms, having cheated yourself. It's being responsible with your health. It's washing your hands, coughing into your elbow instead of your hand, having an annual physical even when nothing seems wrong with you. It is not just sexual health. It is health. We need to start talking about it that way.
12/05/2011
duff duff
Quote:
Originally posted by NuMe
On one of today's SexIs Sex Feeds, Jeff Schult reported that the Midland ISD School Board decided to stop using the Abstinence Only program because since August over 150 students have gotten pregnant.



How do you feel about this ... More
I think its great. They should be teaching safe sex not just abstonance. Most teens are sexually active.
12/05/2011
Total posts: 16
Unique posters: 15