August 22, 2012 – Serious Intimacy Talk By Stella Damasus
I recently came across an article which got me thinking seriously. Not just because I had written something similar but because things are getting worse by the day. For those of us who have teenage daughters we need all the advice, tips, help and we need to pray for them as much as we can.
The world is very negative and evil is celebrated all over, this makes it so difficult to teach young children the right thing. Everywhere you turn, ugly things are being made beautiful, from television, radio, movies, school to music,fashion and even relationships.
Let me share this article titled: Why Teenage Girls Have Sex And How Their parents Can Talk To Them About It, with you and I hope it will help you somehow.
It is written by Jill Kulhawy, BN.
Imagine a 15-year-old girl who thinks she might be pregnant. This was her first sexual experience. It was unplanned. It was even unwanted, but now she thinks she may be pregnant and she doesn’t know what to do.
Now imagine another 15-year-old girl who is on her sixth partner this year. She’s been lucky; she has not got pregnant. She’s thinking of getting tested for STDs. She may be regretting her choices, maybe not.
What is the difference between their motivations and ours? There is really very little difference.
The reality is that these girls are simply acting, to the best of their ability, to find a lover of their soul.
We are relational beings. We desire to know and be known. We crave intimacy. We all want to be loved, recognised and accepted.
Teenagers are also looking for acceptance and recognition, and without knowing it, they are looking for the lovers of their souls. They are going about it as they assume they must from the messages they are given from our culture. Sex is everywhere: TV, music, movies. Kids talk about it all the time. The casual way in which it is discussed gives you a clue as to how it is approached. Many of the ways sex is acted out among teenagers would shock you.
What we see are girls trying to fulfil relationship and intimacy needs as well as the need for recognition and acceptance with sex. They are looking for power and equality but do not realise that that is exactly what they are giving away.
Why do you think teenagers have sex? These are the reasons they give: boredom, nothing else to do, a way to pass the time, hormones, bragging right, goal setting, peer pressure, pressure from partner, curiosity, to get it over with, and sometimes, “they think they’re in love.”
They talk about sex, yet what they are most interested in is relationship skills. Most girls want to know how to tell a guy, “no” without hurting his feelings. They also want to know how to deal with the pain of a break-up (because they know a break-up is inevitable).
But most teenagers are verbally sexually active, meaning they talk about sex as if they are participants. And recent studies show that 13-year-olds are physically sexually active.
This is not only true of the unchurched crowd. At the Calgary Pregnancy Care Centre, we see girls from the churches. And there are many we do not see. These girls take care of their unwanted pregnancy quickly and quietly so no one else will know. It is their big secret. Many times it is kept from their parents and even their friends. Secrets like that can be very painful and divisive, and can follow generation after generation.
Many girls are desperate for love. They feel they don’t have the option to say, “no.” And with today’s society so focused on sex and many girls so willing to accommodate boys’ requests, they may be right. To refuse to “put out” is to lose the relationship, and with the girls so desiring of relationship they feel to “put out” is their only option.
Sex has lost its sacredness and beauty and has become recreational and casual. It’s gone from being the culminating act of a loving commitment to a precondition, a tryout, for future involvement.
There is a frequent complaint that boys rarely ask girls out anymore. Instead they go to parties, drink, pair off and if the mood suits, have sex. Young women who feel as sexually free as it is possible to feel are still powerless. Girls like boys boast of their sexual experience, but are aware that their reputation have been badly damaged and that the boys lose respect for them.
Some girls meet their intimacy needs by creating their own families. They aren’t meeting it through sex. Sex is just the vehicle. They are using men to have children, and are creating their own “family” so they can love, be loved and be needed. They are creating their own “community.”
Then there is the gang community. When a girl joins a gang, especially in school, she is treated as the lowest on the totem pole. They have to be accountable to the gang and follow the rules. These rules are not for their own good as they would be in a family, but the girls join anyway. For attention and acceptance, these girls find they need to be down and dirty. They laugh at the same jokes, even the sexually degrading ones, and treat sex as a recreation, a conquest, not as an emotional commitment.
If you are a parent of a teenagers, what can you do to help them make wise choices about their sexuality?
Let them know your expectation of them in the area of sexuality. Be very clear about your own values and attitudes. Set definite boundaries for them in the areas of dating and weekend activities. Make them accountable to you as to their whereabouts and activities. Sometimes a lack of opportunity is all the help they need.
Help them see the discrepancies between the media and real life. Use time spent together watching TV or movies to facilitate a discussion on sex and dating.
Learn to listen. Start communicating early and often. Keep discussion open; don’t over or under explain. Avoid lecture format. Show them what good, responsible relationships should be.
• I would like to acknowledge Danielle Crittenden’s book, What Our Mothers Didn’t Tell Us, as the source of much of the information in this section.