Saturday, June 09, 2007

Teen Issues

[Or, why I will be completely grey by the time my kids graduate high school.]

Lately I've been hearing a LOT about what our local teens have been up to, and it's not good news. I'm hearing about kids drinking, drugging, and having loads of sex. According to three different sources I've talked to in the last week, about 90% of the freshman class at our local high school are engaging in some form of sexual activity. I'm not sure if that number is in any way accurate, but it's very, very scary. There have been problems with some of the 8th graders in our tiny school regarding blow jobs. Teens are performing oral sex and anal sex because that way you don't get pregnant. (Kids, have you not heard about diseases? Oral sex doesn't protect you from those!) There have been "hookup parties" where kids go just to have sex, and they don't particularly care who their partner is, or even if they have the same partner from one party to the next. Or even the same partner for the entire party. Teens don't consider oral sex to be "real sex" just doesn't count in their book.

This information really scares me. Mark's going to be 12 in less than 2 weeks. He's not far away from the ages of these kids I'm hearing about. He's just now beginning to show some interest in girls, and from what I've observed (and from what my spies tell me), his interest is very very innocent and basic. But how long until it could turn into something else? What the hell are these kids thinking? Why have they not had these topics addressed by adults? Where are they getting the idea that this is okay? Are we, as a society, at all aware that we are projecting so irresponsible a picture to our youth that they would think this was acceptable?

I was no nun in high school. I had sex for the first time when I was sixteen (junior year). I would guess that less than half of the girls I knew had been involved in *any* sexual activity by that point. The difference being, I was in love with the guy, we were in a relationship, I fully expected (naively, as it turned out--no real surprise there) that we would get married eventually, and for me it was an expression of love and commitment. (and yeah, the raging hormones helped) I didn't know ANYONE who was having sex casually, and nobody talked about oral sex, much less had PARTIES dedicated to it. (I'm not saying nobody DID it, just nobody *talked* about it.)

I know that I don't have a lot of recourse to keep my kids from getting involved in this stuff, other than locking them in their rooms for the remainder of their lives (and the law apparently frowns upon this). I've done some talking, I'll do more talking, I'll keep track (or try to) of where my kids are going and who they're with, and at some point I'm just going to have to have faith in the moral building blocks that I've given them. The one thing I will have to remember is to NOT fall into the trap of "it can't happen to me." Quite frankly, thinking about all of this scares the shit out of me. (and this is not even CONSIDERING the drinking and the drugs.) My kids are 4.5 years apart in age, which means that I have the next 11-12 YEARS to worry about this crap. I'd better start investing in Clairol. mk

1 comment:

ng2000 said...
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