Oor wrote:I think, Theo, you're a little too enamoured with the ridiculous line we're fed that there's some magical (ever later) line that a human being crosses, where they transform instantly from child to adult. Whether it's 14, 16, 18, 21, whatever (ymmv).
Not really. Whenever there's articles about underage sex going on I always am irritated when the article calls teenagers 'children'. As you said, there is no magical line between below 18 and over 18 that turns them into adults, and the legal line is entirely arbitrary. there would be three categories... children, teenagers, and adults.
Oor wrote:There's info out there - lots of it - that heavily suggests that the more children, teens and young adults know about sex - both the physical and the emotional side of it - the more likely they are to practice safe sex, the less likely they are to become pregnant (or get someone pregnant) at a very early age, and the more healthy their general attitude will be to sex as they get older. And the emotional side of sex is not "you meet someone, fall in love, then get married and have sex", nor is it "you should only ever have sex with someone you're in love with" nor is it "you should only ever have sex with someone you're in a long term relationship with". Sometimes it's about erections slipping in, clits being rubbed, and cusses being uttered.
While some people might prefer it if young people waited until they were 21 and had sex with someone they'd been with for 3 years, surrounded by candles and rose petals, nothing good ever came of only preparing people for a (very subjective) idealistic life.
Maybe you can't imagine your 14, 15 or 16 year-old self reading something like this, but my 14 year-old self was already sexually active. Your 17 year-old self could have joined the military and been sent abroad as political war fodder to be shot at and (possibly) killed or maimed. Seems a bit odd, in light of that, to get apoplectic about "fuck" or "clit" or "erection".
Wellllllll I'd be okay if a 16 year old to 18 year old read the books I posted. Its the early teens that worry me though, and I feel like if they cannot see a rated R movie by themselves, they shouldn't be exposed to rated R language in books.
Just because certain teenagers have sex at 13 or so doesn't mean the vast majority of teenagers also do it at that age as well. I'm pretty sure in the US the majority of people lose their virginities in their late teens, around 16. Of course, it would depend a lot on demographics, education, income, areas, culture, but the majority of people lose their virginities in their late teens.
I don't get why the majority of young teens 13 14 15 should have to be exposed to explicit material, just because a minority of young teens 13 14 15 are having sex already. It is urging the majority on, while they are not ready.
And although there might be some bookstores that have separate sections of young teens to older teens, the bookstores I've seen just lump the entire 12-18 category all on one section. This would lead to a lot of premature exposure.
It's also worth noting that age of consent laws draw a very arbitrary line that can get consenting, fully aware young (male in particular) people into a lot of trouble - some of it that can literally destroy their lives - under the guise of child welfare. In a world where our media likes to propagandise us into believing there's a paedophile, terrorist or mega-corporation goon hiding around every corner, it's not any wonder that people accept that reasoning - but the laws (that used to stand at much younger ages) were changed across the Western world during an earlier puritanical era (19th C) and have started being raised again in various places in recent years, in response to an ever increasing concern that SOMETHING MUST BE DONE about an ever decreasing problem (child sex abuse). The person MOST likely to end up on a sex offenders registry with their life destroyed for having sex with a 14-or-15 year-old girl is her 16, 17 or 18 year-old boyfriend. IMO the collateral is not worth the infinitesimally small benefit, and the law has no bearing (nor consideration for) the sexual behaviours of young people in the real world.
Well yes. Something must be done, even if it is an ever decreasing problem. Because even one case is too much.
Obviously it's ridiculous to have a 16 year old boy be in trouble for screwing his 15 year old girlfriend, in states where 16 is the age of consent.
However, I have seen some laws that are more nuanced, like, if under 16, the couple must be within three years of each other, with 12 minimum. So say, girlfriend is 12, and boyfriend is 15. Or girlfriend is 14, and boyfriend is 17. I'm not sure the exact numbers or law but I'm pretty sure the 'within so and so years' nuance in laws exist.
I'm not a mom yet, but I have a sister 18 years younger than me who's 13 now, and who will soon be at the age I was when I lost my virginity. She shows a lot of the same precocious, anti-authoritarian personality quirks that I had as a young teen/adult, and if she's going to end up fucking someone next year I'd rather she go into it safely, armed with condoms and information, not expecting a fanfare or an orgasm, knowing exactly what will happen (including erections, hips moving, clits and fucks) and knowing that she can say 'no' and walk away at any time she wants to.
If you keep her busy with extracurriculars, restrict her from visiting certain friends houses , vetting her friends, installing internet filters in the home, working with likeminded mothers who also install internet filters in their home and only allow them to visit those homes, keep them busy with adult supervised after school activities.... enforce curfew, know where your kid is, install a GPS tracker on her smart phone, install software to disable texting, sexting, and the camera...
I'm pretty sure you can keep her from having sex until she's ready in the later teens. You don't have to just give up and settle for something lower.
The effort it takes to give them condoms and give them a 1 hour talk about sex, consent and emphasizing again and again that sex is fun and healthy, of course, is the easy route. Doing what I suggested is the harder and much time consuming route
Were I a young teen I would have probably been rather pissed at all the controls I have suggested. I was also rather anti-authority. But as an adult I realize there are certain things that could take some waiting on, to ensure one is truly ready for something instead of being pushed into it by peer pressure.
I feel like simply saying 'oh they're bound to get exposed to it anyway' is a cop out. One can always make more effort to shield someone growing up so they could come to terms to it on their own.
It's like the media yelling about violent video games causing their teenage sons to be violent. Hello? Who buys them these rated M for mature games? Rated M for mature games are the equivalent of rated R movies. If your kid has access to rated R movies or rated M for mature games, you need to be a responsible parent and lock them away in a cabinet or only allow your kids to visit their friends if you have vetted their friends and have seen their friend's parent's parenting style (like minded parenting, responsible parenting).
As for TV, there's always age ratings and you can restrict things. There is parental controls for everything. TV, computers, smart phones. There's parental controls with meeting with like minded responsible parents at the PTA and ensuring if your kid is going to a friends house it will be in a house where they won't be exposed to anything. And if its not at their house or their friends house, then they would be at school sponsored after school activities or adult supervised extracurricular activities like sports and what not.
Should they have zero sexual education? of course not. young teens should have the same dry sexual education that the rest of us got when we were 13 in biology class. and information about condoms as well, consent, etc.
Should we be shoving them condoms and say 'you're free to do whatever you want to do, follow your impulses'? I would say no. Guiding them to wait would be preferable. I'm not saying they should be abstinent til marriage. I'm saying maybe just wait a bit and not have such an intimate experience with someone you can't believe you lost your virginity to when you get older (e.g. 'i lost my virginity to bob from chem class... i think he works in a tire shop now...') Late teens is good? 20s is better?
I also don't believe that these words "clit" or "erection" or "fuck" have some sort of evil magical power. You say that you'd be fine with less explicit language - euphemism, presumably - that would conjure the same (possibly less accurate owing to lack of foreknowledge) image in the mind of the young reader. That's very odd, to me.
Well if you don't seem to have a problem with explicitness, then maybe you should write the ratings association for movies and tell them all their rated R movies should be PG movies and given to 13 year olds as presents. Because seeing the phrase 'shoving my erection and rubbing the length of it on the clit', is pretty much the same as seeing a non-explicit sex scene that would get a movie a rated R rating.
Oor wrote:So in conclusion, no, I wouldn't have any issue with my children (or younger relatives) reading this material. On the contrary, I'd prefer they were exposed to sex through avenues other than (or additional to) the porn they will undoubtedly be exposed to during their lives. I'd also like them to be able to speak to me openly about sex (my sister can - my own kids may be another story, but will hopefully be able to speak to my sister!), not see it as something embarrassing and gross, and go into it informed about mechanics, expectations, consent and safety. I don't think that's an attempt to be a "cool" mom. I think it's an attempt to be a responsible one.
I think young teenagers should be informed about mechanics, expectations , consent and safety. But I think this should all be done as a safety net, just in case they fail to restrain themselves. They shouldn't be given condoms and allowed porn (and book porn) and encouraged to do whatever their impulses direct them to do.