Their Critics Have Been Challenged
Published on February 4, 2010 By KFC Kickin For Christ In Blogging

So it looks like the abstinence-only crowd was right after all. 

An experimental abstinence-only program can delay teens from having sex according to a new scientific study done over the course of the last two years.  This is the first rigorous research done showing success with an abstinence only approach.  This study helped sixth and seventh graders list the pros and cons to early sexual behavior among other assignments attached to the program. 

The parents of the mostly 12 year olds had four options to choose from.  They could choose abstinence only classes, safe-sex classes, classes that include both approaches or classes that dealt in health and well being only.

Two years later only about 1/3 of the students engaged in sexual behavior from the abstinence only classes in comparison to 49% in each of the other three groups.  Very interesting.

When my children were in school, we had no such options.  We only had the option to opt them out of the sex-ed portion of the health class.   A few of us chose that option and at least once I withdrew my son entirely from the program all together along with a few others because of their radical sex-ed program. 

The critics of the abstinence only programs have certainly been challenged with this news.  The advocacy groups favoring abstinence only programs said it shows the Obama administration's decision to move away from any funding of these types of programs is misguided.  Maybe in light of this news, their decision should be re-evaluated. 

For me the question has always been why so critical of these abstinence programs?  Why not encourage our kids to do the right thing?  Why encourage them to do what everyone else is doing?  Dare to be different.  Why the animosity?  I've seen it up close and personal in school board meetings over this issue.  It can get quite heated.

I think it would be wonderful to include these four options listed to everyone.  Continue to monitor the results.  I think many would be surprised at the results.  Why aren't we doing this now?  Why is it only one-sided? 

This reminds me of what I saw on GMA last Monday.  During one of their spots they showed Oprah interviewing Bristol Palin alongside her mother Sarah.  Bristol had just announced she was going to abstain from sex until marriage acknowledging her past mistake in not doing so resulting in early teen pregnancy.  Oprah, after a few minutes of grilling Palin over her decision, made a flippant remark saying "good luck with that, hope it works for ya."  She was obviously not pleased with Palin's decision.  Why?  Why the anger? 

Hosts Robin and George both remarked they thought Oprah could have been more encouraging to this young woman for making a good decision.  I don't think they understood Oprah's animosity here either. 

The same day Oprah had Rosie O'Donnell on her show.  During this interview Rosie announced that she and her lesbian lover had split up with four children in the mix.  She also announced that she has a new lover who has six more children evidently from her past relationship.  I couldn't believe how encouraging and affirming Oprah was to Rosie in the merging of these 10 children with who knows how many moms and no dads involved after she subtly bashed Bristol that very morning on her decision to abstain until marriage. 

Am I missing something? 

 

 

 

 

 


Comments (Page 1)
on Feb 04, 2010

Nope, not missing a thing.  Abstinance works every time it is tried.  no other method has that rate of success.

on Feb 05, 2010

The parents of the mostly 12 year olds had four options to choose from.  They could choose abstinence only classes, safe-sex classes, classes that include both approaches or classes that dealt in health and well being only.

Two years later only about 1/3 of the students engaged in sexual behavior from the abstinence only classes in comparison to 49% in each of the other three groups.  Very interesting.

Doesn't this suffer from selection bias?

I think sex-ed or no sex-ed has little to do with whether teenagers are sexually active or not (although sex-ed might make them more informed). I think it's the parents who make or break their children.

I assume that parents sorted their children according to their own preference which mostly mapped 100% to their children because the children were 12.

If you tought your child to abstain you put your child in a class where other parents who think like you put their children.

It's no wonder the results reflect these decisions.

It would be more interesting to do such a study with older teenagers, aged 16 and above. And maybe I grew up in a very protected environment in Germany but 12-year olds and sex???

 

The same day Oprah had Rosie O'Donnell on her show.  During this interview Rosie announced that she and her lesbian lover had split up with four children in the mix.  She also announced that she has a new lover who has six more children evidently from her past relationship.  I couldn't believe how encouraging and affirming Oprah was to Rosie in the merging of these 10 children with who knows how many moms and no dads involved after she subtly bashed Bristol that very morning on her decision to abstain until marriage. 

Am I missing something?

Oh, this is just wrong. The moment you have children, whatever the source (own womb, wife's womb, girlfriend's womb, adoption etc.) you have to stop meandering.

As for Bristol, I don't believe she and her boyfriend really wanted to get married. I believe it was for show to save the campaign. After I first thought that I convinced myself that they would break up after the elections. And they did.

Maybe I am being too conservative here but I don't think there is an excuse for what Bristol and her boyfriend did. They SHOULD have got married. And if couldn't because they didn't like each other, they shouldn't have become pregnant in the first place.

 

on Feb 05, 2010

This study is severely flawed. 23% of the students were already sexually active so they’re almost guaranteed to have sex again in the next 2 years, of course the parents are going to put them in the sex ed class, the virgin ship has sailed they just want to keep them from a pregnancy or STD.

For the rest like Leauki said there 12 they’re mostly going into the abstinence class and since the primary outcome was assed by self-report what do you think these kids are going to say after they’ve been told not to have sex? they were probably afraid if they said yes they would have to take the class over again. Kids rarely admit failure.

The study also doesn’t asses pregnancy and STD rates, which have consistently shown to be higher in step with religious based abstinence only education.  

I’m all for abstinence only classes for 12 year olds as long as they’re secular like this study and don’t vilify or misinform about contraceptives like this one did not.

on Feb 05, 2010

The study also doesn’t asses pregnancy and STD rates, which have consistently shown to be higher in step with religious based abstinence only education.  

We have been through this here on JU several times. I think I remember that statistics showed that teenage pregnancy rates were higher in Christian than in liberal regions with Utah and the Mormons being the big (positive) exception.

 

I’m all for abstinence only classes for 12 year olds as long as they’re secular like this study and don’t vilify or misinform about contraceptives like this one did not.

Fair enough. 12-year olds should be tought not to have sex. And 16-year olds should be tought how to have sex safely.

Everything else, i.e. teaching 16-year olds that sex before marriage is bad is up to the parents and the parents alone.

 

on Feb 05, 2010

Fair enough. 12-year olds should be tought not to have sex. And 16-year olds should be tought how to have sex safely. Everything else, i.e. teaching 16-year olds that sex before marriage is bad is up to the parents and the parents alone.

The study mentioned that in the abstinence only class contraceptives were not vilified or lied about so I have to assume if they were asked the students were told the truth, I wouldn’t want to see that question ignored.

I would like to see a gradual increase in emphasis with some leeway granted the teacher to adjust that emphasis if they believe an individual student is about to or has already had sex. I think most parents would accept this.

on Feb 05, 2010

Granted, its not a scientific experiment, not really even a quasi social experiment since there was no action to control for Z variables (potential other reasons for the outcomes)....

It would be interesting to compare a school that teaches abstinence only with a comparable school (demographically and economically) to one (or several combinations) that teach safe sex only.

The data is out there, it just has to be gathered and analyzed....but its a big project and in the end won't change ideology.

Personally I want my sons to wait for marriage.  I will do everything I can to ensure it.  But my oldest knows about condoms and VD.  If he decides to break our family values and rules and have sex, then I want him to protect himself and the girl he is with.  However, I won't be buying him condoms or acting like its ok...there will be consequences....the rule in my house is..."If you're old enough to have sex, then you're old enough to be out on your own."

We'll see how that works in the years to come.

 

on Feb 05, 2010

I would like to see a gradual increase in emphasis with some leeway granted the teacher to adjust that emphasis if they believe an individual student is about to or has already had sex. I think most parents would accept this

In my case, I didn't want anyone (mainly strangers) teaching my child about sex.  I've seen too many teachers who I would consider to be immoral teaching sex-ed.  I wrote back along that there was an incidence in our HS where it was on videotape one teacher was strongly encouraging the kids to take flavored condems and lick them at a health fair.   I've also known good Christian teachers in public schools who are aghast at what they are required to teach the kids which basically amounts to encouraging them not educating them (like the teacher at the health fair). 

I think I remember that statistics showed that teenage pregnancy rates were higher in Christian than in liberal regions with Utah and the Mormons being the big (positive) exception.

I would disagree with this for many reasons.  First of all the word 'Christian" nowadays can mean almost anything.  Most "Christians" are hardly distinquishable from the world.  They loosely take on the name and that's becoming more and more prevalent as time goes on.  I've seen firsthand many young people coming out of strong evangelical Christian homes going to the altar as virgins including two of my sons.  I think this would be a very hard thing to try and put a number on. 

I won't be buying him condoms or acting like its ok...there will be consequences....the rule in my house is..."If you're old enough to have sex, then you're old enough to be out on your own."

I know the teaching of abstinence works because I had two out of three sons wait until marriage which is the same percentage as this study came up with (interesting).  If they choose, like you said to go outside our family values, they pay the consequences. While you can make choices you can't choose the consequences.  They choose for you.   So be it.  But like you said I wasn't about to make it easy for them to do so. 

 

 

on Feb 08, 2010

I am with Leauki on this issue. Moral attributes regarding sex are the prerogative of the parents. But the whole issue is tricky with many pitfalls, and one cannot dismiss hormones and teenagers as a variable. Morals and parental guidance fly out the window as soon as two  young people fall in love anyway.

Sara Palin - I don't understsand how anybody can take her seriously - is the perfect example of a hypocritical attitude.

Those who preach high and mighty about morals and abstinence are often those that do the exact opposite when they're out of the public's eye, and I don't trust them on principle. The papers here wrote about her invovlement in the Tea party movement and her possible political ambitions for the year 2012. It's gonna stay interesting.. maybe if she would actually win, the thanksgiving turkey in 2013 won't get amnesty but have the special honour to get butchered by the president lol.

on Feb 08, 2010

Sara Palin - I don't understsand how anybody can take her seriously - is the perfect example of a hypocritical attitude.

How so?  What is it that causes you to conclude that about Sarah Palin? I know Leauki's objections, but curious about yours.

on Feb 08, 2010

She advocated sexual abstinence before marriage but her own family is anything like the standards she sets for others. Normally, I wouldn't hold it against her, but especially in issues concerning family morals it makes people look like hypocrites for me if they fail to live up to their own standards.

Generally, i don't think she is very smart. The interviews I remember from the election campaign were horrible in any case. That doesn't have anything to do with her being a republican though - I just don't find her very personable.

on Feb 08, 2010

makes people look like hypocrites for me if they fail to live up to their own standards.

Is Sarah sleeping around?  How is she a hypocrite for something her daughter does/did?

I really really hope people don't judge me by what my teenager does or doesn't do.  I can believe and preach abstinence until the cows come home.  It doesn't make me a hypocrite if my son has sex.

Sarah P. has said publically her daughter knew better, was taught better.  But her daughter chose a different path...how does that make the mother a hypocrite?

on Feb 08, 2010

If you were a politician and a prominent public figure with a strong moral and religious conviction that you would broadcast, then yeah.. it would make you look strange to me. Hypocrite is maybe a bit strong, but my oppinion certainly goes into that direction.

Even if her daughter behaved irresponsibly like she did and not Sarah herself - it reflects back on her. If your son had sex, it wouldn't make you a hypocrite. If he slept around and acted completely the opposite of what you tell people proper behaviour should be like from a high horse - that would be another stroy. I don't mean to say that your kid would ever behave like that though, it's just hypothetically. Sex alone isn't the deciding factor, for me.

on Feb 09, 2010

utemia
She advocated sexual abstinence before marriage but her own family is anything like the standards she sets for others. Normally, I wouldn't hold it against her, but especially in issues concerning family morals it makes people look like hypocrites for me if they fail to live up to their own standards.

Interesting view point.  If I may provide an anecdote (KFC, delete if unappropriate).

I was raised and am a practicing Catholic.  Which means Abortion is an absolute taboo (and I sincerely believe it too).  We had some neighbors who were friendly and some might say "redneckish", although there was no prejudice (a common misconception about American Rednecks).  He was a firefighter and she a stay at home mom with 3 kids (they later adopted several foster kids, but that is not relevant).  At the time, our first was born and their oldest was about 14, so there was really no interaction between our children and theirs, just the parents and us.

When the oldest daughter turned 16, she got pregnant.  I felt sorry for the parents, and thought the girl should be flayed to within an inch of her life!  How could she!  What was she thinking!  But most of all, why were the parents not wailing on her!  They should punish her to within an inch of her life!  The audacity of those rednecks to help out that child and let her live with them even after the baby was born!  They oughta...........

They oughta what?  It took some time, but finally I realized what a stupid hypocrite I was! I was totally against abortion, and yet what was I thinking?  I was thinking the exact opposite of what I believed.  And yet these "rednecks" were not thinking anything, they were living my faith (and theirs - they were presbeteryian), and showing through actions what true faith was.  I was ashamed of myself.

They were not hypocrites for continuing to love their daughter and not making her have an abortion, though she was just 16.  But I sure was! 

As I said, it took a while for me to realize MY HYPOCRISY, not theirs. 

While not a redneck, Sarah Palin is just like my neighbors.  We cannot control our children's lives forever, but we can control ours. And we can show them the honesty of our convictions in how we handle their problems as well.  Sarah did.  Yes, her daughter did not listen to her mother that well.  Chidlren do not always (as I have found out many times),  But when they make mistakes, you can shun them for it, or show them you love them anyway, and be the person you want them to be when they mature.

on Feb 09, 2010

That is a good story. I think my parents would have done the same had I or my sisters become pregnant that young. Even though - my cousin, the daugher of an uncle in croatia, had a bit of a wild youth as well. She became pregnant when she was very young and the parents kicked her out and took the baby in. My mother finds nothing wrong with that at all, even though I think it was very cruel and wrong.

 

on Feb 09, 2010



Is Sarah sleeping around?  How is she a hypocrite for something her daughter does/did?

I really really hope people don't judge me by what my teenager does or doesn't do.  I can believe and preach abstinence until the cows come home.  It doesn't make me a hypocrite if my son has sex.

Sarah P. has said publically her daughter knew better, was taught better.  But her daughter chose a different path...how does that make the mother a hypocrite?



I am hoping that if you teach your children that something is deeply wrong, they won't do it.

And I am sure that works in your case. I have no doubt that your moral values are the highest they can be, in fact I know they are.

But if you failed to teach your children your values (or teach them different values than you claim to have taught them) and at the same time run for office on the ticket that teaching those very values like you do is the way to go, you'd be a hypocrite.

You either practice what you preach or you fail to practice it. If you practice it and it doesn't work, you failed. In that case, don't preach.

There are thousands of mothers who have managed to teach their children proper behaviour and who didn't fail and who can lecture us on how it's done. Sarah Palin is not among them.

(Note that I wouldn't have a problem with this if the two actually would have got married after all. It's not the sex before marriage that I have a problem with but the claim that the two would get married when they really didn't.)

 

 

 

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