Regarding “Get Real,” December 9: Teenagers are going to have sex. Not all of them, and not all starting at the same age–but this most basic of human compulsions is not going to be denied. Telling teenagers they shouldn’t have sex until they’re married, while simultaneously teaching them practically nothing but gross distortions about how to protect themselves from disease and pregnancy, may on average slightly increase the age at which they begin having sex. But there’s no doubt that it will greatly increase the risk that their initial sexual experiences will be unprotected ones. Confronted by the realities of sexual desire, unrealistic inhibitions will break down. The kids who think “I’m going to abstain, I don’t need protection” will be same ones most likely to get pregnant or a disease.
Abstinence until marriage is absurd on its face. Put into practice, it means that immature, horny kids rush into marriage long before they’re ready. Desperation to get laid is not a good basis on which to construct a stable, long-lasting relationship. And what about when people do get married? They still need to know about contraceptives. Or do these yahoos at Project Reality want everybody to have 20 kids?
I think the people responsible for teaching these absurdities to our kids have blood on their hands. Abstinence until marriage is a form of child abuse.
M. Ross Adams