We were inspired this week by an Indianapolis high school senior who took a stand for purity. This was Caleb Beaverson's response to his school's newspaper article on safe sex ...
Re: Approaches to Sex Fail Caleb Beaverson
After reading Hannah’s article in the January 21st N the Red, many of my fellow students and I would like to point out that her opinions on sexual education (and sex itself) are not equally shared across our student body. Therefore, I would like to provide some equilibrium to Hannah’s article, trusting you will be willing to print this point of view shared by many of my fellow students.
According to Hannah, we should “…get information to the masses so that our generation can improve and move past this time of excessive discretion.” What I understand her to be saying is that by more broadly and formally presenting the knowledge to teens of how to lose their virginity “safely” before they get married, we are somehow improving society. How is this an improvement to society? Since when is taking the path of least resistance in this aspect of our lives an improvement to society? Furthermore, it is irrational to state, as Hannah’s article does, that “more education” is the solution. What she’s saying is that there are teens in our midst, having pre-marital sex, who are unaware of the concept that condoms, diaphragms, and pills exist as a method of decreasing their odds of becoming pregnant. (Let’s not be so ignorant.) These methods can help reduce teen pregnancies; however it has, in fact, been proven that teens not having sex have a zero percent pregnancy rate, and no STDs. Imagine that!
According to the article, simply because we encourage young men and women to abstain from sex until they are married, we are now, as a society, in a time of excessive discretion. According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, discretion is “the quality of having or showing discernment or good judgment”. The question to be answered then is this: How is it possible to have too much good judgment?
Hannah says, “With 22 percent of births in our country occurring in teens between the ages of 13 and 18, there seems to be some sort of lack of education as to how these teens could have prevented unplanned pregnancies.” What should be stated here is that, “With 22 percent of births in our country occurring in teens between the ages of 13 and 18, there seems to be some sort of lack of self control.” As has been the case for many children in our generation, we have been denied very little of whatever it is we wanted since a young age. Even if the decision to have ill advised sexual relationships may hurt others, or even ourselves, our desire is to run straight ahead anyway; for that is what we most desire at the time. Even if our physical intimacy doesn’t result in an unplanned pregnancy or other health-related, physically detrimental repercussion, many of the psychological outcomes of these decisions do not manifest themselves until some number of years down the road by way of destructive thoughts and emotions with our future spouse as we attempt to assemble a successful marriage. By giving in to the cultural assumption that “headstrong teens” are given to have uncontrollable sex as the default assumption, we are literally embracing the statistically proven fact that by doing so, we are putting a damper on the odds of having a successful, long lasting marriage – because of our inability to possess appropriate discretion.
According to livestrong.com, teenage mothers are more likely to drop out of high school, be and remain single parents, and score lower in math and reading into adolescence. The most certain way of keeping this entire scenario from happening is to abide by the one surefire solution to this dilemma - stay away from sex until marriage. But the best part is that it’s doable! I’ll be a virgin when I’m married. It’s a gift I’ll give away to one very special woman – no regrets. My mom and dad managed to accomplish this “unavoidable”, natural act until they were married. My three uncles and their wives all made it to their marriage vows with their virginity intact. And, it’s not like they were social misfits without opportunity for their own lack of discretion. Rather, they were all teens who were active and popular students participating in and leading their way through high school and college as cheerleaders, drum majors for state championship marching bands, cross country & track team members, starting varsity baseball players, high school basketball players, collegiate baseball Team Captains, highly achieving academic students, and the list goes on. And from the evidence of what I’ve seen around me all my life, it is evident that abstinence also provides for more trusting relationships and provides for true intimacy between spouses.
Again, what we need is less societal endorsement on promiscuous, detrimental behavior and more self control. Let’s become the generation that bucks the trends, uses our minds before our hormones, and is known for honoring rather than using one another.
Ultimately, the decision on whether or not to have premarital sex is one that is up to each individual, regardless of what is taught in school. The root of the problem with teenage pregnancy stems not from a lack of education about alternative methods of preventing teen pregnancies given the “unavoidable” sexual escapades of teens, but rather from a lack of education in the time tested concept of thoughtful analysis of what is in our own best interest.