Former model-turned TV talk show host Tyra Banks has done some research for a recent show about teen sexuality. This past summer, over 10,000 teens took part in an anonymous survey that revealed disturbing trends, and confirms other research in this field. Here are some highlights, culled from an article on the Today Show website (Banks was interviewed about this study on a recent episode of the show.) Parents, brace yourselves:
- On average, girls are losing their virginity at 15 years of age.
- 14 percent of teens who are having sex say they’re doing it at school.
- 52 percent of survey respondents say they do not use protection when having sex.
- One in three says she fears having a sexually transmitted disease.
- 24 percent of teens with STDs say they still have unprotected sex.
- One in five girls says she wants to be a teen mom.
Here’s an exerpt from the article:
Dr. Elizabeth Schroeder, executive director of Answer, a teen sex education program based at Rutgers University, said the survey results sound plausible and are consistent with other research on teen sexuality.
“This so clearly points to the need for comprehensive sexual education for kids,” Schroeder said. “An adolescent … is supposed to be making poor decisions. Developmentally this is the way they’re supposed to be behaving. They need help …. Parents need help talking with their kids about sexuality, and schools need to be talking to kids about sexuality.”
Banks told Lauer [on the Today Show episode] that this kind of communication simply isn’t happening for many teens.
“They are not talking to their parents; they’re embarrassed to talk to their parents,” Banks said. “And more than them being embarrassed to talk to their parents, their parents are embarrassed to talk to them. So they’re finding all [about] sex education with their friends, with their peers.”
And, I might add, from pornography. The challenge of hyper-sexualized teen culture is growing. There is a great need for teaching about sexual sanity for teenagers. Stay tuned to this website for more information about upcoming seminars about this topic.