Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Unsafe sex 'the new engagement ring'?

Hey, guys! I'm back from mourning the blog loss (sob!) of Alisha Hord, co-founder of We Can Relate. She has moved on to another gig, as most of us are wont to do, and I wish her and her hubby Richard all the best. Peace out, sister.

And now I've returned with lots of stuff for us to talk about! Let's start with a little day brightener (NOT!), courtesy of

"Pendarvis Harshaw, an Oakland (Calif.)-based teen, recently sparked a slew of controversy with his public radio essay which stated that in his social circle, 'sex without a condom is the new engagement ring.' "

Yeah, parents. Shudder at the thought. Trendcentral continues:

"(Harshaw) said that for a generation who has grown up with safe sex education and divorced parents, the real symbol of trust, love and commitment has nothing to do with walking down the aisle; the ultimate oath is letting your guard down in the face of potentially life-long consequences. While we don't condone this behavior, or claim that such activity is true across the board (hey, the Jonas Brothers are still wearing their purity rings), we have been hearing from young people that safety and protection -- both physical and emotional -- are the issues that concern them most about relationships and dating."

Man, oh man, oh man.

Just because those cute Jonas Brothers boys wear those rings, that doesn't stop them from being the biggest gigolos on Nickelodeon. They probably aren't, but I'm just sayin'. And once again, I'm thankful not to be the parent of a teenager, because that has got to be the hardest job there is. How do you convince a 16-year-old in the throes of first love that using condoms IS the best way to express that love? Not only are you protecting yourself, but your beloved from unplanned pregnancies and STDs. (Have you seen this week's news about AIDS? And NPR's "Talk of the Nation" had a segment yesterday that'll make you want to go get an HIV test right now. Remember: It's not how much sex you've had, but who you've had sex with. Public Service Announcement over.)

I believe that safety and protection are the issues that most concern teens about dating and relationships; after all, they're pressing issues for us adults as well. But having unprotected sex -- at no matter what age -- flies in the face of such concerns. You're just opening yourself up to a whole new mess of worries.


Anonymous said...

You have got to be kidding me - whatever makes you think that today's teens are concerned about safety and protection when it comes to sex???? What short memories you have! Teens rarely think beyond the moment, or consider the consequences of their actions until after the fact. As long as their role models in the media continue to misbehave, today's teens are more apt to also misbehave and take unnecessary risks.

Anonymous said...

"As long as their role models in the media continue to misbehave, today's teens are more apt to also misbehave and take unnecessary risks."

Do you not think their parents should have a role in all of this. So much gets put on the media, movies, music...It all boils down to just bad parenting. As a teen (not that long ago) i knew the dangers and took procautions. And i thank my parents for raising me that way. This all just confirms my theory that if you have to take a test to drive a car you should have to before you reproduce.

Marie said...

I am getting to this kinda late (leaving comment) but I had to say something after the comment about parenting. True, parents need to be the first defense against such behavior, but they cannot be the only. I was a teen mother and my parents were open and honest with me. I understood the risk and even with all the knowledge in the world, I still made the wrong decision. But it was just that, MY decision. We can only give our children so much, before we have to trust them.