McMINNVILLE, Ore. (BP)--“At 50 percent, we’re talking about a major social norm,” Claire Brindis said. “It’s part of kids’ lives.”
The professor of pediatrics at the University of California at San Francisco was not talking about braces or cell phones; she was speaking about oral sex.
According to a report released Sept. 15 by the National Center for Health Statistics, slightly more than half of American teenagers ages 15 to 19 have engaged in oral sex. That number jumps to 70 percent for 18 and 19 year olds.
A report issued earlier this year, based on the same research gathered in 2002 and 2003, surprisingly showed that slightly more girls than boys have had intercourse before they turn 20. Also, the number of high school girls who have engaged in casual sexual encounters now equals boys.
Now, I'm not really sounding the alarms about something that is not new news. After all, I think there are those in our society who have been ringing these bells since I was a teen. (Yes, that amount of time is growing larger and larger). What this article made me think about was teenage dating. Where do we think all of this promiscuous activity is happening? Do we think it is happening while teens are hanging out with friends under parental or responsible adult supervision? Our youth group at my church has been discussing dating for the last few weeks. My view I think can be summed up pretty well in this summary of the book "I Kissed Dating Goodbye" by Joshua Harris. Here is a snippet.
I Kissed Dating Goodbye is not just about sexual purity; it scrutinizes the whole course of friendship, courtship, romance, engagement, and marriage. In a chapter on what's wrong with the current approach, Harris argues that dating (1) leads to intimacy but not necessarily to commitment; (2) tends to skip the "friendship" stage of a relationship; (3) often mistakes a physical relationship for love; (4) often isolates a couple from other vital relationships; (5) in many cases, distracts young adults from their primary responsibility of preparing for the future; (6) can cause discontentment with God's gift of singleness; and (7) creates an artificial environment for evaluating another person's character.
First a brief description of dating. This would be spending major amounts of time alone for the sole purpose of pepetuating an emotional/romantic involvement. Now,I think at the very least Christians should be coninually looking at ways to protect our children from the influences of sin in the world, and in their own hearts. My question is, do you think dating at a young age (13-17) is teaching our children the Biblical principles of self-control, patience, and purity, or even fostering an enviroment condusive to these qualities? Just asking what you think.