Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sex and teens

One thing that really bothers me about discussions in Mormon contexts (like Gospel Doctrine classes) of dating and courtship is the underlying assumption that kids’ll have sex if we give them even half a chance—that’s not even generally presented as a possibility, but rather as a certainty. Mormons are required, i suppose, to ignore the fact that more half of all teens in the United States finish high school as virgins, and i’d argue that most of that more-than-half certainly had adequate opportunities to have sex there. So how’d they manage, even though many of them didn’t have Mormon guilt trips teaching to stop them?

Oh, wait! I’ve got it! It’s just Mormon teens who are certain to have sex when presented with the opportunity. Now it makes sense!


Butter said...

I guess those discussions must go over my head still... I've never noticed that at all.

David B said...

Well, it’s a widespread underlying assumption, not something that gets stated directly—but it’s there in the idea that unmarried people shouldn’t be left completely alone together in most situations, and the cultural approval of short (very short!) engagements.

Actually, sometimes you hear it explicitly in relation to the short engagement thing, where the idea is that the couple needs to get married quickly “So they won’t slip.”

velska said...

The assumption is not that all teenagers will engage in sexual activity if given half a chance, but that in any given group of any sizeable number, there's always a couple, who'll be doing hanky-panky if given half a chance.

The last place where we want to give that half-chance is at Church activities, right?

2 c worth?