More Teens Are NOT Having Sex!
Ever wondered why, if studies show that saving sex for marriage is the healthiest choice physically, mentally, and emotionally, more people aren’t waiting? A new study says: more people ARE waiting.
The report comes from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics. The report, based on interviews with over 13,000 men and women ages 15 to 44, found that from 2006-2008, the percentage of 15- to 24-year-olds who had never had any kind of sexual contact increased from 22% (for both genders) to 27% for males and 29% for females.
According to Anjani Chandra, lead author of the study, 15- to 19-year-olds had the highest increase in the number of individuals who had never had sex. In that category, 47% of females and 42% of males had never had any kind of sexual contact, including oral sex.
In an article from msnbc.com, Chandra tells the author Diane Mapes that the change could be due to sex education about abstinence. The change takes place over the same time frame when federal funding supported programs that encouraged sexual abstinence among teenagers. The study also seems to support the idea that the overall decline in teen pregnancy in recent years is related to increased abstinence among teens – not increased condom use.
“This study confirms what we see in the classrooms,” says Andrea Nelson, program director for Amplify Youth Development, a sexual wellness program in DuPage County. “When we challenge teens with a high standard and show them that there are a lot of benefits to waiting to have sex, they welcome the challenge!” Nelson says that it is important to show teens that we believe in their ability to have self-control. “And if there were any doubt that teens can wait, this study demonstrates waiting is possible.”