When you encourage teens to save sex, are you negative or positive?
Too often we are negative.
- Don’t get pregnant as a teenager.
- Don’t get an STD.
- Don’t get emotional scars.
- Condoms don’t fully protect you.
What about positive reasons to wait?
A recent study looked at whether the age of first sexual experience predicted romantic outcomes as an adult. The study put the age of first sexual experience into three categories:
- age 14 and under
- age 15-19
- age 20 and up
Which group was significantly more likely to have satisfying adult romantic relationships? The age 20 and up group. Their findings held true even when they tested for other factors including body mass index, attractiveness, or differences in teenage dating.
The study defined a satisfying adult romantic relationship as having the following factors:
- a partner who shows love and affection
- enjoyment of day-to-day things with partner
- happy with the way conflict is handled
- avoidance of aggression
- avoidance of victimization
If that wasn’t enough, saving sex until the 20’s also was linked to
- higher achievement of educational goals
- more income as an adult
Teens deserve the truth about teen pregnancy, STDs, condoms, and emotional scars. Just don’t neglect teaching the hope and reward from saving sex.
Christine Kearney. (2012, October 18). “Age Of First Sexual Experience Determines Relationship Outcomes Later In Life.” Medical News Today. Retrieved from http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/251640.php
Harden, K. P. (2012, September 25). True Love Waits? A Sibling-Comparison Study of Age at First Sexual Intercourse and Romantic Relationships in Young Adulthood. Psychological Science. doi:10.1177/0956797612442550
The University of Texas at Austin. (2012, October 18). Does True Love Wait? Age of First Sexual Experience Predicts Romantic Outcomes in Adulthood. Retrieved from http://www.utexas.edu/news/2012/10/18/does-true-love-wait-age-of-first-sexual-experience-predicts-romantic-outcomes-in-adulthood/