Now that the holidays are here, young people are at the risk of engaging in sex as they look for activities to keep themselves busy, writes John Muturi
The long Christmas holiday is here. Your children have taken a worthwhile break from school and it’s such times that if you’re not watchful, they can ignorantly indulge in sex with dire consequences.
Children and young people learn about sex early in their lives. Unfortunately, learnt mainly from the media and peers, making this information partial, distorted and wrong.
And when something goes wrong, like pregnancy, parents wonder why their children engaged in sex in the first place.
Unless we understand the reasons young people engage in premature sexual activity, it will be difficult to help them.
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Peer pressure: Peer pressure is a great driving force for the youngster to engage in pre-marital sex. Because of peer pressure that others in her realm including friends and young people she knows are doing it, she wonders why she can’t. Furthermore, she is apprehensive of being considered a coward, odd, a novice or still a child by the peers if she doesn’t indulge.
Coupled with the feeling that she could be missing something by not engaging in sex, she argues that since it’s bound to happen anyway, why not now.
Unfortunately, sex is a private affair and she may just be having an allusion that her friends indulge while they don’t. Or they may just be engaged in empty boasting of their sexual conquest to prove they are adults and tough! This may mislead a poor unsuspecting child to engage and stamp their ‘adulthood’ too.
It is important to warn, especially young girls, not to cave in to the demands of selfish ‘boyfriends’ to prove their love by accepting sex. This is manipulative.
Lack of knowledge: Many young girls have become pregnant unaware they’ve had sex or that pregnancy happens if sex occurs at a certain time of their monthly menstrual cycle.
Very often during festivities like Christmas when there is a lot of partying, young people ignorantly put themselves in situations where their body responses are confusing and sex occurs. They can also be tricked into sex by others, not least adults.
Rapists on the prowl: Often young girls and boys become victims of rape by ignorantly putting themselves in vulnerable situations. The worst of it is that it becomes difficult for the victim to mentally and emotionally deal with it. It is instructive that one must exercise their choice to have sex when they have adequate information about it and are able to take full responsibility for all the consequences. Unfortunately for the young rape victim, what is supposed to be an important event that is pleasurable and fulfilling is turned into a ghostly affair.
Freedom corner: Every young person craves to attain the age of 18 and technically become an adult with full independence to take their own decisions on sex and other matters. They feel they are also physically mature to engage in sex. Be that as it may, sex isn’t purely hinged on the body’s maturity. It has more to do with the decision on whether one can bear the responsibilities that come with it.
The drive on safe sex that is evident on advertising campaigns is hinged on the fact that since we’re aware our young people engage in sex, we should protect them by teaching them about safe sex. For our youngsters, the only safe sex is no sex until they get married.