“I think denying that [sex] is part of our culture in 2014 is really not serving our kids well,” says Lara Calvert-York, president of the Fremont school board, who argues that kids are already seeing hyper-sexualized content—on after school TV.
“So, let’s have a frank conversation about what these things are if that’s what the kids need to talk about,” she says.
The singer Rihanna, for example, has legions of young fans.
Her music video for the song “S&M”—viewed more than 57 million times on You Tube so far—shows the artist, pig-tied and writhing, cooing “chains and whips excite me.” It then cuts to her using a whip on men and women with mouths covered in duct tape.
“I had sex with my older boyfriend at 16,” says Ashley Jones, 22, a young Georgia woman. ” (The Kinsey institute puts the average age that kids have first have sex at 16.9 for boys and 17.4 for girls.) Current sex education, where it does exist, often teaches the basic plumbing, but it’s not answering the questions young people really have when it comes to sexuality: What should I do when my girlfriend/boyfriend is pressuring me to have sex?
Other studies have found that 10% of young women who had their first sexual experience in their teenage years say it was not their choice, and the younger they were, the more likely this was the case. ” Young people now engage in relationships increasingly via technology, which means they’re able to connect in a variety of ways and at a speed and frequency not known to prior generations.But these numbers only tell a tiny snippet of the story. “Most of the time they don’t talk about contraception, they don’t talk about risk of pregnancy, STIs [sexually transmitted infections]—certainly not abortion.At some point you would think adults would come to their senses and say hey we have to counteract this.” () Strasburger says the U. shouldn’t base success on its teen pregnancy numbers: “Everyone else’s teen pregnancy rate has gone down too.While many parents think that explaining the consequences of sending out explicit images will get teens to stop, they may be missing the point.“There’s a pressure that people feel to send a sext as a digital currency of trust,” says Emily Weinstein a Harvard University doctoral student who collected the texts above from an online forum run by MTV, for a study on the digital stress of adolescence.