The U.S. is going through a rather unusual time. Reports of sexual activity are decreasing yet STD rates are increasing. I’m not sure how accurate these reports of sexual activity decreasing are, as often those who take surveys may be members of a certain demographic, or geographic which can affect survey results. Regardless of whether sexual activity is increasing or decreasing, STDs are on the rise.
Gonorrhea infected individuals rose 70% over the last few years. A few other diseases saw an increase as well. This is attributed to decreased condom use. This brings me to the real issue, increased social acceptance of certain sexual behaviors. I recently was plagued with the task of writing a paper on STDs and sexual behaviors for both a psychology and sociology course. The acceptance of multiple sexual partners and “no-strings attached” sexual relationships is having a major effect on our youth, and adults in our society. Media encourages individuals to have casual sexual relationships and it worships individuals who rationalize these behaviors. My wife and I watch the Bachelor, but there is no denying the foolishness of the contestants(unless you’re Colton). This is great if that floats your boat, I mean really if you’re an adult do what you want. Whatever tickles your pickle. Children however are affected heavily by what they see via their peers and on television. Divorce has been rising at a fairly constant rate in the U.S. Nearly 50% of all marriages end in a divorce; the main reasons are infidelity or finances. With such a large amount of individuals filing for divorce, the amount of adults who participate in risky sexual behavior is also increasing. Music, television, movies, social media, everything has a profound effect on our children psyche. Don’t allow your child to be influenced by something they heard in a song or saw on television. The average age of teenagers experimenting with sex is 17 years old, although this can vary. Whatever your beliefs are that is your decision but it is our responsibility to teach our children how to behave safely. Whatever happens in Vegas does not always stay in Vegas. Teach your children what is appropriate and what is unsavory.