Abstinence is key

Scott Schulze, Staff Writer

For many teenagers, pressure to fit in and do certain things comes from all over. There are often pressures from advertising and peers to have sex. Even with these pressures, a majority of teenagers are able to resist having sex and are practicing abstinence.

Abstinence is when one refrains from participating in any sexual activities. It may seem hard because it takes a lot of self control, but it is a free birth control method that is 100 percent effective.

Abstinence is on the rise due to better sex education in schools and more knowledge about the risks of STDs.

Many teens are just afraid of getting a STD that could destroy any chance of having a long, happy life.

Carlmont junior Rachel Andrews stated: “If you are going to [have sex], you should do it with someone you love, not with someone you use, like tissue, and never see again.”
Carlmont junior Jack McDowell said many people choose to be abstinent because they “don’t want to feel guilty.”

Along with better education, there is also a larger push from parents and colleges for teens to take extra curricular activities after school.

The average teenager is involved in multiple extracurricular activities today, leaving less free time, and therefore reducing the chance for teens to have time to have sexual intercourse.
Carlmont freshman Michael Lima states that he practices abstinence because he “thinks it is better to wait until marriage to have sex because pregnancy causes too many issues.”

Religious beliefs also play a role in the decision of some teens to abstain from having sex. Most religions want the followers to live a healthy and safe lifestyle and promote not having sex until marriage.

Andrews said that by practicing abstinence, “you are honoring your body and honoring God.”

Another issue related to teens participating in sexual activities is teenage drinking, as well as experimentation with drugs, that when combined with peer pressure, is not a good combination.

Lima points out that another contributor to teens having sex is drugs and alcohol. He stated: “Drugs and alcohol lead some teens to having sex because their judgement is impaired.”

Andrews believes “people should take sex more seriously. Its a huge deal. People don’t realize how scary it is until they have already committed to doing it with that person, so then you feel bad in saying no to the other person, so then you go forth with it and feel horrible after.”

Abstinence may not be for everyone, but it is a smart decision to make in order to avoid big problems.