True Love Still Waits
Teens live in a sexually charged culture that promotes and glorifies sex. However nearly 70% of high school age teens are virgins. This study shows teens have the capacity for self control.
This idea is backed up in a study published in the October issue of the Journal of Sexual Medicine. The study surveyed 820 adolescents nationwide via the Internet, a confidential method the researchers say is more likely to produce honest answers compared to a face-to-face or phone interview. Parents had to give consent.
The study found that 69.7 percent of boys and 68.4 percent of girls ages 16-17 have never had intercourse. Among 14-14 year olds the percentage is even higher - 90.1 percent for boys and 87.6 percent for girls. In other words, the majority of teens had not had sex.
This shows that the abstinence movement is alive and well despite recent attacks and setbacks. The idea that teens can't control themselves and that condoms are the only solution is refuted by the facts. Most teens are not sexually active. When given the chance, teens will respond positively to an abstinence message.
In response to the study, Richard Ross, cofounder of the True Love Waits movement, stated, "Less than a third of high schoolers have ever had sex. And that includes large numbers who only have had sex once. Also, consider that more that 60 percent of sexually experienced teenagers regret what they have done. Combining those figures reveals that only a small segment of American teenagers are committed to a sexual lifestyle."
This study shows that the perception that everyone is doing it is false. Congress and the administration should take into account studies that show the majority of teens are not having sex. Congress and the administration cut all abstinence centered programs despite multiple studies that showed abstinence education works.
Jimmy Hester, co-founder of the True Love Waits movement stated, in response to the study, "Our experience with True Love Waits over the past 17 years have shown willingness on the part of students to consider waiting until marriage to have sex. Once teens understand the reasons behind sexual abstinence until marriage, and recognize the severe consequence when not practiced, most are willing to commit to waiting."
The facts tell us that teens are capable of waiting. They are open to waiting to have sex. According to Ross, "Weather they do or not depends on which voices and influences around them are the strongest."