Thursday, May 5, 2022

In States That Severely Restrict Abortion

Something that all of us as citizens, legislators, and parents need to take very seriously:

1. No matter how much we lecture, model, cajole, or beg: some of our young people are going to be sexually active.  We might prefer otherwise, but protected sex is far better than unprotected both from a disease and pregnancy standpoint.   I know that many are reluctant to make condoms readily available to minors for fear that it may cause kids to start having sex because they perceive the risks to be lower and there is a perceived acceptability about it.  The harsh truth is that some kids are going to do what they swear they will not do.  Being a teenager is not that many decades away for me and there was precious little that restrains a teenaged boy's desires.  (While it never seemed to be this way when I was a teenager, at least of those that I knew, this seems to be often true for teenaged girls as well.)  Make sure that your teenagers know where the condoms are if you leave the house for the evening or go out of town for the weekend because that is time of the highest risk of minor sex.

2. Emphasize to boys that unprotected sex, or even the rare condom failure event, can lead to lifelong responsibilities for child support and considerable consternation and likely life-changing consequences for the young woman who has finally bent to his desires.

3. Make sure that every young woman who has now ended up pregnant is aware that your sympathy for her situation does not make you love her less.  Her willingness to do the right thing by this baby overshadows whatever moment of lust overcame her better senses.

4. Make sure that every young man (and their fathers) realize that this is not "boys will be boys" but misbehavior that has long-term and negative consequences.  Do not expect a car when you reach driving age: you will be paying child support and trying to be a father, or as close to it as you can manage (assuming the mother still wants anything to do with you).

5. Watch carefully for evidence that an adult man is showing too much interest in your daughter.   It would be sweet if every teen pregnancy was a poorly thought out Romeo and Juliet matter.  In California, one of the reasons Gov. Wilson put a premium on prosecuting statutory rape cases is that many were men in their 20s and above getting 13-year-olds pregnant.  This sort of predatory behavior is greatly accentuated by the fact that many girls have a desperate need for romance and feeling loved.  Too many men are prepared to simulate some emotional intimacy for some very real physical intimacy.  If a case goes to court, do not let the "star-crossed lovers" claim sway you.  Such men are often repeaters.  Lock them up.  And as I said, watch for inappropriate age combination relationships.   Be prepared to sound 1950s: "He is too old for you."  That sounds so much nicer than the cruder description of what he is after.

6. Try to have a parent home.  When I was young, most homes had an adult present at all hours; usually Susie Homemaker.  It is a lot easier for sexual temptation to win in a home where no adults are present.

1 comment:

  1. Parent of 3 boys, now grandfather of 6, I agree with your sentiment.

    HOWEVER, as it was then it is now, parents are fighting the same malady that affects themselves as well as their children -- It won't happen to me.

    Nobody ever has a DUI that causes injury or death, never blows off a hand with fireworks, ever has a loose part go flying with a power tool, or accidentally fathers or mothers a child. Nope. Nobody.

    But SOMEbody does.