Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum

Talking to a teenager about sex

Rate this topic


Recommended Posts

I remember being a young teen going through puberty, so I remember that I was rational and could listen to the input of my parents and make good decisions even then. I may not be a girl but I'm betting if properly brought up to know for themselves, they can decide whether they need the pill or not.

This is called "jumping without a backup parachute". You can be a perfect exemplar of rational parenthood and your kids may still pull some incredibly stupid bullcrap. Would you rather just assume or take the time and the effort to *go* to the doctor and *have* the discussion and *get* the pills? Even after all that, there's no guarantee that your teenager is going to *take* the pills properly, but at least you *tried*. As a parent, it's natural to want to load the dice as much in your child's favor as humanly possible. Too much is definitely preferable to not enough, provided you're not an ogre about it.

Stop thinking like a touchy "it's my life!" whiny teenager for two seconds and try to think like a parent who has invested 15+ years of their life into getting their children ready to tackle the big ol' world. It's scary out there. One of the best lessons you can teach your kids is to NOT assume that everything will work the first time.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This is a bit of a tangent, but I was curious about the conclusions one would draw from the examples of sexual behavior offered in Rand's fiction. All of the heroines were virgins until they met men whom they loved. For that matter, Galt appears to have been a virgin until he met Dagny. D'Anconia was a virgin until Dagny and appears to have been celibate after breaking with her. None were promiscuous nor did any of them experiment on the basis of "it's pleasurable and you need to learn, so what if he/she isn't perfect?" Granted, the focus of the novels was not the sex lives of the characters, so there are things we don't know. But, were one to judge only on the basis of the examples offered, the conclusion would not be that fundamentally different from the principle of abstinence until marriage (or genuine love), albeit without the context imparted by a purely religious basis. So, I'm curious why that is seen as an inherently irrational or impractical principle (at least for those who aren't yet legally adults)? Is it because traditionally the source and context of that argument is religion and thus judged to be inherently suspect?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think that especially in the younger folks, people who are finding themselves, sometimes you have to find out what feels wrong before you can make a serious attempt at seeking out what's right. A 16-year-old shouldn't necessarily be expected to be holding out for their "true love", and I think you can have a healthy sexual experience with someone you perhaps like, or like a whole lot, but don't necessarily love. Alternatively, you may think you love someone, but then realize that what you are feeling is not love and that love is something else. I think sex can help in this discovery process. But I think it is really important for teens to learn how to stick to safe and healthy sex. If I could convey one overarching message to teens, even more than just "use condoms", I would say "alcohol and sex do not mix". Note: I am not advocating that all teens "sow their wild oats". Some people may have no interest in this and that's fine. I never did. But some people may learn best by trying things out and then saying, "Hey, you know what, I want more than this."

On the other hand, promiscuous 30somethings need to grow up. Also, something that bothers me about our culture is that some social circles almost suggest it's not cool to care about the person you're sleeping with (generally the same ilk that asserts it's not cool to care about anything at all...) There was actually a recent article about this in the New York Times by their young romance columnist. He basically admitted that now that he'd like to care about someone, he almost doesn't know how because he's gone out of his way not to care to this point. Brilliant.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All of the heroines were virgins until they met men whom they loved.
We don't know this. For instance, with Roark, Rand had planned a previous romance with Vesta Dunning (see unpublished excerpts from FH, later published in "The Early Ayn Rand"). However, from Rand's journals, her backgorund notes on Roark show that she thought of him as having had sex with more than one woman, and where the sex was purely "satisfying a physical need" (see Journals / The Fountainhead / Theme and Characters / Howard Roark Feb 9, 1936 / Sex ). So if we see this with Roark, who Rand conceived as having been born with his values, almost as if they were innate, it is quite likely that Rand considered that some of her other heroes (who had had to learn what was good and bad) would have had sexual encounters too.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...
In addition to preventing an unwanted pregnancy, the pill has many, many other valuable side effects.

"The pill" also has many, many negative side effects that you fail to mention.

Fact is, plenty of teen aged girls are put on the pill whether they're sexually active or not to control other side effects of puberty. In fact, many drugs are "forced on" children constantly throughout their childhoods, such as vaccines, antibiotics, etc. Parents frequently have to "force" things on their children. It's part of the job.

Your contention that you can "force" your child to take a hormone altering pill is quite alarming. Not only does this fly in the face of Objectivist ethics, I also believe that you would have a hard time strapping your child down, forcing her mouth open with your hands, and shoving the pill down her throat. What happens if she doesn't want to take the pill? You can't simply use force. It's both illegal and unethical.

The reality of the situation is that you are going to use your parental authority to present the situation as though your daughter has no say or choice in the matter, which is quite a foolish way to treat someone who is supposedly old enough and mature enough to have sex. Your daughter won't buy for a moment that she "doesn't have a choice," at least, if you've raised her with any shred of dignity or self-respect. She may very well happily agree to take the pill, but the idea that you've "forced" her to take it will be a delusion.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

...I also believe that you would have a hard time strapping your child down, forcing her mouth open with your hands, and shoving the pill down her throat. What happens if she doesn't want to take the pill?
You're letting your imagination run wild, Grim :lol:

From K-Mac's post, I'd be surprized if she was visualizing straps and physical restraint or holding an actual physical gun to her daughter's head.

Imaginary conversation:

Customer: I want to complain. That employee of yours insists that ...

Boss: I'll tell him to do it the other way...

Customer: But, I explained and he insists...

Boss: Don't worry, I'll force him to... ...no guns or physical torture will be involved

Link to comment
Share on other sites

seeing as i am a 15 year old, my parents never really have said much about sex. Except "wait until your married" and dont give any random guy a blow job, you could get herpies. Like i would even do that, Im not that kind of girl, i think they are more worried about the boy. I would have appreciated if very much if they said why, but it seems as if you have to figure things out for yourself, but i do wish i had an an adult who was perhaps in the 20-30 range to talk to about it. My main problem with my parents is they never told me why not to do it, they never said anything about values, or anyone special, and once again, I had to learn that from Miss Rand.

The only person I talk to about sex is my boyfriend. I think it should be that way, that the two people that are in the relationship, should have an understanding of what the other wants or doesnt. He has decided to stay abstinent, for his own reasons. Though he is 5 years older than me, we share the same views in many issues.

but anyway. I think you should talk to your niece, i know i would rather talk to you about it than my parents, and may be more obliged to ask you more questions, while as if i was talking to my parents about it, i wouldnt say anything at all.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're letting your imagination run wild, Grim :lol:

Seems the point was lost on you. The point being that it is "imagination run wild" to believe that one can force their child to take a hormone-altering drug.

Are you forgetting what the word "force" actually means? Is she planning to use physical restraint? Is she planning to get the police involved if that doesn't work? If the police can't do it, are they going to put a gun to her head?

No. I believe that the reality is that, like many parents, she intends to attempt to present the situation to her child in such a way that there is no perceived choice. In other words, she intends to tell (or imply to) her daughter that she has no "moral authority or right" to make a decision against taking the hormone-altering drugs. Otherwise "things will get ugly." You know: argument, punishment, loss of privileges, conflict, and generally attempting to make her daughter's life hell until her will crumples and she gives in to the 'authority'.

This is the reality of the situation when it comes to parents to believe they can "make" their child do something. Especially something so personal as the decision to take a hormone-altering pill. You are either threatening actual force, or threatening a battle of wills that attempts to crush the child's will until they accept it as axiomatic that they have no choice at all, or threatening to reduce their quality of life to the point where they would be less troubled by obeying than by disobeying. It is a declaration of intention to make it happen regardless of the wishes of the child.

Why is it that even among Objectivists, who so strongly support individual rights, that the rights of minors sometimes ignored? Why is the use of the word "force" so easily overlooked when it comes to the rights of children or teenagers? Why is it so easy to dismiss such an inflammatory statement as the desire to "force" one's daughter to take a hormone-altering drug?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No, grim001 is exactly correct...I plan to abuse my children and encourage others to do the same. B)

Then get real. You aren't forcing your child to take pills, you're encouraging her. If she doesn't want to, then you're going to try to convince her. If you fail to convince her, that's your last recourse, other than abusive and coercive treatment. Ultimately, the decision is hers, not yours. You should get in that mode of thought before you bother to have a teenage child or you're going to be in for some serious conflict that will ultimately lead to alienating any teenager (and rightly so).

I take issue with people thinking it is fine to use the word "force" so flippantly when it comes to one's own children, especially ones old enough to be entitled to a large measure of autonomy.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You're just being nit picky and ridiculous, and I stand by my statements.

You need to get a grip on the fact that you won't have absolute control of your child, much less a teenager.

Saying that the difference between "force" and "persuasion" is "nit-picky" sounds like something a villain from Atlas Shrugged would say. Go ahead and dismiss the entire concept of the non-initiation of force and the right to autonomy as "nit-picky." Typical of someone who is so willing to disrespect a (hypothetical) person's rights to consider the rights themselves trivial.

This is exactly the attitude which would rightfully alienate a teenager. In reality, believing that you can "force" them a teenager to do anything is precisely what will deny you of any ability to control them whatsoever.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

You need to get a grip on the fact that you won't have absolute control of your child, much less a teenager.

I know this...some of you seem not to. As I stated earlier (perhaps you missed it), I was a troubled teenager and out of control. Because my parents were proactive, consistent and persistent, I turned out to be a wonderful, productive, self-confident woman. You can do whatever you want with your kids, but I'm going to do what works with mine.

I think you need to get a grip. Because you won't have control over your female teenager and because she won't tell you the truth 100% of the time, you need to protect her in any way that you can. Why not use the technology that's safe, cheap, effective and readily available?

Edited by K-Mac
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I know this...some of you seem not to. As I stated earlier (perhaps you missed it), I was a troubled teenager and out of control. Because my parents were proactive, consistent and persistent, I turned out to be a wonderful, productive, self-confident woman. You can do whatever you want with your kids, but I'm going to do what works with mine.

I think you need to get a grip. Because you won't have control over your female teenager and because she won't tell you the truth 100% of the time, you need to protect her in any way that you can. Why not use the technology that's safe, cheap, effective and readily available?

Don't project your own foolish behavior as a teenager onto your own future daughter. Many teenagers don't behave so foolishly, especially those of sound upbringing. That might be somewhat of a shock coming from your own perspective, but to preemptively treat your daughter as a promiscuous liar is idiotic.

Sure, encouraging use of the pill is a great idea if your daughter was actually sleeping around. What if she's not? What if she's a virgin until 18+ years of age, waiting for the right guy? What if she is deeply offended by the fact that you would, on principle, assume that she was a 'slut'? What if she wants to avoid altering the balance of her own hormones? Are you genuinely ignorant of the well-documented negative side effects hormone altering drugs?

Your right to advocate use of the pill ends where your daughter's mouth begins. Have you ever heard of the concept of individual rights? Forcing a birth control pill into your daughter's mouth is not within your rights as a parent. Not legally in the United States, nor under Objectivist ethics. I find it hard to believe you could consider yourself an advocate of individual rights whatsoever with the attitude you've displayed in your responses thus far.

Let's get straight to the point. Just what do you intend to do if this hypothetical daughter of yours says "no" to the pill?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Grim,

First you posted saying that K-Mac was trying to use physical force on her hypothetical daughter.

Next, when it was clarified that no such force was planned, you objected to the use of the word "force" to describe the type of talking-to that K-Mac was referring to.

Now, you're saying that even advising such a hypothetical daughter to go on the pill is wrong.

Do you have a point, or do you simply feel like an argument?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Grim,

First you posted saying that K-Mac was trying to use physical force on her hypothetical daughter.

Next, when it was clarified that no such force was planned, you objected to the use of the word "force" to describe the type of talking-to that K-Mac was referring to.

Now, you're saying that even advising such a hypothetical daughter to go on the pill is wrong.

Do you have a point, or do you simply feel like an argument?

softwareNerd, you clearly either did not read any of my posts completely, or you're intentionally evading comprehension. I'm not going to attempt to engage in rational discussion with someone who so clearly isn't interested in it. None of the points you just posted are anywhere close to true.

First, let's clarify the point of contention. K-Mac has stated that she intends to force her daughter to take the pill.

1.) At no point did I imply that physical force was actually intended. You need to reread my posts.

2.) No such "clarification" against the threat of physical force was ever made.

3.) As someone posting on an Objectivism forum, it surprises me that you seem to have no understanding of what the word "force" actually means. Force is not the same as a "talking-to." It is the direct threat of physical or mental coercion, and it completely unethical in this context.

4.) I said that advising her daughter to take the pill would be a good thing, if she actually needs it.

In short, every single point you just attempted to make is utterly disconnected from reality. Please post again when you have the respect to at least read and understand what other people are posting.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Like I said, if you want to believe everything your teen aged daughter tells you (or doesn't) go right ahead. I will only trust mine as far as I can throw her no matter how intelligent or responsible she appears to be. (All kinds of girls get pregnant...smart, dumb, beautiful, ugly, responsible, irresponsible.) Because I was a teen aged girl, I understand the hormones, urges and insecurities they go through. Of course I would not project myself onto my daughter. Duh! She is an individual and will have her own personality, etc., and she may be more like her father or some other family member rather than me; however, she is female and I have experience with that, so I will watch her like a hawk and do what I feel is in her best interest. I'm done arguing this with you. There is no argument anyway. You're just trying to prove some point (what that is, I'm not sure) or prove me an awful person (which you will never get me to accept because I love myself), so I'm not playing your game anymore.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...