Today's world and generation is characterized by the dominance of one major factor; sex. From television adverts to music, from home to school, every scene and place is characterized by sex and elements of sexual behavior. Indeed, it seems like the world is worshipping sex. Not with the blunt reason you get when you see a scene in the most harmless and innocent of products such as toys. They say sex sells. This statement may have an element of truth to it, for the direction in which things are moving, it is only a matter of time before full-blown sex scenes are broadcasted in the television screens. This factor has given rise to a worrying emerging trend which is slowly but surely rooting itself in the society and particularly among young people and even children (Madison, 27). Therefore, sex as a topic has become inevitable in the family setting unless a parent decides to act like an ostrich and bury his or her head in the sand with the belief that whatever occurs is beyond his or her perception. This essay discusses the effects that sex as an emerging issue has had and continues to have on young people. Further, it highlights that opening up to young people helps a great deal and argues that talking to kids about sex greatly reduces the risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases, teen pregnancy and promotes healthier relationships.
With the world ridden with sex appeal, this factor has not evaded young minds and eyes. Young people, when allowed to act out of their own accord and without the guidance of a more mature and older person, more often than not find themselves in grim situations. The effects of engaging in sex at an early age and without adequate knowledge of its consequences can amount to far reaching outcomes (Cox et al, 15). The possibility of contracting sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea and syphilis among others increases tremendously. In addition, it may cause a breakdown in the relationship between the teenager/the young adult with his or her parents or with the world in general. As if that is not enough, it may result to teen pregnancy, what is sometimes called unwanted pregnancy. Even then, there is light at the end of the tunnel and parents and guardians can help their children avoid such potentially devastating setbacks in life if they take the right measures (Crooks et al, 77).
The country has been rife with the need to implement sex education exquisitely in school. Even though it may be taught in school, there is no better sex education teacher to a child or a young person than the parent. To begin with, it has a whole lot of positive aspects that accrue to it. Apart from that, it gives the young person the first line of defense against contracting sexually transmitted diseases/infections and early pregnancy. One of the benefits that accrue to a parent being his or her child's sex educator is the invaluable bond that is created between the parent and child. At some stage in their lives (teenage) young people tend to be defiant and it is at the same stage that parents usually undergo a tough time keeping their children under their control. Being your own child's sex educator provides an opportunity for the two of you, the parent and the child to form a long lasting bond from an early stage. As the child grows, it may be too difficult to break this bond thereby contributing a great deal to a steady relationship. However, the objective and the more prominent benefit of engaging your child in sex education is the trust that the child bestows upon you (Madison, 27). By being honest and frank and telling the situation like it is, the parent is able to win the child's trust at an early stage, a factor which may prove decisive in the subsequent actions and interactions of the child with the parent and with the world as a whole. With his or her trust firmly based on his parent, the child is less likely to seek the opinion and advice of his or her peers but will always go to the parent if he or she has a burning issue or a pressing need. This reduces the likelihood of the child becoming a victim of influence and thereby falling into a trap from which he or she may find it extremely hard to get out of (Rosenzweig, 67).
Talking to a child about sex also enables him or her to understand his or her body better. According to sexologists and other health professionals, it is important to remain frank and open when a child asks you any question about any organ. When the child uses a wrong term that he picked from somewhere to describe or name the organ, give him or her the right term. This makes the child aware that you are not ashamed of sharing anything with him or her and that he can come to you to discuss any matter relating to sex or otherwise. However, researchers advise that when a child asks any question pertaining to sex, it is important to answer him or her as clearly and concisely as possible without getting into too much detail as this may serve to yield more problems than solutions (Cox et al, 134). The child may be left more confused than he or she was in the first place. In addition, being frank and telling it like it is enables the child to grow up knowing about his or her body. Armed with this knowledge, the child is less likely to engage in any activity that may result to injury or any demeaning act to his or her body. Further, the child may find it easier confiding in his or her parent in case of a problem.
Research has revealed that teenagers and young adults who are taught about sex and related issues by their parents at a young age are less likely to indulge in early sex. In contrast, those who do not get the opportunity to share with their parents are more predisposed than their counterparts to engaging in sexual intercourse at an early age. Consequently, those who are taught about sex by their parents are less likely to be victims of teen pregnancy and are equally less likely to contract sexually transmitted diseases. This is attributable to one main factor; curiosity. Adolescent and young adulthood are stages characterized with the need to experiment with various things including sex and to explore (McDowell et al, 23). This adventurous nature usually goes hand in hand with curiosity. For a young person who did not get the opportunity to share with his or her parents about sex, he or she may find that he/she is in a compromising situation that can easily lead to acts of sexual intercourse. The curiosity drives them to engage in sex and since they know not much about sex and its resultant effects, they are more likely to contract sexually transmitted infections and become victims of teen pregnancy. In contrast, those who are able to share with their parents about sex from an early stage are more likely to use contraceptive measures and other means of preventing pregnancy. These revelations are buoyed by the fact that every year, more than a million young girls (teenagers) become pregnant while another three million contract sexually transmitted infections (Rosenzweig, 89)
Talking to kids and young people about sex provides an opportunity for the kids to build a healthy relationship with their parents. In addition, the kid develops a better relationship with his or her spouse later in life. On the other hand, children who do not have the chance to talk to their parents about sex have an incomparable relationship with their parents. The logic behind this finding is that children who are talked to about sex by their parents get the opportunity to develop long-lasting emotional stability and trust which goes a long way in improving their relationships with the people in their lives and the people around them (Crooks et al, 59). During sex education, they not only learn about sex but also learn that there are other ways of expressing affection to the people they care about. When they grow up, this is reflected in their association with their families and spouses by the way they develop a close and intimate relationship with them.
The topic on sex has seen a lot of coverage. More often than not, it is discussed by the wrong people and at the wrong time. Parents and guardians have a duty to help their children steer clear of the traps set by sex and related issues by providing the first avenue for discussing and acquainting themselves with the topic before being presented to the outside world. Providing necessary and accurate information about sex to their children comes with numerous positive attributes (Madison, 11). The child is able to avoid sexually transmitted diseases and teen pregnancy. Besides that, the child is able to develop an intimate and healthy relationship with his or her parents together with his/her future spouse and family. It is never too late or too early to start talking about sex with your child or a child under your care for that matter.