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Is it really a .gov? Seems quite opinionated to me: "Waiting until marriage to have sex is a very healthy decision for teens. You can help your pre-teen or teen decide to wait."

What's kind of scary is that a lot of this is taught in schools. You know, those "abstinence only" education programs. I gave a speech to the Governor of Iowa, Chet Culver, and the state legislators on the ineffectiveness of the "abstinence ony" approach for teens in schools. Here's the last page of it (if anybody is interested):

We know abstinence fails sometimes. Dr. Clara S. Haignere, an associate professor of public health at Temple University in Philadelphia, who has published research on teens and abstinence failure in the journal Health Education & Behavior, thinks that schools should prepare teens for abstinence failure by giving them medically accurate information about contraception and sexual intercourse. And she thinks the "just say no and wait" approach isn't realistic, given that nearly half of all 9th–12th graders have already had sexual intercourse according to the 2001 Youth Risk Behavior survey by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Promoting abstinence-only and excluding education about contraception is dangerous. We should take focus off of abstinence-only programs, and focus more on reality and give teens the right information they need about safe sex, because the abstinence-only program is largely ineffective alone.

A review of 13 U.S. sex-abstinence programs involving over 15,000 people found that they do not stop risky sexual behavior, or help in the prevention of unwanted pregnancy. The effects observed in studies and follow-up studies on abstinence programs also found that adolescents who feel the desire to take part in "virginity movements" are less likely to remain abstinent for a variety of reasons, and less likely to have knowledge about contraception. We can give credit to the educational approach we've taken, which is ineffective and a waste of money when teens who pledge abstinence are just as likely or even more likely to have sex, and are statistically more likely to do it without protection.

Dr. Jonathan Klein of the American Academy of Pediatrics’ says it best, that, "Even though there is great enthusiasm in some circles for abstinence-only interventions, evidence does not support abstinence-only interventions as the best way to keep young people from unintended pregnancy."

We know that school-based abstinence programs actually increase the incidence of pregnancies (Peter Bearman and Hanna Brückner also indicate that these teens, who commit to being abstinent, in a large percentage of cases, engage in sexual behavior later in life than their peers. Additionally, a study by A. DiCenso of the British Medical Journal in 2002 (in his article Interventions to Reduce Unintended Pregnancies Among Adolescents: Systematic Review of Randomized Controlled Trials).

But the abstinence-only program has got one thing right: no sex is completely safe or risk-free, but there are effective ways to reduce these risks that the youth need to know about, and why? Because telling teens not to have sex is like telling a dog not to chase a mailman. Giving young people the right information and taking a realistic approach by recognizing that youths have sex regardless of the disheartening abstinence-only programs is the only real way to lower STI rates and save lives, because ladies and gentlemen, this is not a religious issue or a fiscal issue. Saving lives is the issue. Instead of saying, "don’t have sex until you’re married”, be sensible with the approach of, "if you’re going to have sex, realize the risks and be safe." --e|m|c [TALK] 17:20, 17 February 2008 (EST)

Yes, abstinence-only programs don't work. Asking somebody to "wait until marriage" is not only socially biased but it's like telling a horny single guy to not masturbate.

FallenMorgan 21:57, 17 February 2008 (EST)

PennyLane 15:07, 29 July 2008 (EDT) Excellent, man. Totally gree with everything.