Karen Vachon’s column on Aug. 4 correctly identifies the risks and the need for review and changes in our approaches to teen sex education. A confusing or open-ended message does not reflect what we know about the risks of sex outside of marriage and the physical and emotional consequences.

Parents, teens and educators can work together to insure that the next generation will be born healthy in the safety and support of a sound family. The implications are far-reaching personally and for our communities.

Sociological data increasingly reveals the harmful, even tragic effects of early sexual relationships. Fatherless children, impoverished women and incarcerated youth reflect that the sexual liberation has run its course and a significant course correction is in order.

Sexual infections, disease and infertility are further evidence of the damage of early sexual debut and multiple partners. The emotional pain and depression associated with broken sexual relationships do not have to be a part of growing up.

To influence this social picture we can and must raise the expectations for our middle and high school students attending family life or “sex ed” portions of the required health class. Education needs to be accompanied by a vision of and appreciation for intimate physical relationships built within solid committed relationships in marriage. The casual attitude toward sex in the media and culture can be opposed.

The Scarborough School Board is to be commended for taking one step forward to review the contents of this area of curriculum with the invitation to parents to become informed and involved.

Meg Yates RN, MA

Program Coordinator, Heritage of Maine

Portland


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