Another report shows that Abstinence Only programs don’t do jack shit.

From the Haven’t-We-Heard-This-Before department comes word of yet another study that says despite the spending of tens of millions of taxpayer dollars abstinence only programs still don’t work:

“At present there does not exist any strong evidence that any abstinence program delays the initiation of sex, hastens the return to abstinence or reduces the number of sexual partners” among teenagers, the study concluded.

The report, which was based on a review of research into teenager sexual behavior, was being released Wednesday by the nonpartisan National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy.

The study found that while abstinence-only efforts appear to have little positive impact, more comprehensive sex education programs were having “positive outcomes” including teenagers “delaying the initiation of sex, reducing the frequency of sex, reducing the number of sexual partners and increasing condom or contraceptive use.”

“Two-thirds of the 48 comprehensive programs that supported both abstinence and the use of condoms and contraceptives for sexually active teens had positive behavior effect,” said the report.

Telling them ‘don’t do it’ doesn’t do shit. Let’s start spending the money on sex education programs that actually work.

10 thoughts on “Another report shows that Abstinence Only programs don’t do jack shit.

  1. But Les- isn’t the real point of Abstinence Only programs to soften up hearts for Jesus?  Who cares if the kids get pregnant- if their souls are saved from Hell, that’s gotta be worth all kinds of tax dollars…

  2. I thought the whole point of abstinence programs was to produce repressed, AIDS wridden, corporate dependent, high school droppouts (republicans) rather than well educated, well adjusted healthy college graduates (democrats).

    Okay i know huge generalisation, but i’m feeling a little uncreative this morning…

  3. I wrote about this on my blog, and below are my conclusions:

    This is yet another reason why science and logic education is sooooooooooo important.

    Think about this abstinence issue logically; when you have more accurate information you are going to make smarter choices. This is basically true in all walks of life. Abstinence Education fails to teach kids what they need to know about sex. And instead keeps sex as a taboo subject everyone is afraid to talk about. Leaving the kid to learn about sex through third parties such as friends, Internet, pornos, and other shady sources.

    Do you really want your child to learn this way?

    Abstinence Education leads to more teens having unprotected sex, failing to keep STDs down, and failing to keep teen pregnancy down. Abstinence also leads to teens breaking their vow of chastity sooner than other methods of sex education, meaning it does not even do what it was designed to do.

    Basically, abstinence fails across the board.

  4. …just blame the liberals who, after all, invented sex.

    Does that mean the God is a liberal??!! After all the time and money spent to create the Almighty in their own image, Pat Robertson and his ilk will NOT be pleased…

  5. Of course god is a wishy washy peace love and tolerance liberal, Jesus was the original flower child smile (thats the dirty secret of christianity)

  6. So gamma… I guess you are one of the few uneducated democrats… because you can’t spell… moving on to why I’m really writing…
    I am for “comprehensive sex education” along with the rest of you. but my question is… If a student is told condoms are not 100% (they aren’t) and that the only 100% way is abstinence, how can policy makers and lobbyists blame the abstinence only curriculum for the unintended teen pregnancy rate and the teen std rate when clearly the students aren’t looking for an effective way at all, since the funded programs have indeed taught the only true way to stay “out of harms way”… I only ask because i am writing a paper for school, and although this question wont really come up in my paper, I like to have a complete grasp of what im writing, and Ive already tried to contact valerie huber, and the abstinence clearinghouse. both were not helpful and did not return my calls. -Jennifer/Cumberland U

  7. Jennifer, it’s fine to tell the real truth about condoms (they’re pretty damn reliable but must be used correctly).  The problem with “abstinence” education aside from its inanity is that – not to put too fine a point on it – people are going to have sex anyway.  Really.  You can look up the rate of sexual activity among those who have taken chastity pledges vs. the general population and the difference wouldn’t do much for public policy.

    Biblical rules on chastity were formed when people got married around 16 years of age and died before they were forty.  Now we expect teens in a sex-saturated culture to “hold it” from 13 (puberty comes earlier now) to about 22 when they graduate from college.  That is, to put it mildly, not a realistic expectation.

    Nature often trips us up.  The thought “I resolve not to do it” means “I won’t keep condoms around even though I am in a romantic relationship” or otherwise fostering a state of denial right up until the point where one realizes that the deed is done even though condoms were within reach but not used.  I also think that young people drink alcohol with the expectation of lowered inhibitions because they want sex but don’t want to admit they want sex.  The fact that such thinking is not rational has no bearing on how common it is.

    Hope that helps.  Good luck with your paper.

  8. how can policy makers and lobbyists blame the abstinence only curriculum for the unintended teen pregnancy rate and the teen std rate when clearly the students aren’t looking for an effective way at all

    You can blame policy makers and lobbyists because they’re spending taxpayer money on something that doesn’t work. It’s a little like spending money on Air Force jets that don’t fly, with the little wrinkle of being questionable from a “where in the Constitution does it say we get to tell people what to do with their genitals?” standpoint too.

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