No parent wants their teenager to either father a child as a teenager or become a pregnant teen mom. There is only one way that a parent can reduce the risk of becoming a grandparent before they are ready-talk to your teenager about sex.
For some parents, the subject of their teenager becoming sexually active is too uncomfortable for them to speak about. Perhaps they feel that because they go to church with their teenager where abstinence is promoted, they have done their job. There still is need for discussion. Not every teen who is being brought up in a religious home is going to say no to sex or practice safe sex.
As uncomfortable as a parent may be, if you do not discuss your teenager’s sexuality with him/her, you may be having more serious discussions about an unwanted pregnancy in the future. Talking about sex and teaching your teenager about birth control is not giving them the license to go out and have sex. This is a huge misconception that many parents have. Unwanted pregnancy is not the only danger of having unprotected sex. Sexually transmitted diseases are another risk and many have lifelong consequences. As a parent, it is your job to teach your teenager how to be safe and why they should.
If you truly believe that telling your teenager that they should wait until marriage to have sex and end the discussion there, you are doing your teenager a huge disservice. Some teens are curious and in the heat of the moment, anything could happen. Wouldn’t you rather that they be protected?
No matter what your personal feelings are about teenage sexual behavior, you still need to discuss options for birth control with them. Telling them that you would prefer that they waited until they were older to enter into a sexual relationship with someone is fine. Teens should not be having sex because so few of them are mature enough to handle the emotions involved.
Teens are going to be teens and in case they do feel that they are ready, they should be able to come to someone they trust for advice. Doesn’t every parent hope that the person their teen decides to confide in is them? In order for your teen to grow up emotionally, physically and morally strong they need to have a strong adult to come to and discuss grown-up issues with.
If a parent can get off the discomfort of the subject and accept that their teen may choose to become sexually active against their wishes, they can help to prevent teen pregnancy in their family.