Not Really Sex?

From the November 2004 Trumpet Print Edition

In the late 1990s, it was dubbed “the new good-night kiss.” Since then, experts and parents all across America are coming to terms with the fact that more teens are engaging in the latest sexual fad—oral sex.

A 2003 survey by the Kaiser Family Foundation found that 36 percent of 15- to 17-year-olds have done it. “Kids are not having intercourse as much, but other forms of sexual behavior have replaced it,” said Dr. Laurence Steinberg, quoted in the October 19 edition of Family Circle.

Dr. Steinberg states, “The notion that it is not sex has become a part of our culture.”

Another doctor, Robert Blum, from John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, was also quoted in the article, stating that the “abstinence message” of many sex education programs has been interpreted as “no vaginal intercourse, but everything else is ok.

Many young people hold to the myth that oral sex is a way to avoid stds, when actually gonorrhea, chlamydia, herpes and even hiv can be contracted through this kind of sexual encounter. It’s no surprise then that 20 percent of the new std cases reported each year occur in adolescents.

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