“I’m so relieved my daughter is still a virgin. She doesn't even want to have sex.”
This is especially crushing if I know they are parents of a teen who confided in me, through her tears, “I didn’t even want to do it!”
After hearing my story, it's not uncommon for teens to see me as someone who will understand how they got "tricked."
Judith Steinhart, Senior Health Educator at Columbia University’s Health Education Program, says:
“A lot of teens are having sex without pleasure. Having it is more important than feeling the pleasure that comes with it.” It’s often more important to escape the “stigma” of being a virgin.
Parents rarely relate to the idea that the same child who resists PARENTAL influence and digs his/her heels in rather than go along with ANYTHING Mom suggests, can fold like a paper doll when it comes to peer pressure.
Many young girls caught “sexting” (sending nude or sexually explicit texts) will wail, “But ALL the girls do this! If I don’t, no guy will ever be interested in me!”
Until an adult walks a teen through it, s/he will not be able to conceptualize where this behavior leads.
Girls can only see the immediate results: Failing to get the erotic images his sexual nature craves, the boy she really likes will be attracted to another girl. That will break her heart. This emotion is GIGANTIC.
An adolescent girl cannot grasp the fact that once he sees it, a boy will ALWAYS have the image of her naked in his head. It is unlikely (perhaps impossible) that he will ever think of her as someone he should honor and protect rather than use for his sexual pleasure. And once he has sex with her — the main objective after being sexually stimulated — he will feel free to move on to the next available partner, as if he were clicking on to the next pornographic image.
Parents, it may be uncomfortable to have this conversation but it is critical that you do so. Ladies, imagine your husband got a sexually explicit picture text from someone he works with, but barely knows. As your husband, he would be dismayed and uncomfortable. He made a vow that he would be faithful to you and he puts effort into keeping that vow. But having seen the picture, he would not be able to get it out of his head at the next staff meeting when she is sitting across the room.
Now husbands, imagine your wife has a co-worker who keeps urging her to send a similar kind of text. He laughs it off with, “all in good fun,” and “it doesn’t hurt anyone.” But YOU know the damage it could do marriage, career and reputation is staggering!
As an adult, YOU can think through all the ramifications, but your teen can’t!! The only way to get past the GIGANTIC emotional crisis she envisions if “he gets interested in someone else,” is for YOU to help her feel the other emotions, such as:
- Embarrassment: finding out he showed it to the whole basketball team.
- Revulsion: Realizing that creepy boy in Math class now uses it as a masturbatory aid.
- Horror: A boy is caught with her sext is charged with possession of child pornography and now is a registered as a sex offender.