Ways to Talk to Teens About Condom Use
Parents with children about to enter their teens often worry about so many things. They are concerned about the friends their child has and how they’re dealing with peer pressure most especially when it comes to having sex.
Research has shown that young people aged 15 to 24 are four times more likely to be affected by sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) in particular, gonorrhea and Chlamydia. When a person gets infected by these diseases, they may not be able to have a child later in life or worse, they can get HIV which can lead to AIDS.
Before you worry too much, though, it’s very important that you talk to your child about this issue. It is your responsibility as a parent to provide guidance to your teen particularly when it comes to taking care of their health and ensuring their safety.
Set a specific time to discuss about condom use. It should be a discussion between your child and both parents and then a one-on-one follow-up between you and your teen. It’s not enough that you rely on their school or their friends to teach them about using this personal protective tool.
Parents need to take up the courage to tell their teens, regardless of gender, that they need to use condoms to protect them if they do have sex. Explain to them how the rubber can provide protection not only against STDs but even against unwanted pregnancy. Tell them about the consequences what with the rising cases of HIV infections and the importance of staying healthy.
You can share some statistics with them as well. For instance, one in every four sexually active teens currently has a sexually transmitted infection (STI) and one in every two sexually active youth will contract an STI by the age of 25.
While discussing the issue, it is also very important to stress to your child to avoid getting intimate with just about anybody and control their sexual urges. The males, in particular, may be challenged by some of their friends at certain times but they don’t have to give in if they don’t want to. It’s always best that they stick to one partner and not be too promiscuous. If you have a male teen, you have to teach him to always respect a lady and not force her to do anything she doesn’t want.
Inform them where they can get condoms such as from the grocery stores, pharmacies and family planning clinics. It’s a good idea if you also research about any program in your community or state that distributes condoms for free. Your teen needs to know where they can obtain this personal protective tool because sometimes, they can be shy in buying them at a pharmacy or from a supermarket.
If you need support from another adult or perhaps an authority, you may get in contact with a health care provider. Ask about the steps you can take to ensure that your teen adheres to your reminders and makes a healthy choice. You may also talk to a close friend who also has a teen child or an adult child to get some additional tips.