Monday, October 29, 2007
How far is your teen going?
Every week I call my grandma and fill her in on what I've been working on. At 87, she is quite Internet savvy and reads most of what I post online. Last week, I was in Southern California covering the devastating wildfires. She knew before I even told her.
But today I am really praying that Grandma and the gals at the retirement community are caught up in a wild game of "hand and foot," because I'm reporting on oral sex and teens. Don't think I will be mentioning that during our next conversation.
We've been asked to look into the sex lives of teens for a special "Out in the Open" tonight at 8 ET. Rick Sanchez is interviewing Genarlow Wilson, who was released from prison on Friday. In 2005, Wilson, a high school honor student and football star, was found guilty of aggravated child molestation after having consensual oral sex with a female classmate at a motel-room party. Wilson was incarcerated for more than two years. On Friday, the Georgia Supreme Court overturned the conviction. (Full Story)
Teens and oral sex. It's amazing how the topic can turn even the most mature group of adults into a gaggle of giggling sixth-graders. When I was a kid, only the "slutty" girls did that (or at least admitted it.) In my small Ohio town, what we knew about oral sex came from watching "Fast Times at Ridgemont High" at slumber parties while our parents slept upstairs.
But things seem to have changed. According to a 2005 report from the National Center for Health Statistics, slightly more than half of American teenagers ages 15 to 19 have engaged in oral sex. Boys and girls report having similar levels of experience. It appears more teens are doing it now than 20 years ago. In the 1980s, a study found roughly one-fifth of 13- to 18-year-olds surveyed said they had ever had oral sex.
So what do you think? Do you think kids are engaging in oral sex at higher rates than they did in previous generations? Do you think oral sex is the same as intercourse? Do you talk to your kids about it?
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