‘Telephone’ instead of actual communication

Instead of seeking a law, parents should talk to their children about sex.

According to the results of a survey taken at the University, most parents feel clinics should be required to notify them when their child requests contraceptives, but they also think minors shouldn’t need parental consent to obtain contraceptives. This is just another example of lazy parenting and lack of communication between parents and their children. Parents should be educating their children about sex, not seeking a short cut.

Parents who are close with their children already have an idea of when their teenagers become sexually active. For those who aren’t, these laws are just an easy way into their childrens’ lives. It gives parents another reason to not have “that talk,” another reason to ignore the situation when they come home late, another reason to ignore the inevitable choices their child faces.

The earliest sexual experiences in one’s life are often the most uneducated ones. Although some teens do have close relationships with their parents in which they talk about sex and have gone through sufficient sexual education in schools, some have not. Parents of these uneducated teenagers most likely know that their child is uneducated, but push the topic aside. Sexual experiences start at different ages for different people, and it is important that both partners are educated in order to protect each other and themselves.

For minors who do choose to be sexually active and who don’t have a close relationship with their parents, laws requiring parental notification upon request of contraceptives means having more unprotected sex. This would cause more pregnancy, more sexually transmitted diseases and more secrets separating parents and their teens. Some might be so scared of what their parents might say that they would risk not going to clinics to request contraceptives at all. Whether a minor chooses to have sex is not going to be affected by such a law.

Laws requiring parental notification upon request of contraceptives should be recognized as a last resort for parents, and an ineffective one at that. Communication should be recognized as the best resort. This state-facilitated game of “telephone” – in which another party would try to bypass the broken lines of communication – is no substitute for actual parenting.