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Teens: helping them understand sex and STDs

Unfortunately, there are certain conversations that don’t hit home until something bad happens. However, along with the bad, can come some “eye-opening”. There is a person I’m close to that had a completely open relationship with her daughter – talked about everything. However, her daughter, though she loved talking to her Mom and trusted her Mom, couldn’t tell her that she had had sex. She was just afraid that she would be a disappointment. That fear was groundless, but … this is how she felt. Then, she wound up with an emotionally abusive boyfriend. Again, things turned sour and she still couldn’t tell her Mom.

It was not until Chlamydia reared its ugly head that she finally talked. She was unaware that it actually was Chlamydia, but the problem became so “uncomfortable” that she told her Mom “something is wrong and I’m scared”. So, ultimately they wound up at the doctor’s office and found out that what “was wrong” was Chlamydia and that she had contracted this from her boyfriend.

“What happened?” asked Mom. The Mom that had had ALL of the right conversations, asked ALL of the right questions, and thought she had prepared her daughter for ALL of the things that could go wrong. Condoms? Well, she thought she had gone all over that … so how could this have happened to her ittle girl?

Well … people, especially young people, think that they are invincible. We all did at one time or another. You can sometimes talk ’til you are blue in the face and it just does not register. This poor young woman contracted an STD, had to be placed on a very strong medication to “cure” this problem. Then, she had to be put through an HIV test and a whole battery of other STD testing procedures to make sure that nothing else had happened. Thankfully, all of the testing came back negative but … the HIV test had to be repeated. In three months. The longest three months of hell for this young woman, which was absolutely torturous for her Mom to watch.

It suddenly hit home to this young lady that in one, tiny little instant you can go from being a carefree, happy go lucky, young lady with everything in the world to offer and years and years ahead of you to … a very uncertain future. However, it not only hit home to her, but it home to her Mom, to me, and to her very, very close friends. Everyone gained a new perspective on the dangers of STD’s. When it hits close to home, you sometimes feel as though you’ve been hit over the head with a sledge-hammer.

Thankfully, the happy ending to this story is that this young lady is still fine – had her final HIV test – and has no further worries. However … lessons learned? Too numerous to count. I hope that anyone reading this will learn the lessons a bit easier and with a whole lot less pain to go along with it. Protect yourself. If your partner in life can’t respect your wishes, and can’t protect you (as well as himself) from potentially life-altering and life-threatening STD’s – you don’t need him. Move on and find yourself a REAL partner. One who values your life, and his, and will do anything he can to be loving, caring, respectful AND responsible. Get tested. Save lives.