Tag Archives: Teen Pregnancy

CDC reports teen pregnancy rate down, thankfully

27 May

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD FART:

In Talking to your teen about risky behaviors, moi said: There are no perfect people, no one has a perfect life and everyone makes mistakes. Unfortunately, children do not come with instruction manuals, which give specific instructions about how to relate to that particular child. Further, for many situations there is no one and only way to resolve a problem. What people can do is learn from their mistakes and the mistakes of others. Sharon Jayson writes in the USA Today article, More children born to unmarried parents:

A growing number of firstborns in the USA have unmarried parents, reflecting dramatic increases since 2002 in births to cohabiting women, according to government figures out today.

The percentage of first births to women living with a male partner jumped from 12% in 2002 to 22% in 2006-10 — an 83% increase. The percentage of cohabiting new fathers rose from 18% to 25%. The analysis, by the National Center for Health Statistics, is based on data collected from 2006 to 2010….

The percentage of first births to cohabiting women tripled from 9% in 1985 to 27% for births from 2003 to 2010….http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/wellness/story/2012-04-10/CDC-marriage-cohabitation-children/54186600/1#.T4Z8NWHELEQ.email

This is a demographic disaster for children as devastating as the hurricane “Katrina.”

One way to promote healthier lifestyles for children is to keep their parents in school so that they can complete their education. One overlooked aspect of Title IX is the mandate that pregnant teens have access to education.

In Teaching kids that babies are not delivered by UPS, moi said:

It is time for some speak the truth, get down discussion. An acquaintance who practices family law told me this story about paternity. A young man left Seattle one summer to fish in Alaska. He worked on a processing boat with 30 or40 others. He had sex with this young woman. He returned to Seattle and then got a call from her saying she was pregnant. He had been raised in a responsible home and wanted to do the right thing for this child. His mother intervened and demanded a paternity test. To make a long story, short. He wasn’t the father. In the process of looking out for this kid’s interests, my acquaintance had all the men on the boat tested and none of the other “partners” was the father. Any man that doesn’t have a paternity test is a fool.

If you are a slut, doesn’t matter whether you are a male or female you probably shouldn’t be a parent.

How to tell if you are a slut?

  1. If you are a woman and your sex life is like the Jack in the Box 24-hour drive through, always open and available. Girlfriend, you’re a slut.
  1. If you are a guy and you have more hoes than Swiss cheese has holes. Dude, you need to get tested for just about everything and you are a slut. 

Humans have free will and are allowed to choose how they want to live. What you do not have the right to do is to inflict your lifestyle on a child. So, the responsible thing for you to do is go to Planned Parenthood or some other outlet and get birth control for yourself and the society which will have to live with your poor choices. Many religious folks are shocked because I am mentioning birth control, but most sluts have few religious inklings or they wouldn’t be sluts. A better option for both sexes, if this lifestyle is a permanent option, is permanent birth control to lessen a contraception failure. People absolutely have the right to choose their particular lifestyle. You simply have no right to bring a child into your mess of a life. I observe people all the time and I have yet to observe a really happy slut. Seems that the lifestyle is devoid of true emotional connection and is empty. If you do find yourself pregnant, please consider adoption.

Let’s continue the discussion. Some folks may be great friends, homies, girlfriends, and dudes, but they make lousy parents. Could be they are at a point in their life where they are too selfish to think of anyone other than themselves, they could be busy with school, work, or whatever. No matter the reason, they are not ready and should not be parents. Birth control methods are not 100% effective, but the available options are 100% ineffective in people who are sexually active and not using birth control. So, if you are sexually active and you have not paid a visit to a family planning clinic, then you are not only irresponsible, you are Eeeevil. Why do I say that, you are playing Russian Roulettewith the life of another human being, the child. You should not ever put yourself in the position of bringing a child into the world that you are unprepared to parent, emotionally, financially, and with a commitment of time. So, if you find yourself in a what do I do moment and are pregnant, you should consider adoption. http://drwilda.com/2012/01/22/teaching-kids-that-babies-are-not-delivered-by-ups/

Nirvi Shah reported in the Education Week article, Teen Pregnancy Rate at Its Lowest, Again, CDC Says:

The teen pregnancy rate is at a record low, again, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday. And the steady declines from 2007 to 2011 mark the most longest period in recent history for which the drop persevered.

The rate of births among girls ages 15 to 19 has been record-settingly low for the last few years, falling almost without exception since 1991. In the latest figures, the CDC said the overall rate dropped 25 percent since 2007, from 41.5 births per 1,000 teenagers to 31.3 births in 2011—and that’s about a 50 percent drop in the rate since 1991. The overall number of births also dropped to 329,797, a 26 percent decrease from 2007 to 2011.

(If this drop sounds familiar, I wrote about similar numbers from preliminary CDC teen pregnancy data in the fall.)

One highlight: Declines in birth rates among Hispanic teenagers were the largest of any group, with rates falling by at least 40 percent in 22 states and the District of Columbia. In 2007, the birth rate among Hispanic teenager was 21 percent higher than the rate for blacks, but by 2011, the rate for Hispanic teenagers was only 4 percent greater.

The teen pregnancy rates fell at least 30 percent in seven states from 2007 to 2011 with even steeper declines in Arizona and Utah—of 35 percent. There was no significant change in two states: North Dakota and West Virginia.

Giving birth as a teenager can affect a young woman’s health, economic security, and every other aspect of life.

In general, the CDC said the drop is the result of a combination of things, including strong teen pregnancy-prevention messages. (These new Chicago ads are stunners, and a recent teen pregnancy-prevention campaign in New York has turned particularly bold, too.)

The CDC said the most recent data from the National Survey of Family Growth show that more teens are using contraception when they first have sex and using a combination of condoms and hormonal birth control. http://blogs.edweek.org/edweek/rulesforengagement/2013/05/teen_pregnancy_rate_at_its_lowest_again_cdc_says.html

Parents and guardians must have age-appropriate conversations with their children and communicate not only their values, but information about sex and the risks of sexual activity. http://drwilda.wordpress.com/2012/01/22/teaching-kids-that-babies-are-not-delivered-by-ups/

The National Council to Prevent Teen Pregnancy has produced the report, Teen Pregnancy & High School Dropout: What Communities Can Do to Address These Issues:

In 2008, births to teens who lived in counties and cities where 25 persistently low-achieving schools are located accounted for 16 percent of all teen births in the United States, according to a new report released today by The National Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy. The report, Teen Pregnancy & High School Dropout: What Communities Can Do to Address These Issues, notes that these same 25 school districts also accounted for 20 percent of all high school dropouts in the United States and are home to many of the nation’s lowest-performing high schools, often referred to as “dropout factories,” where only 60 percent or fewer of students graduate on time.

The new report, produced in collaboration with America’s Promise Alliance, underscores the clear link between teen pregnancy and dropping out of school and highlights what a number of communities across the United States are doing to directly confront these issues. With the help of school districts, public agencies, and community-based organizations, these communities—from California to New York and Texas to Tennessee —are using innovative strategies and activities to help students avoid pregnancy and complete their high school education.

For example, some school districts, such as the New York City Public Schools, have used results from surveys of parents to overcome resistance to programs designed to prevent teen pregnancy. Other districts, such as Harris County Schools in Houston, TX have organized information sessions to educate parents, teachers, and school leaders about the connection between teen pregnancy and school completion as a way to enlist more support for school-based teen pregnancy prevention programs. And in West Virginia, the state school system has partnered with the state health department and community-based organizations to hold in-person or online professional development courses for teachers to improve the delivery of pregnancy prevention programs.

We are heartened by the work being done in communities across the U.S. to highlight the close connection between preventing teen pregnancy and educational attainment,” said Sarah Brown, CEO of The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. “We encourage school leaders, policymakers, state and local officials, business leaders, and others to collaborate and develop novel strategies like those highlighted in this report to help young people avoid pregnancy and complete their high school education.”

Since its peak in 1990, the U.S. teen pregnancy rate has declined 42 percent and the teen birth rate is now at an all-time low. Despite this impressive progress, it is still the case that nearly three in 10 girls in this country will become pregnant before the age of 20. The United States has the highest rate of teen pregnancies in the developed world—approximately 750,000 pregnancies to teens each year.

The United States continues to also confront a high school dropout crisis. Each year, one in four U.S. public high school students fail to graduate with a diploma—that’s more than one million dropouts annually or one every 26 seconds. Although recent studies found the national graduation rate has increased to 75.5 percent, over the last decade less than half of all states made significant progress and only one state (Wisconsin) has achieved the Grad Nation campaign goal of a 90 percent graduation rate.

The connection between teen pregnancy and dropout rates is a no-brainer,” said John Gomperts, president and CEO, America’s Promise Alliance. “What this report does is reinforce the importance of focusing on those school districts and communities where the dropout problem is the greatest. By turning around those communities that are struggling the most we won’t just see fewer dropouts and teen parents—we’ll see a stronger economy, more vibrant communities, and a more hopeful nation.”

The report highlights other existing data linking teen pregnancy and dropping out of high school, including:

  • Parenthood is a leading cause of school dropout among teen girls. Thirty percent of teen girls who have dropped out of high school cited pregnancy or parenthood as a key reason, and the rate is higher for minority students: 36 percent of Hispanic girls and 38 percent of African American girls cited pregnancy or parenthood as a reason they dropped out;

  • One in three (34%) young women who had been teen mothers earned neither a diploma nor a GED, compared with only six percent of young women who had not had a teen birth;

  • Less than two percent of young teen mothers (those who have a baby before age 18) attain a college degree by age 30; and

  • Over the course of a lifetime, a college graduate will earn, on average, $1 million more than a high school dropout. Over the course of his or her lifetime, a single high school dropout costs the nation approximately $260,000 in lost earnings, taxes, and productivity.

The National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy, an America’s Promise partner, is a nonprofit, nonpartisan initiative supported almost entirely by private donations. Its mission is to promote values, behavior, and policies that reduce both teen pregnancy and unplanned pregnancy among young adults. By increasing the proportion of children born into welcoming, intact families who are prepared to take on the demanding task of raising the next generation, the organization’s efforts will improve the well-being of children and strengthen the nation.

Parents must be involved in the discussion of sex with their children and discuss THEIR values long before the culture has the chance to co-op the children. Moi routinely posts information about the vacuous and troubled lives of Sex and the City aficionados and troubled pop tarts like Lindsey Lohan and Paris Hilton. Kids need to know that much of the life style glamorized in the media often comes at a very high personal cost. Parents not only have the right, but the duty to communicate their values to their children.

Related:

Talking to your teen about risky behaviors                                      http://drwilda.com/2012/06/07/talking-to-your-teen-about-risky-behaviors/

Many young people don’t know they are infected with HIV http://drwilda.com/tag/disproportionate-numbers-of-young-people-have-hiv-dont-know-it/

Dropout prevention: More schools offering daycare for students http://drwilda.com/2013/01/14/dropout-prevention-more-schools-offering-daycare-for-students/

Title IX also mandates access to education for pregnant students http://drwilda.com/2012/06/19/title-ix-also-mandates-access-to-education-for-pregnant-students/

Where information leads to Hope. ©                               Dr. Wilda.com

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‘Plan B’ birth control for K-12 schools: Tolstoy was right about families

26 Sep

Here’s today’s COMMENT FROM AN OLD FART: Tolstoy begins Anna Karenina with this quote:

Happy families are all alike; every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way.

Leo Tolstoy, Anna Karenina, Chapter 1, first lineRussian mystic & novelist (1828 – 1910)

Which brings us to the state of families in contemporary society. There have been several high profile instances of folk intervening in the lives of children to provide them with condoms and other methods of birth control. In 2010 there was an instance described by Cara Pallone of the Statesman Journal of Oregon. She wrote an article about a Halloween incident which describes the cultural divide which currently exists in this culture. On the one hand, are the Sex and The City mavens who advocate sex with anything with a pulse. On the other hand, are those who espouse what is commonly described as traditional values and who advocate a bit more restraint. Pallone reports in the article, Condoms for Halloween Trick-Or-Treaters

Some teenage trick-or-treaters received condoms in their bags on Halloween night in Silverton.

For the couple who handed out the prophylactics, the act was a community service, health education and a message of pregnancy prevention.

For the father of one 14-year-old girl who got them, the act was an intrusion of family privacy and a violation of his right to raise his daughter as he wishes…..

Is providing condoms to teenagers a pragmatic strategy to prevent pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases, or is it an unintended signal that promotes promiscuity? Or did the Harrises just overstep?

“It is hard for me as a parent to imagine any justification for giving children condoms without parents’ consent,” Côté said. “It’s inappropriate. I want to deal in my own house with my own children.”

Kathleen Harris said she started handing out condoms to high school-age trick-or-treaters in college, at the height of the AIDS epidemic, before she moved to Silverton. She has continued the tradition for the past 24 years in an effort to curb teen pregnancy and STDs….

“It’s harm reduction,” Kathleen Harris said. “Kids are going to do these things anyway, so we want them to have to at least think about it ahead of time.”

That’s not the message that Côté says he hears.

“By providing kids with condoms, you’re promoting sexual activity no matter how you look at it,” Côté said, adding that he respects the Harrises’ opinions and values, but that they shouldn’t impose them on other people.

“It’s definitely a subject reserved for family, not some neighbor I hardly know in a neighborhood somewhere,” he said.

At least one expert would agree.

It is parents who know their kids best, said Steve Stephens, a Clackamas psychologist. Strangers giving condoms to teenagers forces them to address sexual issues that they may not be ready to discuss.

“These are the sorts of issues the parents need to be able to talk to kids about when children are ready, or when they come to them to ask questions,” said Stephens, who works with Every Marriage Matters, a nonprofit group that works to stabilize families.

Côté was especially upset with the way the condoms were delivered — on Halloween, to trick-or-treaters.

Moi wrote about a Massachusetts school district’s decision to give condoms to children in WOW: Massachusetts school district to give condoms to 12-year-olds http://drwilda.com/2012/03/19/wow-massachusetts-school-district-to-give-condoms-to-12-year-olds/

The latest intervention in what should be the prerogative of the family is New York City’s plan to offer “Plan B” contraceptives in city schools. Alexandra Sifferlin has written the excellent Time article, New York City Schools Offer Plan B to High School Students:

In Jan. 2011, New York City quietly launched a pilot program to dispense free prescription contraceptives, including birth control pills and the morning-after pill, Plan B, to students at more than a dozen public high schools in the city.

The program, known as CATCH, for Connecting Adolescents to Comprehensive Healthcare, is an expansion of an existing, privately administered program that has run health centers in about 40 city schools over the past several years, offering students primary health care services as well as contraception, including oral birth control pills and Plan B.

In early 2011, CATCH launched in five New York City schools; this year, the program is in 13 schools. All schools were chosen because they are in neighborhoods that lack nearby clinics or health services or because they have high teen pregnancy rates. While public high schools around the country have offered condoms for students for years, CATCH is thought to be the first to provide contraceptive pills. The program works with city health department doctors and trained school nurses to give students a fuller range of contraceptive services, including pregnancy tests.

So far, city officials said, parents have not resisted the program. Parents were notified of the program by letter, and were given the opportunity to opt out by signing a form. Children of parents who don’t opt out can then visit the school nurse and receive contraception, or get a pregnancy test and Plan B after having unprotected sex, without explicitly notifying their parents. About 1% to 2% of parents have opted out, according to the health department.

We’ve had no negative reaction to the CATCH program,” Deborah Kaplan, assistant commissioner of the health department’s Bureau of Maternal, Infant and Reproductive Health, told NBC News. “We haven’t had one objection. We’ve just had the opt-outs.”
http://healthland.time.com/2012/09/25/new-york-city-schools-offer-plan-b-to-high-school-students/#ixzz27YRM6Rcj

Parents must be involved in the discussion of sex with their children and discuss THEIR values long before the culture has the chance to co-op the children. Moi routinely posts the number of Planned Parenthood at the blog along with information about the vacuous and troubled lives of Sex and the City aficionados and troubled pop tarts like Lindsey Lohan and Paris Hilton. Kids need to know that much of the life style glamorized in the media often comes at a very high personal cost. Problem is too many parents have opted out of the role of parent, don’t know how to be a parent and/or think their role is to be their child’s friend and not parent.

Because some children have ineffective parents, the child, the society and any potential offspring of the child pay the price. It is time for some speak the truth, get down discussion. An acquaintance who practices family law told me this story about paternity. A young man left Seattle one summer to fish in Alaska. He worked on a processing boat with 30 or40 others. He had sex with this young woman. He returned to Seattle and then got a call from her saying she was pregnant. He had been raised in a responsible home and wanted to do the right thing for this child. His mother intervened and demanded a paternity test. To make a long story, short. He wasn’t the father. In the process of looking out for this kid’s interests, my acquaintance had all the men on the boat tested and none of the other “partners” was the father. Any man that doesn’t have a paternity test is a fool.

If you are a slut, doesn’t matter whether you are a male or female you probably shouldn’t be a parent.

How to tell if you are a slut?

  1. If you are a woman and your sex life is like the Jack in the Box 24-hour drive through, always open and available. Girlfriend, you’re a slut.
  1. If you are a guy and you have more hoes than Swiss cheese has holes. Dude, you need to get tested for just about everything and you are a slut. 

Humans have free will and are allowed to choose how they want to live. What you do not have the right to do is to inflict your lifestyle on a child. So, the responsible thing for you to do is go to Planned Parenthood or some other outlet and get birth control for yourself and the society which will have to live with your poor choices. Many religious folks are shocked because I am mentioning birth control, but most sluts have few religious inklings or they wouldn’t be sluts. A better option for both sexes, if this lifestyle is a permanent option, is permanent birth control to lessen a contraception failure. People absolutely have the right to choose their particular lifestyle. You simply have no right to bring a child into your mess of a life. I observe people all the time and I have yet to observe a really happy slut. Seems that the lifestyle is devoid of true emotional connection and is empty. If you do find yourself pregnant, please consider adoption.

Let’s continue the discussion. Some folks may be great friends, homies, girlfriends, and dudes, but they make lousy parents. Could be they are at a point in their life where they are too selfish to think of anyone other than themselves, they could be busy with school, work, or whatever. No matter the reason, they are not ready and should not be parents. Birth control methods are not 100% effective, but the available options are 100% ineffective in people who are sexually active and not using birth control. So, if you are sexually active and you have not paid a visit to Planned Parenthood or some other agency, then you are not only irresponsible, you are Eeeevil. Why do I say that, you are playing Russian Roulette with the life of another human being, the child. You should not ever put yourself in the position of bringing a child into the world that you are unprepared to parent, emotionally, financially, and with a commitment of time. So, if you find yourself in a what do I do moment and are pregnant, you should consider adoption.

Why the rant? Live Science reports in the article, 1 in 6 Teen Moms Say They Didn’t Believe They Could Get Pregnant:

Half of teen mothers say they were not using birth control when they got pregnant, and a new report outlines the reasons teens give for not doing so.

Of teen moms who reported not using birth control, 31 percent said they did not believe they could get pregnant at the time. To decrease teen birth rates, teens need factual information about the conditions under which pregnancy can occur, along with public health efforts aimed at reducing or delaying teens’ sexual activities, according to the report released today by researchers for the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention.

Others gave various reasons for not using birth control — 24 percent said their partner did not want to use contraception, 13 percent said they had trouble getting birth control, 9 percent said they experienced side effects from using contraception and 8 percent said they thought their sex partner was sterile. Twenty-two percent of the teens said they did not mind getting pregnant.

Health care providers and parents can work to prevent teen pregnancy by increasing teens’ motivation to avoid pregnancy; providing access to contraception and encouraging the use of more effective methods, and strengthening the skills of teens to negotiate contraceptive use with their partners….

Research has shown that teens who report using birth control do not use it consistently, the report noted. One survey found that among sexually active teens who reported using condoms, only 52 percent said they used a condom every time they had sex.

The rates of not using birth control did not vary among teens of different racial groups — whether white, black or Hispanic, about half the teens reported not using birth control when they became pregnant.

There were some differences among the groups in terms of the reasons teens gave for not using birth control. Forty-two percent of Hispanic teens reported not using contraception because they did not think they could get pregnant at the time, whereas 32 percent of black teens gave that reason and 27 percent of white teens did.

Previous research has shown that 17 percent of all sexually active teens report not using birth control when they last had sex….

About 400,000 U.S. teens ages 15 to 19 give birth each year, which gives the United States the highest teen birth rate in the developed world, according to the report.

Teen mothers are more likely than others to drop out of school, and infants born to teens are more likely to have low birth weight, putting them at risk for a number of health conditions, and lower academic achievement, according to the report.
http://news.yahoo.com/1-6-teen-moms-didnt-believe-could-pregnant-202403188.html

Parents and guardians must have age-appropriate conversations with their children and communicate not only their values, but information about sex and the risks of sexual activity.

Which brings us back to Tolstoy, happy families are just that and they communicate their values to their children. Unhappy families, or given the contemporary context, unhappy associations are more likely to abdicate their responsibilities to each other and any children produced from that association. Parents not only have the right, but the duty to communicate their values to their children. That is the problem with the contemporary context, too few folks know what their values are because, after all, one shouldn’t judge.

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