tagged w/ Teen Pregnancy
Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that the number of teenage pregnancies in England and Wales rose last year.
There was a rise of at least 2.7% in the last year, despite government attempts to improve sex education and contraception awareness.Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that the number of teenage... more
Great Ormond Street Hospital in London has been working on seperating recently born conjoined twins. The girls are joined from the breastbone to the navel, sharing a liver but each with her own heart.Great Ormond Street Hospital in London has been working on seperating recently born... more
A Shropshire teen has given birth to conjoined twin girls, named Faith and Hope. The girls have seperate hearts. Their mother, 18-year-old Laura Williams, was urged to have an abortion.A Shropshire teen has given birth to conjoined twin girls, named Faith and Hope. The... more
Teenage boys think it is acceptable to pressure girls into having sex and will use 'tactics' such as plying them with alcohol, a study has found.
Some display 'alarming' attitudes to rape, the researchers warned.
The study, which explored attitude among 14 to 16-year-olds, confirmed the stereotypes of the sexes to a frightening extent.
Boys were more likely to use 'negative', 'aggressive' or 'coercive' language while girls were more 'sympathetic' to the feelings of others.
Boys also admitted to researchers they tried to get girls drunk as a way of getting them into bed - claiming girls are 'more likely to have sex' when inebriated as they are no longer 'shy'.
Asked how they would perceive a girl who had had lots of sexual partners, they universally condemned her as a 'slag'.
And when asked how they might react to a girlfriend who had slept around, one said he she would 'probably get beat up'.
In one exchange between a group of teenage boys and researchers, one boy suggested a fictional teenager should 'rape' his girlfriend if she resisted his advances.
The researchers said: 'It became clear that the participants were quite serious - seeming to try to differentiate between "just a bit of pressure" and "proper rape".'
The team from Sheffield University which carried out the study said sex education involving adolescent boys should start 'clear discussion about issues of consent and the withdrawal of consent within sexual encounters'.
The academics also said youngsters must be helped to approach alcohol sensibly as part of strategies to reduce teenage pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.
They interviewed 35 teens who had visited sexual health clinics and presented them with fictional scenarios to discuss.
These involved a girl who was reluctant to have sex with her boyfriend, a boy who was unwilling to sleep with his girlfriend and a 14-year-old, Carla, who had slept with 'lots' of boys without condoms.
The girls were more sympathetic to Carla than the boys were, claiming her position was 'difficult', while the boys condemned her.
Some of the boys said the fellow who didn't feel ready to sleep with his girlfriend 'must be gay'.
The study, in the Journal of Clinical Nursing, said: 'There were no instances where young females used violent or conquest-type language - yet this littered the male responses.
'This was particularly evident with the alarming manner in which rape was mentioned in two focus groups (with no evidence of disapproval from the other group participants) and also where young men discussed pressuring girls into sex.'
Dr Mark Hayter, who led the study, said: 'Providing information and contraception is only one element of promoting sexual health.
'When it comes to female clients, nurses should develop interventions that can strengthen self-esteem and teach young girls how to respond positively to the social pressures they face around sex.
'It would also be helpful to encourage young male clients to empathize with their female partners.'Teenage boys think it is acceptable to pressure girls into having sex and will use... more
Sexual content on television is strongly associated with teen pregnancy, a new study from the RAND Corporation shows.
Researchers at the nonprofit organization found that adolescents with a high level of exposure to television shows with sexual content are twice as likely to get pregnant or impregnate someone as those who saw fewer programs of this kind over a period of three years. It is the first study to demonstrate this association, RAND said.
A central message from the study is that there needs to be more dialogue about sex in the media, particularly among parents and their children, said Anita Chandra, the study's lead author and a behavioral scientist at RAND.
"We know that parents are busy, but sitting down and watching shows together with their teen, talking about the character portrayals, talking about what they just witnessed, and really using it as a teachable moment is really, I think, a good recommendation from this research," Chandra said.
To measure exposure, the researchers used a method developed by another research group evaluating 23 shows for sexual content. Then, they asked teenagers how frequently they watched each of those shows, and developed a score based on exposure to the shows.
"We know that if a child is watching more than an hour of TV a day, we know there's a sexual scene in [the] content every 10 minutes, then they're getting a fair amount of sexual content," Chandra said.
Melody Monroe of Norfolk, Virginia, who had her first child when she was 17, said she agrees that sex on television contributes to teen pregnancy. Monroe, who shared some of her views on iReport.com, recalls watching shows on Lifetime Television with her mother that were "almost soft porn," with kissing and bedroom scenes.
"Oh, the guy gets the girl, they fall in love, happily ever after, babies come, I thought that was one way of being loved," said Monroe, now 26. "Happily ever after doesn't happen." Sexual content on television is strongly associated with teen pregnancy, a new study... more
Exposure to some forms of entertainment is a corrupting influence on children, leading teens who watch sexy programs into early pregnancies and children who play violent video games to adopt aggressive behavior, researchers said on Monday.
Researchers at the RAND research organization said their three-year study was the first to link viewing of racy television programing with risky sexual behavior by teens.
"Our findings suggest that television may play a significant role in the high rates of teenage pregnancy in the United States," said Anita Chandra, a behavioral scientist who led the research at RAND, a nonprofit research organization.
"We're not saying we're establishing causation, but we are saying this is one factor that we were able to prospectively link to the teen pregnancy outcome," Chandra said in a phone interview.
The researchers recruited adolescents aged 12 to 17 and surveyed them three times between 2001 and 2004, asking about television viewing habits, sexual behavior and pregnancy.
In findings that covered 718 teenagers, there were 91 pregnancies. The top 10th of adolescents who watched the most sexy programing were at double the risk of becoming pregnant or causing a pregnancy compared to the 10th who watched the fewest such programs, according to the study published in the journal Pediatrics.
The study focused on 23 free and cable television programs popular among teenagers including situation comedies, dramas, reality programs and animated shows. Comedies had the most sexual content and reality programs the least.
"The television content we see very rarely highlights the negative aspects of sex or the risks and responsibilities," Chandra said. "So if teens are getting any information about sex they're rarely getting information about pregnancy or sexually transmitted diseases."
TEEN PREGNANCY ON DECLINE
Teen pregnancy rates in the United States have declined sharply since 1991 but remain high compared to other industrialized nations. Nearly 1 million girls aged 15 to 19 years old become pregnant yearly, or about 20 percent of sexually active females in that age group. Most of the pregnancies were unplanned, the report said.
Young mothers are more likely to quit school, require public assistance and live in poverty, it said.
"Television is just one part of a teenager's media diet that helps to influence their behavior. We should also look at the roles that magazines, the Internet and music play in teens' reproductive health," Chandra said, acknowledging still other factors can influence teen sex habits.
Living in a two-parent family reduced the chances of a teen getting pregnant or causing a pregnancy. Black teenagers, and those with discipline problems, had higher risks.
The report suggested broadcasters provide more realistic portrayals of the consequences of sex and that parents limit their children's access to sexually explicit programing.
A second study in the journal added to existing evidence that youths who play violent video games -- a worldwide trend with American children averaging 13 hours of video gaming a week -- led to increased physically aggressive behavior.
Researchers from the United States and Japan evaluated more than 1,200 Japanese youths and 364 Americans between 9 and 18 years old and found a "significant risk factor for later physically aggressive behavior ... across very different cultures."
Aggressiveness in children is also associated with violence later on, according to the study by researchers from Iowa State University in Ames, the National Institute on Media and the Family in Minneapolis and Ochanomizu University and Keio University in Tokyo.Exposure to some forms of entertainment is a corrupting influence on children, leading... more
Groundbreaking research suggests that pregnancy rates are much higher among teens who watch a lot of TV with sexual dialogue and behavior than among those who have tamer viewing tastes.Groundbreaking research suggests that pregnancy rates are much higher among teens who... more
Bristol Palin's pregnancy may be the ultimate teachable moment. It just might not be the lesson that John McCain intended.
My first thought on hearing the news was: What was Sarah Palin thinking? Assuming, as the campaign says, that she knew about her 17-year-old's pregnancy and informed McCain in advance, how could she expose her daughter to the inevitable spotlight that Palin's vice presidential nomination would bring?
The unwed mother -- or at least, the not-yet-wed mother -- has become a more common (this is bad) and less shameful (this is good) phenomenon in 21st-century America. It's the unusual celebrity (the Hollywood type, not the Obama type) who bothers to get hitched before getting pregnant. The baby bump has become a badge of honor, not a scarlet letter.
Yet no one feels good about a pregnant 17-year-old, whether it's Bristol Palin or Jamie Lynn Spears. As Sarah and Todd Palin put it with decided understatement yesterday, this will "make her grow up faster than we had ever planned."
And it will be that much more difficult in the media glare. "We ask the media to respect our daughter and (the father) Levi's privacy as has always been the tradition of children of candidates," the Palins said in their statement.
As a parent, I sympathize. But as a parent in the media, I also know that the Palins assumed this risk. Anyone who watched coverage of the Bush twins' barroom exploits knew that the avert-your-eyes stance toward candidates' children has its limits.
It's naive to imagine, in the anything-goes Internet era, that Palin's daughter's pregnancy would go unremarked upon. It's also mistaken, I think, to expect it. Like it or not, Bristol Palin's pregnancy is intertwined with an important public policy debate about which the two parties differ and on which Sarah Palin has been outspoken.
Which brings me to the teachable moment: What should teenagers be taught about sexual activity and contraception? By whom? What access should they have to condoms or other forms of birth control? Specifically, is abstinence-only education enough?
The 2008 Republican Party platform acknowledges that "each year, more than 3 million American teenagers contract sexually transmitted diseases, causing emotional harm and serious health consequences, even death." It expresses support for "efforts to educate teens and parents about the health risks associated with early sexual activity and provide the tools needed to help teens make healthy choices."
Bristol Palin's pregnancy may be the ultimate teachable moment. It just might not... more
WASHINGTON - Republican John McCain, whose running mate disclosed that her unmarried 17-year-old daughter is pregnant, has opposed proposals to spend federal money on teen-pregnancy prevention programs and voted to require poor teen mothers to stay in school or lose their benefits.
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's announcement Monday about her daughter, Bristol, was aimed at rebutting Internet rumors that Palin's youngest son, born in April, was actually her daughter's. Palin said her daughter intends to raise her child and marry the baby's father, who was identified only by his first name, Levi. The baby is due in late December.
McCain's record on issues surrounding teen pregnancy and contraceptives during his more than two decades in the Senate indicates that he and Palin have similar views. Until Monday, when the subject surfaced in a deeply personal manner, teen pregnancy and sex education were not issues in the national political campaign.
Palin herself said she opposes funding sexual-education programs in Alaska.
"The explicit sex-ed programs will not find my support," she wrote in a 2006 questionnaire distributed among gubernatorial candidates.
McCain's position on contraceptives and teen pregnancy issues has been difficult to judge on the campaign trail, as he appears uncomfortable discussing such topics. Reporters asked the presumptive GOP presidential nominee in November 2007 whether he supported grants for sex education in the United States, whether such programs should include directions for using contraceptives and whether he supports President Bush's policy of promoting abstinence.
"Ahhh, I think I support the president's policy," McCain said.
When reporters pressed McCain whether the government should provide contraceptives or counseling on contraceptives, he replied, "You've stumped me." McCain said later that he was sure he opposed government spending on contraceptives.
The McCain campaign on Monday did not respond to repeated requests for information.
In Senate votes, McCain has opposed some proposals to pay for teen-pregnancy prevention programs. In 2006, McCain joined fellow Republicans in voting against a Senate Democratic proposal to send $100 million to communities for teen-pregnancy prevention programs that would have included sex education about contraceptives.
In 2005, McCain opposed a Senate Democratic proposal that would have spent tens of millions of dollars to pay for pregnancy prevention programs other than abstinence-only education, including education on emergency contraception such as the morning-after pill. The bill also would have required insurance companies that cover Viagra to also pay for prescription contraception.
McCain voted for the Family Support Act in 1988, which passed overwhelmingly in the Senate and required teen mothers who receive public assistance to remain in high school and, in some cases, to live with their parents.
"Young parents who have not completed high school will be required to stay in or return to school to complete the basic education so necessary to a productive life," said President Reagan, as he signed the law in October 1988.
McCain cited abortion, sex education and birth control as some of the issues on which he differed with Joycelyn Elders, former President Clinton's nominee for surgeon general. He quoted Elders as telling lawmakers that abortion has had positive health effects, including reducing the number of children "afflicted with severe defects."
"As a father of a number of young children, including an adopted daughter who was born with a birth defect, I am deeply, deeply troubled by these views," McCain said in a 1993 speech opposing Elders' confirmation.
WASHINGTON - Republican John McCain, whose running mate disclosed that her... more
In the short time since the announcement from Sarah Palin that her daughter is pregnant and will be marrying the father of her child, reactions have started to come out with Barack Obama, taking the high road and declaring "families are off limits."
The statement issued by Sarah Palin and her husband Todd, via the McCain website:
"We have been blessed with five wonderful children who we love with all our heart and mean everything to us. Our beautiful daughter Bristol came to us with news that as parents we knew would make her grow up faster than we had ever planned. We're proud of Bristol's decision to have her baby and even prouder to become grandparents. As Bristol faces the responsibilities of adulthood, she knows she has our unconditional love and support.
"Bristol and the young man she will marry are going to realize very quickly the difficulties of raising a child, which is why they will have the love and support of our entire family. We ask the media to respect our daughter and Levi's privacy as has always been the tradition of children of candidates."
Reactions are coming out fast and furiously from Evangelicals, supporters and even Barack Obama issued a harsh response.
Starting with Barack Obama's reaction when he was asked to comment on the news that Sarah Palin's 17 year-old daughter was pregnant, he said it was irrelevant to the political campaign and went on to admonish "I think peoples families are off limits and people's children are especially off limits, " as reported by CBS News.
He continued on to say that he would strongly urge people to "back off" further stating , "My mother had me when she was 18 years old,” Obama said, adding that families should deal with these issues privately. “That shouldn’t be the topic of our politics, and I hope that anybody who is supporting me understands that’s off limits.”
He continued on to assert that no one in his campaign is involved nor will be and he concluded by saying, "And if I ever thought that it was somebody in my campaign that was involved in something like that, they’d be fired.”
Other reactions coming out include evangelical leaders, who expressed excitement and immediately united behind the John McCain/Sarah Palin ticket within hours of McCain announcing Palin as his running mate as TIME noted last Friday when the announcement was made.
Dr. James C. Dobson of Focus on the Family issued a statement right after the news came out today, reported by ABC News: "In the 32-year history of Focus on the Family, we have offered prayer, counseling and resource assistance to tens of thousands of parents and children in the same situation the Palins are now facing. We have always encouraged the parents to love and support their children and always advised the girls to see their pregnancies through, even though there will of course be challenges along the way. That is what the Palins are doing, and they should be commended once again for not just talking about their pro-life and pro-family values, but living them out even in the midst of trying circumstances.
"Being a Christian does not mean you're perfect. Nor does it mean your children are perfect. But it does mean there is forgiveness and restoration when we confess our imperfections to the Lord. I've been the beneficiary of that forgiveness and restoration in my own life countless times, as I'm sure the Palins have.
"The media are already trying to spin this as evidence Gov. Palin is a 'hypocrite,' but all it really means is that she and her family are human. They are in my prayers and those of millions of Americans." . . .
. . . The handling of this delicate situation will be a true indicator of the "tone" the next two months of political campaigning will go.
(Full article at link)
In the short time since the announcement from Sarah Palin that her daughter is... more
You heard about the 17 girls in Massachusetts and their pact to get pregnant together. You heard about how Jamie Lynn Spears got preggers at 16.
You've probably got your own idea for WHY.
Here to explain her view is Professor Jane Brown, Director of the Teen Media Project at UNC Chapel Hill.You heard about the 17 girls in Massachusetts and their pact to get pregnant together.... more
A woman accused of slicing open a pregnant woman's belly and taking her baby was obsessed with getting an infant and even had hallucinations of hearing babies cry after a February 1990 miscarriage, according to court records.
A few months later, Andrea Curry-Demus stabbed one woman in an apparent plot to steal her newborn; the next day, she kidnapped another baby from a hospital.
Curry-Demus, 38, of Wilkinsburg, was charged Sunday with homicide, kidnapping and related offenses in the death of Kia Johnson, 18.
Johnson's decomposing body, with her wrists and ankles bound by duct tape and layers of tape and plastic covering much of her head, was found Friday in Curry-Demus' apartment. A day earlier Curry-Demus had taken the baby to a hospital, claiming first that she was the mother and later that she paid for the child.
Authorities say the two women met at the Allegheny County jail on July 15 while visiting different inmates.
Efforts to determine if Curry-Demus has an attorney have been unsuccessful and no hearing has been set on the current charges.
Court records for Curry-Demus' 1990 criminal cases paint a picture of a woman apparently unable to deal with the loss of her own child in her seventh month of pregnancy. She was 21 at the time, and told authorities she also had miscarried at age 12.A woman accused of slicing open a pregnant woman's belly and taking her baby was... more
I was standing in a bookstore yesterday and saw a young teenage girl beaming into the cover of a magazine with a picture of Jaime Lynn Spears and her new baby. I could tell she was enchanted with this illusion of perfection depicted on a glossy magazine. This magazine cover was simply another Hollywood fairy tale which lies about reality and gives teenage pregnancy a "happily ever after"ending.I was standing in a bookstore yesterday and saw a young teenage girl beaming into the... more
Teen pregnancy is on the rise in America for the first time since 1991. One in three teenage girls in the US becomes pregnant. Recent media hype and movies like Juno give teen pregnancy a certain kind of treatment. ANP went to one health center in the Northeast of Washington, DC to explore the real thing.Teen pregnancy is on the rise in America for the first time since 1991. One in three... more
Now why is it the original story on the Teenage Pregnancy Pact garnered so many views and comments but the follow-up story in which the pregnancy pact turns out to be perhaps a gross misrepresentation of facts, gets almost no attention?
The story had alright the right (or rather wrong) elements to inflame the public and start a buzz of debate - well, actually just a lot of name calling and most importantly blame-placing. A significant number of commenters on the original story here which got picked for TV chose to throw in a few disparaging remarks on the intelligence of Americans and or the human race as a whole as though a group of teenage girls was somehow representative of the entire nation or the entire human race for that matter. And somehow Bush's re-election was mystifyingly tied in with it as well by one astute poster.
It seems to be a case of a simple thing blown way out of proportion. The only evidence of a pact is that of those who are already pregnant to stick together to help each other out.Now why is it the original story on the Teenage Pregnancy Pact garnered so many views... more
An article from CNN describes how teens in highschool in Massachusetts are getting pregnant on purpose, some sort of freindship pact.They were excited to have baby showers and apparently one of the fathers of the baby from a baby was a homeless man. And we wonder why we do not have enough resources.An article from CNN describes how teens in highschool in Massachusetts are getting... more
A US city is investigating reports of a "teenage pregnancy pact" linked to at least 17 high school girls who are expecting babies.
A school clinic in Gloucester, Massachusetts, became suspicious after seeing a surge of girls asking for pregnancy tests. Jonathan Beale reports from Washington.A US city is investigating reports of a "teenage pregnancy pact" linked to... more
17 underage girls are pregnant all at the same time at this high school.
According to officials, they all made a pact to get pregnant. CRAZY!17 underage girls are pregnant all at the same time at this high school. According to... more