All over the world, teenagers are becoming pregnant without planning to, and risk bringing a child into the world without being prepared or able to provide a safe environment for them. Unplanned pregnancies are more common in some areas of the world than others, but the question remains:
Why Are So Many Teenagers Getting Pregnant?
Whether most teen pregnancies are unplanned or on purpose, most of these statistics seem to come from a lack of information and support for teen sexuality. Here’s the deal.
Most Teens Aren’t Getting the Best Sexual Education
The vast majority of the developed world is still going by a system of “abstinence-based” education, which boils down to an instructor getting in front of a class in school (sometimes at multiple points in a teen’s education lifespan), explaining as little about the process of reproduction as possible before explaining all the risks and dangers associated with the act of sex, including unplanned pregnancy.
As a teen, you should be all too familiar with this method of teaching — anything that authority tells you explicitly not to do, you’re going to be curious about it. This insufficient education about matters of sex, sexuality and human reproduction just spreads misinformation and fails to inform about all the contreceptive options out there to prevent pregnancy until it’s completely on purpose.
Sex is Still a Major Taboo in Most of the World
The days of old taught humans that sex and the human anatomy was something to be ashamed about. While some countries around the world (mostly in Europe) have adopted a more open and supportive view of sex and human sexuality, most of the world is still lagging behind. Even if you’re lucky (or unlucky, depending how you handle awkward moments) enough to get “the talk”, it usually lacks a supportive message beyond “here’s how sex works, but don’t do it.”
The Bottom Line
As a teen, most of the world doesn’t give you a great foundation for learning about sex, so you’re going to need to do your own research. Learn about condoms, birth control and other contraceptives so if you do decide to have sex, you don’t have to suffer the consequences for another person’s lifetime before you’re ready.