There are many things in life that excite me…talking with or visiting my daughters, running with my friends, seeing a really great movie (with a really good-looking actor), reading a thought-provoking book, taking walks with my husband… But few things will really get my heart pumping than reading about advances in adolescent sexuality health education! (Okay, okay, it’s a little weird, I get it. But it is such an important topic in my professional world.)
Last night as I was staring at my computer pondering my blog and how to address STI’s, I heard the friendly “bleep” of my computer telling me that SOMEONE out there has sent me a message! Whoo hooo! Yes! I must immediately stop everything in my life and read the email!
Well, it was indeed a treat to read this email. It came from a newsfeed I subscribe to called Medscape Nurses. It’s a cool email that sends healthcare professionals all the latest research and updates in their chosen field. This particular update had an article entitled, “AAP Policy Statement: Provide Condoms to Adolescents” written by Jennifer Garcia.
This article has such great information, of which I will plan to incorporate into my blogs down the road. But the bottom line is, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is in support of providing condoms to adolescents because of the rise in STI’s and the high pregnancy rates in our country. YES! Well, I mean, YES about the condoms, not about the STI and pregnancy rates. The statistics actually kind of stink.
The other thing that really got my heart pounding is the acknowledgment that kids and their parents, teachers, healthcare providers, fill-in-the-blank “other” adults in their world, really need to get some communication going. Um, yeah. I sorta thought so.
It is not always easy to talk to kids about this topic. Heck, it is sometimes difficult to talk to our own partners about this topic, but it is important. Sexuality is a huge part of a person’s life – it is a basic need in adults (and apparently in lots of adolescents, too). It is just plain biology, really. And once we can get away from the embarrassment of the topic, it will be easier to approach our kids.