Sex at 12?!

What happened to just being kids?

If you had asked me what a contraceptive was when I was 12, I would probably have told you that it was something you put on a wound to stop it from getting septic. Ah, but things have changed so much in the last few years that pre-pubescent girls can tell you the range of contraceptive options that they use to avoid getting pregnant.

What happened to just being kids?

What happened to high school crushes and all that teasing about being a ‘Sweet 16 and Never Kissed’?

In some countries, it is legal for people as young as 12 to gain access to contraception because hey, kids are having sex earlier and earlier.

I accept that. Fine. But at 12?!!

Surely that’s the lowering the bar too far.

Methinks that at 12 years old, one is just too young to understand what the consequences and meaning of a sexual relationship are.  At 12, you are going through all those pubescent changes and trying to form and assert your identity. Frankly speaking, I don’t see where sex fits into that equation.

I hear someone saying that’s when the hormones kick in.

Yes, I agree. But that’s still no excuse in my book.

Hormones are informed by our socialisation, the way we have formulated ideas about certain things.  So yes, your hormones might rage, but at the end of the day, it is your beliefs about sex and sexuality that will pause you from letting yourself get to the point of no return.

True, some people have greater powers of control than others but I still affirm that at 12 years of age, this all should not even be the topic of debate for anyone.

Sex will not run away, but youth is an expendable resource. So kids should be kids and adults should not give them rights to things that they aren’t ready for. Full stop.

I once watched an episode of Oprah in which she had some mothers who said that they allowed their daughters, who were about 13 years old, to have their boyfriends come for sleepovers and that they didn’t mind them having sex.

In fact, they had told them all about using condoms and contraception in preparation for sex. The reasons they gave were that it was better to teach their girl-children what to do than have them fall pregnant and have to suffer the trauma of either an abortion, or early motherhood.

Point taken. But at 13?

The only genuine fears I think that mothers should have at such a tender age is that their daughters might be raped or molested. It is unfortunate that there are so many paedophiles and rapists out there, but these should Concern Number 1.

Like I said, the way we perceive sex is all about socialisation. If parents teach their children that it is something sacred to be kept for the right time, with the right person, then that goes a way towards instilling some respect for an act which is more and more becoming a transactional process than an act of mutual love.

Admittedly, peer pressure and youthful adventure can play a role in influencing young people to have sex when they aren’t prepared for the consequences.

But seriously, no one at 12 or 13 should be bragging about having had sex and trying to get their mates to follow suit. That sounds a bit crazy to me.

Sweet Valley High novels: my daily bread at age 12

Maybe I am ‘old school’ but at 12, I still found boys to be gross (although I had an innocent crush on Leonardo Dicaprio). At that age, I enjoyed nothing more than reading Sweet Valley High novels and going out to movies with my gal pals.

Is that really so boring?

9 thoughts on “Sex at 12?!

  1. These children of today are something else. At my apartment there are two brothers whose mum is working in SA. They have gone to all the best private schools. All they do when they are not in school is bring girls in and friends to do drugs and alcohol. There are young but the freedom that staying alone provides them has turned them into monsters. With HIV, who knows what else they will get. Some of the women that come to see them driving expensive rides are way older than them, which means they are experienced and have slept with other people besides these young boys and their friends who always come to hang out at the apartment.
    Now just imagine.
    It is scary.
    The kids of today and us…we are just coming from totally different directions. But something needs to be done because this route they are taking is certainly not the best.

  2. Sex at 12 or 13 is outrageous but unfortunately it is a sad reality. One’s ‘first time’ is a special time to be shared with the right person. At 12 these kids have no concept of what a meaningful relationship is! They haven’t even experienced what it’s like to love someone.So why would they want to have sexual relations? And the mothers allowing their kids to have sex at such a young age are encouraging the wrong thing. These kids should be going to birthday parties or playing sports after school! They should leave the sex to their parents. I shudder to think how many sexual partners these kids would have had by the time they reach adulthood (if they make it considering HIV etc). These kids shouldn’t rush to grow up. They should just enjoy being kids. Reading Sweet Valley High or hanging out with pals is definitely not boring when you’re a kid.

  3. I think what you’ve all said is the sad reality of the situation. The even sadder reality is that the world and our social lives are changing and evolving at an exponential rate. These 12 year olds are exposed to the most astounding material on TV, radio and all other forms of media. It is actually not surprising that it results in such actions. I remember watching cartoons and reading – yes the Sweet Valley Highs, but nowadays there is explicit material out there that everyone seems to view, and at times the parents of these children cannot adequately control this. The root cause of these children’s actions, which I am not condoning sometimes leaves their parents at their mercy thus they re-act in a way that will best protect them e.g. teaching them about contraception and methods of avoiding disease.
    I totally agree – 12 year olds know absolutely nothing about relationships and sex, but how do we adress the root causes, which have spiralled out of control?

  4. I really can’t out my finger on why some of these kids are so out of control. These kids do not realize the consequences of sex!I once watched a talk show that featured some teenage girls ranging from 13-16 who were either pregnant, had just had a baby or were planning to have a baby. The ones that had babies talked about the difficulties of being a young mom. The ones that were pregnant regretted the situation that they had put themselves in.Despite hearing all this one of the teenange guests on the show was still stupid enough to say that her and her boyfriend were planning on having a baby. When asked if she could even afford to take care of a baby she was naive enough to say she could because she had job at a fast food restuarant. She seriously thought she could work part time, go to school and be a mom! It turns out that this particular girl did not have a great relationship with her own mom and she wanted to have a baby of her own I guess to fill some kind of void in her own life. There is nothing wrong with wanting this but why can’t she wait until she is older and financially secure in her life? Babies are cute to look at but they cost money and they need a lot of attention! Why don’t kids realize this? Are they living in some kind of fantasy world?
    This leads me to my next point. Are parents to blame for the actions of their kids? Are parents not instilling good values in their children? Are parents not spending enough time with their kids or not showing them enough affection? I think so.

  5. The problem with us human beings is that we often tend to lack foresight. We want what we want now – not tomorrow, or the day after – NOW!!! And that’s where so many young people get lost. They think that at 14 or 15, the boy or girl they are with is the person they will spend forever with. And to consummate that ‘love’, they either get pregnant, or have reckless sex and then fall pregnant by mistake.

    Now, I will be honest and say that I am at an age where I do feel broody; where I am beginning to think about having a family and settling down. BUT, I also realise that I can’t seek to fulfill this ideal with just anyone. I must be selective in choosing a partner because I want it to last FOREVER.

    Whether or not that will be the case is not for me to know now. But what I am saying is that people should take their time in making lifechanging decisions.

    Sex, having kids, getting married – those are life changers! And at 12, one doesn’t even know what life is….

  6. The only genuine fears I think that mothers should have at such a tender age is that their daughters might be raped or molested. It is unfortunate that there are so many paedophiles and rapists out there, but these should Concern Number 1.

  7. I think if kids wanna have sex they are goin to whether or not we inform them of the risks and dangers or not. they just aren’t smart enough,after all,they are just kids. their judgement is compromised. i think its better to inform them of the risks and contraceptive options than to be adamant and ‘stone age’s to think that if they don’t have access to these things,they wont have sex.
    parents need to stop fooling themselves and wake up! give the child all the info they need,and save urself the embarassment of raising grandkids at a young age and maybe preventing your daugters and sons from having HIV and kids with 5 different partners in one life.

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