Can anyone tell me why teens are sex proneSometimes this gives me a scare about incessant cases of teenage sex and pregnancy. Why do you think teens are always constantly sexually active?

Expert Answers
Lorraine Caplan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Their hormones are raging, for one thing.  They are discovering their sexuality, and it is like driving a big, powerful car without having had any lessons. And of course, consequences are something that can never happen to you when you are a teen.

I do think there are a few dynamics that contribute to the teen sex and pregnancy aside from this, though.  One is that the onset of puberty seems to be coming earlier and earlier.  So, bodies are developing way ahead of minds.  A second is that many parents seem to persist in the belief that if they don't talk about sex with their children or allow them to participate in good sex education in the schools, sex will not happen. And that clearly is incorrect.  A third reason is that society seems to accept this behavior, or at least, it seems to be accepting of the consequences, i.e. pregnancy.  There no longer seems to be a sense of shame associated with pregnancy out of wedlock, and this is clearly reflected in the behavior of popular culture, singers, actresses, and sports figures. A fourth reason is that there is a segment of the population that opposes birth control and/or abortion, so the means by which pregnancy could be prevented or eliminated is not available, particularly since so many states are making it difficult or impossible for teens to avail themselves of either without parental consent.  Better, I suppose, to ruin one young life to save one that does not yet exist.

I lament these changes, and i have personally always done everything I could with my own children and with students to emphasize that sex is something that should be mindful, responsible, and loving.  If I have saved one teen from a bad choice, I am happy.

wannam eNotes educator| Certified Educator
I agree with the above reasons. Half of the reason for increased sexual activity is that teens are experiencing a lot of hormonal changes and body changes. Puberty causes so many changes in the body is can be overwhelming. Teens are discovering their bodies as well as noticing the body changes in others. The second half has to do with brain development. Teens still don't have a fully developed frontal lobe of the brain. This is the area that we usually associate with reason and rational thinking. In teens, this area is underdeveloped. This tends to lead to rash decisions and the inability to consider consequences. Many teens experience a feeling of invincibility. This doesn't mean they think they're a super hero but it does mean they have trouble realizing that there will be consequences to their actions. Teens tend to think "oh that will never happen to me." The upsurge in hormons and sex drive coupled with an under-developed frontal lobe and the lower inhibitions associated with it tend to lead teens to be more sexually promiscuous.
trophyhunter1 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Due to peer pressure, hormones that drive the urge to have sex, television and movies, many teens feel that they should participate in sexual activity, even when they might not be ready. Besides the fact that someone could become a parent way before they are emotionally and financially ready, there is always the risk of contracting a sexually transmitted disease such as herpes, syphillis, gonorrhea and HIV with a partner who may have had previous unsafe encounters. Therefore, teens should try to make rational decisions, learn about safe sex and be mature enough before actually having sex for all the wrong reasons.

bullgatortail eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Curiosity is certainly a driving force when it comes to teens and sex. Most teens know about the dangers of unprotected sex, but the forbidden fruit syndrome that drives teens (and others) to try things that are illegal, dangerous or banned (by either law or parents) is overwhelming. An another post mentioned, many teens seem to view a pregnancy as a badge of honor, signifying their move into adulthood. 

vangoghfan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I agree with the other posts. We also live in a highly sexualized culture that is often explicitly (no pun intended) designed to provoke strong hormonal responses from teens.  Teens are also at a point in their lives when they are still supported by parents, don't have to make their own livings, and thus have little sense of the financial burdens of rearing children.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that teens are more prone to have sex because they are curious about it. They have never experienced it before, and when they do they like it so they keep doing it. Teens are also experiencing a sex drive for the first time, and it can be very strong.  Add that to poor impulse control, and you have teens having sex.

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that the other thing that you have to remember is that teens have less in the way of self-control than older people.  So, as the previous post said, they have all these hormones and yet do not have the best self-control that would allow them to manage their emotions and desires better.

literaturenerd eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I would have to agree with all of the suggestions provided by the other posters. Combinations of hormones, inability to control urges, peer pressure, and curiosity are all reasons that teenagers are more sexually active than either younger children or older adults.

daddyzdevil | Student

Teenagers are very curious and want to experience life to the fullest, however when it come to being sexually active it is popular amongs teenagers these days.They say that teenagers are in love and it dosen't matter if they are sexually acitve but what is love. Love is just an attraction between 2 person.

At the stage of adolescent teeenagers hormones are at a very high percentage and therefore are attracted to their opposite sex but some teenager are attracted to their own sex.

wanderista | Student

Hormones - as a child enters adolescence, puberty begins resulting in hormone release. These hormones stimulate the sexual organs, producing pubic hair and such. Sexual arousal is common is the teens (13-18), due to the changes going on from puberty, and the amount of hormones entering the body's systems.

ktloubatla | Student

Agree with the above post as well however, another angle in developing and poor communities like South Africaa trend is that since the government introduction of child welfare grant which is like a stipend paid monthly to help especially unemployed young mothers, youth especially in rural areas which have high unemployment rate engage in unsafe, unprotected sexual activities to increase their monthly welfare grant they get from government which is about US $ 40.00 per month per child.

So the motivation therefore is not just limited to hormones but economic survival.

A said state of affairs for the youth in poor developing economies...

jeleyinte | Student

Thank you all for sharing your expert opinion on this.


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