Abstinence from sexual intercourse is believed by most parents and religious groups to be the only acceptable method of birth control for teenagers. In this regard, the essay aims to proffer issues pertaining to sexual abstinence. The discourse would initially define sexual abstinence and determine its brief historical background. Likewise, the effects of abstinence-only approach in sex education would be examined. Finally, some suggestions and recommendations on using abstinence in sexual education would be presented.
Sexual abstinence is defined as “the practice of voluntarily refraining from sexual intercourse and (usually) other sexual activity. Sexual abstinence is typically considered a subset of behavior in the context of chastity as the latter refers also to attitude and intent and not mere mechanics. Sexual abstinence is typically advocated in the categories of religious/moral concerns and health/social concerns, with a significant overlap between the two” (WordIQ, par. 1).
In an article published by Avert on abstinence and sex education, the discussion provided clear definitions of abstinence based approach to sexual education which encourages abstinence from sex until marriage. The Federal Law in the United States enumerated learning objectives of abstinence education, to wit:
In a study conducted by Planes, et.al. on definitions and examples of abstinence to Spanish University students, the findings revealed that the current understanding of the term is ambiguous resulting to risky sexual behaviors (Planes, et.al, 172). A table indicated in the research on the definitions of the meaning of the term abstinence by gender provided “778 examples or definitions of abstinence” (Planes, et.al, 170) validating the diverse understanding of students on the accurate definition of the term.
The discourse provided by WordIQ traced the developments on sexual freedom to the First World War which indicates that the