Teen Sex Panics Make Me So Tired

Oh, screw Dr. Phil already:

“On his show, he says a girl is ‘on her knees in a bathroom,’ going
down on a guy. While I think that has probably happened, in all of the
stories I have heard from friends, there’s never been one where a
middle school kid was doing that,” she says. “I feel like most of us
didn’t even know what that was back then.”

Girls who engage in
oral sex are bad girls, Dr. Phil implies. But surveys conducted by the
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and first person accounts
reveal that most young women who are going down are doing it for their
own reasons, not to get attention. And most of them are not doing it in
school bathroom stalls, either. Check any online teen health message
board, like Oprah’s community message board — it seems that most teens
are engaging in oral in their bedroom, or in the bedroom of their
partner, not on the streets. “It’s not so difficult to do that you have
to resort to doing it at school.” Erica says. “There are lots of
opportunities outside of that.”

But it seems in nearly every case, the girl still gets the blame for the activity.

Phil hopes to “protect our daughters from giving blow jobs,” yet he
says nothing about concern or responsibility regarding teenage boys.
Little does he realize that boys are giving (and obviously getting) as

Seriously, those of other generations than mine (late X, for the record), chime in here: There has always been a moral panic about the sexuality of our daughters, right? Women have ALWAYS been getting too uppity and letting the boys put their hands under our letter sweaters, right? My grandmother’s generation had its loose women, too, and somehow humanity survived. Or am I just reading too much Victorian lit these days?

Because my instinct is that this is nothing new. Kids have been getting pregnant and doing filthy, filthy sexy things out of wedlock since the beginning of time, and probably always will no matter how many suburban marketing moralists chide them for it on national TV. That’s the major effing rationale for sensible sex ed as early as possible.

I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again, I will take teen sex panics seriously when they start being about pressuring young men to either wrap up their schweens or put them away. Until then, don’t ask me to worry about the major epidemic of girls giving blow jobs in kindergarten because not so much:

In an article from the Washington Post, Jennifer Manlove, who directs
fertility research for the organization Child Trends, says that guys
give as often as girls.

“You assume that females are more likely
to give, males more likely to receive,” she says. “We were surprised
that the percentages were similar.”


13 thoughts on “Teen Sex Panics Make Me So Tired

  1. My generation was the first to discover oral sex. It happened in the sixties. Before that there was only the missionary position. In fact I don’t think our parents actually had sex.

  2. Like all generations, this one quickly learned what that anxious feeling they seemed to get when someone who was attractive to them was nearby was about. Shortly thereafter someone, usually a bit older, explained to them the variety of things that could be done that make the anxiety become exhilaration. Of course they also knew that they had learned a completely new practice, one that their up tight parents had never even dreamed existed, so it was a secret. Meanwhile, their parents were utterly speachless upon learning that their chaste little girls were older than they ever thought they could be.
    Ho hum.

  3. I’m torn because I don’t know whether anyone else here is old enough to get (or remember) this one or whether I could safely claim that I made it up (which I did not). Anyway, a classic line about sexlegraphyaka the “Morseanary Position”
    She was just a telegrapher’s daughter but she did it, ah, did it
    — — .-. … . / -.-. — -.. . / .. … / … . -..- -.–

  4. Kids have been getting pregnant and doing filthy, filthy sexy things out of wedlock since the beginning of time
    Filthy, filthy, sexy, and fun things. The trick is to separate the fun from the pregnancy.

  5. Is anyone else but me sick and tired of the implied “Boys will be boys…but ZOMG THOSE NASTY NASTY GIRLS WHO LET BOYS BE BOYS ALL OVER THEM”?
    Also, I’d really like to stake Dr. Phil to a fire ant mount and pour a gallon of malt syrup on him. I mean, if there’s any modern fakelebrity who drives me up the wall especially, it’s him, since he comes across as soearnest andsincere, andharmless
    …and he peddles practically nothing but reactionary and/or sexist bullshit and woo. Harmless my ass.

  6. My best friend and I are taking my 19-year-old cousin to Planned Parenthood on Friday to get birth control. My friend has already bought her a wild assortment of condoms, including one with a name that includes the word “spiral,” I think.

  7. Being gay, I’ve had my share of straight guys let me blow them because they just want to get off (it was always “No kissing!”–duh, like *that’s* what I was interested in). Does that make me DIRTY FILTHY WHORE? No? Good!
    My best friend in high school complained to me once that his girlfriend wouldn’t “go all the way” (great Raspberries song) but would only blow him.
    Me: “Do you want to use rubbers?”
    Him: “No way! It takes away the feeling”
    Me: “She only blows you because she doesn’t want to get pregnant, asshole”.
    Him: [long thought] “Oh”.

  8. I’m just sitting here, finding it heartening, that boys are apparently giving as much as they get, or something close to it.

  9. I’m with Catherine F. The surprising thing in this story is that boy’s are giving, as well as receiving.
    I have no sympathy for the Dr. Phil’s of this world–they’d be even more against sex for teens if they thought the girls were enjoying themselves. But you have to understand that for that generation sex is considered *humiliating* for women, and blow jobs especially so. The assumption of Dr. Phil’s listeners is that girls are being reduced to the status of a mere handjob. There’s no love, or friendship, or pleasure, or even reciprocity in their model of teenage sex.
    And, of course, women are thought to lose something during sex, something ineffeable but constant. Like the milk in the “why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free” or “you never miss a slice off a cut loaf.” Sex was seen as something women “gave” or “gave away” and that men “took.” And, culturally speaking, the more sex a boy had the stronger, more manly, more powerful, he becomes while the more sex a girl has the weaker, sluttier, more socially disabled she becomes. For him it is additive, for her subtractive.
    And despite all our forward motion in this country that’s still true. The story posted recently about the poor girl who killed herself because she was “sexting” is really all about a poor girl who killed herself because the teen society around her abused her for having and exposing her sexuality, for becoming vulnerable through sexuality.
    In that sense Dr. Phil isn’t entirely wrong–girls and boys come into sexual maturity in highschools far from good adult supervision (the description of the utter incompetence and cruelty of the highschool setting around the girl who killed herself will haunt me for a long time.) And the most cruel to children are other children. And children, of both sexes, get pressured into stuff all the time. I recently found out that an eighth grade girl in my daughter’s class has been sending passionate, inappropriate, text messages and emails to an extremely juvenile sixth grade boy I know. He’s completely bewildered by this. Its totally inappropriate. I wouldn’t even have thought it was possible in our loosy, goosy, leftist, private school.
    It was ever thus, but you can’t expect parents to welcome it when in so many cases they know their children don’t act with real maturity or forethought on everything else from driving, to drinking, to studying for exams.

  10. Aimai: get hold of that girl, in private, and warn her that she’s too old for that boy. Seriously, her texts are not private property — hers or his — and if she’s caught she could be had up for soliciting underage sex.
    The biggest fail of all in this is that kids take for granted that they own their texts.

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