DR. WALLACE: I'm a concerned mother who has enjoyed following your column over the years. Recently, you advised a 17-year-old girl to move on with her life after the baffling disappearance of her 20-year-old boyfriend. My first reaction to this disappearance was to question what issue he was trying to avoid that caused him to run from his year-long relationship with her.
She admitted to having a sexual relationship with him. If I were this girl's parent, I would want to know if they had unprotected sex, and I would want my daughter to be tested for the various sexually transmitted diseases she might have contracted from their encounters.
I'm presently the parent of a 10- and 12-year-old, but I was lucky to have any children at all. I had a similar situation to the girl in your article when I was 18, but in my particular case, we only had sex once. The boy I was with disappeared and moved on, but a year later I had severe pelvic pain and was rushed into surgery. My situation was a direct result of the one and only sexual experience I had. I've since suffered a lifetime of scarring, adhesions, corrective surgeries and, very nearly, a childless life. Young girls do not realize how life-affecting the choice to have sex can be. It can be spinning a roulette wheel to have unprotected sex, especially these days.
Please continue to warn all teens, especially teen girls, that their entire futures, and possibly their lives, can sometimes be the price that is paid for one physical encounter that goes very wrong. — Mother Who's Been There, Detroit
MOTHER WHO'S BEEN THERE: Thank you for sharing your story with our young readers. It's important that they occasionally hear from adults who made unwise decisions as teens. It's a wonderful learning tool and will help many of today's teens avoid making the same unwise decisions.
BE FIRM AND HOPE HE STAYS
DR. WALLACE: I'm 16, and my boyfriend is 17, and we have been dating steadily for about four months. I really like this guy. He has a super personality and is very popular. Besides being handsome, he is intelligent and gets excellent grades in school. My problem is that I'm a virgin, and I'm not ready for a sexual relationship, but he is, or at least that's what he tells me every single weekend. He literally gives me the very same speech each week. By now I could recite it with him word-for-word; that's how many times I've heard it!
Whenever we are alone, he really lays a guilt trip on me. All I hear is that almost all couples have sex, so why shouldn't we? Some weekends, when he goes into his familiar speech, I just tune him out, and when I look at his lips all I hear is "blah, blah, blah." As you can tell, I really don't want him to break up with me, so what can I tell him to get him to back off? He said that 90% of all high school females have engaged in sex and that I'm a prude for not being open to his desires. Am I really a prude who needs to get with the modern times? I really don't feel ready, and I get super nervous whenever I even think about having sex someday. — Going Steady but Not Ready, via email
GOING STEADY BUT NOT READY: First of all, your boyfriend needs to be aware of the facts, not fiction or wishful thinking. His "statistics" are made up to correlate with his desires. Many high school girls refrain from sex and graduate from high school as virgins. Have a chat with your boyfriend, and tell him you care for him very much, but you are not going to get involved in a sexual relationship at this point in your life. If he threatens to break up with you, wish him well in his quest to locate another girlfriend. I know this would be an unwanted outcome, but it's definitely in your best interest, if it comes down to that. In the meantime, tell him that you truly care for him and enjoy spending time with him, but the physical requests are no longer up for discussion, debate or pressure. Let's hope he will stay put. If he does, your relationship should improve, perhaps dramatically. On the other hand, if he leaves, overtime your life will improve.
Dr. Robert Wallace welcomes questions from readers. Although he is unable to reply to all of them individually, he will answer as many as possible in this column. Email him at [email protected] To find out more about Dr. Robert Wallace and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.
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