Cable has Shark Week, we have Abstinence Week! All this week we’re reposting some of our favorite abstinence-related stories from the truly alarming to the very ridiculous. This post originally ran in December 2010. Share your biggest abstinence myths here.
Here's the third installment of this genius series, created by Amplify Your Voice, an organization working with youth to change our dysfunctional approach to sexual health issues. We wrote about the first two here and here.
In this new video, our two bears discuss an abstinence class where boys were told to write down what they wanted from a girlfriend, and girls were asked to write what they wanted from a boyfriend. Then they were asked to imagine their wedding day: The boys had to imagine their brides and the girls their grooms. Then they had a mock wedding in the class. Marriage, between opposite-sex couples, is held up as the only way to have a healthy, committed relationship.
As with the other two videos, this is real stuff directly from the abstinence-until-marriage course materials. As Advocates for Youth points out, these programs ignore the needs–and the very existence–of lesbian, gay, bi and trans young people, by teaching that only heterosexual teens can have healthy relationships.
Since 1996, the US has spent over $1.5 billion on abstinence-only-until-marriage lessons like these. Now, as we've said many times, there's nothing wrong with waiting to have sex, but doing so based on these silly, misleading, and totally ineffective programs is a really big problem.
If you agree, join them by contacting your elected reps. It takes less than a minute to amplify your own voice here.