A recent study published in the Journal of Adolescent Health took on the sensitive topic of sex education, specifically, where kids get their information and where they should get their information.
The study found that although a majority of the parents (97.9%) polled indicated school-age kids (5-18) should receive information about sex from parents, few believed they actually did. Only 24.2% of parents thought they served as the primary source of information.
In fact, a majority of parents responded that kids actually receive their education from the last places parents deem acceptable: Friends and classmates and the media. Only 5.5% of parents thought friends and classmates were an acceptable source and even less (3.5%) thought the media was an appropriate source. Most parents (77.7%), though, believed the main sources of information were friends and classmates with the media not far behind at 60.3%.
Teachers as a source for sex ed. came in second place with 58.5% of parents thinking they were a good source of information. However, parents admitted they did not believe teachers were actually a significant source for the information. Only 15.2% of parents thought kids relied on teachers for their sexual education.
The good news is parents’ desire to educate their kids and the importance of that information coming from parents coincides. A national study sited within the article indicated parents’ influence on their children’s decisions about sex matters more than friends, siblings, teachers, religious leaders, or the media. Other studies mentioned in the article also note communication between parent and child is associated with delayed onset of sexual activity and increased contraceptive use. We offered advice on talking to your kids about sex here.
The report, though, only surveyed people in Minnesota although the researchers did ensure they received equal representation from across the state. So let’s do our own poll of people in Baristaville. What do you say about sex?