10 Tips for Parents:
Be the expert.
Ask open-ended questions.
Listen to your teen.
Put yourself in their shoes.
Appeal to common goals.
Show your interest.
The national public education campaign is celebrated in October and coordinated by Advocates for Youth. Ottawa County Department of Public Health (OCDPH) encourages parents and care givers to continue talking with youth about how to make good decisions about sex, contraception and pregnancy.
Parents are the best sexuality educators for their children.
Teens consistently say that parents most influence their decisions about sex.
Parents want to be good sex educators, but may not always know how.
It is possible to be an ask able adult.
According to the 2013 Ottawa County Youth Assessment Survey, the average age of students who first had oral sex or sexual intercourse was 15 ½. By 12th grade, 47% of students had engaged in oral sex, 40% in sexual intercourse and 37% in sexting. www.miOttawa.org/2013YAS
In 2013, Ottawa County had 243 teen pregnancies, with only 68% being live births (166 babies born). Of these, 37 were repeat teen pregnancies (26 live births).
The high rate of chlamydia cases
in Ottawa County is also a health issue.
In 2014, there were 704 positive cases of chlamydia.
“We know it can be difficult to have conversations about sensitive topics,
but it is important for parents to talk with their children about abstinence
and sexuality.” Heather Alberda, OCDPH
Sexuality Educator www.miOttawa.org/SexEd
For more information, please contact Heather Alberda, Sexuality Educator
at email@example.com or 616-393-5774.
OCDPH Parent’s Guide to Engaging in a Sexual Health Conversation http://www.miottawa.org/Health/OCHD/pdf/FamilyGuide.pdf
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