Not sure when to start giving your teenager access to birth control, if ever? Parents in France are about to be taken right out of that equation. The country will begin providing free contraception to teenage girls starting at age 15, without parental consent. As a mother, I want to say they're overstepping.
I want to. But I can't.
The idea of kids actually getting birth control without us weighing in seems counterintuitive, doesn't it? We are their PARENTS! How dare they do something this important without consulting us? We are here to keep them safe, and that means helping them make all their decisions. We are ultimately responsible for them.
Well, sadly, they already are doing it. Sex that is. Hundreds of thousands of kids start having sex every year without asking their parents. And here in the United States at least, some 330,000 end up pregnant because of it.
The lack of access to birth control does not stop kids from having sex. Nor -- the studies show us -- does the ability to get it mean that they will have sex.
This is why the French are going to give free birth control to the girls 15 through 18. to stop teen pregnancy. To make it safer. To help the kids who aren't talking to their parents about sex but are having it anyway.
So why not give girls access? If they're already making that life-changing decision without us, is it too much to hand off the reins to ensure they're doing it safely?
I'd rather my kid talked to me; and I plan to be pro-active about this. But most important? As a parent? I want my child to be safe. Period.
What would you do if this came to America?
Image via treyevan/Flickr
Going to baseball games
Riding bike rides in the nice weather
Playing outside after work/school
Going for walks outside