DISTURBING INVESTIGATION THAT WILL STRIKE FEAR INTO THE HEART OF EVERY PARENT IN BRITAIN: TEEN SEX TIMEBOMB; As fury rises at schoolgirl's secret abortion a brave group of 14 year olds tell the scary truth about their sex lives ...shockingly they have NO IDEA about contraception or sexually transmitted diseases...
TEENAGERS are at risk of pregnancy or disease just because they don't know the facts of life, a shock sex survey by The People reveals today.
They confessed that they have NO idea what contraception is, or what sexually transmitted diseases are.
It comes in the week Britain was horrified by the story of Melissa Smith, 14, whose school organised a secret abortion without telling her mother.
We interviewed 14-year-old boys and girls from different schools and backgrounds. They spoke with amazing frankness and honesty to provide a unique snapshot of teenage attitudes to sex.
The Melissa Smith case left many parents believing Britain is in the grip of an underage sex epidemic. And a new survey by condom makers Durex says four in ten youngsters are having unprotected sex.
But our investigation reveals that it's not all bad news.
NONE of the girls we spoke to had lost her virginity, and just ONE boy had had full sex.
Here are their fascinating stories. Some names are changed to ensure their anonymity.
HE has had a girlfriend for four months and they had intercourse for the first time two months ago.
Peter learned about sex at the age of eight and insists the sex education he received at school three years ago was a waste of time. "By then everyone in my class already knew," he admitted.
He thinks the age of consent is 14 for a boy, but reckons it is OK to start having sex at 13. "I think by that age you're mature enough," he said.
Peter said of his first time: "I enjoyed it but I was a bit nervous."
HE has NEVER HEARD of contraception, thinks STI (sexually transmitted infection) is a kind of medical scan and does not understand what abortion means.
He asked: "What is contraception? Is that when the baby is made?" Fortunately, Simon is still a virgin, although he began dating when he was 11.
He said: "I don't think it's risky for me to have sex at my age. But does that mean I catch HIV? If my girlfriend got pregnant I'd tell my parents and stand by the girl.
"Whatever decision she made, I would follow."
HE revealed he was given oral sex by a girl five months ago and is looking forward to having full intercourse for the first time. He said: "It's the closest you can get to another person. I don't think you need to be in a relationship. It just depends who you fancy.
"My older brother taught me to love 'em and leave 'em."
Alex said he was told about sex at the age of FOUR by his his big sister. "She told me it was what happened when a boy and girl stuck their private parts together," he said. Alex knows the age of consent is 16 but thinks it is OK to start at 15. He added: "I knew a girl who got pregnant and had an abortion. I felt sorry for her."
SHE found out about sex when she was nine. And the only thing she learned from school sex education classes was how to keep her ARM PITS clean."I learned most things from older kids," she recalled.
Jill has been dating the same boy on and off since she was 12.
But she is still a virgin and insisted she will not have sex until she is ready. She said: "I don't get any pressure from my friends to have sex but we talk about it a lot.
"I've heard my first-time will be painful. I admit I'm curious."
HE has had a girlfriend for two months and touched her breasts.
They have not had full sex - yet. Joe said: "We haven't gone all the way but we've touched each other all over."
He does not think it will be long now. And when they do make love he expects it to be "scary but exhilarating". Joe said that if he got a girl pregnant he would confide in his friends before he told his parents or teachers.
But if his teachers learned of the pregnancy they would have a duty to tell both sets of parents.
Joe regards abortion as a necessary evil. "A foetus is a person and shouldn't be killed," he said.
SHE learned about the birds and bees from a sex education video at school - but referred to it as "a dirty movie". Joanne said: "They put this video on and we saw people having sex and babies born.
"I know two people at school my age who are pregnant and I think they're silly. Your teens are there so that you can have fun - not bring up kids."
HE was offered oral sex by his girlfriend of three months but turned her down.
"She only did it because she felt pressured by her mates,"he explained. He learnt about sex in the playground when he was seven. Formal sex education he regarded as a waste of time because "all they did was show us videos and everyone laughed all through them."
David said that if he got his girlfriend pregnant he would tell her to have an abortion.
HE believes people are ready to have sex at 12 - but has no idea what contraception is. Twelve or 13 is the best time to have sex," he said. "I know a couple of boys who did it then.
"I don't know what contraception means. I don't think you have to be in a loving relationship to have sex."
HE does not know what abortion or STI mean. He believes the age of consent is 18.
Jack has never had sex but has been seeing his girlfriend for a week. But he confessed he would never tell his parents about her.
SHE is still a virgin but peer pressure has made her believe she should lose her virginity by the time she is 15.
Jackie says she would never tell her parents if she had a boyfriend. And she says if she got pregnant she'd have an abortion without hesitation.
She does NOT know what contraception is or what an STI is.
She said: "I feel like I must have sex by 15 but I don't really want to. There is a lot of pressure from my friends."
THIS lad is still a virgin, but always carries a packet of condoms with him - just in case.
"I'd rather be safe than sorry," he explained.
He says his parents have told him everything he needs to know about sex - and he would not hesitate to confide in them if he got a girl pregnant.
HE does not know what an STI is, although he claimed to have had ten girlfriends.
He said he found sex education at school useful. "We learned about condoms and abortion," he said. He thinks he will wait until he is 17 and in "a stable relationship" before having sex.
SHE believes kids should have sex whenever they feel ready but is still a virgin herself.
Sarah said: "There's no point waiting till you're 16. I don't think you should set an age on it.
"But I wouldn't give in to peer pressure. I'm not that kind of girl. I do things in my own time.
"If a girl gets pregnant and she doesn't want it I think she should have an abortion."
THE sensible lad is adamant he is not yet ready for sex.
But he said: "If I got a girl pregnant I'd tell my parents and make sure I was with the girl every step of the way."
HE reckons losing his virginity will be a "roller-coaster ride".
James does not rate the sex education he received at school at the age of 12. He said: "They gave us lots of information about how a girl's body works, but ignored contraception."
HE is a virgin but thinks the legal age of consent is 18.
Richard learned about sex from friends and thinks sex education at school was rubbish.
He recalled: "We were split off from the girls in our class. They were taught about abortion and contraception but we weren't."
If our survey proves one thing it is that many youngsters are not getting good sex education.
And with latest figures showing that 8,000 girls aged 15 get pregnant every year, that is surely a national scandal.
Voice of The People - Page 8
Carries a condom with him at all times "just in case"
Lost virginity this year. Says sex education is a waste of time
Only thing she learned in sex education was to clean her arm pits
Learned about sex from teen mags and a "dirty movie" at school
Has a girlfriend but doesn't know what an abortion or an STI is
Says sex at 12 is OK but has no idea what contraception is
Had oral sex. His older brother says he should love 'em and leave 'em
Learnt facts of life in playground. Girlfriend offered him oral sex
On his tenth girlfriend but still doesn't know what an STI is
Touched girlfriend's breasts and says they will "do it" soon
Found out about sex aged eight. Says: "No point waiting to 16."
Not ready for sex. Says he would tell parents if he got a girl pregnant
Says contraception is totally ignored in sex education classes
Under pressure to have sex but doesn't know what contraception is
"What's contraception? Is that when the baby is made?" he asks.
Pals told him about sex. Only girls learn about contraception at school
Picture: SONJA HORSMAN
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|Publication:||The People (London, England)|
|Date:||May 16, 2004|
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