What YOU Can Do
The Harrisonburg and Rockingham County teen pregnancy rate is a problem, and we need your help. Taking action is necessary in lowering the teen pregnancy rate in Harrisonburg and Rockingham County, and we believe everyone can help fight against teen pregnancy. If you are unsure what YOU can do, listed below are ways you can get involved.
Teens | Parents & Guardians | Community Members | Additional Resources
Talk to your families.
Sex and relationships are complicated and involve some difficult choices. While it can be uncomfortable, it's important to talk to your parents, guardians, and family members about their values and get their input as you make decisions regarding your relationships. Check out some of the resources below on how to talk to your parents about sex and relationships.
Educating yourself on all the facts will allow you to make healthy decisions for yourself and engage in healthy relationships. You can get a lot of accurate and useful information by talking to a health care provider, teacher, school nurse, or other caring adults in your life. The websites at the bottom of the page also great resources.
As a parent, you are the most influential person in your child's life; giving you the opportunity to help protect your child against teen pregnancy. While many children receive sexual health education through school, talking with your children at home is extremely important. In fact, many professionals believe parents should be the main sex educators. Not only has it been found that parents and children who have open communication about sex have better relationships, but they also make healthier decisions about sex. Often parents and youth avoid talking about sex because they feel uncomfortable, or don't know how to start the conversation, but there are many ways to limit these fears.
As parents we want what is best for our children, and that means talking with and educating our children about sex. These conversations should not be limited to just the physical aspects of sex, but should discuss the topics of love and relationships as well.
Start the Conversations
at a young age. The earlier you begin open communication, the more comfortable your child will feel coming to you as they get older.
Make Teachable Moments
during daily life. Start your conversation by using an example of sexual risk taking from today's media, television, or daily life.
Don't be Nervous.
Many parents find their child is relieved when their parents talk with them about sex because they have wanted to have an open conversation and ask questions.
to your children. Listening is incredibly important if you want to have an open discussion with your child.
That is accurate and age appropriate. If you aren't sure about something or what constitutes age appropriate information do some research before talking with your child.
for your child to talk and ask questions. If your child feels you are lecturing them, there won't be any kind of conversation.
Discuss the pleasurable aspect of sexuality.
It is very important that while you discuss the health and responsibility components of sex, you don't leave out the idea that sex is pleasurable.
Educate yourself on the facts of teen pregnancy and unhealthy teen relationships, as well as what can be done to reduce the risks and improve outcomes for our youth. Attend events and support local efforts to prevent teen pregnancy.
Connect with Teens
It is important for young people to be connected with responsible, non-parent adults. You can make a difference in the lives of the teens you know by providing support and being a positive role model.