Saying little word 'no' can make a big difference in life

Saying little word 'no' can make a big difference in life

Saying little word 'no' can make a big difference in life

America needs to adopt a "just say no" policy to reduce teen pregnancy – so says a leading abstinence advocate.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has released a report that cites religious and moral beliefs as the main reason why females in their teens (ages 15-19) have not had intimate relations. According to the report, almost one-third of female respondents (32.5%) cited it was "against [their] religion or morals" for never having such relations. More than one-fourth of male respondents (26.2%) cited the same reason – but 35.3% of the male teens said it was because they "haven't found the right person yet."

Leslee Unruh of Abstinence Clearinghouse, who had a role in the study, offers her analysis.

"Abstinence until marriage [is] a healthier choice," she begins. "… We need to be out there talking about it and really tell young people if you want to be happier and healthier and live longer and do well in life and actually make more money, wait until marriage – and then be faithful after marriage."

Unruh, Leslee Unruh

So much of what young people are taught about the subject is in sex education classes in school, but Unruh contends the most important teachers are the mother and father.

"It still works to say no. 'No' is a love word. I tell my children – [and] my grandchildren now – that the most important word they need to learn is 'no.' I think we're starting to see things are getting out of hand … and it's because we don't know that little word, 'no.'"

Unruh is pleased to see that one of the most common reasons young girls and young women offer for not being intimate is their faith.

See related story by The Washington Stand