Making the Right Decisions and Preventing Teenage Pregnancy
As you grow older you are going to be making more decisions
that impact your life. Where you go to college, whether your play soccer or volleyball
and who you choose as a date to the dance are all a few examples. While every decision
may seem small, they contribute to help form the young adult you’re becoming.
One decision you may face is whether or not you’re ready
to have sex. This is a personal decision that will have a significant impact on
your life. It requires maturity and you need to be able to think about your decision
and how it might impact your life. As a teenager, you have a lot going on. Making
the decision to have sex may not be something your ready for. You may not have a
fully developed brain with the capability to make the right decisions to prevent
Read below to learn more about your development and how it
might affect you making right decisions.
Your Brain is Still Developing: Babies on the Teenage
It’s a fact: Teens and adults do not have the same brains.
They think and reason in different ways. Until you get past your early 20s, part
of your brain (the prefrontal cortex) is NOT FULLY DEVELOPED! That is the part of
your brain that controls judgment, planning for the future and understanding the
consequences of your actions (like preventing teenage pregnancy). Your whole life
may hang in the balance, but your brain has not yet fully developed to think through
your choices and make decisions based on giving you the best outcome in the long
You Get Caught-up In the Moment: Hot & Sticky Situation
Fast forward to a weekend in the future. You’re dating a
guy and find yourself alone with him in a car. You’re feeling waves of desire and
emotions you feel may be love. You weren’t prepared for this situation and you don’t
have condoms, you’re not taking birth control, and you have no way of preventing
a pregnancy. You’re caught up in the moment. You won’t go all the way, right?
According to statistics, there's a good chance you might.
Your underdeveloped prefrontal cortex in your brain should be screaming about disease,
teenage pregnancy, rejection and gossip all over the school. Instead, your feelings
may likely take over completely. You love the intensity, romance, risk and living
for the moment, but your brain may not be equipped to warn you that this may be
Focus on Your Long Term Interests
It’s hard to believe that you are not yet capable of making
wise decisions for yourself or that your brain is not yet up to the careful calculations
needed to act on your own best long-term interests. Just remember: Even your most
cherished longings and emotions could push you to make decisions that feel good
today but you’ll regret tomorrow. If you focus on your long-term interest and who
you want to be, you can make some good decisions that will help you get there.
Feeling torn? Find an adult you trust and talk to him/her
about your future, your boyfriend, and risks of pregnancy. Try to postpone ALL-important
decisions until you've had time to talk things over with the adult. And in even
the most heated situations, remember to focus on your future and make the right
Learn about preventing teenage pregnancy from experts at BeingGirl.com.