Meet what could be the youngest grandfather, Shem Davies 29, in the world. This is his family.
When Shem was 15 years old, he had a daughter. His daughter is now 14 and just made Shem a Pap-pap. While there has clearly been a host of bad decisions made along the way, what is going to happen to that poor new baby? How did Shem raise his daughter while he was still a child and not ingrain it her head how difficult it is to be not only a parent, but a teenage one at that.(More information) Did he want this to happen? Was he just never properly educated himself and could never pass it on to his child? And I thought only this kind of craziness happened in places like Texas.
Texas is the land of ‘abstinence only’ education with 94% of schools (in 2009) educating 3.7 million kids. (Source and a really good article) Abstinence only focuses on the idea that abstinence is the only way to protect yourself 100% from unwanted pregnancies and STIs. It focuses on the times that birth control and condoms falter. Results? Teenage pregnancy in Texas not only rose higher than before ‘abstinence only,’ and more than 50 percent higher than the national average, but number one in repeat births. Presidential candidate, Governor Rick Perry is in full support of teaching Texas teens this way and has to tell you, “from my own personal life, abstinence works.”
Clearly, some sort of sex education needs to be taking place to prevent things like 29 year grandparents. On top of that, can we add in some maturity/grow the hell up lessons too? This is obviously a very difficult and awkward subject to bring up. How am I going to do this in a second language/culture? I’m really glad to hear that many Volunteers have successful life skills camps and seeing things like Shem and Rick Perry’s opinion make me think I need to bite the bullet here and get something started out in the local high school. It’ll be a lot of work and won’t reach many of the kids. It might not be much, but a few hours of awkwardness (and let’s be real here, I’m awkward everyday, everywhere I am) is worth sparing just one pair of Thai kids trying to raise one themselves.