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11yo Had Sexual Experience With Neighbor

Published: August 2, 2010
Dear TeenHealthFX,
i am a mother of an 11 yr old girl whom i just found out had a sexual expierience with my 12.5 yr old neighbor...i called police dept on this other child...i tried to get her on birth control through a free teen clinic and lady claimed she was too young and if i brought her there cps would be called! how ignorant! please help
Signed: 11yo Had Sexual Experience With Neighbor

Dear 11yo Had Sexual Experience With Neighbor,

 

TeenHealthFX is also in full support of the clinic policy, that an 11yo not be put on birth control as a child this age should definitely not be sexually active in any way. FX can also understand that CPS would become involved if a parent was seen as allowing their 11yo child to be sexually active as an 11yo is not considered legally of age to consent to sex in any state in this U.S. and a parent who knowingly allowed or encouraged it in any way would be seen as legally responsible. While we certainly understand where the staff member at the free clinic is coming from, we also appreciate your need for some guidance with this situation and possible frustration at being told what you can’t do rather than in getting recommendations about what you can do to help your daughter.  So rather than resorting to putting your daughter on birth control, consider the following:

·         Educate your daughter. It is important that your daughter be educated about sex and about relationships. She needs to understand that she is too young to be sexually active, that there are a lot of considerations that go into being sexually active, and that at this point in her life her main focus should be going into developing friendships, NOT serious dating or sexual relationships. If you need help in how to talk to your daughter about this, consider having this discussion in the presence of, and with the help of, your family doctor. You can also find helpful books or websites for guidance with this such as WebMD’s Talking to Your Kids About Sex, 4Parents.gov Talking to Your Pre-Teen or Teen About Waiting, and check out the books listed on the Rutgers answer sex ed, honestly site.

·         Ensure your daughter is well-supervised by adults. If you do not feel your daughter is in a place right now to make good judgments for herself when it comes to relating to members of the opposite sex or making decisions about sex than she needs to be more thoroughly supervised. She cannot be left alone without a trusted adult supervising her, or in any situation where she would have the opportunity to participate in any kind of inappropriate behaviors with members of the opposite sex. As parents, it is our responsibility to make sure our children have the adequate supervision they need given where they are intellectually, emotionally, and socially.

·         Consider meeting with a mental health professional. Young girls can be drawn to dating situations and sexual experiences because of certain underlying emotional issues. It would be helpful for you to take your daughter for a consultation with a clinical social worker or psychologist to find out if there are any emotional issues that need to be addressed so that this kind of behavior does not continue to be a problem. If you find that you are feeling unsure about how to effectively deal with this situation, a therapist could also assist you in how to best relate and respond to your daughter around this issue in a way that will be most helpful to her.

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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