Birth Control for Children?

“This isn’t encouraging kids to have sex. This is about the kids who are engaging in sexual activity.” Richard Veilleux, executive director of the Maine Assembly on School-Based Health Care

Birth Control for Children?
Joe Leonardi

For years those on the left have been preaching the need to make condoms available in schools. They have used the argument that teens are going to engage in sex and the need to protect them from HIV/AIDS was and is important. For the purpose of this conversation, I will concede as fact that in today’s age with many sexually transmitted diseases back on the rise — we need to teach our children the importance of utilizing a latex barrier to help prevent those diseases.

Considering that many of these infections, most notably HPV, demonstrate a link with cervical cancer, the argument that condoms can potentially save lives, from a health care stand point, is valid. So why is an educational institution willing to discount past thought and encourage the practice of unprotected, potentially lethal sex? Why are we willing to send the message to a child that, yes, you are sexually active and the most important thing is to avoid getting pregnant, take this pill or wear this patch and all will be okay?

So if the child opts for the birth control pill or patch over a condom; who will be responsible if a child contracts HIV? Will it be the school district, the doctor or the child who wrongfully thought they were “protected?” One of the benefits to the safe sex message is that properly used condoms can possibly prevent pregnancy as well as disease. Abstinence actually does prevent both but liberal thinking does not allow, into the conversation, that fact.

Another question to pose; is the child of legal age to make a medical decision for herself? The child is not of age to enter into a legal contract, so is the young girl now able to sign a medical informed consent form? Will an eleven year old be able to understand the plausible side effects? Even if they do comprehend and experience an adverse reaction; will they tell their parents? Considering the medication was given without parental knowledge it would not be a stretch to think that the child would not tell the parent.

What about possible drug interactions? If the parent takes the child to the family doctor for another condition and the family doctor is unaware the child is on the birth control pill and prescribes another drug, if there is a negative reaction — who is responsible?

We are now seeing, in post menopausal women, a possible link between breast cancer and hormone replacement therapy. What can of worms are we going to open when we introduce adult level hormones into an immature reproductive system and body? Does being on the pill make one more susceptible to breast cancer?
From drgreen.org, “According to Dr. Leslie Bernstein, et al., looked at many studies, some showing a risk from birth control pills, others showing no risk at all. They did a careful meta-analysis of all the data and concluded that the risk of breast cancer does increase with prolonged use of the pill. (Relationship of hormone use to cancer risk. Monograph of the National Cancer Institute 12:137 1992). At 120 months or ten years of use the relative risk was 1.38. These women were 1.38 times as likely to get breast cancer as those who had not used the pill.”

If these children, start on the pill prior to the age of eighteen, stay on it until they are twenty eight, they will be past the ten year mark. If they develop breast cancer who is liable? Did the child, at eleven years old, understand the potential risk of developing breast cancer into their thirties, forties, or fifties and beyond. Again, can the child make an educated, responsible, informed, consenting decision? I say no! And I say shame on the doctor who irresponsibly, without parental knowledge and consent, prescribes a controlled, hormone based, medication to a child.

This decision negatively impacts true safe sex efforts, parental responsibility, parental rights and puts children at greater potential risk. One must question the motivation behind this decision. Is it about the children? Are the proponents well meaning, but short sighted? Or is there another agenda?

When you examine the facts — this zeal to prevent pregnancy, via prescription drugs, could potentially prove fatal.

Joe Leonardi

Advertisements

13 Comments

Filed under AIDS, Birth Control, Cancer, HIV, Liberal, Maine, Maine Middle School, Pregnancy, STDs

13 responses to “Birth Control for Children?

  1. jenuinejen

    Great post! Found your site from a comment at MommyZabs. I am astounded that there is a school district seriously considering giving birth control pills to such young children. Thanks for your insight.

  2. Thank you for pointing out what I could not do. Very well Written.
    Ravenii

  3. Hi Jen and Rav

    Thanks for your kind words and taking the time to comment.

    Keep up the dialogue.

    Joe

  4. Bud

    Thinking about what the school system is doing really astounds me. It would make much more sense to get the parents involved. The argument that the child is afraid to approach their parents with this issue, mental health or drug abuse is absolutely wrong. If the child is afraid it’s because they know what they are doing is wrong . This is where the parents need to be brought in so they can help the child make the right decisions or get the right treatment and then be able to follow up and support the child.

    Since when does the school system do a better job of handling our kids than we do? It’s like saying the government is more responsible with our money than we are. Instead of pushing the parents out of the way we need more involvment not less. If the parents are so stupid/naive that they can not help their child handle their problems then it would be prudent to have the child and parent go into counseling. This is where the school can help – not by circumventing the person who is ultimately responsible for these children.

    It amazes me how shallow our teachers and their Administration can be (certainly not all but too many). These are the people we trust to teach our children? It’s a very sad situation.

  5. Pete Lyden

    Not sure about Maine law, but will hazard a guess that fifteen (at least) and below is under the age of consent.

    Wouldn’t the distribution of birth control to a person under the age of consent, if that person were to go on to have sex, make on an accessory to statutory rape?

    I could be wrong about how the law views this, but it seems to follow from a common-sense standpoint.

  6. Hi Pete,

    I didn’t even get into age of consent. Age of consent does not have anything to do with being a legal adult with the ability to make certain decisions, i.e. enter into a contract, vote, join the military without parental consent, etc….

    Thanks for the comment and keep up the dialogue.

    Joe

  7. Thanks for the comments on my blog.

    As a registered nurse and mother, I completely agree with these views.

    As mentioned in this post, birth control pills can interact with other medications. Particularly antibiotics, which are commonly prescribe for children. Many adults have become pregnant while taking antibiotics and birth control control pills- I’m sure many children would do the same.

    Thanks for the great post!

  8. Alex

    You’re entitled to your opinion, of course, but you ignored some important information. For one, kids need permission to attend this clinic. Two, you talk about HIV/AIDS as if birth control will lead kids to skip condoms. This is what comprehensive sex education is for. And, you have to realize there is so much more to birth control than the name would suggest. No girl should have to suffer through painful periods or other conditions aggravated by the menstrual cycle. As for breast cancer, maybe the pill slightly raises the risk, but it definitely decreases the risk of several other cancers. Do your research.

  9. Alex,

    Thank you for taking the time to post. I did not ignore information.

    I have done my research.

    Getting permission to use the clinic and informed consent for hormone based medication are two totally different things. A minor can not give informed consent for treatment. If something goes wrong the doctor will be, rightfully, hung out to dry. Waiver or no waiver, permission or no permission a good lawyer will destroy the doctor.

    The birth control pill used to treat a medical condition, such as dysmenorrhea is readily accepted and monitored differently. I doubt a child would have to go behind their parents back for this type of treatment. Unless the parent has objections to medication, then there are many natural alternatives.

    The slight increase in breast cancer I cited happens over a ten year period, based upon women starting the pill between the ages of 18-25. When their bodies and reproductive systems has reached adult maturation. There are no long term studies on young, pre-teen girls taking the pill, because it is not intended for them. Lately in the news, there are reports of children dying from over the counter cold and flu medicine — don’t you think a parent should be able to monitor a prescription medication with a list of side effects considerably larger? If the parent does not know that the child is on this drug they may miss important signs of an adverse reaction. This is a drug!

    The other forms of cancer it has been previously reported to decrease, longer term studies are showing this is not necessarily the case, to fend of the lawsuits that the drug companies know will be coming they took a preemptive measure and it is one of the reasons they have lowered the amount of hormone in the drug.

    As far as comprehensive sex ed. I am sorry and perhaps I am selling them short, but 11, 12, 13, 14 year olds I know are not going to grasp the consequences of unprotected sex. If they are on the pill, in their minds, they are going to think they are covered.

    Also are you telling me that they are going to take the pill and use condoms? What color is the sky in your world? Next you are going to tell me they will use the sponge, spermicidal gel, an IUD, the rhythm method and withdrawal just in case. The reason they are taking the pill is not to use any other form. A properly used condom has a very good success rate in preventing pregnancy and STD’s and the only risk is if you have a latex sensitivity.

    I never advocated for not teaching sex ed. I didn’t speak out against condoms. I didn’t speak out against the proper use of medication for treatment of conditions with supervision, I spoke out against medicating a child without parental knowledge or consent. I spoke out about the long term damage other STD’s besides HIV/AIDS they are risking exposure. I have treated more patients under 35 who have had hysterectomies due to cervical cancer secondary to HPV than I care to recount. And every-time I see this it sickens me because I know it could have been prevented!

    I suggest you recheck your research.

    Again, thank you for commenting and keep up the dialogue.

    Joe

  10. Pete

    “As mentioned in this post, birth control pills can interact with other medications. Particularly antibiotics, which are commonly prescribe for children. Many adults have become pregnant while taking antibiotics and birth control control pills- I’m sure many children would do the same.”

    But what you didn’t mention is that when the child pregnancy rate goes up in Maine, they will say, “See! We told you these kids were bad! It would be even worse if not for our pills!”

    Just wait and see…

    Alex says:
    “No girl should have to suffer through painful periods or other conditions aggravated by the menstrual cycle.”

    This is simply the most bizarre contradiction of nature and natural processes that I think I’ve ever read. Are you from Southern California, Alex?

  11. nikitazkya

    The problem that started this whole controversy was an increase in pre-teen pregnancy in Portland. I believe the problem is really a cultural one. A great number of the children were African immigrants, in their culture, life just starts earlier. I think throwing birth control at the problem will only lead to new problems. We need to either accept that African culture is going to be different, even in Portland Maine, or we need to seriously educate the immigrant population in Portland (children & Adults) on the taboos of this behavior in America.

  12. jon

    Hey I am a college student and this is good background what I can use on our project.

    I think it is stupid to allow birth control to young kids. Back 30 years ago kids wouldn’t learn anything about sex till they were 12. Now they are learning how to use birth control at 11!

    Most comments that I see on sites that are for birth control in schools say, “Kids will have sex whether we like it or not minus well let them have contraception.”
    That is wrong 100%.
    Parents need to do a better job at parenting in general.

    I find it ironic to see schools promoting abstinence and birth control at the same exact time.

  13. в итоге: мне понравилось…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s