Christian Teen Dating: How to Talk to Your Kids

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Teen dating. No big deal. That is until YOUR teen starts dating. That’s when everything changes.

Suddenly, the conversations get real…scary. Thinking about your son or daughter out in the world without supervision is daunting. Unfortunately, the inevitable will happen. Sooner or later, your child will be alone with the opposite sex.

So how do you prepare your teen, especially if you are a Christian parent? What are the real facts, and is it possible to teach him to wait when the stats are so discouraging?

In this post, we are going to talk about teen dating with hard facts (statistics). And how to talk to your teen as a Christian parent.

Teens standing in the middle of the road with only the legs of a girl and boy showing. The girl is on her tippy toes.

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The Facts about Teen Dating

1. 41% of teens admit to having sexual intercourse-CDC.

2. 30% of those teens surveyed have had sex in the last 3 months. And 46% of them did not use a condom the last time they had sex-CDC.

3. 1 in 4 teens will contract an STD every year.

4. 10 million new STD’s are reported each year. Those most infected are between the ages of 15-24-CDC.  

5. About 80% of sexually active people are infected with an STD at some point in their lives-Teen Vogue.

6. 50% of all gonorrhea diagnosis are those between the ages of 15-24. The rate of reported gonorrhea cases increased by 15.5% for persons aged 15–19 years in 2017.

7. 65% of all chlamydia diagnosis are between the age of 15-24, representing 62.6% of all reported chlamydia cases.

8. There is a 30% chance of picking up a sexual disease even if it’s a one-time encounter-WebMD.

19. 80% of Americans with herpes don’t know it.

10. 21% of all new HIV diagnoses are young people between age 13-24. 

So how do you keep your teen from being a number in one of these statistics? I would love to tell you the best secret to keep your child from being sexually active is a simple conversation, but it is not.

It’s many conversations, coupled with a strong relationship, prayer, and lots of wisdom. Even then it is a leap of faith that your teen will do the right thing. You have to consider friends, locations, curfew, and about every other factor to keep them out of harm’s way.

Most of all, it is about passing down a legacy of faith.

Related: The Best Way to Change Your Teen Through Prayer

Estranged: Finding Hope When Your Family Falls Apart book

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Passing Down a Legacy of Faith

The best way to teach your kids to wait is to pass down a legacy of faith. A legacy of faith includes teaching abstinence.

Abstinence is the only way to talk to your teen about dating.  In order to do this, you have to have your own faith. If you don’t have a faith, then you can’t pass it down to your kids.

Related: Why I Teach My Kids to Wait Until Marriage

Your convictions will be transferred to your child whether you like it or not. If you don’t believe in the Bible and practice biblical parenting then your kids probably won’t adhere to biblical principles either.

A child with no real faith or biblical training has no reason to practice abstinence. It is too hard to wait to have sex unless there is a deep moral conviction. Peer pressure and lack of conviction will eventually win over anything you say.

The stats clearly show this.

Over the years, I have seen how families that practice faith raise kids with a strong moral compass. These kids are willing to wait until marriage because they want to be safe in multiple ways.

First of all, kids with faith realize Biblical principles will keep them out of trouble. They know having premarital sex has big consequences such as STD’s. (And now lawsuits and possible jail time for sexual misunderstandings.)

The Bible has been warning about the consequences of premarital sex for centuries. Now more than ever, they can count on it for real truth and guidance.

Second, they realize the emotional consequences of giving themselves to someone other than a spouse. There is no guarantee of loyalty or commitment. They know this is not real love, but lust. Real love waits.

Related: How to Approach God as Parents

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Third, kids who embrace a faith know they don’t want to have sex before marriage because it is wrong, and it will hurt their relationship with God and their parents.

I want to encourage you to consider developing your faith now. And developing an open and honest relationship with your child.  Don’t wait until you have a teen to start talking about morality and God.

It is important to plant those seeds early in your child’s heart. Preaching at them won’t work. Faith has to be a lifestyle of living biblically as a family. It is a part of your everyday life.

A relationship with your child and faith is better than a few sex talks and a condom they probably won’t use all the time.

This is your only real chance to keep your kids safe. Don’t let your child be another statistic. This trend needs to stop. Let it stop with your family.

Related: How to Get to Your Child’s Heart

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Book on Family Estrangement from a Biblical Point of View

Are you experiencing family problems? Perhaps you and a loved one are no longer speaking. Don’t go another day without reading this book. It addresses family problems and estrangement from a biblical point of view. Estranged: Finding Hope When Your Family Falls Apart is on Amazon or in your favorite digital store. 

Estranged: Finding Hope When Your Family Falls Apart book.

Get Creating Family Memories for FREE in exchange for your email. If you get this book, it will help you build a good relationship with your kids so that when the hard times come (teen years), you will be able to weather the storm.

Scroll down or look to the side to sign up. You can also get it at your favorite bookstore.

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Continue the conversation on Facebook and join the group Christian Parenting and Family. This is a place for moms with preschool age kids or older to talk about their struggles with parenting, family life, education, or marriage. You will find biblically based advise from other moms who want to raise godly kids.

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Julie Plagens

32 Comments

  1. Rikki Ridgeway on November 1, 2018 at 5:23 am

    I’ll admit that even though my daughter is only three-years-old, this thought still creeps into my head every now and again. As soon as she is older, we will start talking to her about this very important topic. I waited until I was absolutely sure that I was ready, and committed before I gave up my virginity at the age of 20.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:07 pm

      It will be here before you know it. I hope you will start developing faith now. It is not too early to start talking about God and values.

  2. Leah Weber on October 31, 2018 at 9:33 am

    I only have a 2 year old so this isn’t really on my mind yet but so important to think about for the future!

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:12 pm

      Actually, I wrote this to parents with 2-year-olds because faith starts early. It is important to start talking to your kids about God when they are young. It is hard to start instilling values at 10. By then, kids already have been exposed to many things.

  3. Berlin on October 31, 2018 at 7:00 am

    I like the advice you gave about abstinence. This is very true.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:12 pm

      Thanks, I am glad you enjoyed the article.

  4. Wendy Polisi on October 30, 2018 at 1:11 pm

    It is crazy that so many of our youth are at such high risk. STD’s need to be treated seriously; be protected!

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:17 pm

      Or perhaps just wait! I realize a lot of kids won’t wait, so protection is definitely better. Unfortunately, the stats say that no matter how much parents say to use protection, they aren’t. It is a terrible problem. Teaching values and morals early will help kids to understand why it is important to wait until marriage.

  5. Heather on October 30, 2018 at 12:20 am

    This is all great information. My husband works in cytology and my daughters are growing up knowing probably too much about STDs. But we know it’s so important for them to understand the risks.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:18 pm

      I am glad that they are aware of the risks. I am sure he has some gross stories.

  6. David Elliott on October 29, 2018 at 7:36 pm

    I definitely think teaching your children the proper attitude about relationships and sex in context is the best way to preventing them from getting some of these STIs. It’s really hard with a world which is teaching them the opposite. Which is why engagement with your children is so very important.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:19 pm

      I read a lot of your posts. You seem like you are really involved with your kids. Thanks for reading.

  7. Eric kay on October 29, 2018 at 3:41 pm

    There needs to be more abstinence taught to our kids. Thanks for sharing.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:22 pm

      Thanks, Eric. I agree. We live in such a sexual world now. Things are not like they used to be. Thanks for reading.

  8. Tatyanna on October 29, 2018 at 12:24 pm

    I don’t share the same perspective but I definitely appreciate reading about your views. It’s always important to have open communication regarding different viewpoints.

    — Tatyanna
    https://www.apopoflife.com

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:23 pm

      Thanks for your comment. I totally get it.

  9. Jennifer L on October 29, 2018 at 4:33 am

    Abstinence teaching is great but there also needs to be a discussion of safe sex practices. Thank you for bringing up a topic that I feel doesn’t get opened enough and while we may differ in certain aspects, I love knowing your perspective.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:27 pm

      Thanks, Jennifer. I appreciate your comment. I agree that if kids are going to have sex, they use protection. I believe there already is a lot of safe sex talk, but kids aren’t listening. The stats show this. That’s why I think it important to have a relationship with God, and to introduce faith early. Morality goes a lot further than a safe sex talk. Waiting is a conviction that comes with morality.

  10. Yuli Armstrong on October 29, 2018 at 4:15 am

    Thank you for being out spoken about faith, conviction and the legacy we leave behind to our children and even their children. I do whole heartedly agree on the importance of the most important relationship they will have, is with God.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:28 pm

      I am so glad you agree. I don’t think my opinion is very popular but it is the truth. Thanks for reading.

  11. Chloe @callmecoco.co on October 29, 2018 at 1:14 am

    I don’t really share your opinion and I don’t think teaching abstinence is the only solution.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:30 pm

      I hear you. Safe sex is an option, but the stats show that the safe sex talks aren’t working. Teens have heard this a million times, but they still don’t do it. Having a faith in God motivates kids to wait because they believe in something better than a hookup.

  12. Amina on October 28, 2018 at 8:51 pm

    I love this post so much!! Passing down a legacy of faith is extremely important for families and children this days. Abstinence is truly the Key!!! I waited till marriage and practiced Abstinence because of my faith and I can definitely say that was the best decision of my life!!! More kids need to start paying attention to their Spiritual relationship with God

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:32 pm

      It’s funny because many people regret having sex before marriage, but I have never heard anyone ever say they regret waiting until marriage. There is no shame or emotional damage when you wait. Thanks for reading.

  13. Alejandra Graf on October 28, 2018 at 8:16 pm

    Yes, we have to open up the conversation and let kids know what we think about hard topics like this one.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:33 pm

      Thanks for your comment. This is so true!

  14. Diana on October 28, 2018 at 2:52 pm

    Abstinence-only education failed me and I was pressured into things by a boy that to this day still makes me feel violated. So while I think it’s important to teach abstinence, I think it’s also important to teach them how to have safe sex, and what sex is. Otherwise, it makes kids especially vulnerable to someone who is more knowledgeable than them, especially girls.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:36 pm

      I am so sorry, Diana. I can’t imagine how you feel. I certainly don’t know all the details, but I know that God never fails. Maybe the sex teaching did, but God is true and His principles always work. Thanks for reading.

  15. Alice Mola on October 28, 2018 at 1:51 pm

    While abstinence if effective to prevent STD’s, teaching teenagers safe sex is an indispensable tool. My perspective is very different from yours, but I respect your views and how you raise your family 🙂

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:37 pm

      I definitely believe that teens need to have protection, but I think they are already getting the safe sex talk. Everyone has heard this a million times, yet they don’t do it. The stats show kids like risky behavior.

  16. Tren on October 27, 2018 at 7:15 am

    This is an important topic. I work w at risk adolescences 9-21. Unfortunately many parents don’t discuss this openly, for many reasons.

    • Julie Plagens on November 8, 2018 at 8:39 pm

      Many parents don’t have their own faith, so they have nothing to pass down to their kids. Faith starts at home with your kids and it starts early. It is important to know what you believe so you can pass it down. Thanks for reading.

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