Teen dating influnce
Television, movies, music, and magazines contain a great deal of sexual content and little discussion of emotions, responsibilities, or risks associated with sexual activity (eg, pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, birth control, and condom use).
Sex is portrayed in both word and deed, with characters discussing sex they have had or want to have, myriad jokes and innuendo, advice from magazines about techniques to “drive your partner wild,” and scenes portraying activities from “making out” to intercourse.
These scripts are important in themselves and may also influence sexual health, pleasure, risk-taking, and dysfunction.
Within North American media, the dominant sexual script expects men to pursue sexual relationships, prioritize sex and pleasure over emotion, treat women as sexual objects, and reject homosexual feelings or “feminine” behavior.
In 2005, more than two-thirds of television programs contained sexual content, but portrayals of safer sex were rare.
However, little information is available about moderators and mediators of these effects.
These relationships held after accounting for a dozen other factors that are associated with both media habits and sexual behavior, such as religiosity and parents’ monitoring of their children’s activities and whereabouts.
In 1 of these studies, researchers found associations between exposure to sexual content and later pregnancy.
Such studies could be used to inform interventions to reduce negative outcomes and increase positive media effects.
Policy makers should stimulate the development of such interventions, including tools to help parents identify and manage negative media influences on their children’s sexual well-being and development and dissemination of innovative media literacy programs related to sexual health.