The story of girls today is a good news/bad news story. Never before have girls in most of the developed world faced a better shot at a good, successful life in terms of education and fulfilling employment. Starting in 2010, women in the United States are outpacing men in terms of employment. Women are also ruling the board on education, with more ladies earning a bachelor's degree than their male peers. And The Atlantic reports that of the 15 top professions to watch in the coming decades, 13 of them are dominated by women. It's not a bad time to be a woman in terms of career development and education. That's the good news.
The bad news is that women are not doing as well in another important area of life: sexuality and relationships. The only winners of the sexual revolution have been the pornographers and other low-life misogynists. It ended up hurting all the rest far more profoundly than anyone ever imagined. Some men might claim it brought plenty of fun, but it aided only the basest part of the male sexual nature which seeks as many women as possible for the least amount of commitment and consideration. The sexual revolution made men neither better nor, as the research consistently shows, happier. However, setting sexuality free from the protective confines of marriage has hurt women more profoundly. And it starts hurting them at very young ages.
This very bad part of the bad news about women is the subject of a new book by two well-respected board-certified ob/gyns who both have long and distinguished careers helping women have sexually healthy lives. Joe McIlhaney and Freda Bush's Girls Uncovered: New Research on What America's Sexual Culture Does to Young Women (Moody) is a sharp and well-informed case for why parents, teachers, coaches, and youth leaders need to be mindful of the sexual experimentation among and manipulation of our teen girls. Consider that we give our teenagers more instruction for getting a driver's license or entering college than on how to form healthy, lasting, male-female romantic relationships that lead them into what the overwhelming majority of young people call their number one life goal: a happy, enduring marriage.
A Gateway Drug
As the father of three teen daughters and one "tween," this book struck a deep chord with me. As a researcher on such matters, it greatly impressed me. I am deeply concerned about the world my girls are increasingly moving into, and I want to make sure that that world treats them with the respect and dignity they very much deserve. Especially the boys. If my wife and I succeed in helping our daughters remain chaste, we will be well in the minority. While only 20 percent of young women answered that oral sex is sex (such a question reminds me of the Saturday Night Live "Celebrity Jeopardy" skit where Darrell Hammond's Sean Connery is stumped by the category "Colors That End in Urple"), more than 40 percent of 15- to 17-year-olds have had oral sex, while 70 percent of 18-year-olds have done so. And it doesn't get better the older they get. For 20- and 21-year-old women, more than 80 percent report having had both vaginal and oral sex. More than 25 percent report having had anal sex. More disturbing, more than 40 percent of early post-teen women report having engaged in oral sex in the last thirty days.