WHERE DID WE LOSE TRACK AS A COUNTRY AND AS A SOCIETY IN GENERAL IN BRINGING UP OUR TEENAGERS? By Mungai

As one philosophical saying goes, if you want to analyze the future prospect of an ideal state or society and gauge whether it will flourish, analyze their offspring’s. The growth of the off springs. How they cope, react and adapts to different evolving time changes this a lot about their future.

That’s why the recent report about teenager’s sexual irresponsible activity sent shock waves among the Kenyans.

At present times living in this world where there is a myriad of challenges, hard economic times, joblessness among the youths coupled by desperate times and this life is proving to be a little bit harder than yester years. Times are harder and making life worthy living calls one to dare to go an extra mile and total dedication to one’s life.

According to a recent study which was released by the Centre for the study of adolescence, indicated that young people are engaging in promiscuous sex at an early age leading to unwanted pregnancies and school drop outs among the girls.

In the actual fact, if the report is anything to go by it seems as if our ideal state which we want to build into an actual state is delving into a downward spiral. The report has irked Kenyans as Kenya is a more conservative society where parents or guardians hardly talk sex with their children.

Our purported leaders who are required to offer leadership are always busy politicking, strategizing the next course, 2012 general elections. The subject issues which can help the common Kenyans are blown off and out of that proportion by their bad politicking. The matters which are of grave concern that requires adequate attention aren’t attended to and they don’t add a voice to the raging debate.

With the released report, no formal attention or a word has been given by the government and from our leaders or how we can avert this looming alarming calamity and a ticking time bomb which will cause great ramifications. If you happen to reiew the shenanigans that receive a lot of attention in this state of ours, proves the beyond the doubt that we are a reserved state.

In these hard economic times most Kenyans especially the parents are spending most of their quality time tied to their 7 to 5 jobs, hustling around in trying to provide the basic social amenities and to live a better life. The allotment of time to other issues like spending time with the children has been erased to most Kenyan Minds.

This anomaly has left most teenagers at the mercy of the world which is discarding it’s moral values. This void has been filled by the accessibility of the information Technology, where young people are increasingly consuming sexual explicit media, magazines, videos, internet and mobile phones.

According to the report of the centre for the study of adolescence, indicated that girls as young as 12 years old are engaging in prostitution that is selling their bodies for pretty things such as mobile phone airtime, chips and even sanitary pads. And many atr opting not to use protection, even though they are fully aware of the dangers of unsafe sex and different partners in 6 months. What’s more, they are spending almost as much energy and their actions secret from parents and guardians.

The study carried out among both urban and rural youths aged between 12-19 years showed a worrying trend of increased sexual activity. The survey involved 4766 students in 125 secondary schools. Nearly 65 percent of those surveyed recommended that sex education be taught in schools and parents be invited to forums where sexual health is discussed.

An article which was earlier carried out by the Daily Nation about sexual activities in one of the slums further proves the point. The article which highlighted a slum in Nyeri, called Witemere, where it was claimed that sex pests are looming in that slum luring young girls. And due to poverty, desperation and hunger has made these young girls to be easy prey and makes them trapped in these irresponsible sexual activities.

But where did we go wrong and lost track as a country and society in General in bringing up these children?

Parents and guardians stands accused for using school as “dumping grounds” leaving the responsibility of parenting and monitoring of children to the teachers. There is an increase in sex among teenagers, let’s not pretend that the youth are not engaging in sex; give them the right information and guide them to make wise decisions.

The downfall has been aggravated by poor parenting, where parental guidance is often lacking due to various commitments hence a likelihood that such issues will occur, coupled further by the ever absent fathers who have been mesmerized in the drinking dens.

The centre for the study of adolescence, recommends for youth friendly resource centers be set up and new innovative ways to be found to address reserved teenagers.


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