As a parent, you have the benefit of hindsight when it comes to the teenage years. You’ve been there and know what goes on. The difference is that with today’s teens they are literally bombarded by all kinds of sexual images on television and the movies. And, of course, there is the dominant presence of the Internet providing easy access to all kinds of videos and sexual images. Even with the most sophisticated filters, a smart teen can always find their way around the blocks. The real issue is to separate a normal level of curiosity about sex and a full-blown addiction.
Adolescence begins around age nine for girls and around age 11 for boys. By the time a teen has reached 12, 13 or 14, their bodies are going through significant changes as they make the transition into pubescence. This is the time when that curiosity can take hold and lead some teens to begin sexual exploration. If in these early stages there isn’t a healthy approach to sex and intimacy, an addiction cycle could take hold that might last well into adulthood.
Maturity and Teen Sex Addiction
Each teen matures at their own rate. There are many contributing factors such as their family life, school environment and peer group that can have a strong influence on how their development progresses. Depending on the circumstances, there might be the occasion when a teen will begin to experiment sexually. No matter how hard you try to prevent this from happening if a teen wants to have sex they will find a way. Some estimates have found that over 80 percent of Americans lost their virginity when they were a teenager.
Just because a teen has begun to experience sex doesn’t mean they are becoming an addict. However, it’s when you notice a demonstrable change in their behavior that you should seek out professional guidance. Is your teen spending a lot of time alone, locked in their room? Are you aware of what type of sites or searches they might be conducting online? Are they becoming more detached from the family? Are they changing the way they dress to be more proactive? Again, these could all be normal signs of a teenage development. But if you have a growing concern, there is nothing wrong with asking for help.
Talk with Your Teen About Sex
Because of the level of readily available information for a teen, it’s even more important for today’s parents to become involved early on with their questions about sex. If mom and dad have a hard time discussing these matters then it’s not a stretch to imagine that the teen will turn to the Internet or their peers to gets answers.
If you’re not sure how to approach your teen about sex or a possible sexual addiction, you can seek out the guidance of a certified sexual therapist first. They can provide you with some valuable insight into the addictive personality which might help you recognize if your teen does indeed have an issue with sexual addiction.
This therapist can also provide you with options for treatment programs to help your teen manage these issues. The last thing you want to do is ignore the problem and hope it might just go away. If you sense something is going on, it might be.
You can call the toll-free number on this page for more assistance and information about teen sex addiction treatment choices.