Sunday, September 14, 2008


During the period of adolescence, the individual adolescent begin to exhibit some sexual behaviors. Among these behaviors are dating, attraction, love and premarital sex. These are briefly discussed.
DATING BEHAVIOUR: Dating is a period which precedes going steady. Dating may lead to courtship. It is a period when adolescent begin to meet and discuss on future relationship.
Dating behavior then means how adolescents of opposite sex carry themselves during dates. Suffice to note that many researchers have worked extensively on dating. They have concluded that dating does not take place in a particular time of the year.
Obviously, we have so many types of dates among these are; MOVIE DATE,LUNCH DATE,DINNER DATE,FELLOWSHIP DATE, PARTIES DATE ETC. Generally, when dating is to be made, the male will ask the female if she will not mind to go on a lunch date with him. The manner of request varies. The most important is that whoever is asking should be polite and modest.
During dating, men are expected to pay or finance the dates. The expectation of men from ladies during dates is that ladies do not eat or drink too much. Topics for discussion in most cases are raised by men. This is not to say that ladies can not raise topics, but if such is done, the lady must be cautions.
ATTRACTION; This is the extent to which the physique of that individual appeal to the opposite sex. It is very apt to remark that adolescents dwell so much on attraction. Some girls prefer tall, slim fair etc while some guys prefer dark, busty or sizeable ladies. Although, preferences differs from individual to individual, adolescent seems to forget the fact that beauty is like a fading flower.
L O V E ; This is the bond of affection between two people. In this context, between two people of opposite sex. There are different types of love.. EROTIC LOVE, AGAPE LOVE,PHILEO LOVE, STORGE LOVE, PHILIA LOVE, PRAGMA LOVE, LODUS LOVE,MANIA LOVE, STARGE LOVE.
EROTIC LOVE: Affection with sexual intercourse.
AGAPE LOVE: Unconditional love – Gods own love.
PHILEO LOVE: Conditional love. STORGE LOVE: parent/child love affection.
PHILIA LOVE: Solid friendship etc. Suffice to say that love has varying styles. PRAGMA LOVE: Most practical aspect of love. LODUS LOVE: Playful styles of love . MANIA LOVE: These love can lead to death-too possessive. STARGE LOVE: Being best of friends.

COURTSHIP: Courtship take place after dating and it precedes marriage. This is a period where the couple learn more about their family history, temperament and compatibility. Learn to understand each other in preparation for marriage.
In other to understand each other, the couple embark upon series of test. Among these tests are namely: TIME TEST- This test the ability to keep to time. EMOTIONAL TEST-This is to test the extent to which one of the couple is emotionally stable. This could be done through deliberate provocation of one another. Other types of test during courtship are DATING TEST,QUARREL TEST,HABIT TEST, SHARING TEST ETC.
Pre-marital sex simply means sex before marriage. It must be born in mind that adolescent is in the period of exploration. The expirations is not unconnected with the hormonal secretion during adolescence. This hormonal secretion increases the sexual drive of the adolescent. This is very natural and normal. Inability to withhold this drive causes an adolescent to seek gratification which more often leads to sexual intercourse before marriage.
These are briefly explained thus.
CURIOUSITY; Remember that adolescents are very anxious to know a lot of things including sex. They wants to know why mum and dad cuddle each other with their room under lock and key. They want to taste and want to feel. This ultimately lead to sex before marriage.
PRESSURE: Adolescent may give in to pressure from peers. According to Papilla(1990) She said many fail under pressure to engage in sexual activity even when they are not ready for it. Most often than not, the pressure to engage in pre-marital sex or early sexual activities are socially based.
MEDIA: Today teenagers quest to watch television set, pornography in computer, obscene pictures in newspapers and magazines etc increases adolescents urge for sex. It must be noted that there is increase in frequency with which sexual matters are being addressed on television through movies and video cassettes. Records even send out more sexual images.
PARENTAL UPBRINGING: The first teacher of a child is the parent. Children learn mostly by imitation. They imitate what their parents do. If parents are promiscuous. Tendencies are that adolescent from such environment may be exposed their parents’ sexual activities.
LACK OF GUIDANCE AND COUNSELING: Where adolescents lack proper guidance and counseling, could lead to early sexual activities, hence premarital sex. If adolescents are not well guided in their sexual behavior, this may lead to premarital sex as they may not know the implication of what they are doing.
PURSUIT OF CAREER: Where individual is pursuing work or career. This may lead to delay marriage. The implication is that such individual uncontrollably engages in sex before marriage.
CULTURE: In some parts of Africa countries, some culture places premium on early marriage thus exposing children even at pre adolescent level to sexual activities. Such culture value the number of children individual have more than life.
When sex is not done in appropriate time and stage, there must be its consequences. Some of these consequences are grave. These are;
DISEASES AND INFECTIONS: There are series of diseases and infections that could be contracted by the adolescent during premarital sex. These are summarized as sexual transmitted infections(STI) Some of which are;gonorrhea,syphilis, etc. However, where not properly treated could lead to infertility.
UNWANTED PREGNANCY: As the name implies, the pregnancy is not wanted. Why this is because the individual at this stage is not ready.
FALL OUT OF EDUCATION: As a result, of this pregnancy, the adolescent stops schooling. The boy may also experience set back as there may be inability of the parents to cope with nurturing pregnancy and paying schools fees.
VISCO VIRGINA FISTULA: Early exposure to sex which may lead to pregnancy and ultimately child bearing have been documented as causing visco virginal fistula ( V.V.F) This is a very serious health problem ravaging the northern parts of Nigeria.
DEATH: The adolescent may want to wriggle out the guilt and shame that are associated with unwanted pregnancy by aborting it. This has resulted into death in some cases.
There is no doubt that the adolescents faces multiple of sex related problems. These are highlighted below;
ATTRACTION: As noted earlier in this write up, attraction is the extent to which the physique of the opposite holds appeal. It must also be mentioned that adolescent adore their body. Hence, they are mindful of their body image. They do this, because they want to be noticed by the opposite sex. They will do all they can to be attractive to the opposite sex. This invariably becomes problem to the adolescent who may not be able to identify natural beauty from man made one.
BURN OUT: When adolescents are dating, and they do this for a very long time without marrying there is tendency that they are bored. This boring situation is what is known as BURN OUT. This always happen when adolescent do not caution themselves and rush into a relationship.
PSYCHOLOGICAL AND PHYSICAL ABUSE: It is possible that adolescents suffer some psychological and physical abuse in their day-to-day sexual activities. Adolescent could be roughly handled. This could be psychological traumatic. Among those ways in which adolescents could be abused is through raping. Rape is when there is sexual intercourse without the consent of the partner whether the boy or the girl.
IGNORANCE ABOUT BODY LANGUAGE: Body language means the extent to which some part of your body responds to touch. The sensitivity of any part of your body that can SWITCH YOU ON. There is no doubt the fact that there are many adolescents that are ignorant of this. Hence, they fall victim of this. This has created problem for them.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Are Parents The Cause Of Teen Suicide?

What drives a teenager to commit suicide? Is a dysfunctional family the cause of teen suicide or is it the peer pressure, low self-esteem, stress, access to drugs, guns, or an unyielding desire to make the pain disappear. Teenage suicide has and is becoming a pandemic in our country and around the world.

According to the National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center, "teen suicide is the third leading cause of death among teenagers -- almost 2,000 teens kill themselves each year." It is estimated that "over 90% of teen suicide victims have a mental disorder, such as depression, and/or a history of alcohol or drug abuse."

Our youth has become entrenched in an ideology doled out by those who seek to control, persuade, and coerce our teenagers. At the same time, communication between parent and child has become, in most situations, non-existent. This leaves teenagers to fend for themselves in areas they are too immature to understand, or too eager to become engaged in activities which can lead them astray.

There was a time when teens came directly home after school; were greeted by at least one parent; studied; had a family dinner, and off to bed. Today, the term “latch-key kid” has become the norm, rather than the exception. Teens arrive home late; often to an empty apartment or home. They engage in computer games, while eating junk food; and often do not see their parents until morning – and only because they are late getting out of bed. Homework is secondary or non-existent. One can argue a two income household is necessary; but at what cost? Furthermore, if you’ve ever graced a public school environment, you would find teens lack even the rudimentary necessities of life; yet, cell phones are tucked in their worn out jeans and skirts.

The music, movies, and educational system have let down our teenagers in the most rudimentary way. They lack guidance and care. Our child services, our family courts, and our caregivers have offered little to assert the importance of self-worth. Over the years, the make-up of the "family" has dramatically changed. A teenager’s family could be his gang members who, on a daily basis, feed into the destruction of that teen. Morality has become passé, and they have become self-absorbed in an underworld of hatred and self-loathing.

Have all teenagers talked or even thought about suicide? No. However, the statistics are still frightening. A teenager doesn't suddenly choose to die unless something terribly wrong has pushed him/her over the edge. We cannot allow them to choose that endgame. Teenagers do become depressed, alone, angry, hopeless and helpless. As parents, as friends, as educators, as guardians of this precious commodity - we cannot allow them to succeed in what they think may be in their best interest. They must be given a reason to live, to love, to become needed and useful members of our society.

As adults/parents, we must educate and interact with our youth in a positive, caring and thoughtful way to ensure they have the proper tools with which to grow and gain empowerment. To do less would without a doubt contribute to the cause of teen suicide, the ultimate tragedy.

The Benefits Of Exercising During Pregnancy

Everyone knows that exercise is very good for your health. During pregnancy, exercise can have many other benefits as well. Normally, exercise should be light, especially during your first few weeks of pregnancy while your body adjusts to the changes.

Any type of heavy exercise can divert the blood flow from crucial areas, and most women that exercise on a regular basis should tone down their workout regimen during pregnancy.

Swimming, walking, and yoga are two very popular exercise activities that are suitable for pregnant women. There are other forms of exercise such as weight lifting that are acceptable as long as it isn't too strenuous. Most specialists recommend exercise 3 - 4 times a week, unless you have a medical condition that prevents it. If you are ever in doubt, you should consult a physician first.

Below, you'll find some of the best reasons as to why you should exercise during pregnancy.

1. Exercise can help to reduce the length of labor and recovery time. The right exercise routines will also increase stamina that is needed for delivery.

2. Improved mental health. Exercise can lower stress and improve your emotional health, making it easier for you to get through the new experience of becoming a mother.

3. Exercise can also help with weight management after the child has been born. A common concern with most mothers is the weight they lose after pregnancy. During pregnancy, exercise can make postpartum weight loss easier.

4. Exercise is very good for your unborn baby. By keeping your body healthy, you are also looking out for your baby as well.

5. Exercise can help reduce the side effects of pregnancy. Symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, swelling, and constipation are all common with pregnant women. Studies have shown exercise to reduce the occurrence of these symptoms.

6. Exercise can also decrease the risk of premature birth. Exercise has been proven to decrease the risk of premature birth by at least 50%.

You should always make sure that you drink plenty of fluids before you exercise, follow a nutritious diet, and avoid over exertion. You should also listen to your body, and if you start feeling sick you should immediately stop and rest.

If you exercise during your pregnancy, you'll find it a lot easier to deliver when the time comes. Exercise will help your body strengthen up, which will make it very easy on you when you go into the delivery room. Women who don't exercise find it much harder when the time comes to give birth.

Exercising during pregnancy is one of the best things you can do for yourself and for your unborn baby. Your baby will reap some of the benefits, which is reason enough to exercise. Always be safe when you exercise, and don't hesitate to ask a doctor for advice if you have any questions at all. As long as you exercise safe and use good common sense, you'll do a world of good for your pregnancy.

Diets For The Pregnant Woman

The major myth surrounding diets for a pregnant woman is that she can eat whatever she wants because of her cravings. In fact, this could not be farther from the truth. Pregnant women should follow certain diet guidelines to ensure that their baby is born healthy, receiving enough nutrients and vitamins to grow accordingly. There is no one prescribed diet for pregnant women, but there are a few basics.

One of the first things a newly pregnant woman should do is increase the amount of folic acid or complex B vitamins. In reality, you should be increasing this amount even prior to becoming pregnant, but maintain an increased amount in your diet during the early stages of pregnancy as well. These vitamins help with the neurological and spinal development of a baby in its early stages, and increasing your consumption of them ultimately helps the baby's growth.

Another important part of diets for the pregnant woman is getting enough protein. Protein helps with cell development and producing blood. When consuming protein, pregnant women should consider lean meat choices, such as chicken or turkey, along with egg whites or nuts and tofu. Iron, often found in lean red meats, is also necessary to help cell production and prevent anemia in both the mother and the child.

The diets for a pregnant woman should not be low-carbohydrate, high-protein diets, however. Carbohydrates are necessary for one's energy on a daily basis. With the extra weight gain and the hormonal changes of pregnancy, one should try to keep one's energy up. This means continuing to exercise - but focusing on exercises for pregnant women instead to maintain your health and metabolism.

Beyond protein and carbohydrates, it is essential for pregnant women to maintain a diet rich in vitamins and nutrients. As most everyone knows, calcium is crucial to building strong bones, but it can also help with nerve functions. Pregnant women should be sure to consume a moderate amount of calcium per day. Other essential vitamins like A, C, B12, D, etc., are necessary to help with healthy skin and bones and maintaining the nervous system. A lot of these vitamins can be found in leafy green vegetables and fruits.

Overall, it is important to understand that diets for a pregant woman must be balanced diets that are healthy. Understanding the five food groups of the food pyramid as established by the U.S. government is perhaps the easiest way to ensure that you are eating the right kinds of foods. Many pregnant women think they need to eat for two people, but in reality, you should only be consuming about 300 more calories per day for the baby, and those 300 calories should be nutritious and healthy.

Sunday, August 24, 2008


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Is Money Causing Stress In Your Marriage?

Many couples find that finances are a prime source of friction. And, like most couples, you may never really discuss with one another the financial facts of your life. How do you feel about money? How does your spouse feel about money? What's a financial necessity and what is a luxury? How should money be handled and who should handle what? What are you and your wife/husband's long term financial goals? If most couples would take the time to get close and discuss money like this, they would have discovered that although they may have different ideas about saving and spending, perhaps they could have resolved these differences before they became too divisive.

If relationships that go down the tubes due to money stress are like yours, then take the time to sit together with bank statements, pencil, paper, calculator and draw up a workable budget that you can stick to. You may have to spend a few weeks jotting down what you each spend during the day so you can see where every penny goes. Most of us are aware of the beg expenses, but it's the smaller ones (dry cleaning, drugstore items, food) that slip by but add up. Write down your fixed costs: rent, mortgage payments, child-care expenses, insurance. Then include costs that are more flexible: entertainment, clothing, food, and so on. What can you cut out or cut back?

If you have made a realistic budget, you should be able to put aside money for savings every month as well as have money for emergencies. Determine who is going to handle which payments and be sure to put some money into a personal spending account for each of you so you aren't obligated to consult each other on every minor expense. However, always discuss significant purchases or investments. Revise your budget and investment plans if your family or job situation changes.

When discussing money, try to be business-like, not emotional. Avoid blaming and labeling – calling your spouse a tightwad or saying he spends money like a drunken sailor, for instance, is not conducive to cooperation.

Most important, no matter how tight money is, reserve a small amount for pleasure. Even if you go out once a week to a movie or for pizza, just the two of you, you'll feel better about your relationship in general if you indulge yourselves once and a while.
The best first food for a baby is breast milk and it is the reason why breastfeeding is being encouraged in all over the world. No matter who you are, poor or rich and where you come from. There are benefits giving breast milk to your baby, what are they?

Breastfeeding is another way to build a strong bond with your baby. The skin contact that you are making and the warm cuddle that you give her will make her feel sense of security, warmth and comfort. The more often you do the breastfeeding the closer relationship you will have with your baby.

The breast-fed babies have fewer illnesses because human milk transfers to the infant a mother's antibodies to disease. About 80 percents of the cells in breast milk are macrophages, cells that kill bacteria, fungi and viruses. Breast-fed babies are protected, in varying degrees, from a number of illnesses, including pneumonia, botulism, bronchitis, staphylococcal infections, influenza, ear infections, and German measles.

Sucking at the breast promotes good jaw development. It is harder work to get milk out of a breast than a bottle, and the exercise strengthens the jaws and encourages the growth of straight, healthy teeth. When your baby doing breastfed she learns to control the flow of milk by sucking and stopping. With a bottle, the baby must constantly suck or react to the pressure of the nipple placed in the mouth.

On average, breastfed babies have fewer infections in their early life. In particular they have less: diarrhea and vomiting, chest infections, and ear infections compared to babies who are not breastfed. The main reason how it can be happen is because the antibodies and other proteins, which in the breast milk from, mother to baby. These help to protect against infection.

Yvonne Hanson is a mother and professional adviser, specialized on parenting area. She enjoys helping parents to raise their children, starting from the pregnancy period by giving valuable information.

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