walrusandowl asked: Hi! I love WtSSS, and I wanted to ask your thoughts on breaking the mold of Young Adult Literature when it comes to sex and teens. Why do you think it is still taboo to write about teens having sex? And especially teens having sex when they aren't like "soul mates" or what not? We seem to have adjusted to teens drinking in YA Lit, but still have issues with this whole sex thing. Thanks!
I wish I had one really great answer, but instead I have theories, which may or may not be accurate.
Theory #1: Reading about sex will lead to having sex. (Life imitates art, rather than art imitating life.)
Theory #2: Teenagers are children and therefore aren’t capable of making decisions about sex, let alone having sex.
Theory #3: God says sex is bad for everyone but married people (and even then it’s only for married straight people, so if you’re a teen—or worse, a gay teen—don’t even think about it.)
Theory #4: My teenager isn’t thinking about sex! Why should she/he have to read about it in books?
Theory #5: Good girls don’t need to know about sex. Sex is for boys and sluts and porn stars.
Theory #6: If you don’t write about it, I won’t have to talk to my teen about it before I’m ready. Or maybe ever!
Honestly, I don’t know why sex is still taboo. It seems to me that it’s smart and healthy and HONEST to show teens what sex—the good, the bad, and the ugly—is really like. It might help them make better decisions. It might show them what a considerate partner (or a crappy, avoidable one) looks like. It might let them see the risks without actually having to take the risks. And for some teens, books might be the only way they get any information about sex at all.
(I hope that answers your questions.)