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Age of consent/average age to loose virginity, feminist issue?

(137 Posts)
misspontypine Tue 05-Nov-13 21:20:51

I don't venture over to the feminism topics often, please excuse me if I am asking an inapropriate question.

I have recently been reading a few threads on AIBU that talk about age of consent/average age for young people to have sex.

My mum brought me up in a feminist enviroment(sinle mother, no dresses, no barbie (or girls toys/boys toys), lots of positive talk about the power of having periods/fertility/babies me and my brother were allways treated exactly the same)

I was allowed to have my long term boyfriend sleep over in my bed when I was 13/14 years old. We decided to have sex a week before I turned 15. I feel like from a feminist perspective it was right to empower me to be able to make my own sexual decisions.

I was taught that my opinin was very important, no ment no, sexuality was not something to be ashamed off, as a woman you have huge power becuase you are ultimatly in controll of contraception and if any children are born (through unprotected sex or protected sex) you as a woman have autoatic right over those children (it was the 90s.)

Is it right to tell young women (or men) to wait untill they are 16 to have sex despite people reaching sexual maturity at all different ages?

DixonBainbridge Fri 08-Nov-13 20:06:38

Indeed! I shall believe my truth, and you can believe yours!! Both happy...

MistAllChuckingFrighty Fri 08-Nov-13 18:02:41

Sadly, Dixon wholly missed the point of my wiki reference which is that one can find anything on the internet to support a particular viewpoint

Doesn't make it true as Dixon has ably assisted me in pointing out smile

ElizabethJonesMartin Fri 08-Nov-13 16:07:33

wiki is very reliable on the whole.

DixonBainbridge Fri 08-Nov-13 15:13:14

I like the fact that it doesn't beat around the bush (so to speak) - a fantastically clinical expression! Not something you'd hear too often...

I look forward to whispering it into Mrs Bainbridge's ear & seeing whether she laughs or punches me on the nose!

BasilBabyEater Fri 08-Nov-13 12:01:56

"I do like the phrase "to penetrate anyone else's body with his penis" BTW, interesting phrase."

LOL, in what way interesting?

That's what the age of consent refers to isn't it?

AFAIK, it's not about other forms of sexual activity like kissing, fondling, stroking, etc.

Thinking about it, is there an age of consent for those other forms of sexual activity? Digital penetration for example?

Part of the reason I use that phrase, is to point out that penetrating someone else's body with a penis, is only one, very limited form of sexual activity, it's not usually the one which enables orgasm in women and young girls and one of the joys of being a teenager used to be that you could have fantastic sexual experiences without having to risk pregnancy and std's by doing everything else but penetrating/ being penetrated with a penis. Too many people automatically assume that sex=penetration. I want both my DC's to know that that's not the case. Partly because I'm assuming that both them and any sexual partners they ever have, will have much better sex lives as a result of knowing that.

freyasnow Fri 08-Nov-13 12:00:46

The whole thing is pretty anti- feminist really. I mean what is this 'sexual maturity at different ages' stuff? Do people honestly believe having had sex makes you more mature than other teenagers? Like Freud or something, the clitoral orgasm is an immature experience? You must be penetrated ASAP. And if the desire to be penetrated is such a 'natural' urge for young people, why aren't we on here discussing when our daughters are going to peg their teenage boyfriends for the first time? At least nobody gets pregnant from pegging.

freyasnow Fri 08-Nov-13 11:51:34

What has 90% of this discussion got to do with the OP? The OP's question was whether or not it was right to tell young people to wait until 16 to have sex, and that was in the context of giving parental advice. That is an entirely different issue to the legal age of consent.

Branleuse, no it isn't unusual for a 14 year old to want sex. In fact it is entirely normal if by sex you mean any kind of sexual activity including masturbation. If by sex you actually mean being penetrated by a penis, yes, I think it is unusual for 14 year olds of either gender to want that, which is why the average age of losing virginity, regardless of age of consent laws, is 2-3 years later than that in every developed country that protects children's rights

DixonBainbridge Fri 08-Nov-13 11:46:09

Yeah - I've seen entries change & then changed back, but it's still not 100% reliable, which is why it shouldn't be used as the sole point of reference.

Back to the OP though, looking at the posts above, there aren't any hard & fast rules - some youngsters had a fantastic first time under the age of consent, others had a crap time over it & vice versa. Everyone is different and matures at a different rate.

We have to trust that our kids are listening when we explain everything & that they don't get caught up in the moment & forget it all! I don't think letting them know there are some condoms in the drawer over there is encouraging them personally. As mentioned upstream, it's vastly preferable to them making a mistake that'll affect the rest of their lives.

Branleuse Fri 08-Nov-13 11:30:38

actually, my ds tried to change a load of stuff on wikipedia and i didnt know till they messaged me telling me that since I hadnt provided reliable sources and references, my wikipedia edit had been removed. So theyre changng

DixonBainbridge Fri 08-Nov-13 07:50:25

Basil "It's not my job to hand him condoms" - Fair enough, that's totally your call - people have different ideas about how far to parent. Would you help your daughter with her contraception though? I do like the phrase "to penetrate anyone else's body with his penis" BTW, interesting phrase.

Misty - it's obviously not a "well known" no no though is it? Given the frequency with which it's "mis-used". It's something pedants like to leap on (much like the grammar nazis).

The uni reference was to make the point that quoting wikipedia as a reference is a no no, because you may as well be quoting your aunt ethel for all the accuracy it can be proven to have. (my DW informed me of this as I've never felt the need to attend uni yet).

Branleuse Fri 08-Nov-13 07:30:42

well mist, no i dont, because 1, its still true, and 2, this is mumsnet, not a caught of law, nor some sort of university thesis that im going to get marked on ffs

BasilBabyEater Thu 07-Nov-13 22:49:55

My DS is 14, I won't be ensuring he has condoms available to use. I've told him he needs to take responsibility for contraception and to not even think of penetrative sex until he's thought about and sorted out contraception. That means not relying on a girl to be on the pill, but also to use a condom every single time he has penetrative sex and to take responsibility for supplying that condom. He knows where he can get them for free (a place not far from his school) as and when the time comes and I've told him that if he doesn't feel able to organise the contraception, then he's almost definitely not ready to penetrate anyone else's body with his penis.

The rest is up to him. It's not my job to hand him condoms, penis-beakers or anything else to do with his sex life. My remit as his mother just doesn't go that far...

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 22:19:35

and yes, I attended "Uni" although that that has to do with it, I am at a loss to know

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 22:18:48

Dixon, you conflated two separate definitions

That's a well known no-no

DixonBainbridge Thu 07-Nov-13 22:14:15

Christ, first thing they tell you at Uni is "never quote Wikipedia" - it's non-verified information, anyone can upload anything.

I think I'll take the Oxford Dictionary and the Sex Offenders Act as my points of reference if that's all right with you...

Back in the accurate world.....

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 21:34:56

well, bran, if you use "lowering the age of consent won't encourage paedophilia" as an argument, you need to be very sure of your terms

Branleuse Thu 07-Nov-13 21:32:06

well no, it doesnt demonstrate ignorance. I know what paedophiles are and i know theres another term i cant remember for children above puberty but under the age of consent. You all knew what i meant in context, but if your correction made you feel better, then im happy for you.

I really dont think anybody should be having sex before theyre ready, or at any time they dont want to, but if they do want to, then i have no issue with it, even if theyre 13, 14 15 whatever. Not my body, not my business. There are lots of things that can mess with your head at any point in life, sex is only one thing, but it can also be, and for most people, if its really what they want to do, a wonderful experience, and not inherently dangerous

Lots of emphasis should be placed on childrens self esteem, and how to say no and stay safe.

Obviously there will never be a change in the law to anything like this extent, if at all, so this is purely my considered opnion on the matter,

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 21:31:24

One can usually find any variety of online definition that fits a particular argument

here is mine

it took one click

back in the real world....

DixonBainbridge Thu 07-Nov-13 21:27:09

Oxford Dictionary gives the definition of a Paedophile as -

a person who is sexually attracted to children.

and for Child it says -

noun (plural children /ˈtʃɪldr(ə)n/)
a young human being below the age of puberty or below the legal age of majority (italics mine)

The Sex Offenders Act 1997 defined paedophilia as a sexual relationship between an adult over 18 and a child below 16.

Quite willing to be proven wrong, but the tools most people have to hand would disagree with you.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 21:07:50

The context is wrong , Dixon, and demonstrates ignorance

It should be called out every time it raises it's ugly head

Liara Thu 07-Nov-13 21:03:35

I had a similar situation as you OP, although my bf did not stay for sleepovers, we had privacy in my room and could experiment sexually as I saw fit.

I did choose to have PIV sex at age 13 (almost 14). We had been experimenting with other sexual things for a few months, had been together for over a year. He was 16. He was totally willing to wait, and even reluctant to go ahead so soon. It was completely my decision and I felt totally in control.

It was a genuinely positive, valuable experience. I am very glad it was my first sexual experience.

Particularly as when I was 16 I had a 'relationship' with a 40yo sexual predator which was the exact opposite. It was very damaging, and I shudder to think what it would have been like if that had been my only sexual experience at that point.

As it was, I knew from what I had lived before that this was not right, that I was not in control nor choosing what was going on. This enabled me to get out and move on.

Oddly, my positive experience would have been illegal in the UK, my second not (different consent laws where I was).

DixonBainbridge Thu 07-Nov-13 20:53:54

How many times does that actually need saying ?

Lots, because the mainstream media have perverted the meaning & it's generally used now to describe any adult having inappropriate sex with someone under the age of consent.

Rather than continually trying to point out peoples error it may just be best to read it in the context it's written.

MistAllChuckingFrighty Thu 07-Nov-13 20:45:37

Who is talking about paedophiles ?

Paedophiles are only interested in pre-pubertal children

How many times does that actually need saying ?

Branleuse Thu 07-Nov-13 20:45:20

I do not believe the government should have more rights over a girls body than she does.

Branleuse Thu 07-Nov-13 20:43:12

I would lower it too. I cannot see how on earth that would encourage paedophilia.

Paedophiles dont give a fuck about age of consent

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