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Phlegethon
Monday, November 10th, 2003, 12:11 AM
Many Teen Girls Date More Than One Person at a Time

Wed Oct 22, 2:26 PM ET

By Alison McCook

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - Almost half of teenaged girls have been in a "non-exclusive" relationship, in which they and their partners could date other people, according to a survey of 12 to 15 year olds.

While this might increase their health risks, say the authors of the report in the journal Sexually Transmitted Diseases, it doesn't automatically follow. In fact, overall, having multiple relationships can be a positive.

The investigators found that girls who were younger and believed their boyfriends were dating other people were more likely to have an outside relationship.

Furthermore, girls who said their parents did not always know their whereabouts were more likely to be in a non-exclusive relationship, while girls who spent a lot of time unsupervised by an adult were more likely to have sex in their outside relationships

These results suggest that parental monitoring of their kids' lives, in the form of communication and supervision, "is just a good thing," study author Dr. Mary Short of the University of Texas Medical Branch Children's Hospital in Galveston told Reuters Health.

"Parents need to talk to their children, set developmentally appropriate limits, and know their children's -- and teens' -- friends, activities, reading materials, and TV and movie watching habits," Short added.

For the survey, Short and her colleagues asked 160 girls about their romantic relationships once every 6 months for 3 years.

A total of 72 girls, or 45 percent, said they had been in a relationship in which they and their partners could date other people. Twenty-three girls said they had had sex in that outside relationship.

Being in non-exclusive relationship may not necessarily be a bad thing, Short noted.

Having a relationship helps you learn about yourself and how to relate to others, and the more relationships you have, the more you may learn, Short and her colleagues write.

And while having more partners can increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases, less than half of the girls who date more than one person at a time said they had sex in the outside relationship. Consequently, "non-exclusivity may not always be a health risk," Short said.

However, she cautioned, "We are not encouraging adolescents to cheat, even if it happens. It is better to have one boyfriend at a time or to be dating than to be having outside relationships."

SOURCE: Sexually Transmitted Diseases, October 2003.

Abby Normal
Saturday, December 27th, 2003, 06:26 PM
Hmm. I am a teenage girl, and this doesnt sound like anything I've been through... But then again, I'm not exactly an "at-risk" teen. Most people I know would consider practically it a sin to date more than one person at a time. It was not so during the "old days," though. My Emily Post book says that "going steady" does not exist by the standards of etiquitte; that no young man can claim the exclusive right to date a young lady. It was written sometime in the 1920s.

Abby Normal
Saturday, February 7th, 2004, 12:25 PM
Hmm. I am a teenage girl, and this doesnt sound like anything I've been through... But then again, I'm not exactly an "at-risk" teen. Most people I know would consider practically it a sin to date more than one person at a time. It was not so during the "old days," though. My Emily Post book says that "going steady" does not exist by the standards of etiquitte; that no young man can claim the exclusive right to date a young lady. It was written sometime in the 1920s.

Yep, I still agree with that... :D