And, nope, not a parent.
My mom didn't even know I didn't have friends during much of grade school. (though I did have seven different grade schools). And when my family was having a general conversation it came up, from me. It wasn't an "oh woe" me situation, just talking. My mom had this strange look (regret? sadness? guilt? I dunno) over her face and said something along the lines of that she didn't know. I obviously didn't tell her at the time (why I didn't I can't specifically recall, I didn't recall keeping it from her either.... I was just an introverted kid who didn't obviously think to talk about my school-life much with her).
I imagine that look is why you think every parent should know. Even if they can't change what happened, what is happening, or what is going to happen, most good parents want to know. So they can talk to their kid about it, help them process it, and if possible/necessary, help them sort it, with various levels of contribution. And if that is not possible, to at least be a shoulder to cry on (though that really falls under the processing part). Even if my mother couldn't change anything, she would have liked to know.
I am just wondering the the notification law isn't an interference in the child-parent relationship as is. Of course, one could easily argue of course it is, in the favour of the parents, which need all the tools and help they can get these days And since an abortion (hopefully!) is not something a teen is doing themselves, unlike a million other things, good or bad, they may do autonomously, and they are getting a facility and staff approved by either the government and/or a medical association or something similar, the government can't remove itself from the relationship and must make a decision either way. Though the lack of notification law doesn't *stop* a teenager from telling their parents.
Unlike say the HIV consent laws here in Canada. Tomorrow morning the Canadian Supreme court is going to make a decision regarding a law that says that a person, who is HIV positive and knows it, must reveal that status to their potential sexual partners. That is getting too much into people's bedrooms for me. Yes, it is the only moral thing to do, but besides giving people a false sense of security (and perhaps discouraging some from testing), there shouldn't be a law about it.
I am not saying they are the same situation. I just came across that news story today (didn't know this was going down) and my brain put them in the same sphere of government in very private situations.
So, if I understand your position, you are not as concerned about problems notification may cause (I am not talking about child abuse victims, but other things, such as teens ending up with riskier abortions from either back alley/home abortions, or delays due to parental fears, judicial waiver, being near 18, etc), as you are with the problems lack of notification may cause (the undermining of parental governance and guidance of their teenagers and the many problems that may cause). Maybe it is just because the problems with notification are such much more measurable that it is easier to swallow. Maybe I'll join you some day And I believe you feel that various contraceptive should be available to teens without notification/consent. STI tests, and results, since it is a medical condition, potentially, I assume you feel the parents should get notified as well. Should include even negative results, make the parents both relieved and shocked at the same time!
I think part of it is I just want laws to make some sense. Like I said before, the government is allowing teens to consent to sex without parental input (in some places, where the law is less than 18). Of course, how does one stop it? Some may think it is bad idea to make a law to put the age of consent up to 18, even with close-in-age exceptions. So, yes, if I am probably not discussing this in a manner you'd appreciate. I don't know if I can, I get stuck up on details and analysis sometimes. Just sometimes Though near the top of this post I tried! For my part, I have really appreciated this discussion, I haven't had one like this on EI for a long long time. Maybe because I haven't had the time, maybe because U.S. politics stuff dominate, I dunno. But maybe you can console yourself that someone got something out of this
Bad Wolf (I had to look up your current handle, I instinctively put an old one there initially... still, after all this time! ) the age of consent is 18 in California? How does the law treat contraceptive, solely use for contraceptive, for teenagers then? It would seem odd that a teenager could still get contraceptive, solely for that purpose, if it is to support a criminal act. And anyone who is prescribing contraceptive should know the purpose they are prescribing it for. Of course, sometimes it has multiple purposes.
Edited to add: I only briefly touched upon teenage development and what not. I don't think I have made myself much clear on the topic. It is sort of a side topic, but connected, tenuously or otherwise. Some say adolescence is a modern invention. Though obviously there has always been a time between the onset of puberty, and the end of physical growth, there hasn't always been this extended childhood. Not saying it is manageable, or desirable in today's society, but sometimes it seems like the twenty-somethings seem more like teenagers now-a-days. And I've read of parents catering to their adult children. Writing resumes, and other things. I am not saying parents show let their teenage children do whatever they like, I just wonder how useful this extended childhood is. I think it was QT that said once, talking about infants/toddlers, that a seeming development delay could be sign of unintentional parental interference in such (for example, a child may not learn to talk at an average developmental age because all their wants were constantly available and given). I think that can happen at any stage of development. Of course, sex is a big thing, and kids should definitely talk about it to an adult they can trust. I was trying to talking about teenage development in general, which is going to drift from their parents as the central authority in their lives. Completely natural. Not that I am romantizing (sp?) old times. I mean you made one bad decision back then and you were stuck with it for life (like marriage partners). And often unwed teenagers still lived at home and, at least in the home, under parent governance. As far as I can tell, they had more responsibilities, but not likely autonomy.
Of course, notification laws may not make one whit of difference. In most of the best functional families the kids will probably talk to their parents without this law. In dysfunctional (but not abusive) families, with a notification law, there might be a blow up argument, or nothing said at all... Little may change, or a lot may change, and the information is out there. What harm is there in that I suppose? And in families in-between, something in-between will happen.
Edited by sierraleone, 04 October 2012 - 08:37 PM.