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'Postponing Sexual Involvement' (PSI): the philosophy behind the My Future-My Choice program's curriculum

  • Persons younger than 16 are not able to understand fully the implications of their actions.
  • Persons younger than 16 generally are not mature enough to deal with the consequences of their sexual actions. Furthermore, the needs that young people are trying to meet through sexual intercourse could best be met in other ways.
  • Young people under 16 are often pressured into doing things they really do not want to do. One source of pressure to become sexually involved comes from glamorous images presented by the media.
  • Young people need awareness and skills to be able to resist pressure to become sexually involved. They need support and practice in learning how to resist this pressure.
  • Young people respond most favorably to programs promoting postponement of sexual involvement when the information about how and why to say "no" comes from peers slightly older than themselves.

Excerpted from "The Emory University/Grady Memorial Hospital Program: 'Postponing Sexual Involvement', the Contraception Report, May 1994, Volume V, No. 2

My Future-My Choice Curriculum

Peer led

  • LESSON ONE — Looking into the future: Understand the differences between short-, mid- and long-term goals and how they affect one's future.
    Lesson 1

  • LESSON TWO — The advantages of postponing sexual involvement: Develop the conclusion that postponing sexual involvement is a healthy choice for young people.
    Lesson 2

  • LESSON THREE — Social pressures: Develop awareness that the images or messages about sexual behavior in the media are not necessarily accurate or the best models to copy.
    Lesson 3

  • LESSON FOUR — Peer pressure: Develop awareness about peer pressure and understand the importance of setting limits.
    Lesson 4

  • LESSON FIVE — Learning assertive techniques: Learn assertive techniques to resist pressure to become sexually involved before they are ready.
    Lesson 5

  • LESSON TEN — Reinforcing skills: Peer leaders return to review and reinforce previous learning.
    Lesson 10

Adult led

  • LESSON SIX — Changes: Understand the stages of puberty for both males and females, and the related vocabulary.
    Lesson 6

  • LESSON SEVEN — Recognizing the risks: Recognize the possible short- and long-term consequences of becoming sexually active at a young age. Identify methods of protection including abstinence, disease reduction measures and contraception.
    Lesson 7

  • LESSON EIGHT — Communication and refusal skills: Understand the importance of effective communication and practice communication skills to refuse pressure.
    Lesson 8

  • LESSON NINE — Taking responsibility: Recognize healthy and unhealthy traits in a relationships and the responsibility for making healthy choices in our relationships.
    Lesson 9