The Youth Assembly recently released its latest survey on issues young people in the Cayman Islands are concerned about, topping that list was sex and relationships.
Cayman’s Youth Assembly’s survey on issues impact young people has been released and the three highest ranking topics, in ascending order are sex and relationships with 28 percent of the votes, stress and anxiety with 22 percent of the vote, drugs and alcohol with 15 percent of the vote. Youth Assembly President, Brianna Bodden says she was not surprised teens have anxiety about sex and relationships.
“Teens today, I think they need to be more aware of how to handle themselves when put in that situation and like when pressured to do things that they probably wouldn’t do, based on their standards and what they set for themselves as a person,” said Brianna Bodden.
Vice President Theola Williams agrees, she says young people are uncertain about what is acceptable and what is not.
“Like what they’re supposed to do to take part in a sexual relationship, they want to say no, but if they say no then their boyfriend will just leave them and they don’t want to be left alone, so they need advice on how to do stuff,” said Theola Williams.
With stress and anxiety was ranked as the second issue of concern for young people, C-Y-A member Keanu Oliver says teens are feeling pressured on all sides in the school environment.
“Since most of the teenagers are in high school and they are dealing with exams, that is a lot of stress because of parents are on you, your teacher is on you, if you don’t have a good grade, you won’t get a good job,” said Keanu Oliver.
While drugs and alcohol is ranked in third place, Ms. Williams says their use appear to be more accepted than sex and relationships among young people.
“If you say “I smoke, I smoke every day, I take this, then persons are like oh okay, they’ll hype you up for doing drugs but like when you say you’re in a relationship, they’re just like “errrrr” I thought you were supposed to save yourself for marriage or something like that, they’ll ridicule you,” said Ms. Williams.
The Youth Assembly encourages all young people to talk to someone they trust about issues they are facing. The youth assembly says they will be using this data in a youth forum next year, over one-hundred young people participated in the survey.