As a father of four (and one on the way) this story scares the hell out of me.

According to the Center for Disease Control 96% of Americans have had sex by the time they’re 20 years old. I know today’s culture is a little (or a lot) crazy when it comes to sex but… 96 percent? That’s really high. Are we on some societal spring break here?

The median number of lifetime female sexual partners for men was seven; the median number of male partners for women was four.

Forget even looking at it from some puritanical lense where sex is just forbidden outside of marriage -although it is. The thing is, how many of us know someone who entered into a bad marriage because of sex? I’ve seen it countless times where someone is dating someone and they’re not crazy about the person and then all of a sudden the next time you talk to them they’re head over heels in love. It’s likely that the change of opinion is not based on rational factors of compatibility. It’s because they had sex.

I know two people who will freely admit that looking back they would have married different people but sex gave them the illusion of intimacy and compatibility. Somehow when our culture took away the meaning of sex it became an obsession -the only thing everyone wants to do and talk about and do a little more.

Sex is dangerous. I’m not just talking AIDS, STD’s and pregnancies. I’m talking emotionally. Broken hearts, abortion, and people using each other as means to their own ends are our cultural finish line. That is why we are told not to have sex outside of marriage. It is not to limit us. The rule is there to open our lives to possibilities and happiness. As a father I make rules all the time because I love my children and I don’t want them to get hurt. (Although I’m pretty sure the rule about not swimming an hour after eating is just because we’re lazy)

Sex is for marriage because it is the only time where you are telling the person you’re with that they’re not interchangeable with anyone else. That to me is the key. Marriage is more than intimacy. Marriage is a 50 year experiment in forgiveness -if you’re lucky.

That is what I’m going to try to teach my children. But 96 percent? My goodness. I hope that number is elevated severely. I just want to protect my children. Our country does not seem to be run by adults anymore. It is run by kids and adults still pretending to be kids. That has to change.