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Talk Around Town

  • Date Submitted: 04/09/2010 07:11 AM
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Talk Around Town
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(15-01-2006)
Confronting changing views on sex
by Thu Giang
Many Vietnamese people blame couples living together for the increasing number of abortions here, especially when Viet Nam is one of the Asian countries in which many people believe that happiness will never come to women who have had pre-marital sex.
In Western countries, couples often live together and have sex before they are married, but this seen as a problem in Viet Nam because people view it as a sign of a decline in morals.
Despite public opinion, the trend of having intimate relationships before marriage has expanded to Asian countries and many young people do not see it as a problem and prefer to follow a more Western lifestyle.
In fact, I do not believe we can blame cohabitation for the increasing number of abortions in Viet Nam. Instead, it is a lack of knowledge about safe sex among young people that is causing this problem.
Viet Nam is a developing country and a change of lifestyle among a small group of Vietnamese is natural. However, the problem for Vietnamese educators is how to approach the subject of pre-marital sex and cohabitation when the topic is still taboo in this country.
Lai Phuong Linh, a student at Ha Noi National University, says she has lived together with her boyfriend in a lodging house in Ha Noi for nearly two years.
Linh (not her real name) says she has had two abortions.
"My boyfriend always promises to marry me after graduation but I am still worried. I fear he will leave me and it will be difficult for me to love others in the future," Linh says.
Linh’s problem should be to worry about having safe sex, rather than focusing on whether or not her boyfriend will marry her.
She is one of many girls who lives with the constant pressure of public opinion.
Nguyen Thuy Hanh, also a student at Ha Noi National University, is one of many students...

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