Grade Level: High School- College
Unit Area: Sexual Health
Time: 15-30 minutes
The Abstinence Pill
National Health Education Standard
Student will comprehend concepts related to health promotion and
Students will debate the statement: “Vows of ABSTINENCE break far
more often than condoms.”
Students will imagine what an ABSTINENCE PILL would look like.
Materials: Large clear cylindrical container to simulate prescription bottle.
Plastic “egg” or other container that can simulate a “pill”
Small piece of paper inside the “pill” that says “NO”
Handout: “100 ways to have fun without DOIN’ IT”
1. Write following quote on board:
“VOWS OF ABSTINENCE BREAK FAR MORE OFTEN THAN
2. Engage students in a debate-discussion of the above quote.
• -How effective/realistic is it to discuss Abstinence with adolescents?
• -Should Abstinence be a mandatory part of a sexual health unit?
• -How many of them have discussed Abstinence with Mother? Father?
Friends? In school? In religious instruction?
• -What messages do you get about Abstinence?
• What kinds of things do people Abstain from?
-Food, voting, alcohol, drugs, sex
• Why do they abstain?
-protect health, avoid making a decision, avoid negative
consequences, part of religious beliefs
• As far as sex is concerned:
-used as a birth control method: abstaining from vaginal intercourse
-used for safer sex: abstaining from vaginal, oral, and anal intercourse
• Abstinence is a choice, like any other form of contraception. Factors to
-what is best for you? Your partner?
-how does it fit into your life?(values, morals, relationships)
• What are some ADVANTAGES and DISADVANTAGES of
3. Show your model of the ABSTINENCE PILL.
“It’s hard to talk about something you can’t see, so I decided to invent an
ABSTINENCE PILL. Let me read the directions on the label.”
At this point, you can be creative in designing your label. Consider Dosage,
frequency of use, Dr.’s Name, must have with you all the time, side effects,
do not mix with drugs or alcohol, etc.
• When will you “go off” the Abstinence pill? (never, certain age, when
you find the right partner, marriage, engaged, when you find another
method that works for you , etc.)
4. Open up the bottle and take out the pill. “As you can see, for a lot of
people this Abstinence pill is going to be difficult to swallow.” Now open
up the “pill” and take out the only ingredient, the word “NO”.
5. Handout: “100 Ways To Have Fun Without Doin’ It.” Discuss.
Remember that ABSTINENCE doesn’t have to mean lack of love, intimacy,
romance, sensuality, or fun!!
President at Prime Time Health Consulting
Greater New York City Area