Teen Vogue crosses the line…and then some with its promotion of perverse sexual behavior

The main topic of this week’s Spirit and Life is something I wish I didn’t have to write about. While I will only provide absolutely necessary details, I warn you that the subject matter is disturbing and for mature readers only. I apologize for using such base language; however, it is crucial that we be fully aware of the forces that seek to destroy the innocence of young people by presenting a perverse and secular vision of the human person and sexuality. We need to protect our children, families, and society from this aggressive assault and fight back.

This past week Teen Vogue (that’s the same magazine that recently informed teen girls what to buy for their friends after they get an abortion) ran an article “Anal Sex: What You Need to Know.” Sadly, the only thing more disturbing than the title is the article itself. Again, I warn you about the language and subject matter.

“Sex educator” Gigi Engle begins by lamenting that while there is “a lot of stuff on the Internet about anal [sex],” very little of it is targeted specifically at teenagers. But don’t worry, she’ll remedy that.

Anal sex, she continues, while “often stigmatized” can be “awesome,” and is “perfectly natural.” And contrary to that natural first reaction any teen girl might have when hearing about it, it definitely “isn’t weird or gross.”

The rest of the article amounts to a step by step instruction manual on how to go about engaging in this perverse behavior (traditionally known as “sodomy”). I’ll spare you the details.

Ms. Engle may consider her article “sex education”, but I call it violence against a child’s inherent dignity – it’s child abuse.

Indeed, perhaps the most telling sentence in the whole article is the one tacked on by the editors after the fact. It reads: “This article has been updated to include the importance of using protection during anal sex.”

In other words, Teen Vogue managed to write an entire article about an extremely risky sexual practice, without once warning their highly vulnerable teen girl audience about the many dangers associated with it.

Meanwhile, the U.S. Center for Disease Control states bluntly on their website that sodomy is “the riskiest sexual behavior for getting and transmitting HIV for men and women.” And that’s not to mention the myriad other STDs that can be transmitted through anal sex, some of which (including syphilis) can be transmitted even when a condom is properly used.

Meanwhile, according to the American Cancer Society, anal sex also significantly increases the risk of anal cancer. And never mind the many painful injuries that can come from engaging in sodomy, many of which are endemic in the male homosexual community.

You get the point. But absolutely none of that was mentioned by Teen Vogue.

Indeed, reading this bizarrely one-sided article painting sodomy in the rosiest hues, it’s hard to avoid the thought that it bears a disturbing resemblance to the techniques of “grooming” – used by sexual predators to lower the sexual inhibitions of their young victims so they can begin their abuse.

Often, as InternetSafety101.org explains, sex predators will “use sexually explicit conversations to test boundaries and exploit a child’s natural curiosity about sex.” It’s all part of a process of lowering a child’s sexual inhibitions. Often, they’ll expose them to pornography, gradually normalizing practices that would naturally strike the child as abhorrent. All the while, of course, encouraging their young victim to say nothing to their parents about their little “secret.”

Sound familiar? In fact, so much modern “sex education” can only properly be understood as a legalized form of grooming, often deliberately bypassing or marginalizing parents, all the while assuring young people of their “maturity” to “decide” for themselves whether to engage in dangerous sexual practices that – but for the sex educator – they would never for a moment have considered.

In the case of this Teen Vogue article, the tragic results are inevitable: Many vulnerable teen girls, reading this disturbingly one-sided article, will be convinced (or, in many cases, heavily pressured by their pornography-using partners) to try something with which they are not at all comfortable, or for which they are not even remotely emotionally prepared. And many of them will pay a steep price, physically, emotionally, and spiritually.

So, what can parents do?

First, educate yourself about what children are reading, or what websites they’re visiting. Parents have to come to terms with the fact that when it comes to raising their children in the practice of virtue, most of the media is enemy #1. Teen Vogue, like the equally (if not more so) grotesque Cosmopolitan and Seventeen magazines, has many millions of subscribers and monthly website visitors. These magazines (and many others like them) are often passed around freely among friends at school. They’re in every supermarket checkout line. Often, parents simply have no idea what their children are reading, or how bad it is. Parents must be vigilant.

Second, if what your children are reading, watching, or visiting is inappropriate, get it out of the house! As in the case of this Teen Vogue article, their lives may literally depend upon it. I would strongly recommend installing safety and accountability filters on all Internet-connected devices. In the age of on-demand Internet-porn, there’s no excuse for letting a child or teen use an Internet-connected device without a filter. There are lots of great tools available nowadays. If you don’t know how to install these filters, talk to (and if necessary, pay) a computer expert.

Third, talk to your children! I can’t emphasize this enough. Many parents assume that because they bring their children to church every Sunday, or send them to a good school, that they’ve done all they need to do to protect their children. It’s not enough. Parents are the primary educators of their children! It’s up to parents – not teachers, the media, or even your pastor! – to help their children navigate the minefield of chastity in an age hell-bent on destroying their innocence. Talk to and listen to your children about sex in an understanding and non-condemning spirit, while also providing firm guidance and putting in place uncompromising boundaries – teach them the true beauty of human sexuality and its proper role.

And finally, express your outrage to Teen Vogue magazine. Write them a letter. If you, or anyone you know, has a subscription to Teen Vogue, cancel that subscription and let them know why. Comment on their Facebook page. Sign a petition. Teen Vogue needs to know that they will be held accountable for playing fast and loose with the innocence and lives of our young girls.


As president of Human Life International, Fr. Boquet is a leading expert on the international pro-life and family movement, having journeyed to nearly 90 countries on pro-life missions over the last decade. Father Boquet works with pro-life and family leaders in 116 counties that partner with HLI to proclaim and advance the Gospel of Life. Read his full bio here.

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  1. Fr. James A. Loiacono, OMI on July 17, 2017 at 1:43 PM

    I’ve mentioned this almost too often to repeat it again at length. But, it is necessary to once again suggest that you pull “Cosmopolitan” off the magazine racks of Walmart, Walgreen’s or CVS. It’s target group is girls between 11 and 17. Entering late teens, girls stop reading it. Every issue instructs the reader on a “mind-blowing” sexual technique – like how to “drive their boyfriends out of their minds” with terrific oral sex (i.e. how t turn herself into a sex instrument, no relationship). I’ve railed against it for years, and, while the kids get it, the parents don’t. If they did, the magazine would have disappeared eons ago. The mag was founded by the radical feminist, Helen Gurley Brown, and the intent is to destroy heterosexual, committed love and a healthy family life in favor of a self-centered, recreational sexuality which no marriage or children to “enslave” the woman and let her (and the man by default) drift off into a narcissistic life untethered to human connection, commitment and love, so they “can be everything they want to be and do whatever they want to do.” We’ve abandoned our youth to this by either doing nothing, saying nothing or even living this psychologically, socialogically and spiritually pathological lifestyle – that that’s why 25% of teenagers of each gender now suffer an incurable, sexually transmitted disease and suicide is now the top killer of today’s youth.

  2. Charles Griego on July 15, 2017 at 10:46 PM

    See previous comment

  3. Charles Griego on July 15, 2017 at 10:44 PM

    Thank you for the above information. When necessary and available, I will promote the positive angle to this perversion. My prayers
    will include the petition for the Mercy of Our Lord and His Mother, Mary. Charles Griego

  4. Mary Sue Laing on July 15, 2017 at 6:53 PM

    Perversion is also being explicitly taught in public schools. Military manuals are demanding that military personnel be permitted to be any gender they wish. 3.7 billion dollars is being set aside for sex change operations and the hormones they must take indefinitely. Robert Reilly gave a lecture to the Institute of Catholic Culture, which can be accessed on the Internet, just last evening in which he gave evidence that this is happening. He said “It won’t last long.” Indeed it won’t. The wages of sin is death. Mr. Trump is the commander-in-chief of the armed forces. I hope he uses his authority to stop this atrocity.

  5. Dr. Robert Schwartz on July 15, 2017 at 4:57 PM

    Would that our young children were as innocent and protected as Charlie.

    The issue of Teen Vogue discussed above indicates what perversion is possible among adults who hold a professional position that is focused on kids. We must all embrace the fact that most Western Hemisphere governmental laws are based on the relationships among citizens. Those relationships vary in the interpretation of human nature that each of us carries and adheres to. Since mankind on a global level is subject to a governmental interpretation that clearly differs from that of other governments, the question is…how to distinguish, or how can one be so different from the other?
    The answer might begin with the Ten Commandments of God. They are based on the very nature of mankind, singly and socially. They are generic, though, and demand interpretation. Even though all humans are born with an innate sense of the Ten, the interpretations differ everywhere and among all governments.
    This brings us to the question: Which is the correct interpretation of the Ten? The answer lies in both history and faith. Historically, God chose the Hebrew tribe to retain the correct interpretation of His commandments, for without a flawless interpretation, mankind would degenerate into many ways to look at human acts, aka, morality. God chose to send the very Son of God to earth, fulfilling His promise to deliver to the Hebrews a Messiah, who would bring a renewal of ways of looking at life, human nature and morality itself. There was no great change intended in interpreting morality, which is man’s relationship to God and to his brother.
    God sent Christ precisely to correct some errors among the religious practices of His people and wanted this knowledge extended to all humankind. One interpretation of human morality was intended to fit all God’s creatures henceforth.

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