Michael Norton

It used to be said that the way to a man’s heart was through his stomach. Saying this was a tongue and cheek means of addressing simpler times and plainer ways. In the same lighthearted spirit the way to a woman’s heart was viewed as far more mysterious, and was often described as a path laced with kindness, understanding, flowers, and a diamond or two.

But now Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains (PPRM) has a put a new twist on this, and perhaps unintentionally demonstrated that those simpler times are gone. They’ve done this by showing that the way to a teen’s heart is through his or her cell phone: literally through texting about sexual issues and answering questions teens might have about their sexuality.

That’s right—PPRM is now in the business of texting with today’s teens about matters that earlier generations would have either never voiced or at least would have only voiced to a parent or close friend. Yet in 2012, setting up this quasi-cyber texting relationship with PPRM is as easy as one, two, three – and parents likely won’t know anything about it.

For starters, a teen with questions simply goes to PPRM’s “In Case You’re Curious” webpage. Once there, teens with questions about their “sexual health” are encouraged to text PPRM—a number is provided—and told that their questions will be kept anonymous and that they will receive a response via text within 24 hours.

Among the information available from PPRM by texting are locations of “health centers” where teens can get HIV testing, contraceptives, and, of course, abortions. Moreover, teens don’t even have to text to find out where to have an abortion. Rather, they can just click the link marked “find one here.”

Michael Norton

Michael J. Norton is senior counsel with Alliance Defending Freedom and is a former United States Attorney for the District of Colorado.