According to Janet Elise Rosenbaum’s study, “Patient Teenagers? A Comparison of the Sexual Behavior of Virginity Pledgers and Matched Nonpledgers,” they don’t (http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/).
The study found that teens who sign pledges, vowing to wait to have sex after marriage, are just as likely to have premarital sex as those who don’t. Furthermore, teens that sign virginity pledges are less likely to use birth control or protection.
There are many different pledges that parents are asking their teens to sign on topics from safe driving to underage drinking.
Most safe driving pledges require teens to promise no speeding, no drinking and driving, and to buckle up. Because virginity pledges have been found to be ineffective, does that mean that these safe driving pledges are unlikely to work?
At the end of the day, a signed pledge is just a piece of paper. It is up to you to make the responsible decision. Pledges may be a good idea, but not alone. They need to be coupled with good education, good decisions and peer programs like Teens in the Driver Seat.