Lets talk about sex, baby.

5 Jul

I honestly don’t remember having the “sex talk” with my parents. I’m sure we did, but I must have been so embarrassed I blocked it out. The thought of teaching Sex Ed to my students is… intimidating.

I read an article the other day about a study that found 1 in 3 eleven-year-olds have been in a “girlfriend/boyfriend relationship.”  Teens are also having sexual contact at young ages. It’s important for us as teachers to be resources for our students who may not feel comfortable talking to their parents about sex.

One of my classmates pointed out to me the difference in attitudes about age-appropriate sex-ed between parents and non-parents in our class. It seemed that those of us who have children thought that sixth grade was too young to talk about certain aspects, while those of us without children thought that we should talk about everything kids ask about.

It’s a protection thing, I know – humans are hard-wired to protect their children, and sex is a risky behavior – physically and emotionally. I don’t know what it’s like to be a parent, and my views may change when I am one – but for now, I think it’s important to give children information, or they may attempt to discover things on their own, which could be worse.

I have a cousin with two beautiful children – but she’s younger than me, and had to drop out of her pre-med program because she didn’t know that antibiotics could interfere with her birth control pills. She grew up in Texas, with abstinence-only sex ed, and absolutely no talk of birth control in schools. She is lucky because she has a beautiful family, loving husband, and is now continuing her education. But her life could have been different with a little education.

Even if we don’t want to think about young teens having sex, they might be. Even if it is uncomfortable for us to teach young teens about birth control, they will most likely need it – if not now, then when they are older.

Isn’t it better to start a conversation, to let kids know it’s not bad or embarrassing to talk about sexual health, then to discover later that you could have helped?

 

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One Response to “Lets talk about sex, baby.”

  1. dl5pgh July 8, 2012 at 12:03 am #

    Great comments and insight and a powerful story. What a great example that is. Sex is a tricky subject and fairly controversial. I too noticed the split in the class between parents and non-parents. As a parent, I am terrified to have the conversation and it is hard to think about our children having sex, any form of it. No making out on the side of the house!!!!!

    However, I know that they will start having sexual contact. While some will have intercourse others will not. But that doesn’t mean they all shouldn’t have the information. It does start with a kiss, right?

    What is the right age? There is no right age. Amy Lang of BirdsBeesandKids starts talking at very young ages, long before 6th grade. There are things that are age appropriate to say. Some kids will ask, some won’t. Mine hasn’t asked anything yet. phew!!! But I guess I better figure out what I want to say.

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