A Lesson in Sex Education

Channel four aired a program last week called, Sex in Class. The program saw Sexologist, Goedele Liekens who was tasked with testing 15-16 year olds on their knowledge of sex. Goedele was extremely knowledgeable, professional and very personable and she was able to talk to the teenagers on a level they understood. Examples of the questions she asked were: ‘Do you watch hard core porn?’ and ‘Do you masturbate?’

A number of teenagers had a fantasy idea of sex and freely admitted to watching pornography which was creating an unfortunate preconception at odds with a loving, sexual relationship. The teachers at the school seemed to be very uncomfortable with the discussions and the parents also found the homework a little too much, in that Goedele had asked the girls to take a mirror home and examine their vagina.

The teenagers were tested at the end of the lesson and it appeared that the vast majority learned a lot, and that they would welcome this more detailed, factual approach regarding sex education. The school agreed that a lot of new ‘Sex Education’ discussions were needed and would hopefully be introduced 

My own experience of sex education at school wasn’t in the slightest bit interesting, engaging or at all useful for real life. Being shown cross-section diagrams of a penis (and subsequently being told to, ‘STOP GIGGLING!!’ and ‘LISTEN’) in a biology lesson at school isn’t exactly real life, is it? 

A discussion is needed, questions need to be asked and not immediately dismissed if considered a little ‘experimental’. If teenagers are given the freedom to talk, they will. Having worked in sexual health and, in particular, young sexual health clinics, I have witnessed how mature teenagers can be, given the right environment.

They will often freely discuss their sexual experiences and aren’t at all embarrassed to request contraception, so why, as parents, are we embarrassed to discuss sex and our bodies with our children? 

I for one am in favour of introducing a more continental approach to sexual education in schools but I would also recommend that subjects such as revenge porn and social media safety are added to a 21st Century curriculum for sex education.

Clearly teenagers are evolving in a modern world and underage pregnancies rise year-on-year, so why should we expect that our antiquated methods of educating the 2015 teenager is still applicable?

I’d love to know your thoughts.

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7 thoughts on “A Lesson in Sex Education

  1. Great blog post! I agree with you completely. I live in Australia and I must say that school sex education programs here are also lacking relevance for Australian teenagers. Do you mind if I share your post on my blog (www.50shadesastray.wordpress.com)? Will be keeping updated with your blog in the future!

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  2. Great blog post! I have to say that there may be limits on how much children can learn about sex at school. Parents should embrace the embarrassing talk about the birds and the bees and educate their children too 🙂 HYL

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    • Sorry for the delay. Thank you for commenting on my blog post. Yes, you’re probably correct in saying there will be limitations/regulations with regards to what can be discussed at school but why are these conversations still considered embarrassing. Let’s hope more parents have the same approach to this as we do 🙂

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