Sex education, penis and perversion

8 05 2011

If you have arrived here expecting illegal explicit images of youngsters you can fuck off. All search terms and IP addresses are recorded (including those behind privacy proxies – tech is a wonderful thing) and will be passed onto the relevant authorities to ensure your perverted ass is seriously destroyed in jail.

and so onto the blog.

Once upon a time, there was a GrumpyHatGirl…

At age 3 or 4, a local boy brought one of his fathers prized periodicals into the bushes for us all to gape at. I have quite a vivid memory of this and the graphic nature of the pictures. This wasn’t playboy we were looking at, in fact even now, I’d question its legality for sale on a top shelf in Britain. This was hardcore 1970’s bushy pornography. Regardless, within the magazine I was able to identify to my peers, with clinical precision, the relevant body parts we were all admiring in their full glory.

There were no giggles, no ewwwws, no that’s disgusting. We were fascinated by what we saw but it wasn’t something we spoke of together afterwards. We looked, we saw some naked bodies and didn’t think much more of it.

A few hours later a woman is screaming at my mother calling ME all the perverts under the sun and her a terrible abusive parent.

The reason?

I called a penis a penis and not a ‘willy’ a ‘dick’ or a ‘john’. This woman was the mother of the boy who had introduced us to hardcore pornography before we’d even started school.

picture of a penis

A penis

A piciture of William Shakespeare

A Willy

dick cheney

A Dick

a picture of john barrowman dressed as aladdin

A John

To her, it was less acceptable for her son to be hearing and using the term ‘Penis’ than it was for him to be sharing his fathers fruitful literature with a bunch of pre-schoolers and she wanted to let the neighbourhood know what a perverted family we were.

ok sign made by hand with finger poking the hole

no pokey pokey-okay

I’ve always known about reproduction and sex. My parents weren’t the type to teach me of the cabbage patch or stork visiting. There was no digit based dramatisation of the pokey pokey-okay.

When I was 3 years old, my mother was pregnant with my brother. Instead of spouting all the usual cabbage patch crap she calmly explained that daddy planted a seed in mummy’s tummy. The seed met my mummy’s egg and together they turn into a baby, over a period of 9 months.

sperm swimming towards an egg

spermy meet eggy

I questioned how daddy planted his seed and was told it came from daddy’s penis into mummy’s vagina. I didn’t need to know more and didn’t ask any more.

I remember ‘the talk’ quite clearly. It was very clinical, matter of fact, and honest. There was no shame surrounding it and it didn’t turn me into rampant nymphomaniac by age 10 and that won’t have changed by the time I hit 40.

I was well aware of the proper terms for genitals. My mother was a nurse and didn’t think it inappropriate to use them.

At the time, she was the only one. Fast forward over 30 years and it seems not a lot has changed.

Sex education is still a taboo subject for parents of younger children, with the BBC News reporting a survey by Babychild Website where 59% of parents claimed they disagreed with the practice of sex education for under 11’s.

I am firmly of the belief that the more open and honest we are about sex and our bodies, and the earlier this is normalised, the less likely it is to be a taboo topic. It also has the potential to take the mystique away from sex.

That doesn’t mean showing hardcore pornography to 4 and 5 year olds in bushes or in school; nor should it only be putting condoms on food stuffs at any age. Of course it should always be age appropriate education starting with the clinical facts and working to the more confusing and hormonally driven emotional elements of intercourse and relationships.

To deny children an understanding of these things, I feel is the truly abusive behaviour.

two frogs having a cuddle

Two frogs having a special cuddle.

My high school sex education consisted of a video of frogs shagging while our humiliated science teacher left the room unable to cope with the embarrassment of teaching a bunch of preteens about sex. Shutting kids in a dark room with a video of copulating frogs while teachers light up the corridor with their shameful blushes does nothing to normalise the human reproductive process or remove the shame of the human body.

And the shame of the human body is another huge issue that needs addressed, particularly in Britain. When parents believe the stage at which nudity should be hidden from children is when they are old enough to ask questions, in our house, we’d have been fully covered up by the time the baby was 16 months old.

Why should children not be aware of the differences between their and their parents bodies? What is so wrong with baring flesh in your own home? There is absolutely nothing sexual about seeing a naked body but sadly society deems nudity as wrong, shameful and to be shied away from.

Peter griffin of family guy kissing his moobs

Moobs are not something shameful to be hidden

In reality portraying something as wrong or shameful will only make it more appealing to curious youths, just like sex.

Now I’m not claiming all under-18’s who are purposefully shielded from sex education will turn into sex maniacs but neither will those who are taught about sexual relationships from an early age. Hiding from it doesn’t promote a relaxed culture towards talking openly about such taboo topics. In cultures where sex is spoken about from an early age, such as in Holland, teenage pregnancy rates and STD rates are considerably lower than in the UK.

Education does not lead to premature sexualisation of children, it leads to knowledge and understanding and removes the taboo. Teaching kids about the fundamentals of sex in a manner appropriate to their age and maturity, is a completely different experience to dressing or treating  a child inappropriately for their age.

Teaching the basics of reproduction is not the same as objectifying children. It’s odd that so many parents disagree with former but consume the latter with vigour.

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One response

10 05 2011
Sian Rowland

Really enjoyed this post but loved the illustrations even more. Very wise words, grumpy. Here’s my view on SRE in schools…
http://citizenr.wordpress.com/2011/05/05/dorries/

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