So I really love talking about this and just rambled in the queer section about this a bit. I know a lot of other people feel really strongly about this issue as well.
But I was just wondering, how was sex ed at your school? Was it helpful? How could it have been better???
*** My thoughts Sex ed at school for me was pretty crap. I mean, it was nothing I didn't know already from sneakily read Cleo mags in newsagencies. But I'm in huge favour of having sex ed at school of course.
I went to a good public school, and it was still crap as.
Some critiques *completely heteronormative, nothing on lesbian safer sex (eg/ dams). token token reference to 'experimenting'. F*** that. *useless focus on consent - it was all 'you can say no' not 'ask for yes,' focus on communication, which is the kind of consent that is useful and that everyone needs to know I reckon.
I seriously think that if everyone learns good safer sex stuff at school it could totally revolutionise our society, with less queerphobia, emphasis on good relationships, and a society based on consent and respecting others' surroundings.
Obviously this needs to be coupled with stuff like anti racism classes, and useful stuff that to me was better than any geog or archiology class or nuffin.
Post by Erica Chan on Apr 12, 2010 17:34:27 GMT -5
I couldn't agree more. I remember sitting in school and wishing that we could get classes on real politics and what was going on in the actual world and real life.
Honestly, our safe sex class wasn't quite as bad as I've heard others to be though. At the time, I thought it was truly pathetic - yes it was heteronormative, and the big message at the end was 'abstinence only'. But at the same time, they at least let us know the general biological workings of it, as well as informed us about the pros and cons of, and how to use, several different forms of contraception. That beats the hell out of other private school sex ed I've heard of... eg. 'stay away from men/women until you're married'.
It's good that you got some focus on consent though! If I recall, ours was just kept strictly biological. Even if the focus was screwed...
I do believe that if sex ed were improved here, things would get a lot better in social terms. Then again, at least we don't have it as bad as in America.
Last Edit: Apr 12, 2010 17:34:46 GMT -5 by Erica Chan
thanks for your thoughts erica! did you go a religious school?
i don't know, some places here are 'as bad as america' if not worse my friend went to a catholic school in adelaid where they watched basically one guys raping another (some kind of porn) and the teaching saying 'this is gay sex. stay away from it. you'll get raped and go to hell'. so like woah wtf.
do you think that proper school sex ed could be revolutionary? i seriously don't think that word is too over the top, but maybe i'm just young and idealogical! imagine if everyone knew to love their bodies, respect other people and how to have healthy sexuality and self esteem..... = amazing! it could do amazing things. Betty dobson has some great things to say about this too...
I don't remember much but I remember being taught about dams because I'd never heard of them before then. I was surprised that many people at Uni didn't know about them because I thought it included hetero-normative sexual acts too. I even remember the teacher cutting a condom to show how it could be turned into a dam. Good things from health class: -teaching me the difference between gender and sex and how some people struggle by not identifying with the gender that society identifies them with. -self-esteem/body image; I remember having to write a list of things I liked about my body as homework for a period of time. And we dissed girls in magazines...but that could've been in English.
Things that could've been better: -consent; focused on saying 'no' and stopping is okay, blah. I think this is the main problem with sex ed, they should make it clear that consent is about obtaining a 'yes' because people aren't always in a state to verbalise their wishes. -i also think they could've have introduced some forms of contraception earlier than the legal age of consent because i think a lot people start having sex earlier or at least a lot of people in my class did.
Post by Erica Chan on Apr 23, 2010 19:23:41 GMT -5
Hmm... it really seems as if consent wasn't an area focused upon. That's a real concern, methinks, and it might explain a whole lot of things wrong with our society in terms of date rape and such.
Neha: I think teaching kids about forms of contraception earlier than the legal age of consent is a great idea. Teaching people about contraception at 16 is problematic if they've already started having sex, I agree. It's good that you got taught about dams though! And self-esteem/body image and gender sounds pretty good too.
I think it's great that your health class did stuff on self-esteem/body image. My health class was on promoting a 'healthy, active lifestyle(!!!)'. Not that that's not good, it's just in the absence of a rounded message I thought it was potentially damaging to fragile teenage egos at the time, eg mine.