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How Prudish Sex Education Is Leading Teenagers Into Unsafe Sex

Image provided by the Durex safe sex emoji campaign

“I’m not going to tell you not to have sex,” my teacher told me in year 8 “I’m going to teach you real sex education.” She then proceeded to do nothing but present us with graphic pictures of STD’s, and show us how to put a condom on a dauntingly large blue dildo.

Now, my teacher most certainly did tell me how to have ‘safe’ sex, in the sense that I know how not to get pregnant and such. However, if I went off the information she gave me and that information only, sex would be painful, confusing, and just altogether bad.

Firstly, when told about the mechanics of sex it was very much just this: Penis into vagina, in out, in out, shake it all about, ejaculation. This is harmful, as we learn that the end of sex is the male orgasm, and that’s all there is to it. Not only was the word clitoris never uttered, but I learnt virtually nothing about the structure of a vagina, or anything that might imply that there might be more to the female enjoyment of sex beyond penetration.

By being prudish about sex, we allow for more hurtful experiences. Young girls might go into sex without knowing about how their body allows for sex by getting wet, and will resign themselves to having a first, second and third time that is bound to include blood, chaffing, and lots of pain, when it very much doesn’t have to be that way. Though oral sex may be mentioned, it’s utility in making the whole ordeal a lot less painful was not, because God forbid we mention the f-word {Foreplay}. Without a full understanding of their body’s, young girls are very much going in dry, and young boys thinking that a girl with a tight vagina is a good thing, as they don’t know how the female body will open itself up when it’s sufficiently aroused. This is unsafe, subjecting teens to harmful encounters that could potentially make sex traumatic

And the real kicker is that nothing other than heterosexual, missionary sex is mentioned. To place a taboo around gay and lesbian sex is harmful. Young queer teens therefore have no guidance, and might go into sex with no preparation which is, once again, literally harmful. And also due to the penis-centric attitude of sex education, the first port of call in lesbian sex is of course a strap-on, and a woman can’t truly lose her virginity until she’s been penetrated. Nonsense.  

Peer sex Educator Laci Green provides frank, and well informed advice on sex as it pertains to Gender and sexuality that may be considered risqué, but is in fact more informative on how to avoid uncomfortable sexual encounters, and therefore have safe sex.

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Olivia Traverso-Madden

London based writer with interests in politics and media, and how they fit together


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