Tag Archives: teen sex

Teen Sex: The New After-School Special?

The news about teen sex these days just keeps getting more and more alarming. When it all comes down, it’s on Bush’s watch.

Earlier this year, studies showed that an average of one out of every four (26%) of teenage girls are now carrying an STD in the great USA. Never mind the teen pregnancies. These are sexually transmitted diseases, people.

The news is alarming now, but imagine five, ten years from now when the fallout of the STDs exchanged between today’s youths are really felt and known.

It’s been a few months now since the story came out. I’ve been quietly waiting around for the shitstorm to unleash, for when parents start screaming in outrage that their baby girls having a 25% likelihood of carrying an STD, and soon… But the shitstorm never came. The anger never rose. Continue reading

Condoms for Everybody! No?

Deep, deep, deep down in the world’s frigid underbelly of Antarctica, a last crucial ship bearing supplies for the dark, cold winter months ahead has landed. And now the serious work of the next few months of frigid, brutal winter can begin.

According to Reuters, the 16,500 condoms provided to the scientific community of 125 at the McMurdo American research base are given matter-of-factly and free of charge by the bigwigs in the government. Bill Henriksen, the manager of the McMurdo base, says “Since everybody knows everyone, it becomes a little bit uncomfortable” to buy the evil pieces of latex rumoured to protect individuals from pregnancy and STDs 99% of the time.

If you’ve broken out your trusty calculators, you know that it works out to, if every single person had to use a condom for every sexual act, that it would mean each of the 125 people would have sex 132 times in six months. But since only one condom is required per 2 people, I figure that means 264 sexual encounters. In six months. That’s a lotta double-headers and triple-plays, methinks, or sex every day with 80 bonus plays.

Six months of freezing total darkness, no sun, nada, and locked behind the walls of the United States’ most remote outpost, living on cafeteria food, monthly flown-in supplies, and luck.

Those condoms should come in handy. Thank god for the government!

Hey, wait a second! The government that is worried about embarrassment for a bunch of parka’d science geeks stuck in frozen world of ice, rock, snow, wind, and total darkness is the same government that prefers, back on the mainland, a mandated education of abstinence-only in high schools and discourages teaching that condoms are effective sexual protection, and never, ever provides them or makes them easily accessible?

What?

Kids are living in hotbeds of sexual activity, in the middle of a fast-paced real world not covered in snow, ice, and total darkness, but instead is alive with sexual advertising in the media, peer pressures, and, with more working parents than ever before, kids have more opportunity to shag themselves senseless than ever before. Yet they get abstinence education, and these people who are actually working for the government, being paid very nicely to live on government land and eat government food while they study frozen amoebas and whatever the fuck else, they get condoms given to them with the implicit understanding that, while sexual harassment of coworkers ain’t allowed, it’s understandable to fuck ’em when it’s dark and cold outside?

I say kudos to accepting the reality of the latter, and that they should extract their heads from their asses on the former. The reality is, people will have sex. Whether it’s a frozen wasteland or the teenage wasteland of high school, knees will be a-knockin’. Sex will happen.

So why not prepare for all eventualities and make condoms more readily available to teens and college students, too?

I mean, in Antarctica, you could try the whole “Sorry, folks, but you can’t fuck your co-workers, so no condoms for you” argument, but anyone with a brain will know the base doctor’s going to be seeing a whole lot of yeast infections in the coming months, you know? (Or any one of hundreds of other sexually transmittable diseases, from the clap to AIDS.)

So the bigwigs embraced reality and did what they could to work with it.

Too bad you’ve got to live in Antarctica before you’re governed with a little reason by the Conservative Bush administration, eh?

School Me, Babe: Relationship Education

Had I actually been a guest on Sex with Emily last Saturday night as planned, question number one from them was, “Why is your blog so popular?” Why, indeed?

If I had to say why I wish my blog was as popular as it’s proving to be, I’d say it’s because I’d like to think I’m real. But that’s a pat little answer, isn’t it?

The thing about sex writing is, it’s so easy, in theory, to write about dripping, hard cocks, about the fury and the fumbling of two people coming together in sexual union – the passion, the intensity, the fun, the excitement. The pulsing of hearts, the throbbing of members, the vaginal swelling… we’ve all experienced these things, we’ve all been on both the receiving and giving ends of pleasure, and so it’s easy to relate to when we read about others’ experiences. And if it’s not something we actually can relate to, then it’s something we live vicariously through.

Not a lot of sex writers try to tackle the emotional content under it all, though, and the ones who do tend to inspire more loyalty from their readers. I tend to focus more on the emotional aspect of it – not just the emotions we show, but those we hide. Perhaps this is why y’all dig me. Or maybe it’s my irreverence, or my honesty about my own insecurities and desires and fears and dreams. Who knows. But these are the reasons I would like to believe my blog is popular.

And it’s something I thought about when I saw this “breaking” news on the BBC site. Apparently kids find sex education classes too biological. Gee. Really?

They’re right. It is far too biological. Everything about sex originates in one place: the brain. The brain powers our emotional response, spurs our physical response, and then our juices flow, action proceeds to happen (or not), and the rest is messy history.

Funny enough, in England, the biology of sex is a mandatory class, but “personal social and health education” is optional at the institutions doing the teaching. This latter course brings education about relationship and emotional health into play.

I must have missed the memo where relationships and emotional health were optional in my own life.

In a time when divorce is the norm, moreso than happy marriages, perhaps it’s time to reevaluate the ways in which we approach relationships. Maybe it’s time to acknowledge that the psychology/self-help departments of bookstores are the most popular non-fiction sections for a very good reason: We’re all so fucking clueless about how to deal not only with our own problems but any of the problems that might arise in our relationships.

I have a history of running from relationships when things get tough, which is why I’m stunned I’m even hanging around my present relationship at all, considering all the life-induced chaos within it. My first running-from-adversity relationship happened with a young guy named “JH,” my first real boyfriend. He fell, and he fell hard. He wrote me songs, played his guitar for me, and felt like the king of the town whenever I was around. I dumped him as soon as I saw that a divorce was imminent with my parents. I never told him why I was fucked up because I was too ashamed to admit my parents’ failure, and more ashamed to admit that I was weak emotionally.

I pulled the “but we can still be friends” bullshit and instead learned what it felt like to break someone’s heart. The guy fell apart and wrote a “you tore my heart to shreds” song for me, handed it to a friend to deliver to me, and within the week, stole a car, got arrested, and then never, ever spoke to me again.

Maybe if I’d had a better emotional upbringing I wouldn’t have fucked JH up as much as I apparently had. Who knows. I do know that I didn’t have a clue how to open up, how to trust, or how to react when the fit hit the shan. Instead, I’ve spent the better part of two decades slowly learning these lessons through bump-in-the-night, daytime talk shows, and brief flirtations with both self-help books and actual therapy.

And I’m not an exception, I’m the norm. Isn’t it time we change that?

As for “sex education,” it’s really a misnomer. I know that nothing I’ve ever had to deal with was taught to me by anyone with any authority. I learned through necessity.

I’ve had the fear of a condom breaking with a boyfriend before the age of 20, having to stroll self-consciously into a Free Clinic in order to get a morning-after pill, something I’ve had to take three times in my life. I once was so freaked out I was pregnant that I remember doing a pregnancy test ASAP after purchasing it – in the bathroom of a Subway sandwich shop. I never learned about the possible negatives of birth control pills until the last few years, because I was already so fucked up in so many ways that it just never dawned on me that my depression must have been exasperated by pill usage.

In short, everything I’ve ever learned about sex has come as a result of a need-to-know, and-now education, not before-the-fact. It has been a hard road getting to the place I’m at now, considering I was raised by sexually ignorant parents who weren’t comfortable talking about sex, and schooled by a high school that didn’t teach sex ed. Of my friends, I was one of the first to get laid, even though I was 17, and none of us ever talked about sex. When I lost my cherry, my only education was that provided by television and movies. I had no idea why the hell there was a wet spot, and it scared the crap out of me.

I didn’t understand all the emotions that came with sex, and I didn’t understand that a kiss was just a kiss, not an undying declaration of love. I wasn’t hurt by love; I was destroyed by it, and all because I was ignorant of the power relationships could have over us.

Teaching us the biology of sex does little to prepare us for the emotional overload that comes from relationships. Teaching us about human relationships and the dynamics of emotional response would far better prepare us for life and love, and it’s damned well time schools began to embrace that reality.

In the final paragraph of the article I’ve cited, some talking head spouts this sentiment:

“We trust teachers to use their professional judgement to decide which organisations can support teaching and learning in the classroom and which resources best support schools’ sex and relationship programmes.”

Jesus. Let’s not trust the teachers, okay? Let’s convene some people in-the-know to talk about what needs to be learned by kids today, and then create a program that includes all those essential facets, so as to stem relationship problems, improve self-esteem, and build emotional resilience. Violence in schools is greater than ever, bullying is at an all-time high, and divorces are skyrocketing.

Isn’t it time we learn about emotional health as part of our curriculum? ‘Cos we’re clearly fucked without it.