starting the conversation

Again, I feel like I say this a lot but, it feels like it has been a while since I’ve sat down and just written. So, today I want to talk about something that is kind of controversial (okay maybe really controversial). I was originally going to talk about identifying insecurities in yourself and how to combat it, but this topic seemed more interesting and I want to save the topic of insecurities for a video blog. So, my topic for today is why I feel schools should start teaching sex education more and way better.

I remember in middle school in sixth grade, we were separated into boys and girls and each group was sent to different rooms to watch a video about puberty. I could tell by just looking around that no one was paying attention, and no one cared. At the time, I wondered why no one paid any attention because this was stuff that was important to know. But, there was also that the video was poorly made and so no one took it seriously. Fortunately, my mum had got me one of those books on puberty with those awkward drawings and kind of awkward advice but it was really informative (I’ll link the book my parents got me down below). So, I considered myself lucky that I was so informed as compared to my ignorant classmates, who giggled everytime the p-word came up. Though, to be fair this was back in sixth grade.

At the end of the video, the teacher supervising said that in eighth grade we would be watching another video on safe sex and protection. It never happened.

My parents never gave me the dreaded “Talk” because they always believed in abstinence until marriage. So, I never knew about birth control pills and the other types of contraceptives available for young teenage girls. It was pure idiocy to believe that you could get away with practicing sex without some sort of protection and yet, a lot of people I knew believed that. Of course, in high school we learned some things, but it wasn’t enough to be completely informed about all the risks.

I learned a lot of this through research because I am not one to take unnecessary risks because I was too lazy or because it was too embarrassing. It is important to know.

A lot of parents often feel uncomfortable talking about this subject, but it is really important to be transparent about this topic in particular. You do no one a favor by keeping your child ignorant of something like this.

My advice to starting a conversation about this is to start with asking them about what they know and don’t know and fill in where they are lacking. Here’s a list of questions to cover a general spectrum of ideas (some are gender specific so be careful about what you ask):

  1. What do you know about the female/male anatomy?
  2. What do you know about practicing safe sex?
  3. What do you know about contraceptives? (and parents even if you don’t want to contemplate the idea of your kid having sex at all, please have your child get some sort of IUD or pill or even have some form contraceptive available-because it’s better to know that they are practicing safe sex over not knowing at all what your child is upto until it is too late)
  4. What do you know about STDs?
  5. Give general advice about how your child should abstain from sex in general lol.

So, final thoughts. I think that schools do their students a great injustice when they allow them to be ignorant of safe sex and puberty. This is a topic that will never be ‘comfortable’ to talk about but it is a must. I wish that I had been given the talk and had access to contraceptives like birth control pills just for the reassurance, that safety net.

Puberty Book– This book is one that was created by the American Doll brand and they have a lot of self care, teenage help books for girls.

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PROUD

My sister, prior to me writing this (obviously LOL), asked me for a friend of hers, if I believed if cheaters can change- and I said,

-that he wouldn’t have cheated in the first place if he cared for her.

-he shouldn’t have cheated on her if he even respected her, even just a little bit.

This lack of respect reminds me of the relationship my best friend had with this guy (yes, I did get permission to tell this story).

I think that while he genuinely liked her for quite a while, he was also burdened by expectations from his friends and people that only knew of him.

I remember when we were kids-fifth graders, everyone knew he had a crush on her and they both had been teased about it for quite a while. Flash forward to the summer before senior year-they go on their first date. It’s all roses and sunshine, I went on a couple double dates with them, etc. Then comes time for college application month, NaNoWriMo to some, etc. Basically, November-the month of craziness. They have their first fight over not going out on enough dates. She’s busy with college stuff so she can’t go out and so they argue. He isn’t happy and basically ignores her for the next four months and the most talking they do is small talk over text. OVER TEXT, guys. Its silent. She finally was able to get a chance to break up with him late May. So, what this tells me is that there were a lot of issues that were never addressed and still have not been addressed. Both had issues and I’m not blind to her problems just because she’s my best friend.

A lack of communication. When the only method of communication that a couple is comfortable using is text-well that’s a big no-no isn’t it.

Too much pressure. Like I mentioned previously, a lot of people had played matchmaker with them and I think one of the reasons they got together was because so many people were indirectly pressuring them to be together.

Both acted cowardly (in my opinion, sorry bestie!). Anyways, they never really confronted each other in person-which ties back to the communication portion. They ignored their problems until it blew up in their faces.

She could have made time for him-the whole argument they had-could have been avoided had she made time for him. Relationships are all about give-and-take, compromise.

At the same time, it was a busy time for her and he could have been more understanding.

Ultimately none of these things that are kind of important to a successful relationship existed.

I side with her because she’s my best friend, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that she wasn’t also in the wrong ya know?

She doesn’t play victim and she knows she has issues-I don’t fake sympathizing with her because she doesn’t need it. I’m proud that she respects herself and him enough to not play victim, to not point fingers.

Final advice?

Find someone who will respect you first as a person, then pursue a relationship if that’s what you wish.