Sexuality is one of the important facets of human life. Everyone, adults as well as children, should know as much as on the subject of sex education, also sometimes referred o as sexuality education. The subject includes adult sex education, sex education resource, comprehensive sex education, sexual health education. All in all, sex education is an educational measure that centres on sex. It can be defined as set of instructions in various psychological, physiological and sociological aspects of sex and reproduction. It enlightens one about sexual orientation, intimacy, values, decision making, dating, relationships, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), birth control and more. Sex education is important on the part of children and adults, to protect them and society as a whole. Sex education can help keep away exploitation, abuse, unplanned pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases and HIV/AIDS.
Importance of Sex Education
Why is sex education important? Most people do not even understand the importance of sex education especially in kids. Adults are aware of most of things but children need to be taught all about sex including good touch, bad touch, sexual organs, consent, to name some parameters but a few. Parents often feel weird when something that is related to sexual health comes in front of them when they are with their kids. In reality, they should practice acceptance and allow children to gather some education. The best and most reliable source of sex education is parents themselves. Let us talk about the benefits of providing sex education at the right time.
Prevention of STDs and HIV
Sexually transmitted diseases can be caused due to unprotected sex. HIV is also an infection that can cause severe health consequences. If someone makes intimate relations with and HIV-positive person, they can get HIV too. Thus, educating people about sexual health is very very important.
Empowerment against physical abuse and sexual violence
Children, especially girls, often cannot make a judgement about good and bad touch. When someone touches them inappropriately on their private parts, they feel something fishy but don’t find what is wrong because of lack of education. If we teach them everything right from the start, our children can be saved from this abuse and humiliation. Sexual predators are everywhere in the society as we get to hear such incidents very often. It is our responsibility to keep our kids safe from them and this can only be possible if they are aware of the situation and how to deal with it.
Similarly, women who are married off at an early age also do not know about sexual health and that their consent matters. They are so naive that they only obey what their husbands say and do what they want. This makes them victim of sexual abuse. Unplanned pregnancies are also common in such cases.
Preventing unplanned pregnancies
Another important aspect of sex education is averting the risk of unintended pregnancies. Teenagers make relations out of emotions but with little information about do’s and don’ts. This can result into unplanned pregnancies which can make their lives way more complicated. Use of contraception is also included in sex education.
Sex Education for Children
These days, children are very smart and hyperactive. They want to know everything and for that, they don’t mind asking questions that may embarrass their parents and others. Besides, their grasping power is amazing as they easily catch words and phrases that they are not supposed to listen, at least this is what parents believe. Therefore, sex education plays an important role in spreading awareness amongst children. Before your kids turn to other sources to get answers of their sex-related complex queries, parents should take the charge. In this way, your kid would be provided with the right information in the right manner from a reliable source. Here are some to provide sex education to children:
Start with teaching good touch and bad touch to both boys and girls. Demonstrate them what is good and what is bad to help them make the difference.
Menstruation is one of the toughest topic that a mother has to convey to her daughter when she crosses puberty. This is difficult but you need to initiate the conversation to help her understand why she suddenly starts to bleed followed by acute pain and cramping. Besides, reason behind periods and their link with reproductive cycle should also be explained. Tell them that menstruation is not something to feel weird about but this is a superpower that only women are bestowed with.
Initial levels sexual education should also be given to children including what is sex, its importance to make babies and why it should not be done for pleasure. You can teach them about other terms related to sex such as masturbation, erection, etc. Be simple with words and find ways to teach them easily without feeling awkward.
You can tell your kid to ask anything that they find weird with only parents. This sets an open stage for query resolution and also, reliable source of information.
Sex Education for Teenagers
With progressive approach about sex and sexual health, this is included in syllabus as well. However, this doesn’t cover all the aspects about sexual health. Basics are introduced but advanced information should be provided to them as well because of their growing age. They are exposed and so, they would need to make touch choices at some point of time. In such cases, it is a parent's responsibility to educate them. Here are some tips:
Wait for the right moment to start the conversation. Many parents feel awkward talking about such a sensitive and private topic but it is necessary and so, you must find the right time to break the ice.
When something on the TV plays or there is some advertisement on, do not switch the channel buy play it. This would serve as an ice-breaker and you can carry the conversation. These moments shouldn’t be missed but utilised.
Be clear and concise about the facts and explain to them in an easy language. Brief them about the risks involved in the process and how it should be perceived. Ask them to be open and vocal to you about everything that is happening in their lives.