Sex-Ed & Emotions – a Catch 22

Wouldn’t be a lot easier if we could be more like Data from Star Trek – just switch on/off our ’emotion chip’ whenever we didn’t want our emotions involved – especially when it comes to sex…but then, what about love and responsibility? Where would they come into play? Conversations like, “What do you mean we shouldn’t have sex? But we love each other!” wouldn’t be an issue – we would just turn off our emotions, put on a condom (and in the words of Nike), Just Do It – then turn back on our emotions and know that the sex was just sex and nothing more. Wow, just imagine – we wouldn’t have to spend hours contemplating whether or not sleeping with that particular someone was indeed a good idea or not…or wake up naked after a fun-filled party night with someone you had just met and have your heart sink to your stomach while trying to sneak away before anyone notices you were ever there in the first place…or feel broken-hearted because someone said they loved you just to have sex then never hear from them again. But what if we were trained better to deal with our sexual emotions in the first place. Well, that is the Catch 22 here.

As of now, there are no national programs set up in schools to tackle all the emotional issues that revolve around sex – it’s mostly outdated misconceptions, scare tactics and the ‘just don’t do it’ education. It is up to each state’s own government entities to decide what their schools must teach or not when it comes to Sex-Ed. Then to top it off, there’s no one that goes around to make sure that those decisions are being implemented or not. And if we as parents don’t take the time to emotionally educated our children – then guess what? That’s right, no one does – and we end up exactly where we are today – more teen pregnancies and more young adults with STDs.

We need to change as a society – when this is going to happen is only now a matter of time – but I say the sooner the better…and I will leave you with this by Dr. Melissa Gilliam (professor of obstetrics/gynecology and pediatrics at the University of Chicago Medical Center in a recent article in the Trib by Alexia Elejalde-Ruiz called: Sexual Evolution); “the focus on comprehensive sex education is a step in the right direction, as abstinence-only messaging is “biologically implausible” for kids undergoing puberty and bursting with sexual curiosity. Sex ed must get innovative to be relevant. A crucial piece of the puzzle is to spend more time talking with teens about relationships. We’ve given them a lot of the fear part. We’ve told them what not to do but not what to do.”