Saturday, February 2, 2013

Quick hit: because you WANT to

I read this comment on the blog Love, Joy, Feminism, and it said something about sex and sex education that I find really important, which I'm not sure I wrote in my posts on sex education (my bolding):
What my mom said was that when you decide to have sex, it should be because YOU want to — period — not for any other reason — and that you should use protection, because you should also get pregnant because you want to and not because you weren’t paying attention. (Not, as it turned out, a problem I was ever going to have … but we didn’t know that when I was 14.) She didn’t tell me to wait till I was married, or even, really, to wait until I was ready — she told me to make sure I was doing it because I wanted to, and not because I felt I had to, or ought to, or didn’t have a choice, or wasn’t in control of the situation. And I think that was a really, really valuable piece of advice.
 The problem with saying something like "wait until you're ready" is to imply that there is a maturation process and when you're "mature enough" you'll want to. This ignores the existence of people who are asexual, on the one hand, and gives teens the message that sex is an adult thing to do, which at least to me sounds like a pretty irresistible framing to people who want to show themselves to be mature, and a pretty good tool for whoever wants to badger someone into sex (well, if you don't feel mature enough for it...). Better then to stress the values I've mentioned in past posts, and stress that wanting it for yourself and wanting to have sex with the person(s) you're doing it with.

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