So Knowing About Sex Makes Them Guilty?

Recently my friend Kathy, who has been a teacher for many years and now a principal, brought up the topic of sex education in our schools. She mentioned she saw posts on social media of people commenting on the new provincial government’s proposal to turn our sex education curriculum back to what it was in 1998. Hearing her say that out loud made me wonder, what organization would benefit from going back to the policies of 20 years ago? Hmmm, off the top of my head, I could not think of any. I could not think of anyone who moved forward by going back. I understand the importance of using hindsight to move forward as it is always important to use what we have learned from our experiences when moving ahead. However this is about simply going back in time.

My mind returned to our conversation. Kathy continued to share that one of the comments on this post was from a parent who would be grateful if the sex curriculum went back to what it was so “our kids could return to their innocence”. Now that one really hit me, like a painful brick wall. “What?”, I said with a confused voice, “What does that mean? Knowing about sex and our bodies makes us guilty? Guilty of what? Why does it sound like ignorance about sex is sweet and pure and knowing about sex is bad and guilty?”.

I had a flash back to when my oldest child first asked me what sex was. She was seven at the time. I told her the short and sweet answer of how the physical act works and then she just nodded her head. She said she had already heard what it was but just wanted to make sure. Then she asked a question that I will never forget. She looked up at me with sad, confused eyes and asked, “Why is sex such a secret?”. I said “Oh honey, it is not a secret, it is just that many adults have a hard time talking about it. It makes them uncomfortable because for many generations nobody talked about it or were even allowed to talk about it so we are all still learning how to talk about it without getting upset, angry or confused.” Evey let these words sink in and then she said “The problem is when everyone acts like it is a secret it makes sex feel like a bad thing”. Ah yes, the wisdom of a child. Since then I have made a point to not make anything sexually related a secret. I listen and watch closely for the signs or opportunities to talk about their bodies and other sexual topics. I make a point of talking about these topics with love and positive excitement. At the same time, I am always assuring them to listen to their own internal wisdom in order to keep their bodies safe and healthy while enjoying their bodies to the fullest. I tell them my rules or society’s rules will not keep you safe, your intuition will, so use it.

I am saddened regarding how many parents continue to use fear, threats of distrust or simply not educating their kids, not having talks with them over sexual matters, in order to keep their kids safe, or at least that is what they apparently hope ignorance will do. I have never known ignorance to keep anyone safe and innocent. Children’s lack of awareness and education on age related sexual matters only makes them more vulnerable to negative experiences.

I have seen time and time again adults struggling with sex-related issues that stem from a childhood where sex was not talked about or worse, there was some severe punishment for wanting to investigate their bodies and sexuality. We pay such a huge price when we continue to try to keep children uneducated and ignorant of sexual matters.

When I think back to my talk with Evey, she was only seven and someone else had already told her about sex and I assure you, it was not her teacher. By keeping sex topics out of the curriculum, we are not keeping anyone innocent, we are just allowing other sources, like peers, to educate our children and I am not sure that is the most accurate or positive resource for us to rely on. Hindsight can validate that for all of us.

have learned through my own sexual healing journey how empowered we are when we combine communication and sex. The results are incredible. On my TV show, Awakening Within, I have sat down with various professionals to talk about communication skills and sex. In fact, my most recent show is looking at one of the struggles many adults have because they were not taught how to talk about sex in a healthy and positive way.

I have a dream… a dream where religions, educational institutions, health organizations and parents all offer our children a story of celebration. A story that begins with love your bodies, treat them with respect, keep them healthy and fully enjoy the gift of sexuality that comes with residing in a body. I have a dream where love dominates over fear, where freedom dominates

Is anyone else interested in joining my dream?…

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Jill McPherson