When you’re young, there are lot of rumors and myths when it comes to sex, which is why sexual education is so important. However, even as we get older, not everyone receives the most comprehensive education. But it doesn’t mean it’s too late to learn a few things about your body and safe sex practices.
Sex education helps people to gain the information, skills and motivation to make healthy decisions about sex and sexuality throughout their lives.
You may have learned the basics, but there are likely way more facts to know about your sexual health than you even realized. Here are nine interesting things you should have learned in sex education, but didn’t.
1. Female Masturbation Is Normal
“The idea that ‘boys will be boys’ as far as masturbation is often addressed but female sexual drive is frequently skipped. This should also include the fact that masturbation is a natural behavior, and while it is private, should not be demonized or avoided in the presentation.”
2. No Ruining The Mood Or No Sex
Sure, in theory you know it’s best not to have sex without a condom, but in the heat of the moment, it’s harder to make those decisions with so many other factors at play.
“This isn’t something women should say sorry about,” it is just what they choose, and their partner has to accept this or they aren’t going to have sex,” says McGough. I’ve seen many women have a lot of insecurity about speaking up and expressing their own needs, or fear of ‘ruining the mood.’
3. You Can Still Get Sexually Transmitting Diseases(STD) With A Condom
Although condoms are highly effective at preventing STDs that travels through bodily fluids, other STDs are spread by just skin-to-skin contact. This means you can still get STDs like the human papillomavirus (genital warts), genital herpes, and syphilis, even if you wear protection.
4. You Need To Pee After Sex
While you may want to fall right to sleep after a heavy love-making session, using the bathroom is essential for flushing out bacteria that can travel through the urethra to the bladder, causing infection.” Yes, you can still take a couple of minutes to cuddle after sex, but try to hit the bathroom sooner rather than later, but at most within the next few hours.
5. There Are Multiple Types Of Birth Control
Most of us just hear about condoms or the pill, but those aren’t the only type of birth control available, or it might not even be the best kind for your body. In addition to those contraceptives, there are also Intrauterine Device(IUDs), rings, implants, shots, and patches that are all viable options.
6. A Lot Of Women Don’t Orgasm From Penetration Alone
If you have a hard time orgasming from sex that only involves penetration, there’s nothing wrong with you — and you’re definitely not alone. The vast majority of women need clitoral stimulation to climax, but many sexual positions don’t do this.
To help achieve orgasm, it’s best to cycle through a variety of vaginal sex, oral sex, and manual stimulation, according to research from the Journal of Sexual Medicine.
7. Stay Away From Oil-Based Lube When Using A Condom
Although oil-based lubricants such as coconut oil can seem like a cheap and easy option. But they come with a dark side. It can make latex condoms less effective, which means you’re at risk for STDs or pregnancy. If you’re using condoms, stick to water-based and silicone-based lubes instead.
8. You Can Get Pregnant On Your Period
Contrary to popular belief, you can still get pregnant on your period. This was a common belief because it wasn’t well explained during school that while technically you are shedding your uterine lining and the egg is going along with it, there is still the possibility for sperm to meet egg.
9. Only Have Sex With Someone If You Want To – Period
Our sex education text books might cover the “sexual pressures” we face from strangers. But they never really mentions what to do when the person you’re already having sex with wants to bang, and you absolutely do not.
Even if you’ve had sex a thousand times with this person, you have every right to say no if you don’t feel like doing it. You don’t have to make up excuses or feel guilty. Your body is yours and you can have sex whenever you feel like it. (If your partner is cool with it too, of course.)
10. Hymen Can Still Be Intact
Urban legends from ancient times suggest that the hymen is this thick wall of skin that can only be broken when you lose your virginity. In reality, it’s more like tissue with a hole in it that can be stretched out by various sorts of objects.
You can break your hymen in a thousand ways, most of them not including sexual intercourse. Likewise, you can have sex and still have a hymen that is intact to some degree.
11. All Vaginas, Boobs And Butts Are Unique
I was so ashamed of my body as it changed, because I had no idea what was “normal” and what wasn’t. My mom never really told me what would happen as I grew older, so my transforming self was really not satisfied.
It took a long time for me to realize that the perfect vagina, perfect breasts, and perfect butt were non-existent. So don’t be ashamed of yours,nobody is perfect.
12. Use Lube. Do Not Hold Back.
I know you will want to be naturally oozing with bodily fluids when the time comes to get it on. But sometimes it just doesn’t work out. Or even if you are good to go, lube makes everything better and less painful. Because sex can sometimes hurt, and usually that pain can be handled with proper lubrication.
13. Orgasms Take Practice, And You Probably Won’t Get There The First Few Times
Sex is not like the movies. It takes time to be “good” at sex and fully enjoy it. The best thing you can do for yourself if get comfortable with your body and with your partner.
14. Don’t Have Sex To Prove Anything To Anyone
Don’t use sex as a measurement for anything, including your self-worth, how much your boyfriend or girlfriend likes you, or your level of coolness.
15. If A Guy Refuses To Use A Condom, Do Not Waste Your Time With Him
If a dude doesn’t want to use a condom because “it doesn’t feel as good”. Then tell him that he can go and f*ck himself. But seriously, don’t let a guy be selfish enough to refuse putting on protection. He’s doing this for himself and you.
A condom isn’t there to enhance his sexual experience. It’s there to make sure you two don’t pass any heinous cooties between you, and to ensure that he doesn’t squirt baby sauce up into your vagina-hole. These are, in fact, non-negotiable things. Do not negotiate condom use with anyone ever.
16. Your Boobs Will Get Sore From Time To Time
Depending on your hormones and birth control method, boob soreness is totally normal. It usually means they’re growing, or your hormone levels are shifting. Do check yourself for breast cancer on the regular, though. They should definitely be teaching girls how to feel themselves up for safety.
17. Sexuality Is Totally Fluid
Homosexuality and bisexuality almost never got covered in sex education, and that’s a serious shame. Hopefully our society will progress enough to include these topics. Because it would save a lot of unnecessary frustration, depression and guilt.
If you’re a girl and you’re like both girls and guys, that is totally fine. If you’re a boy and only like boys, that’s perfectly okay too. Don’t let anyone make you feel that your sexuality is abnormal. And furthermore, don’t let anyone pressure you into deciding “what you are”. Because our preferences can change and labels are just a social construct.
18. Most Of The Sex Education Online Is Not Accurate
The websites teens turn to for sexual health information often have inaccurate information. For example, of 177 sexual health websites examined in a 2010 study by the Journal of Adolescent Health, 46 percent of those addressing contraception and 35 percent of those addressing abortion contained inaccurate information.
19. Let’s talk about the situation in U.S.
- A study revealed that 93% of teens aged 15-19 receive formal instruction about STIs and HIV, and 84% learn about abstinence. But a third of teens have never had any formal instruction about contraception.
- By the time of high school graduation, 41% of teens reported knowing very little about condoms, and 75% had never been introduced to the pill.
- By their 18th birthday, 60% women and more than 50% teenage men have had sexual intercourse.
- Every year, roughly nine million new sexually transmitted diseases (STD’s) occur among teens and young adults in the United States as compared to rates among teens in Canada and Western Europe.
- One in five teachers believe that restrictions on sex education are preventing them from meeting their students’ needs.
- The majority of teachers believe that topics such as birth control methods and how to obtain them, the correct way to use a condom, sexual orientation, and factual and ethical information about abortion should also be taught by the end of the 12th grade. These topics are currently being taught less often.
- 82% of adults support comprehensive sex education that teaches students about both abstinence and other methods of preventing pregnancy and STDs.
- Despite the decline, the United States continues to have one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the developed world—almost twice as high as those of England, Wales and Canada, and eight times as high as those of the Netherlands and Japan.
- Overall, in 2011–2013, 43% of adolescent females and 57% of adolescent males did not receive information about birth control before they had sex for the first time.
- Among 15-17 year olds, 52.4 % of boys and 60.3% of girls have never had any sexual contact with the opposite sex, which includes sexual activities that are not limited to sexual intercourse.
- Between 1991 and 2015 the percentage of high schoolers that never engaged in sexual intercourse increased by 28%.
- In the past 20 years, the percent of high school females who are waiting for sex has increased 24%. While, the percent of high school males who are waiting for sex has increased 30%.
- The most recent data reports that about 30% of pregnancies among 15-19 year olds end in abortion, down from 46% in 1986. Of the approximately 750,000 teen pregnancies that occur each year, 82% are unintended.
- Sexually active high school students were 7% more likely to use a condom in 2009 than in 2015.
- 57% of sexually active high school students used a condom during last intercourse. It is the only contraception that also reduces the risk of acquiring an STD.
- Young adults (age 15-24) contract about 10 million new STDs each year, costing about $8 billion in direct medical costs.
- About 40% of sexually active teen girls (aged 14-19) have at least one STD.
- The four most common STDs among teen girls are : HPV, chlamydia, trichomoniasis, herpes, and gonorrhea. Herpes and HPV can easily transmit even with the use of a condom because they can spread by skin-to-skin contact.
- About 40% of teens say that their sex education classes make them feel pressured to have sex. 32% say they feel pressure from their dating partner.
- Almost 3/4 of parents opposes to premarital sex both in general and for their own adolescents.
- If a male teen initiates sex by 14, he has almost a 75% likelihood of having 6 or more partners by the time he reaches 20 years of age. While a teen girl has 58% likelihood of 6 or more sexual partners by that age.
20. Now Let’s Talk About The Situation In India
- After years of sex education not being available in many Indian states, Prime Minister Narendra Modi rolled out a sex education program in 2018. This training is vital since India is number three in the world’s HIV epidemic.
- This education involves role-playing and activity-based modules that are taught by trained teachers and student peer educators. In this training, students learn about sexual violence and sexual health among other topics. The whole training in total is 22 hours. Each week the schools set aside one period for the training.
- Better India conducted research in 2017 and found that 77% of males and 54% of females use the internet. Projections show that internet usage will reach more than 600 million people by 2021.
- In a society where sex is taboo, learning about sex education privately online is a better solution. Media content on sex education in Hindi has become popular. MDhil’s videos on sex and STDs have received 1.2 million views on YouTube. The shareability of this content increases the reach of sex education.
- There are over 2.3 million people over 15 years with HIV infection. In India, about 31% of the total population has AIDS/HIV.
- Only 45% young men and 28% young women seem to have a comprehensive knowledge about HIV/AIDS and its prevention. This is more in cities than in rural areas.
- Same is the knowledge about HIV/AIDS testing facilities with only 42% young men and 30% young women, among the 15-19 year olds, ever having heard of resources to get such a health check-up.
- The sad reality of rural and a bit of urban India are underage marriages. Young girls even below 15 years of age are getting married to older men. This brings about a disproportionate amount of high-risk pregnancies among adolescents. About 62% of rural women mothering at least one kid when they have barely turned the corner from childhood themselves.
- Unwanted pregnancies are also dealt with by unsafe means. Because many are unaware of the risks of back-alley abortions or the fact that there are perfectly legal means to seek abortions before 20 weeks, for special circumstances.
- A dearth of knowledge of menstrual well-being is also perpetuated by a reluctance of talking about menstrual periods openly. It is usually shrouded in secrecy, as if it is a crime to bleed and show signs of being perfectly healthy.
- Nearly 50% of boys and girls, each, face sexual abuse in their young lives in India, according to a survey by MWCD. It is the responsibility of adults to empower these young people with the knowledge to protect themselves against such abuse.
So, next time your kid asks where do babies come from, resort to facts and not storks. Because without proper sex education we’d be letting our young out into a world very different from our wishful moral utopia.