I’m always so interested in what people say about their earliest recollections of learning about sex – whether it’s the birds and the bees, school sex ed programs, parent’s leaving brochures around your room, etc. Do you guys remember learning about it for the first time?
I had the anatomical stuff sorted out as early as I can remember. My mum always referred to our body parts by their correct name and we read the “Where Did I Come From?” book when I was about 5. I knew the basics before school classes covered them, plus I used to read a lot of Dolly Doctor. I do remember being quite young, maybe 11 or 12, and watching When Harry Met Sally with my parents. During the infamous fake-orgasm scene I asked Mum what was happening and she said “I’ll tell you when you’re 18” which was kind of a bummer. I never learned about orgasms and masturbation or how to communicate my needs/wants until I was older. That seems to be left out of most sex ed, as does the importance of consent.
Other than the parents signing the consent form so as to avoid having to have ‘the conversation’ with me themselves – I remembered “Letters to Judy” by Judy Blume being mentioned in class. Turns out there was a copy in our bookshelves at home, and being curious and a reader I devoured its content.
The talk with my parents started by the book “what’s happening to me” puberty book magically appearing on my bed to read. A lot of my sexual health information came from Dolly doctor too @ElleBelle. I think my parents “hoped” that it they would never have to have the sexual safety talk with me
I definitely think I’m one of the lucky ones now. My family is very open. I remember learning about sexual health mainly around the dinner table with my parents and 3 older siblings. Nothing really seemed to be off limits and I never really felt embarrassed. I know when I first got my period I asked my mum for a book to read, but other than that….definitely lucky I think
My parents always used the correct terms for things – I remember knowing what a penis was at the age of five. I think that’s helped me be quite relaxed around sex and sexuality. I’ve never formally had the ‘talk’, but it’s always very easy to discuss something like a question about my birth control with my mum. I’m very lucky that way.
Oh yeah, @ElleBelle I remember ‘Where Did I Come From?’. I have no idea how old I was then so I guess that conversation started pretty early. I do remember a condom discussion coming after an episode of Getaway (yes the TV travel show) I was watching with my sister. The host was at some swanky place and made some coy comment about the facilities and it showed a vending machine. I didn’t see what was in the machine so asked the question and my older sister was too embarrassed to respond. Cue Dad bringing out and opening a condom for a detailed explanation when ‘it was a condom machine’ would have sufficed!