Cross-posted at Sadie Magazine
If you know me at all, you’re aware that abstinence-only sex education, or even preachy abstinence-plus sex education, is a huge pet peeve of mine. I’ve always been boggled by how much information about sex our culture witholds from teenagers, exactly when it’s needed most—when they’re first becoming independent, curious, and sexual. The way I see it, as long as a teenager is self-aware and safe about sex, then it’s fine for them to explore, and that there’s no grounds to shame teens (which really means teen girls, since I can’t recall a teenage boy ever being publicly shamed for having sex) for being sexual if they do it in a mentally and physically healthy way.
So imagine how much my heart was warmed when I found out about this project. The Midwest Teen Sex Show isn’t necessarily promoting teen sex—it’s promoting a “discussion of teen sex.” It owns up to the fact that yes, teens have sex, and no, most of them aren’t going to become depressed dropouts because of it (HEL-lo Miriam Grosssman!).
The episodes drop knowledge on how to navigate the sexual minefield of prom night and all you’ll ever need to know about birth control (posted below). There’s also a community page, which includes convos about herpes, orgasms, and Bristol Palin, among other juicy topics. There are even some burgeoning “groups,” including “Parents who support discussion,” and products you can buy, such as a “Thanks, masturbation!” t-shirt.
Now this is the kind of sex education I can get behind—honest, fun, informative, and realistic, not moralistic.
UPDATE: While we’re on the topic, progressive sex ed website Scarleteen needs your help!!! Scarleteen really has the right idea in terms informing young people about sex and their bodies, so donate if you can. (via Women’s Glib)