Sex Ed?

June 6, 2008

I went out with Robot Boy for a little happy hour tipple yesterday, and somehow, we got on the subject of our dating experiences (or lack thereof) in high school.  I was socially middling, while RB was a bit more of a wallflower, which apparently concerned his parents, who urged him to go out with girls his age.

The conversation then turned to The Sex Talk.  You know, the one that parents are suppose to have with their adolescent or pre-adolescent children.  We compared notes, and it turns out that we were both woefully underserved in this area. 

RB reported that he had one Talk with his father, that went like this:

Father (clears throat):  No means no.

RB (blushing furiously):  Um, okay.  (Thinks: Oh my god, what did he do?)

I don’t think that’s supposed to be how it goes.  He also was given a book by Dr. James Dobson of the abstinence-preaching-but-totally-obsessed-with-sex Focus on the Family.  He doesn’t remember the title, but it was probably Preparing for Adolescence, which will tell you that your morning wood or damp knickers make the Baby Jesus cry.  Or something.

My uh, “conversations” were even less enlightening.  I remember two that fall, loosely, into The Talk category, one with each of  my parents.  The first happened when I was maybe in 9th grade, and went like this:

Dad (desperately trying to sound casual):  Wroth, I’m going to the store, do you need any uh, tampons or anything?

Wroth (running down the hall to GET AWAY FROM THE HORROR OF THIS QUESTION):  NonothanksI’mfine!

The second happened during summer before my junior year.  I had been to a camp where I met a boy, and after the camp ended, I went to spend the weekend with him at his mother’s house in The City, about two hours away.  Several weeks after this, while in the midst of a fight with my mother about…I have no idea, we had this conversation:

Mom (upset, near tears):  …are you PREGNANT?

Wroth (gobsmacked):  WHAT?  WHAT?  What the hell are you talking about?  I am offended!

…and scene.  That’s all, folks. 

This is not to say that we didn’t know what was what–we had friends, and outdated filmstrips in 6th grade, and I read the entire section on puberty in the turquoise Childcraft book titled Your Body (I think it was volume 5) over and over again, so we were fairly well-prepared for all the groping to come.  There was no confusion about kissing making babies or douching with Coca-cola to prevent pregnancy, anyway.  But it is sad to me that sex was so wrapped in embarrassment.

So, today’s question, ’cause it’s Friday, and I just decided to start making Friday a Question Day, is what sort of Sex Talk/s did your parents have with you, if any?


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