Cos faced a lot of shame from the outside world, but she says it was her mom’s unconditional love that helped her grow up to the open and confident adult she is today.
Even if you grow up in an open household, it doesn’t mean learning about sex is going to be easy.
Tom grew up sheltered and religious, but his curiosity pushed him to explore sexuality on his town terms.
Nick from the United States I grew up in the north of Kentucky, so it was a weird mix of being culturally ‘southern,’ but there was still this mix in of Midwest culture. They aren’t that different, but some aspects are distinctive. Most people I grew up with were Catholic, but not super devout. I …
Katerina from Germany I grew up in the southwest of Germany, in a pretty small village that is well connected to the city. When I was older, I always went to the city for the club or the cinema but my childhood was spent in a house with a garden right next to the forest. It …
Blue from Panama I first became aware of sex when I walked in on my parents. I used to go sleep in their bed all of the time when I was a kid. I was really good at sneaking in rooms without making any noise. So one night, I opened the door and my parents …
Sami from Syria ** If you haven’t checked out the first part of the story, check it out here** Mixed messages Even with my first girlfriend, I never really knew what I wanted with her. I knew something could happen between us, that we could kiss or whatever, but I always had this voice in …
Sami from Syria ** This week we are once again doing something different. This is a fantastic story but it’s longer than normal. Because of this, the story will be split into two parts. Check back in in two weeks for the second half of the story. ** A tale of two identities The neighborhood …
Warning: This story has topics that not all readers might be comfortable with, specifically, sexual coercion or assault. I have sat on this interview for a long time because I was nervous about publishing something that showed the darker side of sex ed but the thing is, TJ is far from alone with her experience. …
Jonathan lived a multicultural life with traditional Asian parents. Instead of getting the information he needed, he was left to figure things out on his own.
While most of us have been raised in an overly macho culture, Alex was raised with a strong feminist background. In most ways, this made Alex a great man, but it didn’t come without its difficulties.
Sometimes we can pinpoint where fantasies come from but in Zach’s case, his love for interrogation scenes seemed to come out of nowhere.
Bo’s school gave her a good start but sex education comes from a number of different places, some weirder than others.
Here it is, my own story.
Even though I work in sex education now, my own sex education was horrible.
Lara from Germany I grew up in a rural area in the deep south of Germany. And with rural, I mean *really* rural. There are twice more cows than people in my village rural. My parents get free days from work because we sometimes can’t leave this place due to snow rural. My parents …
Katrina from Australia Sexuality was shamed in my family and mostly ignored. When a kissing scene would happen in a movie, my dad would put his hands over his eyes and go eww. I realize later that he was feeling awkward about being around children during things like this. I never got a birds and …
Alphonse from Germany One day I was walking around after school with my sister and we found a porn magazine on the street. It was already a bit wet so the pages stuck together. We worked so hard trying to separate all of them. My parents were traveling so a friend of my parents was …
Sophia from Australia I went to a Catholic school for both primary school and high school so our whole sex education was abstinence is the key. It was very focused on the importance of virginity and that you needed to be in love to lose your virginity. They didn’t say that you should never have …
David from the United States My mom was a single parent who worked a lot, so I grew up with a lot of freedom and a lot of time to myself. As long as I didn’t get in trouble, kill myself, or get taken to prison, my mom didn’t ask questions. I have to …
Many of us take the option of safer sex for granted but what about those generations of people who had to diagnose the risk of every sexual interaction even more carefully?
Christine from the Netherlands One of the first memories I have is when I started masturbating. I think I started kind of early. I have heard from a few people that they also started around five but I think overall there aren’t so many. One night, I woke up in the middle of the …
Emma from Switzerland When I was around seven years old, my friend and I started playing what we called “Mom and Dad.” She always played the dad/husband and I always played the mom/wife. We always had jobs. I, as the woman, worked in a very modern office. My friend as the man in the …
Kim from Canada I have always been really into reading. When I was growing up, the most easily available books where those dime store romance novels, usually Harlequin brand. My mom had quite a collection of them and new ones were always coming. Between the ages of ten and thirteen, I easily read over …
Markus from Germany If I think about why I am the way I am as an adult, especially sexually, it’s not difficult to figure out where some of these things come from. I’m very sex positive and open about my sexual side, I’m pansexual and I’m polyamorous (poly). This is kind of the story …
Living half in the city and half in the country, Martina had the option of learning about sex from both worlds; big city public schools and the animal kingdom.
Tristan fell madly in love with his first girlfriend in grade school and wanted nothing more than to hold hands and kiss all day. When the opportunity arose to not only kiss the girl of his dreams but also make some cash on the side, he couldn’t say no.
Coming from a tiny town in the middle of the tundra, Anja dealt with an incredibly closed mined and homophobic society, where she was never able to figure out who she was as a sexual being.
While we may think of puberty happening only to teenagers, for transgendered men and women taking hormones, a second puberty can come at any time and bring some interesting side effects.
At the age of fourteen I discovered masturbation and became a born again Christian, so I had a lot of conflicting ideas. My very formative experiences of sexuality were framed in “sex is sinful and dirty and there are intense, life long consequences.”
Not learning much about sex from her school or her parents, Sophia tried getting information anywhere she could including movies and even video games.
If no one tells you it’s inappropriate to talk openly about sexuality, you can grow up thinking it’s fine to share everything, even with your parents.
Joseph wanted nothing more than to spend his days watching the Playboy Channel but as a kid, it’s not always that easy. Joseph however, couldn’t be stopped.
As a kid, Newman Alexander was really into wrestling and quickly his love for the sport blurred over into his sexuality.
Louise never cared about sex until she developed an intimate and intensely sexual relationship that launched her into her own vibrant sexuality.
Knowing a bit about a topic can be more dangerous than knowing nothing at all. Is Patrick gay? Can his actions make him gay?
Kids don’t have to know what sex is to know that there is something about wanting, loving and touching another person that is appealing.
For a while, Cat wasn’t sure if she was meant to be a boy or a girl and what it meant to be either one of those things.
The first time when you figure out that it can feel really nice to touch yourself in this special way can be a magical moment for many people.
Like many first generation immigrants, Greg grew up between the lines of Hong Kong and Canadian culture where sexuality was handled in very different ways.
A young boy finds hundreds of porn magazines dumped in the trashcans and quickly realizes that he has been handed a great opportunity.
As kids most of us think that we know everything there is to know but David was smarter than that. He knew that there were going to be a lot of things that he didn’t know, especially when it came to sex, so he made it his mission to never be caught off guard.
Sarah figures out her body can do this cool thing when she touches this special area and tries to figure out the best ways and places to experiment with this new sensation.
Playing “E” was the perfect code word for the special game Katja and her friend would play. It wasn’t too obvious but it let the other know that a well thought out and developed scene was about to happen between the two of them.
Hanna goes through some positive and not so positive experiences as she searches for this weird feeling she sometimes gets in her pelvis area and tries to get some special friends of hers to play doctor with her.
Some people are just not ready for the thralls of childhood romance. Tom just wanted to be a kid but when it came out that some girls at his school liked him, he did everything he could to avoid the situation.
After seeing porn, Ashley wanted to try penetrating herself but was too young to walk into a sex shop or have a credit card to buy one online. Instead she took the path of a true engineer and decided to experiment with making her own.
Growing up in the GDR, Momo started her childhood with zero contact with sexuality. Then, when the wall came down, a rush of sexual media came flooding in and she got the chance to learn about this new world for the first time.
All at once Zach went from a kid who didn’t even notice girls to a kid who was obsessed and madly in love with girls and needed to proclaim his love from the mountain tops. Though, yelling how much he loved one girl from a mountain would have probably been better than what he ended up doing.
Through a string of sleepovers Jane and her friends played out romantic scenes from movies and learned that rubbing against things in a certain way can feel really good.
Sexuality doesn’t have to be fast, for Grace it was a long process of learning to explore and be more comfortable with her girlfriends and building up over years starting from a simple show me yours and I’ll show you mine, leading up to cherished relationships and decently hardcore sex scenes.
When you don’t have adults to get information from, you end up having to learn from your friends. When you ask other ten year olds what sex is though, you get a lot of incorrect or partially correct information.
Listening to a Sara Bareilles CD, Malikei thought this is finally the time to figure out what this masturbation thing was. Someone should probably tell Sara Bareilles that her voice has the power to send people into orgasm.