I grew up in that weird, remote part of the United States that they call the “Bible Belt.” Then a few years ago, I moved to Berlin, which is probably one of the most sexually open cities in the world. Here I have been forced to confront a lot of the ideas that I had about sex. Some that I knew existed; some that I let stay hidden in the back of my brain where I could contently leave them unattended.
I grew up seeing first hand what bad sex education can do to someone. I was told that my sexuality as a woman was like a piece of bubble gum. Once someone “chewed it,” no one else would ever want it. Having sex would make me ‘used’ and unworthy of future love or respect.
Even for the kids who didn’t have such horrible explanations of sex, the fact remains that across the world, our sex education curriculum is flawed and failing kids. Sure talking to kids about these topics is hard but it’s a necessary hurdle if we want future generations to do better and be better than us.
This is the generation of women standing up for their sexuality. The generation of #MeToo and of taking responsibility for the way we want the world to go. By seeing and talking about what happens when our sex education fails, I hope we can instead make steps to give future kids a better shot.