Sex Education, Then and Now

When I was a kid in the 1990s attending Pennsylvania public schools we had sex-ed in 5th grade and then again in 7th grade. The classes were meant to coincide with the beginning of puberty and focused on basic reproductive biology and hygiene.

This was pre-internet but most of the material wasn’t that groundbreaking. Later in high school I had another sex-ed course in an elective Health class which was more explicit. I can remember the teacher showing us photos of STI-infected genitals which were nasty but we were big kids by then so we survived. There was no talk of morality or anything like that, just biology. Even at that age I knew this basic stuff was sensible and appropriate to introduce to students.

I can’t remember anybody who was barred from the classes by their parents but I was aware of the anti-sex-ed crowd through pop culture. The caricature of those people made me dismissive of them as religious weirdos who were trying to prevent me from sexual freedom.

Now when I see things like this article or this I sympathize with where the bible thumpers were coming from and I am now anti-sex ed. This isn’t about education, it is now propaganda.

Which is the propaganda part?

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I’m gonna guess “propaganda” is now whatever the right can come up with. Showing Sesame Street in schools - wouldn’t doubt some rightie considers that pro-gay propaganda because they once heard someone say Bert and Ernie are gay.

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You’re not wrong. Anything can be thought of as propaganda by someone.

In this case however, the propagandists are making easy for us as they are not trying to hide their intentions.

All of it. The authorities are blatantly trying to mold the minds of kids towards a “progressive” view of sexuality.

I’ve always thought Bert and Ernie were brothers and my husband thought they were roommates. Whatever the case, we never came up with the idea they were gay. That’s what adults have conjured up for some strange reason, just as they said the purple Teletubby is gay. :roll_eyes: It is kids Sesame Street is geared towards and it’s kids who mostly watch it. Why do adults tell kids what they think Bert and Ernie are? Why not just allow the kids to assume they are brothers or roommates or in this day and age, they might think about their dads if they have two dads and not have adults go nuts about the two puppets? Kids should be allowed to see Bert and Ernie as brothers or roommates or whatever, not be told what the adults believe, because it’s probably wrong.

Gender identification is science. There’s nothing to hide

Is it a crime to say one is skeptical about said science? I’m not sure if the information people get about the subject is real or pseudoscience. Not that I don’t continue to read about the subject, but I continuously question, albeit silently most of the time, the sources and what is said about this new gender stuff. I’m not sure if it’s a phase/fad (like possibly with my older son being “agender”) or if it is for real and actually a thing that’s here to stay and not pseudoscience. I mostly keep my mouth shut about it, observe, and continue to read articles about it- with silent skepticism. I just don’t know about it.

At the same time, I often hear my husband read something (generally on FB) and say to the FB memes, “No, there’s just two genders- XX and XY” and “There is no science concerning all these made up genders.” Or something to that effect. He calls anything outside of the old science, false science or not science at all, because “there’s no real science supporting these kids beliefs”.

I hear it from both sides and I just says nothing in agreement or disagreement, because I really don’t know and am skeptic of the alleged evidence supporters give. I figure time will tell with the alleged science behind it. It’s so new, that I have no idea what to believe or say about it, EXCEPT my [adult] child says they are agender, wanting me to use neutral terms concerning them (except with his grandmother, who’s 77 and will never understand it, his father, and some other people) and I love my son, so therefore I’m not going to argue with my child about it, doing my best to get along with my child and trying to adapt to what they wish to be called, even if it is awkward for me and I’m not sure if it’s just a fad or not. I don’t think he’d mind in this group, because you’re more open mind than most and they probably won’t ever meet you to discuss/argue the subject.

No. But keeping the science out of school is not good. Sports have been dealing with this for a long time, so it’s not a fad. The problem is, there is no one simple test for gender. Biology works most of the time, but DNA can contradict the bodily evidence and hormones can contradict either.

We know that culture imposes boundaries on how people should act, but that’s harder to explain to kids. I don’t know psychology well enough to know how you talk to someone about what gender they think they are, but there are people who can do that.

I can agree with that.

I don’t get it and I have a psychology degree, but I received the BS degree in '98 and a lot of new info, which I haven’t seen all of it, I’m sure, has changed. As for my son, he wants gender neutral wording or in his words, “my pronouns are they and them”. He can get very upset if you don’t address him as they or them. “Who is this ‘he’?!” So the psychology behind is beyond me. It could be a fad with him or I’ll just have to force myself to adjust to the plural pronouns, thinking of them as an unknown.

That is just one part of what’s going on. Whether or not we think it’s science, the goal is to plant the idea that it is not a problem in the heads of kids as early as possible.

You think it’s a problem. Based on what?

That’s what they used to teach, or should I say, didn’t teach, but let people believe it’s a problem. So kids killed themselves because they thought they were sick, parents disowned them, they were severely bullied.

And that is a problem. We can’t have kids killing themselves because another is bullying them. IMHO, we really need to teach kids that we are all human and come in many forms and there’s nothing wrong with that.

I was my final year before university, in a private religious, only male students, lyceum.

Some days before the end of year, a priest convoked our class.

" Young men, you are going to enter another life. Remember the teachings of the church. Sexual relationships outside weddings are forbidden.

I know that temptation can be strong. If you have a sexual relationship, don’t add sin to sin, and don’t use a contraceptive.

And if an accident happen, don’t wed the girl , you would make 3 unhappy people, the girl, the child and you.

Don’t forget that abortion is murder. The child must live and give him to a religious institution which will care for him, and will find adoptive parents."

I was very angry

That’s messed up.

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From what I remember, our sex education in school was presented in more of a biological/science context.

My “Sex” education from my father was “Keep it in your pants and you won’t get in trouble like your brother”

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From my father, when i was 11, i asked " How are really children born ? " He explained to me.

When my daughter was very young, she asked us. We told her that there was half a seed in the mother belly, that the father had the other half, gave it to the mother and from the whole, the mother made the baby.

When she was six, she asked us, haw does the father gives his half seed to the mother. We explained and she exclaimed " It is disgusting"

We laughed and showed her drawing for children.

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A biological/science context is how it should be. Once we start bringing ideology into the class it goes downhill.

Why is DNA, hormones, and psychology suddenly ideology? Sounds like you don’t like what science is telling us.

Transgenderism is not just some color on the LGBTQXYZ rainbow. It is a disorder. It severely limits happiness and success in life. It is also extremely rare. These individuals need treatment, not acceptance – which is just enabling behavior.