Saturday, May 31, 2008

lessons from jr high sex ed

e from e.beck.artist asked what my son is learning from his healthy choices class. I wish I could say he comes home each day excitedly rattling off the day's itinerary.

Not even close.

He walks in the door, hangs up his back pack, skulks through the kitchen mumbling about how hot the schoolbus was, and then disappears down the hallway to merge with his youtube account. An hour later he surfaces and heads for the snack drawer.

"How was school?"

"Fghggghh," he mumbles, or something close to that.

Today I risked asking what he learned new and exciting in his sex ed class.


Maybe I should have left off the "new and exciting" part.

So to decipher what he's been filing away in his gray matter, I've had to mostly settle for reading between the lines of a few questions he'd asked over the past couple days . One question he asked his dad and one he asked me. In that, do-you-know-the-answer-to-this-question style of (confirming he's smarter than us) communicating.

1. The daughter of a teen mother is more likely to:

a. wait until she is older before she has a baby

b. become a teen mother herself

2. The teen boy who gets his teen girlfriend pregnant is more likely to:

a. marry her because he knows its the right thing to do

b. take off and have little to do with his girlfriend or the baby

He later told me "All they talk about is abstinence" and that his book said, "Kids who are religious care more about values" and "If you want to remain abstinent, you can only be friends with kids who are abstinent."

And then he added, "It's so stupid. Noone believes it." (That's my boy.)

Oh, and I thought up a possible explanation for the peculiar seating.

If they were seated girl,boy,girl,boy, what you might get is wiggling red-faced teenagers, with no real paying attention or asking questions.

If they were seated all boys together, it might turn them into homosexuals, OR, it becomes too likely they will egg each other on and dissolve into a snickering fest.

But this way, (girl,girl,boy,boy, girl,girl) the school district is clearly laying the groundwork for threesomes OR wanting each child to sit with a girl and boy on either side. This way, each girl has a girl companion sitting next to her, for comfort sake, but then a boy on the other side to keep things upright and serious.

By the way, if you guessed "b" for each answer, you too can be a jr. high sex ed teacher.


e.beck.artist said...

it is so interesting to me that in this day and age that abstinence education is taught so archaically ..... i think it is fine and necessary to teach it ... as ONE choice .... but since so few choose it, why on earth would it be presented as the ONLY choice .... i would have thought that our generation would do a better job .... maybe our kids' generation will do better .....

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

My teeanger has learned that a) having unprotected sex with someone is like having sex with everyone they've ever had sex with and b) she likes Gummi Bears.

Way to go school system!

Alison said...

Love the description of your son. I'm only working with primary aged kids this year, no high schools.

It's nice because adolescents are like. Like so totally. Uncommunicative. Gotta love em though...

shrink on the couch said...

e, fortunately texas is not representative of the rest of the country, but yah, there are plenty of states that have joined us in the dark ages.

shrink on the couch said...

alison - they are, like, yeah. like you said.

Anonymous said...

I think you're being a little hard on the school's seating policy. Hasn't it been scientifically proven that boys are at a higher risk for homosexuality when three or more of them spend a lot of time in close physical proximity? Or exposed to Barbra Streisand albums?

JCK said...

Maybe you should be the Sex Ed teacher? Just sayin'... Of course, your son would never forgive you.

Radical Reminders said...

Great post! and i love the graphics. It's great that your son is so open and honest with you, that's incredibly important.

and um, tell me Manager Mom was kidding? "Hasn't it been scientifically proven that boys are at a higher risk for homosexuality when three or more of them spend a lot of time in close physical proximity?" And if not... i'd definitely like to see that "research..."

shrink on the couch said...

manager mom - the research says "in close physical proximity when not engaged in athletic competition"

Sports even has a protective effect against the homo-erotic risks of same sex butt patting.

habladora said...

Argh... I can't believe this sort of 'sex ed' is still being taught. It doesn't work. It might actually hurt. It wastes tax money. Sigh.

Anyway, thanks for the exposé.

shrink on the couch said...

jck - you've met my son, apparently?

feministgal - If she's serious, I'd better go burn my Streisand albums ;)

la pobra - yah, it's not education, it's moral lecturing.

Anonymous said...

Amazing that they teach abstinence. They gave up on that ages ago here. I think it has swung a bit far the other way really.

Your son sounds way cool.

Mary said...

I assume that in your own home you have provided some obviously essential sex advice to balance out the obviously inadequate education on that front he is getting school !

shrink on the couch said...

rb - thanks! I think he is way cool, yes : )

mary - yes, in no way am I leaning on the school to do the work for me. although filling in some of the blanks would be nice. mostly I worry about the kids who come from homes where very little to nothing is taught. How their fate is often sealed by an early, unwanted pregnancy.