Sex Education for ill prepared parents

Recently, Gov. Herbert discussed maintaining the current sex education laws in Utah requiring schools to teach sex ed and abstinence but not about STDs or contraceptives.

Many UVU students and faculty brought up a different angle on the subject of sex education: Why isn’t there a focus on sex education for parents?

Many people believe that sex education should be taught in the home. Others argue that leaving it in the parents’ hands leaves many children uneducated and uninformed.

Psychology professor Matt Draper said, “Regulations are never the best answer. No one is getting adequate sex education. The question is: Whose job is it to teach? We don’t need more sex ed for kids. We need it for parents.”

Almost everyone will agree that more needs to be taught on the subject. Jeremy, a student, said, “Sex is a natural part of life, so why not teach it? We talk about death, murder and genocide but don’t talk about sex.”

Many students say they learned about sex from their friends. A few said they learned about it from their parents. Almost everyone admitted that they did not feel they had adequate education on the subject.

Shelly, a student and a mom, said, “I think parents should be the primary educators, but they should be taught how to teach. I learned what I know from my sisters and from romance novels.”

Sol Gordon has a Ph.D and is the author of several books on parent-child communication and sexuality, and he advocates teaching kids about sex at home. In the Gordons article “Why Sex Education Also Belongs In the Home,” it says, “the best way to help your children develop healthy attitudes about sex is through example. If parents are honest and also well informed, children will learn the value of knowing the facts. If parents are generous with affection for the child and spouse, youngsters will themselves learn to be loving partners and parents. In effect, if parents are comfortable with their own sexuality, children will have an excellent opportunity to learn how to lead sexually healthy lives. And they will have learned how from the people who can teach them best—their parents.”

The idea of teaching parents how to be better educators for their children is not new. It appears that many people are unhappy with how the topic of sex is taught to children. Educating parents may be an answer to this discontent.

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