Americans Get ALOT Wrong When It Comes To Sex
There was a brilliant post recently in Huffington Post, 8 Things America Gets Wrong About Sex. Americans fall far behind other countries in their attitude, education and practice of sex.
According to the article, something happened around the 1700s that “. . . has grown into a sinister vine tightly wound around many of our public institutions . . . the stigma around sex and sexuality persists where it hurts the most: in the classroom, doctor’s office, at political conventions and sometimes, in the voting booth.”
Here are 9 things we still get very wrong when it comes to sex:
1. Doctors Ignore Sexual Health
Both men and women are scared to discuss sex with their doctors and doctors don’t want to discuss sex with their patients. There’s limited sexual health education in medical school, which is probably what makes doctors unwilling to touch the subject. According to the World Health Organization, “The purposes of sexual health care should be the enhancement of life and personal relationships, and not merely counseling and care related to procreation or sexually transmitted infections.” Interestingly enough, the US has the highest rate of STDs in the industrialized world. Maybe better education is the answer? But wait…we have little to no sexual education.
2. Sexual Education - What’s That?
Unfortunately, sexual education in the US is mostly about abstinence. There’s a lot more to sexual education than just abstinence — how to have sex, consent, how to use contraception, and STDs. Teens who only receive abstinence-only sex education are more likely to get pregnant, according to the Journal of Adolescent Health. What’s wrong with this picture? Kids will have sex whether we want them to or not — isn’t it our responsibility as adults to educate them as to the what, how, and why?
3. Waiting To Have Sex Until Marriage
There is a lot of money spent on abstinence-only education. Despite that, 95% of Americans are sexually active before marriage. So, why spend all that money ($1.5 billion in the past 25 years)?
4. Defining What Sex Is – And Is Not
While 53% of Americans support same-sex marriage, many Americans are still not comfortable with 2 men or 2 women having sex. On the same note, they are also not comfortable with multiple people having sex or being in a relationship. Are things changing or are we just more aware of differences?
5. Our Love Hate Relationship With Porn
Despite the fact that the US is the 4th largest consumer of porn globally, we still look down on sex workers. Strangely enough, the people with the most traditional views on sex — the red states — have the highest porn consumption rates. Why do we watch and enjoy porn yet openly speak out against it? “When we keep porn (and to a lesser extent, sex) an illicit, albeit open secret, we lose the opportunity to provide young people with the media literacy to understand what they are seeing, where it comes from and how it diverges from real life.”
6. We Don’t Know How To Do It
Numbers don’t lie: only 48% of Americans are sexually satisfied. What about the other 52%? Compare that to 64% of Italians and 90% of Spaniards who are sexually satisfied. While Spanish men were rated the best lovers in the world, American men were rated the 5th worst. Who is now moving to Spain?
7. We Pretend It Doesn’t Exist
Despite the fact that most of us do it, we pretend it doesn’t exist. Why? To many people, shame equals sex. “Problems arise when we censor sexuality to the point that we teach our children to be ashamed of said sexuality.” Sex and love are beautiful things. We should not teach our children to be ashamed.
8. We Hate It
“In a country where “sex” so often precedes “scandal,” the degree of negative sexual discourse in America seems to imply a complete aversion to it.” Why is it that a bare nipple offends more than gun violence? Guns kill whereas sex delights.
9. Pleasure – What’s That?
Pleasure is never discussed, and if it is, it is only with regards to men’s pleasure. Women deserve pleasure just as much as men, yet it is either forgotten or an after-thought. Why aren’t we open to the topic of sexual pleasure? What are we afraid of? A more healthy and joyous life?
Along these same lines, we also have a love hate relationship with sex toys. Cheap adult toys have ruined the industry and the notion that pleasure is acceptable and good. Yet, many people buy cheap toys only to realize that they’ve just wasted their money and it’s a joke. Why do we settle for inferior products and thus inferior pleasure, when we deserve more?