Dear Mad, I read your editorial and I would like to comment in defense of sex education for children. First of all, this education should be the job of the parents. The problem is that parents do not do this well. They wait too long, they are embarrassed, or they think ignorance will protect their children’s innocence.
I am a Woman’s Health Nurse Practitioner/CNM and I have raised five children. I gave my children explicit sex education by the time they were eight, using proper terms for their body parts and sexual activity. They comported themselves pretty well, protecting themselves and others. I showed them textbook pictures of sexually transmitted diseases and talked to them about the exquisite pain women have when unwanted pregnancy occurs. I am pro-choice, but no pro-abortion. With the proper sex education and free/available contraception) including a long-term implantable contraceptive for men) the decision to have an abortion would be rare.
Although homosexuality has been around since the beginning of human history, the issues of sexual identity has become a relatively new and public phenomenon. I personally don’t care what sex a person identifies with, nor do I care what sexual preference a person has. What matters to me is the way they conduct their lives, having respect for the feelings of others and maintaining health boundaries. Another phenomenon that has become a huge problem for us is the internet. It has presented difficulty for kids, especially their ability to maintain their boundaries and their privacy.
I also appreciate your religious feelings, but sex education in schools should not be based on religion. That is why the public-school system bans religious teaching. That also should be done at home. I hope this will clarify someone else’s viewpoints, and I hope your daughter feels more comfortable with the information she gets at school. Growing up is not easy, but constant communication within the family is paramount.