to be a bit surprised that 11 year olds had school lesson involving putting a condom on a banana?

(192 Posts)
Mintyy Mon 12-Nov-12 22:29:50

So this is a Year 7 class in a local academy.

Aibu to think that they are still a wee bit too young for this?

Felicitywascold Mon 12-Nov-12 22:30:28

Statistics prove otherwise I'm afraid.

OhBuggerandArse Mon 12-Nov-12 22:31:15

More appetising than a courgette, I imagine.

ravenAK Mon 12-Nov-12 22:31:32

I'm surprised too - horse carrots are cheaper & less bendy; we always use them.

CaptainBarnaclesDaddyman Mon 12-Nov-12 22:31:35

My school did that and I wasn't responsible for any teen pregnancies. Go figure.

picnicbasketcase Mon 12-Nov-12 22:32:06

A bit surprising perhaps but not shocking.

Mintyy Mon 12-Nov-12 22:32:16

What statistics are those Felicity?

sausagesandwich34 Mon 12-Nov-12 22:33:49

I would have no issue with my 11 year old doing it at school

putting a condom on a banana that is, not doing it, I would be most upset!

Considering a lot of my peers were sexually active by the end of year 8, I'm not surprised that they teach them in year 7!

Portofino Mon 12-Nov-12 22:36:57

I went to a naice grammar school and my class mates were having sex aged 12/13. Not all of them - but some of them, and this was 30 years ago, It is entirely appropriate I am afraid.

FredFredGeorge Mon 12-Nov-12 22:38:25

Even if the majority were too young (not that I think they are) it's surely a good idea to teach them before, rather than after?

So YABU for thinking it's too young, plenty interested at 11.
and YABU for thinking it's inappropriate even if they weren't overly interested.

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 12-Nov-12 22:39:19

Oh dear. I don't want it to be, but I can believe it is necessary.

No mensh of condoms and bananas as year from my year 7

Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 22:39:31

What would you rather they did instead?

socharlotte Mon 12-Nov-12 22:41:03

I would certainly have a BIG issue with it.They are 5 years under the age of consent.

CaptainBarnaclesDaddyman Mon 12-Nov-12 22:42:03

Yes because no one has ever broken the law socharlotte

sausagesandwich34 Mon 12-Nov-12 22:43:13

do you honestly think that we schouldn't teach them about safe sex until theya re 16????


JennyPiccolo Mon 12-Nov-12 22:44:31

There are no laws about learning about sex. Not yet, anywayhmm

Portofino Mon 12-Nov-12 22:44:36

Yes - would you rather your child had the approproiate knowledge or pretend that they will not have sex til they are in their 20s and married...? ffs

whathasthecatdonenow Mon 12-Nov-12 22:44:56

Odd that they used a banana. We have a plastic penis for this.

GhostShip Mon 12-Nov-12 22:45:08

Socharlotte slightly missing the point there.

They need to be educated before that. Lots of children are losing their Virginia before 16, and whilst its not good, it's better to educate them in safe sex rather than pretend its not happening.

aufaniae Mon 12-Nov-12 22:45:44

socharlotte yup.

But when I was at school I knew 12 year olds who were having sex. (Waited till 14 myself. My parents had no idea.).

Basic advice on protecting yourself needs to start before they become sexually active, don't you think?

marriedinwhite Mon 12-Nov-12 22:46:35

They certainly should be taught about safe sex - at home preferably. If they are going to teach how to put a condom on a banana at school I hope they would write to me so I can discuss it with the children first and make sure they realise it needs to go on a penis and not a banana

giraffesCantLightFireworks Mon 12-Nov-12 22:48:04

I think it is good if they have all the knowledge.

I work with children and young people in my 2nd job and the myths and questions they have about sex/contraception/pregnancy is shocking.

Only4theOlympics Mon 12-Nov-12 22:48:12

I know personally a girl who had a baby very shortly after her 13th birthday.

Sex education is vital. That includes having the self esteem to say NO and how to be safe if you say yes.

motherinferior Mon 12-Nov-12 22:49:45

Wouldn't the banana squash? Although I suppose it would teach them to treat the banana with respect and a gentle hand.

Kafri Mon 12-Nov-12 22:50:15

It's the norm now, and to be fair better they know than not.

My sex ed class in school was putting a condom on a bottle of 'mum' brand deodorant. Not sure where my teacher got that idea from - think a banana would have one the trick.

Oh, and trying it out in sex ed didn't make me run out to try for real.


JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 12-Nov-12 22:50:18

Oh marriedinwhite, I am smiling at the thought of the a few who'd believe in the protective powers of a be-durexed banana

Startail Mon 12-Nov-12 22:51:41

Given the dissappearence of on girl at the end of Y9 to have a baby. DDs class should have had that lesson.

Startail Mon 12-Nov-12 22:52:16

I must fix my spell checker blush

Mintyy Mon 12-Nov-12 22:53:06

Seems iabu then.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 22:53:18

I think you're Incredibly naive if you think that 11 is too young to be thinking about sex! Better to have the info and not use it, than know nothing and end up in trouble! Prevention being better than cure and all that!

EuroShagmore Mon 12-Nov-12 22:53:21

We had this class age 12 when I was at school 25 years ago, so no, it's definitely not too early!

Mintyy Mon 12-Nov-12 22:54:26

Feck off with telling me I am incredibly naive! Ffs.

Wallison Mon 12-Nov-12 22:56:40

I suppose the thing is that they need to be talking about and aware of this stuff for some time before they become sexually active. Given what was going on at my school almost 30 years ago by the time we were all in what is now year 8, I would say that year 7 is definitely the time to start proper frank discussion and education on the subject.

Felicitywascold Mon 12-Nov-12 22:58:04

What statistics are those Felicity?

There have been many studies, most available with a quick google.

I was thinking specifically of the NHS figure that 25% of teens will have sex before the age of consent.

Don't get me wrong minty I wish you were right. With all my heart. But the sad truth is you aren't right.

Marriedinwhite- the school don't consult you on the rest of the curriculum this is no different.

TwinkleReturns Mon 12-Nov-12 22:58:54

Im 22 and however many years ago I was in year 6 we did this ... although I seem to remember a selection of vegetables and the hysteria about who got the cucumber grin

Of course its sensible. I would hope we are a far cry from the days of "dont talk about it and they wont do it" which results in far more STIs and underage pgcies than DC who have been taught about protection early on. Its not as though the teacher stands there giving out tips on oral and how to achieve mutual climax! As I remember it we had a general biology bit about what a penis and vagina look like, how they work incl an explanation of the menstrual cycle. Then we moved onto talking about what contraception was; how it prevents the sperm from reaching the egg thereby stopping fertilisation. Then we all got to look at diff contraceptives and practice putting condoms on carrots!

Each year we did a recap and the information gradually became more detailed in that it stopped being so factual and we were introduced to the idea that sex was something people did for pleasure and not just to create a baby. In year 9 we discussed anal, rape, domestic violence(specifically sexual abuse), peer pressure, STIs, oral, group sex, homosexuality etc in the context of the media and society as a whole as well as personally.

I think its actually very important that we open the topic right up at a young age.

whathasthecatdonenow Mon 12-Nov-12 22:59:03

You should receive a letter with the option to remove your child from the lesson. We send them home with the pupils and a nil reply means your child does the lesson. We assume that some letters don't get home, but generally those are the children who want to be informed but know that their parents would rather they were kept 'innocent' (ignorant). The letter is posted on the VLE as well.

squeakytoy Mon 12-Nov-12 22:59:41

I knew of quite a few in my year at that age who were experimenting with sex, and one of my classmates had a baby by her 13th birthday too.

That was 30 years ago.

aufaniae Mon 12-Nov-12 23:00:47

There was a girl in my class at school who got pregnant at 13. It was her excuse for not doing PE. "I can't, I'm pregnant miss!".

No one believed her. Turned out she was telling the truth: she had 2 DCs by the time she was 16.

Goodness, she must be 37 with a 24yo and a 21yo now. Wow! We've had such different lives. (My DS is nearly 4). I hope things improved for her.

squeakytoy Mon 12-Nov-12 23:02:26

My schoolmate was a gran before she was 30.. and her own mum was a great grandma at 46... clearly it was a family tradition confused

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:02:53

better to have it (the knowledge of how to) and not need it than need it and not have it IMO

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 12-Nov-12 23:03:26


And we had an animated "egg and sperm" cartoon and a handout of sanitary towels.

Can't help feeling I've missed out somehow.

TwinkleReturns Mon 12-Nov-12 23:04:17

I actually remember masturbation being discussed after one of the boys had thought there was something wrong with him when he'd had a wet dream. So from that angle aswell there needs to be a discussion about sex in the same way that menstruation needs to be explained to girls before they start periods and panic that they are seriously ill because they dont understand what is happening to them. IMO you cant discuss masturbation and not safe sex because one inevitably leads to the other.

Mintyy Mon 12-Nov-12 23:04:23

I am not saying there shouldn't be any sex education, dear me! Its just the instructions on condom usage that slightly made me go hmm.

ninah Mon 12-Nov-12 23:04:26

yup, most underage pregancies are down to the banana
they don't call it fruity for nuttin

stinkinseamonkey Mon 12-Nov-12 23:04:31

no not too young, this is the kind of thing they need to learn BEFORE they start having sex, and even back in "my day" some started at 13ish. 11 sounds about right to me, although I wonder if they start even younger now than they did when I was a kid??

MaryZezItsOnlyJustNovember Mon 12-Nov-12 23:04:57

Sorry Mintyy.

They need to be shown while they are still young enough to actually listen.

By the time they get to 13/14, they know everything. So won't listen to anyone about anything.

A girl in my local hospital had a baby a couple of months ago. She was 13. So was the b/f. Both were 12 when she got pregnant.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 23:06:25

Sorry. You aren't naive at all. You are obviously right, and the teenage pregnancy statistics in the uk are incorrect!

TwinkleReturns Mon 12-Nov-12 23:06:56

Jamie grin

We also had to watch a rather horrific video of childbirth where I humiliated myself by fainting blush You weren't missing out there!!

JamieandtheMagicTorch Mon 12-Nov-12 23:07:00

good point Mary. Had not thought of that

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:08:31

so minty you think they should have sex education but not be taught about safe sex? confused

CaptainBarnaclesDaddyman Mon 12-Nov-12 23:10:21

twinkle one of the boys in my class threw up during the birth video we watched!

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:13:29

we really are very backward in the uk about sex education. so prudish and uptight and it doesn't do the children any favours at all to know less rather than more facts. i'm not good with the figures and linking but i'm sure someone will be along soon with the stats of the teen pregnancy rates in the likes of holland or wherever it is that have the low rates and how early they talk about sex ed and how open it is.

MrsApplepants Mon 12-Nov-12 23:14:28

I think it's vital that kids get the information before they become sexually active, yr 7 probably seems about right. But to me it signals the end of childhood getting earlier and earlier and it's so sad. I'm 32 and when I was 12/13 i was still climbing trees and reading the beano, having sex never entered my head. Perhaps I was immature for my age.

Twinklereturns: shock year 6?! I never got to do this. In my first school they waited until year 9, and my second school was completely in the clouds about the fact our area had the highest teen pregnancy rate in the country at the time and also had the countries youngest mother at the time too (she didn't hold the title long, was a little over 13 I think).

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:16:51

This kind of thing does make me annoyed. There is meant to be an age of consent in this country. It is 16. So schools should not be teaching contraception to 11 year olds. Having under age sex is illegal why are schools encouraging it.

Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 23:18:17

So OP if your not naive and you have an issue with condoms being used correctly, what would you suggest instead?

TinyDiamond Mon 12-Nov-12 23:19:17

YABVU I know plenty of girls who lost their virginity in year 8

Wallison Mon 12-Nov-12 23:19:58

Telling people how to have safe sex is not the same as encouraging it.

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:23:40

vivienne how would you go about reducing teen pregnancy rates if not by educating on how to use condoms properly?

LavenderPots Mon 12-Nov-12 23:24:09

the schools are not encouraging it, they are being realistic - they will know the accurate teen pregnancy rates in that area etc, surely a practical lesson on safe sex (how to put on a condom) how to prevent sti's / std's etc its better than little / no idea and getting pregnant at 12(as someone at school did whose mum wouldn't let them do sex-ed classes)?

our sex-ed classes also taught us about periods / how to use tampons (girls) not sure what they taught the boys in these lessons as we where split up but it was always useful and relevant and we where encouraged to speak to our school nurse (confidentially) if we had worries about stuff.

plus i think a lot of parents are possibly to embarressed to approach this subject with their soonb to be teenager and vice-versa

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:24:24

We cover contraception in year 9, but by that time it is definitely shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted for quite a few of them, legally or not.

Shouldn't be using a banana - they should be using a model penis.

And yes, they absolutely do need to be taught how to use one correctly. They are very resistant to the idea of condoms, worryingly, and very nervous about using them.

We have races. Put it on blindfold. Girls and boys.

Good lesson usually.

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:25:24

But why tell 11 year olds how to have safe sex if it is illegal for them to have sex for another five years. They should be told sex before the age of 16 is illegal. Not shown how to have safe sex by schools. The more I think about it the more wrong I think it is. Sorry if this goes agains the thinking of the majority.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 23:25:33

<<bangs head on desk>>
The age of consent is irrelevant. Just because wchildren are told they shouldn't have sex before they are 16, doesn't mean they wont!
Much as I agree 16 is young enough to be sexually active, plenty of teens disagree. Not telling them is a recipe for disaster.

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:26:40

yes i was just about to say, they should be taught how to do it blindfolded.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 23:27:45

Because nobody ever does anything illegal, do they? So if kids have sex before 16, and get pregnant because they don't know how to use a condom, then what?...

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:27:53

They should be told sex before the age of 16 is illegal.

they are!!!

aufaniae Mon 12-Nov-12 23:28:48

"But why tell 11 year olds how to have safe sex if it is illegal for them to have sex for another five years"

Well, would you rather a sexually active 14yo was

a. pregnant
b. using condoms?

(Note "c. not having sex." is not an option!)

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:29:00

We tell them it is illegal. We tell them that at the very start of sex education.

However, we don't kid ourselves that that will stop some of them actually having sex...

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:30:18

vivienne teens have always been having sex before they were 16. the law does not put them off. sorry if that isn't what you want to hear but it really doesn't. maybe a few of them will abide by the law but most who want to have sex before 16, will. do you not think it is far better for them and their future partners and children that they are taught how to have safe sex?

Wallison Mon 12-Nov-12 23:31:10

It makes no odds - teenagers will always have sex, whether it's legal or not. The only sensible use of the law is to stop them being the target of predatory adults - if they're just shagging each other, you can't really stop them.

And it's not a modern problem either - teenage pregnancy rates are actually lower now than they were in the 70s. Even back when they had their babies taken off them or were chucked into mental homes, young people under 16 were having sex. You can't do anything to deter them - even really draconian measures don't work. The best thing is to recognise that it will happen and give them enough information so that it is safe for them.

MaryZezItsOnlyJustNovember Mon 12-Nov-12 23:31:14

They are told sex is illegal.

But that doesn't stop many of them. I mean, think back - how many of us didn't drink/smoke/have sex because it was illegal hmm.

If they are shown at 11/12 how to use condoms properly, and then shown again at 13/14, they are much more likely to actually use them properly.

In my kids' school they had mixed sex-ed classes - I really admire the teachers. It made them all, boys and girls talk about it all, which is really important; it doesn't become a secretive fumble with unknown consequences.

And yes, I would love my children to still be playing with dolls and trains at 13. But many of them aren't. And dd who is 16 tells me she isn't yet sexually active. I would love to believe her - but hope that if she isn't telling the truth she remembers her lesson in condom use at the age of 13 and follows it.

Dancergirl Mon 12-Nov-12 23:32:02


I would be furious if this had happened at my dd's school.

Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 23:33:03

I'm trying to get my head around this, so instead of educating children about the very basic biology which has resulted in the human race. We should avoid the subject because they're not legally old enough to do it yet.

Does this apply to driving, drinking and voting too?

ChippingInLovesAutumn Mon 12-Nov-12 23:33:27

I think the teacher with the deodorant bottle had the right idea. Don't the young lads feel a bit intimidated by the bananas?

11 is young, sadly it seems necessary as much as I wish it wasn't and they could be kids for longer. Many girls will have had their periods for a couple of years by then too - we can't stop them growing up.

MaryZezItsOnlyJustNovember Mon 12-Nov-12 23:33:38

You are kidding Dancergirl [baffled]?


Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 23:34:33

and unfortunately pregnancy isn't the worst result of unprotected sex.
Do I want my DC's to know how not to catch HIV? Of course I do.

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:34:42

It's about time not having sex below the age of 16 was an option. We are not protecting our young people by allowing them to think that underage sex is perfectly acceptable. it isn't.

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:34:56

But why? Are your children very suggestible?

Year 7s will learn the plumbing. Do people really think they're just waiting for the contraceptive knowhow before they go and put theory into practice? hmm

Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 23:35:46

and how Vivien are you going to stop them?

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:35:49

i remember my aunt proudly telling me about how her DD had come to her aged 17 and asked if she could go on the pill, and aunt had taken her to the GP and gone through the whole thing and gotten her the pill. this was the same cousin who i had gone with when she was 14 to the same gp and sat with her when she asked to go on the pill. she had been having sex for 3 years before her mum knew a thing about it. she simply asked her GP to go along with the sharade for her mum's sake on her next check up.

OddBoots Mon 12-Nov-12 23:36:18

I've taught my children how you start and work a car despite the fact they aren't able to drive until they are 17, I don't think that will make them any more likely to drive under age. I've taught them about mortgages and credit cards even though they aren't allowed to have either until they are 18, I'm not sure that will cause them to make an appointment with the bank in the next little while either.

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:38:06

You are extrapolating way ahead of the facts there Viviennemary...

I have never given the impression that having sex below the age of consent is acceptable. I make it clear that it is illegal. I make it clear that any activity involving semen brings with it the risk of pregnancy.

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:38:38

How can people be stopped from doing other illegal things. I think they should either abolish the age of consent (not that I'd want that really) or do something about enforcing it.

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:39:17

Such as?

Dancergirl Mon 12-Nov-12 23:40:20

No,I'm serious mary.

Stop accepting that 'its what kids/teens do'. Drum it home to them that sex is for adults.

Bobyan Mon 12-Nov-12 23:40:29

How can you tell who's having sex and who isn't?

Yes lets lockup all the teenagers who have sex before their 16th birthday. I'm sure the police have nothing better to do.

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:40:37

abolish the age of consent so paedophiles could carry out sexual acts on children and go unpunished?

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:40:56

I am adding this. Nobody thinks it's a good idea for 13 and 14 year olds to be having sex. But the attitude seems to be oh well they will anyway so we might as well show them how to do it safely. I just don't agree with this attitude I'm afraid.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 23:40:59

<<laughs at Vivienne>>
What do you suggest? Chastity belts?

MaryZezItsOnlyJustNovember Mon 12-Nov-12 23:42:02

Of course it's an option.

It's a choice that (I think) my dd has made. Which is great.

But if she didn't make it, what should I have done? Locked her up until 16 or taught her to protect herself?

How do you suggest enforcing it? Do you want to do what they are doing in Ireland and jail kids for sleeping with their boyfriends/girlfriends?

Portofino Mon 12-Nov-12 23:43:39

My mother fell pg with me - aged 16 - 44 years ago. Teen sex happens! info is power,

aufaniae Mon 12-Nov-12 23:44:12

Viviennemary you haven't answered my question:

Would you rather a sexually active 12yo (like my friend at school) was

a. pregnant
b. using condoms?

(Note "c. not having sex." is not an option!)

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:44:33

interested in hearing about vivienne's sex or not test and what the preventative measures/punishments are.

Portofino Mon 12-Nov-12 23:45:56

I suppose I should be grateful that marriage was the thing vs abortion. But I can't bring myself to go there...

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:47:12

So would you rather they took risks then?

I don't understand that at all.

I am assuming you think that teaching children about safe sex encourages them to have sex. Like some people think that the HPV vaccination will encourage underage sex.

I disagree.

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:48:45

Dancergirl, are you missing the posts that say we do indeed tell them that they should not be having sex. Because it is illegal.

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:49:49

I haven't got anyall of the answers. I wish I had. But I don't think it's in anybody's interests for children of 13 and even younger to be having sex. Sex is not for children.

Dancergirl Mon 12-Nov-12 23:50:09

But the point is, even if a school mentions (in passing) that sex under 16 is illegal, the vast majority of the lesson gives the impression that under age sex is ok. Which it isn't.

And parents can be just as bad. Too scared that their child will hide having sex to parent them properly and teach them that underage sex is illegal and leaves them vulnerable.

Where will it end? What about condom lessons at primary school? Some 11 year olds have sex so lets make sure they're safe...

InNeedOfBrandy Mon 12-Nov-12 23:51:31

I would just like to say

Our teen pregnancy rates are falling thanks to the better sex ed we now teach in our schools. The more we teach teens about this the better informed they are and the less teen pregnancys we have. FACT

That is all

TheFallenMadonna Mon 12-Nov-12 23:52:15

Dancergirl - you have never been in one of my lessons. Like Viviennemary, you are objecting to soemthing that doesn't happen.

Viviennemary - you say that like you expect someone to disagree with you...

No, 13 year olds should not be having sex. Of course.

Mollydoggerson Mon 12-Nov-12 23:54:01

I agree that info is the key and the more aware kids are of repercussions of sexual activity the better.

I have boys, when the time comes, not alone will I be telling them that it is illegal for them to have sex with underage girls, I will be telling them it is rape and will be printing off details of boys who have been found guilty of rape due to having consentual sex with young girls.

I think all those dangers need to be hammered home so kids can protect themselves.

Viviennemary Mon 12-Nov-12 23:54:40

So would the solution be to persuade them somehow that having sex at such a young age is not a good idea at all. Schools should be doing more of this rather than putting condoms on bananas.

cantspel Mon 12-Nov-12 23:55:33

Underage sex is a fact of life. It has always happened and always will. Better that they are educated in safe sex then end up with a unwanted pregnancy or a sti.

I have a 15 year old. I would rather he wait until he was older to have sex but if he doesn't it wont be the end of the world as long as he practises safe sex.

There is alot worse things a 15 year old could be doing than having sex.

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:55:36

"But I don't think it's in anybody's interests for children of 13 and even younger to be having sex. Sex is not for children. "

who said it was?

InNeedOfBrandy Mon 12-Nov-12 23:57:07

I think all the young mums that got shoved into convents and had their babies took off them puts the idea of pursuading them not to shag out the window. How would you pursuade them more then how they are now while still teaching them to be safe.

WearingGreen Mon 12-Nov-12 23:57:29

Sex was never mentioned in my school until just before gcses where we were taught whatever was on the biology syllabus. It was literally the last thing we learnt so most of us were already 16.

I can assure you I needed no encouragement from condom wearing fruit. My hormones were adequate encouragement.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Mon 12-Nov-12 23:58:06

Maybe as mothers, we should go back to the Middle Ages. Insist onout daughters remaining chaste until they wed, on pain of being turned from the house, then, on their wedding night, tell them to lie back and think of England?

BooyhooRemembering Mon 12-Nov-12 23:59:20

i went to a catholic grammar and was not given info about safe sex, nor did my parents discuss how to have safe sex. i was a teen mum.

Cathycomehome Mon 12-Nov-12 23:59:26

I have no idea in actual fact, but my year 8 son is 12, and this thread has scared me! He hasn't seen me in the bathroom for years, but his voice hasn't broken, he's a typical pre teen. When do I have to start worrying? He IS interested in girls, not sex I don't think, surely they don't have sex in year 8??

cantspel Mon 12-Nov-12 23:59:44

ah but in the middle ages they would have been married off by the time they were 12

TheFallenMadonna Tue 13-Nov-12 00:00:46

Persuade them somehow?

Well, I tell them it is illegal. We discuss why it might be illegal.I tell them about the risks of pregnancy from various activities. I tell them about the risks of STDs. We discuss the emnotional fallout of sexual relationships. We discuss the risks associated with contraceptive use. We discuss the emotional and physical consequences of pregnancy.

I don;t just pull out the plastic penis and a blindfold and get cracking...

Mollydoggerson Tue 13-Nov-12 00:03:15

The Fallen Madonna do you tell them the legal ages of consent for boys and girls and do you discuss the legal definition of Statutory Rape (such a potentially unfair law for boys)? Curious.

NatashaBee Tue 13-Nov-12 00:05:44

Isn't the Netherlands one of the most open countries in the world when it comes to sex ed, and also has one of the lowest teen pregnancy rates? I'm pretty sure I recall that statistic being quoted somewhere.

I would rather that any child of mine put condoms on bananas until they were sick of the sight of them, take them to the doctors for contraception with no questions asked, and make sure they cover the topic in enough detail at school that protection popped into their head as soon as they thought of having sex, no matter what age they were - than have to deal with a teenage pregnancy or STD. You cannot stop teens having sex by denying them access to sex education.

TheFallenMadonna Tue 13-Nov-12 00:06:11

Yes, we do.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Tue 13-Nov-12 00:08:32

Tbh, the illegal bit is a bit pointless. When was the last time two 13yos were jailed for having sex? OBVIOUSLY, an over 16 having sex with a minor is WRONG and should be illegal, but two minors?
DISCOURAGED, yes, drummed into them that 16 is plenty young enough, but was anyone EVER arrested?

TheFallenMadonna Tue 13-Nov-12 00:09:04

We also explain that it is illegal for someone in a position of trust to have sex with someone under 18.

TheFallenMadonna Tue 13-Nov-12 00:11:28

Which is why we don't stick to "it's illegal" as a disincentive...

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Tue 13-Nov-12 00:13:17

I think the worst thing you can do is tell a teenager NOT to do something!

ravenAK Tue 13-Nov-12 00:14:38

& can I just point out, that Sex Ed is not just PSHCE doing the stuff with the 'nanas. Or horse carrots. It's not even just the balanced & sensible stuff people like TFM have described.

I'm a form tutor (year 8) & an English teacher - just done a Speaking & Listening Assessment with year 10 - 'Should Romeo & Juliet have waited?'. The consensus was that yes, they bloody well should have done...

Knowing the mechanics of barrier contraception is a very small aspect of how most secondary education addresses issues around teenage sex. It's pretty vital though, & best covered asap.

My 6 year old dd1 has a better understanding than I do of the workings of the internal combustion engine. I can't see that providing her with technical info is encouraging her to go out TWOCing.

Mollydoggerson Tue 13-Nov-12 00:14:40

Yes people have been arrested and been branded rapists and sex offenders, it does happen, especially in cases where there is a 16 plus yr old boyfriend and 13/14 year old preg. girlfriend. I am too tired now to google examples but it happens.

There were recent cases where the girl in question lied and said she was 1-2 years older to impress the casual boyfriend and then he was acused of stat rape when the true ages emerged.

BooyhooRemembering Tue 13-Nov-12 00:15:46

i agree feck

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Tue 13-Nov-12 00:18:35

Yes, and as I said, a 16+ and a 16- is wrong and should rightly be illegal.

Only4theOlympics Tue 13-Nov-12 00:20:39

Knowledge is power. I was over the age of consent, I was in a loving relationship, I knew what I was doing and what choices I was making and how to be sensible about it. I knew all this because I had sex and relationship education from school and at home from an early age.

You can't say to a 16 year old. Sex is now legal, here is how you do it and here are a few condoms and this is how to use them. Now that WOULD be encouraging them.

Hopeforever Tue 13-Nov-12 00:21:14

I now know why there are smaller bananas in Tescos, not for the smaller appetite but so that year 7 boys don't think they are smaller than average.

I do so hope my kids wait to have sex, but I don't want them believing myths about sex either. Knowledge is power not permission

cantspel Tue 13-Nov-12 00:23:12

There is no such offense as statutory rape in the uk.

We have the Sexual Offences Act.

InNeedOfBrandy Tue 13-Nov-12 00:26:34

The only time I've known someone done for stat rape was when he was in his 40s she was 14/15 and got pregnant and her parents got the police involved. I would assume the police don't bother about 16 yr olds shaggigng 15 yr olds unless parents get them involved to.

Only4theOlympics Tue 13-Nov-12 00:29:28

My understanding of statutory rape is that according to the statutes, rape is sex without consent. A child (under 16) is legally incapable of giving consent. This would mean someone having sex with a person under 16 would be having unconsential sex and thus committing rape.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Tue 13-Nov-12 00:31:27

I've taught my Dcs, 16 and 13, about sex from a young age. Made talking about it main stream, discussed the ins and outs of contraception, taught them that their body is theirs, and to be used with respect. Let them know that you can have sex before 16, but that it's better to wait until you are older and in a loving relationship. Taught them that the ONLY way to avoid pregnancy is not to have sex, and that a condon is not optional. Sex Ed in school should just be a supplement to sensible teaching at home.

LucieMay Tue 13-Nov-12 00:32:31

Statutory rape is not a UK offence.

FeckOffWithYourXmasBollocks Tue 13-Nov-12 00:33:36

Only, so 2 under 16s having sex together?

BooyhooRemembering Tue 13-Nov-12 00:35:42

again i agree with feck

Only4theOlympics Tue 13-Nov-12 00:36:35

What feck said x 1000. This is exactly what and how I was taught. I was also told that losing your virginity was something you would always remember so not to regret it or waste it.

I also concluded that, knowing about consent issues etc, why would I want to waste my virginity on someone who didn't care if what they were doing was classed as rape?

I could make these arguments because I knew what everything involved. If you know about sex you HAVE to know about safe sex.

cantspel Tue 13-Nov-12 00:37:23

Causing or inciting a child under 13 to engage in sexual activity

(1)A person commits an offence if—
(a)he intentionally causes or incites another person (B) to engage in an activity,
(b)the activity is sexual, and
(c)B is under 13.
(2)A person guilty of an offence under this section, if the activity caused or incited involved—
(a)penetration of B’s anus or vagina,
(b)penetration of B’s mouth with a person’s penis,
(c)penetration of a person’s anus or vagina with a part of B’s body or by B with anything else, or
(d)penetration of a person’s mouth with B’s penis,is liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for life.
(3)Unless subsection (2) applies, a person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—
(a)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both;
(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years.

and over 13

Sexual activity with a child

(1)A person aged 18 or over (A) commits an offence if—
(a)he intentionally touches another person (B),
(b)the touching is sexual, and
(i)B is under 16 and A does not reasonably believe that B is 16 or over, or
(ii)B is under 13.
(2)A person guilty of an offence under this section, if the touching involved—
(a)penetration of B’s anus or vagina with a part of A’s body or anything else,
(b)penetration of B’s mouth with A’s penis,
(c)penetration of A’s anus or vagina with a part of B’s body, or
(d)penetration of A’s mouth with B’s penis,is liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years.
(3)Unless subsection (2) applies, a person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—
(a)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both;
(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years.
10Causing or inciting a child to engage in sexual activity

(1)A person aged 18 or over (A) commits an offence if—
(a)he intentionally causes or incites another person (B) to engage in an activity,
(b)the activity is sexual, and
(i)B is under 16 and A does not reasonably believe that B is 16 or over, or
(ii)B is under 13.
(2)A person guilty of an offence under this section, if the activity caused or incited involved—
(a)penetration of B’s anus or vagina,
(b)penetration of B’s mouth with a person’s penis,
(c)penetration of a person’s anus or vagina with a part of B’s body or by B with anything else, or
(d)penetration of a person’s mouth with B’s penis,is liable, on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years.
(3)Unless subsection (2) applies, a person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—
(a)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both;
(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 14 years.

Only4theOlympics Tue 13-Nov-12 00:38:38

Technically rape of each other. Though I fail to see where the public interest would be in pursuing such a case. Prosecutions are only supposed to occur in the public interest.

Only4theOlympics Tue 13-Nov-12 00:43:20

Cantspel. A 17 year old sleeping with a 14 year old would not be breaking those laws BUT would be committing other criminal acts. Much like how murder can be differentiated from manslaughter.

cantspel Tue 13-Nov-12 00:46:56

Only4theOlympics That is cover in section 13 of the act

13Child sex offences committed by children or young persons

(1)A person under 18 commits an offence if he does anything which would be an offence under any of sections 9 to 12 if he were aged 18.
(2)A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable—
(a)on summary conviction, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or a fine not exceeding the statutory maximum or both;
(b)on conviction on indictment, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 5 years.

pigletmania Tue 13-Nov-12 01:33:01

My private school had sex education lessons, we were shown that when about 12/13, this was about 23 years ago

pigletmania Tue 13-Nov-12 01:35:20

I had my first child at 30

2MumsAreBetterThan1 Tue 13-Nov-12 01:51:45

I had my VERY FIRST sex education class at the age of 15. I was 5 months pregnantat the time!

I adore my daughter clearly but it was bloody hard, I wish I had been more informed. I had no idea about contraception, stds etc. all I knew was what my 18 year old boyfriend told me.

Oh and we first slept together aged 13, I was clueless and trusted him, a very dangerous position to be in!

I think education is the key.

I also think they should teach about same sex relationships. I thought there was something wrong with me for not enjoying sex, not having the same urges and crushes as my friends etc. Then I met my first girlfriend and it all became clear.

sashh Tue 13-Nov-12 04:42:26

We teach children to cross the road when they are too little to do it on their own.

We teach them to tie shoe laces when they are still small enough to wear velcro shoes.

We teach children not to touch medicines before they are old enough to go to a doctor alone.

The first time somone encounters a condom should not be just before they have sex for the first time.

LST Tue 13-Nov-12 04:50:24

I had sex for the first time at just 14. And had never had a sex ed class. Year 7 is a fine age IMO.

MammaTJ Tue 13-Nov-12 06:00:01

I think that they need to know at this age. It is all very well to say that learning about sec is fine but learning about condoms isn't but how else are they going to learn to protect themselves?
I will be quite happy for my children to be taught about this in school at that age (and indeed was when my 17 year old DD was that age). It just makes sense.

Of course it is sad that they are no longer our babies but they have to grow up, better to do so armed with knowledge.

GhostShip Tue 13-Nov-12 07:36:39

Wow some of you would be horrified at the High sch

GhostShip Tue 13-Nov-12 07:39:19

Shit new nails!

At the high school I went to. Not only did we have sex ed, they had the Brook Sexual Health come in once a week where we could get condoms, morning after pill and an Sti test.

A lot of girls would have been pregnant were it not for them
And I'll never forget the day were half of the year nine lads found out they had the clap. From the same girl.

It's needed, Vivienne you're living in a dream world. It's obvious we can't stop it so we have to keep trying to make it safer.

cory Tue 13-Nov-12 07:41:36

what sash, and others, have said

nobody complains that they are taught to conduct chemical experiments or do electric wiring in Yr 7 though it is unlikely that most of them will be called upon to do either of those things in RL for a few years yet (if ever)

also, as far as my dc are concerns, raven's statement is certainly true: the mechanical aspect is a very small part of an education that is focused on staying safe and making sensible choices- not on rushing out an having sex at the earliest opportunity

this has not been mentioned in passing but discussed at length

they have not been given the impression that early sex is considered a good idea

<ponders what education would be like if no skills were taught until they were needed in practice>

sashh Tue 13-Nov-12 07:47:09


We had no sex ed at school (run by nuns) but we did get lessons on 'natural family planning'. The year I left there were 15 or 16 pregnancies.

bigTillyMint Tue 13-Nov-12 07:58:15

I don't think the DC have done the condom on the banana at their local academy, but I will check tonight...

Would have no problem with either DD(Y9) or DS(Y7) doing it, though I fear DS and friends might find it more of the yuck-factor ATM. And DD too confused

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 08:17:58

Knowledge is power! The more knowledge kids have the less likely they are to make poor decisions based on crap they've heard in the playground - or be talked into doing something they don't want to do.

Just because they know what to do doesn't mean they will run out and do it.

I would be very very surprised if even the most naive 12 year old didn't know what a condom is.

WineGoggles Tue 13-Nov-12 09:00:47

"Sex is not for children"
We are animals at the end of the day; just because we eat with cutlery does not make the laws of nature redundant. Once an animal is sexually mature it will seek out sex. The sex urge is very strong so don't kid yourself that under 18s won't be DTD if they have those urges. There is really not a lot we can do to prevent a horny mass of hormones wanting to fuck unless you keep them under lock and key or make them wear chastity belts, so we have to give them as much information as possible so they make safe and respectful choices. when a child's hormones wake up and they have sex urges they won't give a shit about the age of consent! I'm very much in favour of sex education well before puberty and very much against the idea that giving children the information encourages them to go out and have sex. The Dutch definitely have the right idea compared to the conservative views of Britain and the US; the teen pregnancy rates speak for themselves I think.

If I had my way they'd be putting condoms on model penises (of various sizes, using various sized condoms) rather than fruit and veg, stress the importance of sexual consent, how to say no, how to discuss contraception with each other before sex, etc. I'd also like to see all the broody children being given one of those living dolls for a few days (the ones that are programmed to behave like a normal needy babies) and see whether their idea of a cute thing to dress up and show off to their mates matches the reality of sleep deprivation and commitment.

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 09:01:49

I think those robot babies should be given out as standard grin

Fillybuster Tue 13-Nov-12 09:14:19

We had our sex ed class in biology at the beginning of yr 7. I was 10, in an all girls school.

It was very <ahem> frank and our teacher was scarily open with us about what she did at home with her husband (including telling us that it is ok to have sex during your period). Then we watched an insemination film, learnt all about conception and watched a childbirth video.

This had 2 main consequences:

1. I was well informed before I 'needed' the information, and got over all the giggling, silly stuff and wrote my homework up properly, so understood the mechanics.

2. Parent/Teacher evenings were never quite the same for my parents, once they knew some of the details of my biology teacher's personal life!

I don't remember doing much any emotional or legal stuff at school at that stage - it was mainly the mechanics - all the other important stuff then followed over the following few years.

By 14/15 when a large number (not all) were sexually active, we were reasonably well informed and understood the available contraceptive options. Thats not to say everyone applied their knowledge (14 yr olds are amazingly stupid) and I had a fair few 'split condom' and morning after moments along the way, but at least I and my friends understood what we were dealing with on a physical level, even if we were emotionally under-developed.

In short, YABVVVVU

ISingSoprano Tue 13-Nov-12 09:46:06

My dc's school do a 7 week course in PSHE in year 9. Nearly all of it is about relationships. One lesson is about contraception (what it is as well as where to get it) and part of that is about how to put on a condom. The fact is, for most of the students, year 9 is still too early (thankfully) but as most have already said, it's far better to educate them about condoms and contraception before it becomes an issue for them.

As a GP surgery we work quite closely with the school. Last year two of our doctors did a session with year 10 students about embarassing bodies. In planning the session we carried out an anonymous questionnaire with the year group to guage which topics to cover. Many of the students had forgotton what they had been taught in year 9 about contraception. So, yes, great to teach about it early but it also needs to be revisited!

Latara Tue 13-Nov-12 11:10:01

Not shocking because i had classmates that first had sex aged 11.

Would be better to use a proper model of a penis - it may put the kids off having sex too young hopefully!

Latara Tue 13-Nov-12 11:11:26

So yes, YABU to think 11 is too young to get educated about condoms.

However, they need education about relationships & how to say 'no' too.

PoppadomPreach Tue 13-Nov-12 11:18:43

Good post sashh

timetosmile Tue 13-Nov-12 11:33:47

DS is also yr7 and they are doing the condom-banana thing this term too.
What concerns me is not that they are being told about contraception and the prevention of STIs - forewarned is forearmed.

But isn't anyone else bothered that the mechanics of condom use seems to be taught in a vaccuum?

That the 'ideal' place for sex is a trusting, loving relationship?

That the statistics on unwanted pregnancies, STIs etc show that the earlier you lose your virginity, the poorer your future sexual health will be (statistically)?

That most people who lost their virginity younger than 16 now regret it and wished they'd hung on a bit longer?

That the statistics aren't being presented as 'the majority of young people wait until they are over 16 and in a trusting relationship', but rather, 'lots of people have sex really young'

Context is everything.

Felicitywascold Tue 13-Nov-12 11:44:42

Timeto I don't understand your post? Are you saying that the things on your list aren't being taught?

Because most of it reads the same as my classes syllabus.

timetosmile Tue 13-Nov-12 11:50:09

felicity I'm really genuinely glad to hear it, but a bit surprised to be honest, because it doesn't seem to be the message that's getting home. The peer pressure is enormous, certainly by 13,14yrs and I very rarely hear a 'waiting is better' message through the 'OMG guess who's having sex' clamour.

whistlestopcafe Tue 13-Nov-12 12:00:03

Sex education should start early and as long as the putting a condom on a banana exercise is repeated as they get older I don't have a problem with it.

However I personally do not feel that our high rate of teenage pregnancies is because of a lack of sex education. A lot of my peers were having unprotected sex at 14. Some got pregnant and some were lucky. Everyone knew about contraception and they all knew that it was likely that they would get pregnant if they continued. The problem was that a lot of the boys refused to wear condoms and a lot of the girls didn't even want to be having sex but didn't have the self esteem to say no. A lot of the boys were not ready for sex either but were told they were "gay" if they didn't lose their virginity.

gordyslovesheep Tue 13-Nov-12 12:04:31

A few points

Most under 16s aren't shagging like rabbits

School do discuss waiting until 16

School and family planning orgs always discuss waiting, talking to family and risk to under 16s

A child of 12 and under can not consent to sex under our laws

Some children will engage in sex before 16 ...knowing this and giving them information does not equate with condoning it.

At least the bananas can be peeled and eaten so no waste

SoggySummer Tue 13-Nov-12 12:05:02

I have to say I have heard of these practical before but only a couple of years ago - my best friend who has slightly older DC and has a very liberal view to sex etc told me - and said she had been relatively taken back by it when her DD came home and filled her in on the all the gossip and hysteria the class had apparently had.

At this school they did not use fruit and veg but proper plastic cocks that screw (pardon the pun) onto the edge of the desks ready for condom practice.

I am 40 and at my school all we got sex ed wise was diagrams in books and on the black board, the most practical it got was passing various forms of contraception around the classroom - which flew around the class at lightening speed because we were all too giggly and silly to look at these things and ask questions. There was a cartoon with cartoon green germs swinging from the underarm hair explaining about puberty and the need for personal hygiene. There was also apparently a film of someone giving birth (I missed it I was off sick that day). Sex ed at our school was pretty shit but everyone seemed to know about contraception etc. But still from yr 8 to year yr 11 the number of girls in my class diminished as more and more left to have babies and there were rumours about others having had terminations.

To be fair, if you have never heard of these modern practical sex ed lessons and you had something similar to what I had at school then its no surprise some parents are shocked when their DC come home and tell them they have been practicing putting condoms on.

I have mixed views. Firstly I am happy to chat away with my kids about sex and pretty much anything else but in all honesty it would not occur to me to teach them how to put a condom on a cock. Not because I am a prude or embarrassed - it just wouldnt occur to me to do something that practical. So on that aspect I am more than happy the school does this. I do wonder though that as much as information is a wonderful thing - if some pre teens feel pressure to certain degree to engage in sexual relationships - not solely because of these lessons but because of society today as whole and the addition of these lessons. Its not something I feel overtly strongly about so I would not oppose my DC having these lessons at all, but it is something I do think about.

Dahlen Tue 13-Nov-12 12:11:21

I am close to 40. In my year at school, even allowing for those who claimed to be sexually active but weren't, I'd say about 30% of girls were having sex by the age of 13. Well over half by the age of 15. I thought the average age for a girl to lose her virginity these days was about 13.

The trouble with sex ed is that in a perfect world it would be unnecessary, because no child would want to do it before the age of consent and all parents would have lengthy, informed discussions with their children about sexual health and safety and emotional wellbeing. But it's not a perfect world, is it. And we would be failing the very many children who don't get this support from any other source if we withdraw it from schools.

My DC knew the biology of sex and how babies were created by the age of 5, including the various body part names and the egg and sperm bit. Obviously their understanding was a little bit different to your average year 7's, but IMO if they're old enough to ask, they're old enough to be given an age-appropriate explanation.

Exposing children to porn (the average age of that is also 11 sad) and the constant sexualisation of our society are far more worrying to me than sex education in schools, though sex ed could be used to far greater effect to counteract some of the highly damaging messages directed at our youth through these means IMO.

Before industrialisation, most children of a surprisingly young age (bar the aristocracy) would have been completely au fait with the mechanics of sex. It's not going to traumatise them. We need to concentrate far more on contraception, STI prevention and why it's perfectly ok to say no either to an act that makes you uncomfortable or to having sex at all.

honeytea Tue 13-Nov-12 12:24:16

I don't understand why everyone thinks that waiting till they are 16 is so very important, I would say that what is more important is that young people have sex in loving relationships. I had sex under 16 and it was a lovely experience, I have always taken sex very seriously and have never regretted any of the (handful) of sexual partners I have had. I have friends who waited till they were at uni but then slept with many many men and regretted on an almost weekly basis their sexual exploits. I know there are inbetweens but personally I would prefere my kids to have sex at 14/15 and be sure it is what they want and be in a relationship than have sex at 18/19 and do it because it is expected of them or they were drunk.

Teanagers grow up at such different rates i think the strict "wait till you are over 16" message is not right and I won't be teaching it to my kids I will be teaching them about safe sex and about having sex in a respectful loving relationship.

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 12:26:00

Do you have boys or girls honey?

whistlestopcafe Tue 13-Nov-12 12:30:53

It is important that my children are "ready". The thought of them being ready at 14/15 horrifies me if I'm honest. I suppose we are all tainted by our own experiences.

There is so much more to life than sex and I would prefer it my sons waited until 6th form.

Loobylou222 Tue 13-Nov-12 12:31:04

I think it's a good idea, they are going to have sex anyway surely it's better they know about safe sex, would you be happy taking your 13 year old to get tested for std's?

It is a scary thought that my 11 year old niece maybe having those sort of lessons though, she is way to sweet and innocent to be thinking about sex ( at the moment, she has only just started secondary, we will see what she is like at the end of the year!)

Dahlen Tue 13-Nov-12 12:35:44

Soggy - I've never really understood why the need to have a practical lesson on condoms TBH. It's not rocket science and they come with instructions that if the school has done it's job in terms of literacy are very easy to follow. you don't have a practical for any barrier method or for sex itself. wink

Far better to talk about the ethical issues raised by sex IMO.

Feminine Tue 13-Nov-12 12:36:16

I am against the demonstration aspect.

We can educate that age group without bits of the fruit bowl.

11 is too young.
Masses of changes happen between 12-14, I wouldn't have a problem with it then.

honeytea Tue 13-Nov-12 12:39:20

I have a baby boy, I also live in a country where the age of consent is lower than the uk, but then tean pregnancy is also lower.

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 12:41:43

honey I just wondered as I bang on to 11 year old ds about the legal age as I can just imagine an irate dad turning up or ringing the police if ds was shagging a 15 year old and he was 16. I think that's why people are concerned about the legal age.

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 12:42:46

But if not properly used condoms are useless so it's either bits of the fruit bowl or an actual plastic model of a penis.

Siriusstar Tue 13-Nov-12 12:56:35

I think that pshe should be taught by qualified pshe teachers at secondary school with some form of assessment. I think it should be standardised across the country so that all the children are learning the same kind of things. Some teachers don't necessarily bother with pshe and only do the minimum. Plus some are just too embarrassed to do a proper job.

My dh is a secondary school science teacher and not easily embarrassed. He teaches both the biology of it and the pshe side of it. Like many things that get taught at school, the students won't necessarily listen or remember what they have been told or shown. He has come across 16 year old girls who don't even understand their menstrul cycle despite being taught it a couple of times. I think it has to be taught over and over and over again, each year.

I think if it was taught as a discrete subject, then maybe the emotional side of things would be covered properly and consistently.

I will always remember a year 6 teacher saying that after a sex ed class, a timid girl asked her " Miss, do I HAVE to have sex?"

I think we need to assume that they will and to prepare them but not assume they are and make it clear that they have a choice. That they always have a choice.

Got to go back to work now.

Because I am trying to have a rest I'll share my opinion and rationale for it.

I am religious and follow the rules of church which teach chastity (no sex before marriage and that also includes any heavy petting and necking). Both myself and my husband kept these rules and were each other firsts when we got married. I would want my daughters and sons to live like this too.

However, everyone has the right to chose for themselves (including my children) and while I will teach them the rules of our religion I also teach them the rules of the country and common sense ... for example just because I pray each day that we will be kept safe they still are required to look before they cross the road.

While it would be great that every person would wait until the age of consent and every parent to teach their child about contraception, not every parent does and not every child is able to listen I do believe that children should be taught these things at school at an age when they will listen and before they start doing these things. If school feels that 11/year 7 is a good age then I would trust their judgement as educators. I would imagine that they are aware of some of the stuff (or the consequences) that are going on.

It does feel young but then centuries ago people got married at 14yo! If my children were to be doing such stuff and didn't want to talk to me about it I would be very grateful for the adults that either they felt they could talk to about sex or who had talked about it.

My oldest is 9 and has not asked many questions about such things, I answer them as we go along and if this complete disinterest continues we plan on having a talk around yr6, hopefully before his peers don't educate him too much and that he is mature enough to cope with some of the information.

valiumredhead Tue 13-Nov-12 13:07:25

AFAIK sex ed is taught in biology lessons at 11/12 not PHSE.

Chelvis Tue 13-Nov-12 13:27:27

I don't have a problem with the way the mechanics of it all are being taught, but I do worry about the emotional side. I worked in a high school until recently and the amount of girls who felt that they couldn't say 'No' was appalling. It wasn't considered acceptable in your peer group to be a virgin past, maybe, 13. Girls who wanted to wait were mocked and called lesbians or freaks.
And it isn't just 'normal' sex they're having; so many girls were pressured into 'porn acts' - group blowjobs or anal at 13 or 14 - and many many girls were pressured into sexting or filmed sex acts, either by direct pressure from their boyfriends or by feeling it was something they had to offer. The mechanics of it are fine, but how on earth to we teach these children how to deal with it emotionally and how to say no? How do you turn back the pornification of sex? It is so hard, I'm glad I don't have that responsibility for teaching it.

Philippa1110 Tue 13-Nov-12 13:33:47

I went to a convent school where sex education was not well-taught, largely because of the fact that catholicism and contraception are on a collision course of epic proportions. At least one girl in my class, and one in my younger sister's class, had babies in their teens and in both cases I think were under 16 when they got pregnant. Demonising, proselytising and banning Do Not Work. I would much rather find a used condom in either of my daughters' rooms (in due time; they are both under 3!) than either a positive pregnancy test or a course of herpes medication. I will tell them why waiting is good - I was 19 - but I would much rather they knew how to avoid bad outcomes than that they found themselves in a situation way out of their control.

Felicitywascold Tue 13-Nov-12 13:37:20

It's not that the appropriate values aren't being taught, it is that they (in some cases) aren't being learnt.

Just covering the topic and learning the facts- be that mechanics, or emotional 'facts' does not an empathetic, responsible teen make.

And I'm certain that schools are only a part of that learning.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Tue 13-Nov-12 14:29:38

But why tell 11 year olds how to have safe sex if it is illegal for them to have sex for another five years. They should be told sex before the age of 16 is illegal. Not shown how to have safe sex by schools. The more I think about it the more wrong I think it is. Sorry if this goes agains the thinking of the majority. fgs sex and relationship ed in school, or Relationship and sex ed as its called here is NOT just about safe sex, its about attitudes, laws, respect, peer pressure, self esteem, acknowledgement that having sexual feelings is ok, there is no encouragement to act on them. The aim is to equip pupils with the skills and knowledge to make decisions for themselves within a set of parameters that include it being against the law, harm reduction and assertiveness skills to say NO until they are ready. NOT every teen is having sex, some are for all the wrong reasons, some are for the right reasons, many choose not to. telling them about it and encouraging sensible discussion about choices and being safe is not going to make someone do it. OH yes it's also about what they learn at home so get on and tell them what it is you want them to know too.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Tue 13-Nov-12 14:38:35

I will always remember a year 6 teacher saying that after a sex ed class, a timid girl asked her " Miss, do I HAVE to have sex?" then I am sorry but that was a badly taught lesson. I second whoever said it should be taught by properly trained teachers or better still someone from outside the school like a trained youth worker or school nurse. a survey of PSHE in our local schools showed the majority of kids would prefer to be taught by someone other than a regular teacher and also said that they should be specially trained. most also wanted relationship and sex ed to be done earlier that they had it! and called for it to be consistant in all our schools and regular so that those who were 'off that day' still got it. many thought schools shied away from teaching it and once done 'ticked a box' never to return. we should listen more to what pupils want.

StepAwayFromTheEcclesCakes Tue 13-Nov-12 14:43:55

and while I am still on my soapbox, grin RSE should start way back in education, I don't mean mechanics and condoms and STI's but back in infants teaching respect, how to be friends, caring for others, listening to others, also personal hygiene like washing hands etc is all part and parcel of good RSE, the mechanics etc come later on and if taught well at age appropriate stages we end up with well rounded adults with a healthy attitude to RSE interspersed with personal / family/ religious beliefs.

ISingSoprano Tue 13-Nov-12 14:48:21

I agree StepAway. At my dc's school there is a team of pastoral staff who teach PSHE (and thus sex ed) but most importantly nearly all have a background in youth work - they are not curriculum teachers.

ghoulygumdrops Tue 13-Nov-12 14:50:20

We did this at school in pairs, one boy one girl, using condoms and test tubes when i was 11 - 22 years ago!

laughtergoodmedicine Tue 13-Nov-12 15:55:25

Things have clearly changed in schools since my day We kept rabbits

PostBellumBugsy Tue 13-Nov-12 16:05:27

Think it is fantastic that schools do this (banana/carrot/plastic willy - condom thing). Shame that so many parents shy away from talking to their children about sex.
I also think that all young teens should have to watch that show "16 & Pregnant". If ever there were lessons to be learnt about how tough it is to be a teen parent, they are all in that.
They should do more "self-respect" lessons too, so that teenagers can understand that saying no is a bloody sensible option too, that they should be proud of taking!!!!!

whathasthecatdonenow Tue 13-Nov-12 23:06:18

Well, I had fun today with my Year 9s putting condoms on the plastic penis whilst wearing the beer goggles - demonstrating how difficult it can be to be safe when you are drunk.

cory Wed 14-Nov-12 08:08:39

"But isn't anyone else bothered that the mechanics of condom use seems to be taught in a vaccuum?"

No, because it isn't.

Dc's sex education has certainly not been in a vacuum; it has been in the context of carefully thought out lessons and class discussions on such issues as relationships, personal safety, resisting peer pressure etc. Noone has ever hinted that they should be having sex before the age of consent or indeed that one ever should have sex just to live up to other people's expectations.

This is how it should be taught- if it isn't happening in your school, then you should complain, just as you should complain if they aren't covering the maths curriculum.

OldMumsy Wed 14-Nov-12 08:29:18

whathasthecatdonenow that sounds like an epic lesson! I wish we had had that when I were a lad.

MrsBucketxx Wed 14-Nov-12 08:35:55

i think its a good thing knowledge is power after all. yabu

the age of vonsent is there yo protect children from adults mostly its not enforced child to child on the whole.

MrsBucketxx Wed 14-Nov-12 08:36:22

consent not voncent

WakeyCakey Wed 14-Nov-12 10:18:18

My dsd's school sent us all letters but also invited us to a night where we could experience the lesson before the kids to decide if we thought it appropriate.
Highly embarrassing, utter good fun.

The main thing to remember is their safety. DSD has an older sister who was pregnant at 17. statistics show that dsd will probably also as her mum was also pregnant at 18.
I'd much rather she knew it all :-)

Think thus is an excellent idea. Better to have bolted the stable door before the horse has bolted IMO.

Mind you being allergic to latex both the banana and the condom would have huge implications for me. Luckily the word sex was never uttered at my convent school, we were taught about frogs reproduction cycle and I was quite disappointed that I would have to have a whole baby and not such lay some spawn in the pond in the back garden!

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