The good and the bad – they go together!

World, meet my new computer.  New computer, meet the world.  Two things that should never, ever be allowed to mix?  Rust and the inside of my computer.

Today I’ve been thinking about the good parts of sex (physical pleasure, a deepening relationship with someone, babies, fun, and more).  I’ve also been thinking about the bad parts of sex (STDs, unwanted pregnancies, acquaintance rape, and of course so much more).  The problem is that you can’t have one without the other.

I talk with parents who sit on both sides of this fence.

Some parents and teachers want to scare the bejesus out of their kids by showing them horrible pictures of STDs, terrify them of rape and molestation so the child doesn’t feel safe alone, ignore and deny the physical and emotional pleasure and beauty that a sexual relationship can bring, and making them carry around 10 pound bags of flour for days on end.

I’ve also heard from the occasional parent and teacher who have a somewhat idyllic view of sexuality in today’s society, and wants to talk only of the upper bounds of human connection that can come out of a sexual companionship.  These parents and teachers want the beauty of sex with none of the ugliness.

The problem is that the two go hand-in-hand.  Human sexuality is a nuanced topic, even when it’s left all to itself with none of the cultural opinions and beliefs that are so intrinsic and ever-present in our current society.

Sex is good.  Sex is bad.

Both of these are true, and the true-ness of them extends into dating, romance, making-out, oral sex, homosexuality, gender, menstruation, babies, and everything else related to the topic of Human Sexuality.

You cannot be true to your children, or hope that they are learning what they need, unless you acknowledge and talk about this dichotomy openly and often.  Sex is one of those topics where you need to find and go to your Zen Parenting Place.

Sex is bad.  Sex is good.  Sex is.

About Karen Rayne

Dr. Karen Rayne has been supporting parents and families since 2007 when she received her PhD in Educational Psychology. A specialist in child wellbeing, Dr. Rayne has spent much of her career supporting parents, teachers, and other adults who care for children and teenagers.