(Sex-positive isn't as kinky as people think.)
Admitting you’re a sex-positive parent can feel weird.
The conversation is flowing, until you say those words. It’s hard not to feel like you’ve done something wrong.
The term is often misunderstood.
Being sex-positive does not mean always feeling positive about sex, but lots of people assume that it does.
Being sex-positive is all inclusive.
It’s about the whole picture, not just sex, disease, and reproduction.
The Journal of Positive Sex lists 8 core elements:
- “Positive” Refers to Strengths, Wellbeing, and Happiness
- Individual Sexuality is Unique and Multifaceted
- Embraces Multiple Ways of Knowing
- Reflects Professional Ethics
- Promotes Open, Honest Communication
- Positive Sexuality is Humanizing
- Encourages Peacemaking
- Applicable across all Levels of Social Structure
Great explanation, right?
Try explaining this while you’re in the tailspin of rejection, though.
To help find my balance, I like to be prepared with a simple response for moments like these.
Feel free to use this one for yourself:
Sex-positivity is about aiming for positive experiences.
If they want to hear more, I add this:
A natural part of sexuality is feeling good. There’s nothing wrong with teaching about pleasure.
Kids can learn to seek out the positive and avoid the negative.
Because promoting fear and shame doesn’t work.
What? You want to know more? (Says me responding to the interested person)
Sex-positive parents teach about abstinence and responsible sexual behaviors. There’s no judgment either way.
We practice having an open mind, an open heart, and model good behavior.
Facing our own fear and shame prevents us from passing it on to our kids.
Sex-positive parents are leaders, not lookouts.
Next time you’re having a conversation, and things get weird, know that you’re not alone.
Us modern parents are blazing a new trail.
Telling kids the truth about sex and sexuality won’t cause them to become sex-crazed teens anymore than teaching them how to walk makes them want to run marathons.
Don’t let the weirdness fool you, you’re doing the right thing.
Ever had a conversation get weird?
Do tell in the comments below.