Monday 2 June 2014

Sex...And How Our Parents Lied to Us

Photo by Michael Prewett on Unsplash

Do you remember that conversation you had with your parents about sex? It was probably on that day when you had your very first menstruation. Or maybe, that day when your neighbor's daughter came home pregnant and the entire street got a free show. Either way, something must have triggered the talk. Now, it didn't matter if you were as close to your parents as peas in a pod or had a run-away-to-my-room-as-soon-as-daddy-shows-up attitude. What mattered was that, if you had a conversation about sex with your parents, it most definitely must have been awkward!
The thing is, as awkward as it must have been for you, it must have been ten times worse for your parents (okay...a little exaggeration. Maybe, two times more). Imagine the horror they must have felt trying to explain sex to you; a child they brought into the world. Multiply that horror by two if you were a very inquisitive child. If it wasn't so serious, it could actually be very funny. In retrospect, you knew you couldn't dare laugh. What was worse, parents knew that too. They also knew they could not laugh either. With that much pressure, it is no wonder that they sometimes resort to flat-out lies to keep us in check. Done out of love as they would say, these lies have shaped how we view sex today.

Here is a list of some of the lies our parents told us about sex.

Lie #1: Your virginity is your most valuable asset and the best gift you can give a man.

Some might be nodding their heads in remembrance of this one. Is this statement even sensible? How can virginity be ranked as a woman's most precious asset?! What happened to her brain? What happened to the influence with which she was created? When you take a look at this statement, you see the hand of some very misogynistic group of people who do not think that there is more to a woman than her 'honey pot'. These ideas formed the core of society’s norms and were further translated to kids by their parents. So, the question that begs to be asked is: when the virginity goes, does her value go with it too? Is her virginity supposed to help her husband be the man he ought to be? Is her virginity going to help her manage a home, and if she works, still keep a balance between home and career and all other things she does? How come the one thing that is taken in a jiffy is deemed the most important asset she could bring to the table? What is worse, some men have married virgins and are totally disgusted with their character flaws, personal hygiene, or general persona. He will not care if she is a virgin if she falls short in other areas that are necessary for the partnership. It then goes to show that the hymen cannot possibly be the most valuable thing that you can give a man.

Lie #2: If you do not have sex before your wedding night, your husband will love and value you more.

You all know that couple who start the day with a brawl, a loud shout or the sound of the wife used as a punching bag. The presence or absence of the hymen doesn't make a wife beater hang his gloves, nor does it make an emotionally empty man show love and affection to his wife. Some men have married virgins yet have gone on to disrespect them in public. Some have gone as far as withdrawing their affection and cheating on them, even to the tune of dating their very best friends, and in some cases, their sisters. Virginity is no guarantee that a man will treat a woman right when she becomes his wife. Also, the fact that your husband was your first doesn't mean he will be so enamored of your vagina that he won't stray to some other woman. If you are in doubt, go ask all the virgins before marriage who are dealing with straying husbands.

Lie #3: If you have sex before marriage, your husband will lose his savor for you.

Truth is, whether you have sex before or after marriage, your husband will eventually lose his savor for you will lose yours for him. Keeping desire afire in a marriage is a full-time responsibility required by both husband and wife. That is why you might start your marriage hitting it five times a day and then slow down to once a day, once a week, once in three months, and in some instances, never at all. It is a natural phenomenon. Laws of diminishing return always set in and sex is no exception. Your precious ‘virginity gift’ wouldn't make your husband bury himself in you for the rest of his life. He will get up; even if it is just to pee.

Lie #4: Sex is disgusting.

This line is usually towed by religious fanatics. They hammer on how disgusting the sexual act is, going as far as saying it is a sin, even in the confines of marriage. There are stories of people who get up from having sex with their spouse to bent knees in prayer to 'cleanse themselves'. You begin to wonder how they can take that stand when God created coitus, not just for procreation but for communion and fun. Well...if that is your belief anyway. There is absolutely nothing disgusting about sex. 

Lie #5: A woman who wants to know about sex is a 'whore'.

Many women get engaged to men and the issue of sex never comes up. When they eventually get married, they suffer through their husbands' sexual overtures without saying anything. Many of these women don't even know that sex can (and should) be pleasurable for them. They lie down, allow their husband to hump and grind, reach his own orgasm and get off. Whenever they want to ask their husband to do something different, they remember their mothers telling them that talking about sex is forbidden for good girls. This results in many sexually frustrated women who are gradually reduced to frigid lovers. It becomes worse when a woman gets turned on and doesn't feel she can talk about her desire with her husband. She suppresses her desire so she doesn't come off as a nymphomaniac or worse, a 'whore'. It doesn't matter that sex is to be a mutually beneficial expression of desire if it is to be effective or enjoyed. It also doesn't matter that many women clamp their teeth and squeeze the sheets, not from pleasure, but from immense pain. No one cares that a woman knows what would please her as naturally as a man knows where to insert his shaft penis. Who cares that talking is (and can be) a form of foreplay, thus making the sex act all the more enjoyable? But no! Our parents said good girls don't talk about sex.

Lie #6: Women have a low sex drive.

This one in particular is just totally out of this world! But it isn't too far-fetched. If you have to deal with all the aforementioned lies our parents told us, of course, your sexual drive is bound to be low! Even when a woman has a 'normal' sexual drive, she would feel ashamed for being different and want to hide her 'abnormal' drive from the glaring eyes of their parents and society in general. It is when you sit with a group of girls, ladies, and women that you realize just how frustrated many women are. Among ladies, there is a free flow of conversation that many parents, men, and society should learn from. 

It will be noticed that men are excluded from these examples. Generally, men do not get the talk. They are not bothered by societal strictures like women are. No one - well, except for religious bodies - condemns a man for not holding onto his virginity. In fact, society lauds a man who sows his oats - royal or otherwise - as far and as wide as possible. No one tells a man not to just jump on top of the woman and grind until he gets his satisfaction. Parents don't call their boys to tell them about chastity before marriage because whether it is said or not, boys are expected to have sex way before marriage. 

As much as society has evolved, the double standard regarding sex is still very glaring. It is high time these standards get evened out so there is a level playing field for which society can be built. 

Parents should give their children sex education without bias. It is time that parents tell their daughters that their virginity is not the most important gift they can give to their husbands but a sign of their willingness to share all of themselves with their spouse. Parents should tell their boys that while it seems okay to have sex before marriage, it should be something they really think about before doing it! Boys should be taught the same standards as girls so that if (and when) they have sex, it will be a joint dive into pleasurable depths of earth-shaking sex.

Parents shouldn't tell their kids that sex is disgusting because the psychological trauma from that statement alone is enough to mar a person sexually for life. As awkward as it may be, parents need to let their kids know that sex is beautiful, exciting, exhilarating, and can also be dangerous, disappointing, and in some cases, downright tepid. Parents should be the source of ALL the information on sex that their children get so that they don’t wander off to the uninformed ideals of their peers, the unbalanced theories found on the internet, or the fallacy found in porn videos and pictures.

Education may be shedding more light on the issue of sexual relationships, but many are still shrouded in the darkness of ideologies built centuries ago. When parents are the illuminating factors in expanding a child’s mentality on sex, there might probably be a reduction in instances of unplanned pregnancies, STIs, and STDs and also phobia of what sex entails.

Sex is still the most exciting topic to talk about; from the loud guffaws of Casanovas to the muted whispers of belles, sex cannot be easily shrugged off. Parents need to start spilling the truth because every lie your child discovers on their own, reduces your credibility as a parent.

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Well said Ramat...U gat a bit of Tim Lahaye writing style....A good conclusion.
    I agree truth need be told...I hope no one reads this half way; it might just result in a stone sentence.
    Looking forward to ur next