Who taught you about SEX? No really, I’m curious how you learned about sex. How old were you when you learned what it was? Even though it is a natural act that has existed as a normative experience since the foundation of the world, it still seems that this is one of those topics that is always taboo. I recently administered a survey to the youth of our church. I set up four stations in the lobby area of our building and I bribed students to take this anonymous survey. Our youth pastor, who also happens to be my “little” brother, just recently went through a purity series with the students. He talked about things like “how far is too far” and abstinence.
I’m fairly confident that the students were honest in the survey because a good portion of them asked questions privately to me as they went through the questions. One thing this taught me is that they don’t call things the same today as they did when I was younger. Now, now, let’s not get off topic. I was actually somewhat pleased that students had to ask what I meant by things like “heavy petting” because it helped me identify that they were honest enough to ask if they didn’t know (or didn’t understand that lingo).
So what were the results of this survey?
The answer to that could take a long time so I’ll just focus on a couple of the answers. One of the questions was “At what age did you have ‘THE SEX TALK’ with your parents?” 24% of the students said “never.” For those parents that did have “The Talk” with their kids, it seemed that the most common age was between 10 and 12 with each of those having between 14% and 17% of the students indicate that was when that talk happened. So when did the students actually learn about sex? 41% actually did learn between the age of 10 and 12. However, 23% learned about it when they were age 9 and a whopping 29% learned at age 8 or earlier. That is 52% of students who likely learned about sex from someone other than their parents.
Interestingly, 64% of the students indicated that they have looked at pornography in the past. 71% of students who learned about sex before the age of 10 have also viewed pornography. Perhaps we as parents in the church could place more value in being the ones responsible to share about sex with our kids. I wish I had asked where the student first learned about sex. My suspicion would be that they learned about it from their friends, the Internet, or the movies, but not likely from their parents or the church.
What about you? When did you learn about sex? Who taught you about it? Consider taking this brief survey to find out how you compare with others. I’ll be sure to post the results when enough people have participated. Oh, and by the way, I’d love for you to share this with others if you don’t mind.