Sexual education in India, whether it was taught in a classroom or through the social messaging system, is a mess. In our weekly sex-column read what I wish we had been taught instead.
Written by Aarushi Ahluwalia
Between social messaging, the one sex ed class we had as part of the “moral science” curriculum and the strange things I learnt from peers and television, I had an insanely muddled idea of sex as a young teenager (and this was despite the fact that my mother was really on top of it when it came to informing her kids). I still learnt some weird things. For example, young women should not have stuffed toys because they take sexual gratification from them. After the age of thirteen, all girls should have to surrender their stuffed animals. When I told my mother an adult had told me that, she was livid. I also learnt that chocolates satisfy sexual urges in you (she’s not completely wrong, eating Nutella is as good as multiple orgasms).
Probably in biology class, I learnt how babies are made. The following is the parts of the process I retained:
Step 1: Parents find you a suitable match made of wonderful qualities such as light-skinned, tall, respects parents and, most importantly, MBA.
Step 2: Much money no one has is spent on the wedding to feed people whose names you have to memorize from a photo album of your last relative’s wedding.
Step 3: An auspicious time for consummation is decided upon by your elders. Selected bed for consummation is creepily prepared by your siblings with rose petals, garlands and white sheets.
Step 4: ‘this material has been censored by the Central Board of Secondary Education. Kindly follow the twelve step application process under the guidance of your parents (and a cow) to acquire this information only with their blessing.
Step 5: Baby is born. Goddess status unlocked.
Step 6: What the fuck are you doing still reading this? Go take care of your baby, goddess.
I learnt that every time you had sex giant warts would grow out of everywhere. Until marriage. When you do it once and baby is born.
I learnt some important stuff too.
I learnt I had a vagina.
I learnt my friend Naresh had a penis.
And if we put them together we would make genital warts.
Unless we got married.
And then we’d make a baby.
Useful stuff. Really useful, but just for fun, here’s a list of things I wish I had been taught?
- The only way to completely wash hot sauce (or any chilli based product) off your fingers is dish washing soap. You think you’ll need condoms and lube, but actually what you will need is clean chilli-free hands. STDs are not the only thing that will make your stuff burn. Dish washing soap, people.
- That sex involved thrusting of the penis repeatedly inside the vagina. For a long time I thought sex was just a one-time insert and pull out deal and I couldn’t figure out why the fuck anyone would want to do that.
- What genital warts actually are.
- How a man fits between a woman’s legs. Okay, look, I know this sounds ridiculous, but my 14-year friend asked how a guy fits between a woman’s legs legs and I had to demonstrate it to her, and her mom walked in while I was proving that it’s quite easy to fit. It was uncomfortable (in case that wasn’t clear).
- Semen in the uterus may get you pregnant, but getting it in the eye could blind you.
- How to prepare healthy and ready to eat post sex snacks. That shit makes you hungry and I was not fucking prepared.
- A sub-module called clitoris studies would have been great for everyone. Countless men could have been saved the embarrassment of hearing me say, “Baby, that’s my eyeball, and countless women could have been saved the ten years it takes to figure that shit out.
- A little information about queefing. Starting with…that it happens? I literally thought there was a balloon in my vagina. I crouched down and tried to look for it. A 20-year old boy had to explain vaginal flatulence to me and boy was I mortified.
- We talked about the emotional cost of sex but how about a conversation about the actual cost of sex? Like razors, waxes, Brazilian waxes, scratchy underwear that is obviously made of diamonds given the cost. Who was gonna warn us about that, huh? HUH?
Better Sex Ed!