Sex Ed: Babies Come a[euro][umlaut]From ... Armpits?

By Levin, Dan | Newsweek, December 10, 2012 | Go to article overview

Sex Ed: Babies Come a[euro][umlaut]From ... Armpits?


Levin, Dan, Newsweek


Byline: Dan Levin

China's bedroom problem.

Where did I come from?

Sooner or later, every kid asks. But in China, where frank discussions of sex and childbirth remain taboo, parents often avoid the subject altogether. In a recent news segment on the state-run China Central Television, a reporter asked adults when they first learned about sex. After much nervous giggling, many acknowledged that their parents were less than forthcoming about their biological origins. One woman said she grew up thinking she came from her mother's armpit. "I knew nothing about sex until college," she said. Most of the 200 people interviewed said their parents told them that they had been found. Even scarier, some said they'd rather leave their children in similar ignorance than bring up the birds and the bees.

Despite a booming bedroom culture of mistresses and a recent spate of sex scandals, many of China's 1.3 billion people remain paralyzed when it comes to discussing sex openly. Sex education is often a quick and vague lecture to high-school students by teachers too embarrassed to frankly talk about private parts, let alone contraception. The Chinese government has no national policy for sex education, and attempts to implement a curriculum have been thwarted by parental opposition.

This silence has serious consequences. According to an online survey, only 12 percent of 1,000 Chinese women ages 20 to 35 fully understand contraception. …

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Sex Ed: Babies Come a[euro][umlaut]From ... Armpits?
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