We all know that there’s a sex ed gap – generation after generation has felt that hard. In the UK, the sex education in schools doesn’t cover the breadth of sexuality, identity, or relationship structures. Sex itself is labelled as P in V, and not much else beyond that.
Hundreds of studies have shown that well-implemented sex education can support positive sexual health outcomes that prevent the risk of sexually transmitted infections (STIs), unintended pregnancies, and sexual violence. Being taught how to make informed decisions about our sex life is just as important – if not more – then the act itself. And for LGBTQ+ people who have previously been left out of the discussion, affirming messages on sexual orientation, LGBTQ+ identities and relationships are vital.
Leading LGBTQ+ charity Stonewall has partnered with beloved condom brand Durex to launch All In, an inclusive alternative to sex education. Durex conducted a major sex education survey – which had over 5,000 LGBTQ+ respondents in the UK - and found there to be an urgent need for sex education beyond what they call a “heteronormative curriculum”. #MySexMyWay is right.
The results from Durex’s study noted that only 14% of LGBTQ+ respondents felt sex education was a positive or relevant experience while less than half (33%) found that sex education was delivered in a non-judgmental way. “It's important for LGBTQ+ young adults to have resources that give them the confidence to fully be themselves,” says Robbie de Santos (he/him), the Director of Communications and External Affairs at Stonewall, “and we're happy to be working closely with Durex to deliver this.”
All In is a comprehensive guide that meets an urgent need. It includes insight from diverse groups of LGBTQ+ people who refer to their own personal experiences with navigating sex and relationships from anal sex and kinks, to consent and body positivity to help LGBTQ+ young adults discover their needs and wants.
“We stand for real sex,” Durex said in a statement “Sex that feels good — and does good. We want people to feel good about whatever they’re into. We believe in recognizing the problems, and fighting to fix them.”
The British government announced revised regulations for teaching Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) in England in April 2019 to incorporate more inclusive ways of teaching, but efforts to introduce a truly expansive sex education curriculum in the UK continue by campaigners and grassroots groups. Earlier this year too, A major survey by the Sex Education Forum shows that young people are still not receiving the comprehensive and quality Relationships and Sex Education (RSE) they were promised when the subject became mandatory.
Before that, the RSE regulations had not been updated in almost two decades. It now includes LGBTQ-inclusive teaching, along with tackling and preventing homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying. Despite huge advances in recent decades towards LGBTQ+ equality, anti-LGBTQ+ bullying and language still common in British schools, according research conducted by Stonewall. Of course then, support in nurturing inclusive attitudes from a young age is essential. And so is actively expanding our understanding around LGBTQ+ inclusive sex education, from safety measures, to understanding, exploration and sex positivity that will ultimately prevent shame and stigma.
A lovely, necessary reminder there’s no one way - or person - to teach sex ed, and it’s your sex, your way.
The All In LGBTQ+ sex education resource from Durex and Stonewall is now available online.
You Might Also Like