From what I gather, most people had an uncomfortable discussion about sex with their parents or an authority figure at one point in their lives.
I think the majority of those people already had a general idea of what goes where when this talk occurred, but the parents insisted on having their kid hear it from them. Because the playground is no place to learn about sex.
My parents have never spoken to me about sex. My dad makes the odd dirty joke to which my mom crinkles her nose and calls him gross, but that’s about it. When I was 17 and had my first serious boyfriend, about six months in my mom said the following – “Now that you're in a long-term relationship, we should go see the doctor.” We both knew what she meant by this.
“No need, mum. I already took care of it.”
And that was it. That was the sex talk with my mother. Short and sweet, to the point, with a quiet understanding and no delving into the nitty gritty.
On a side note, I hadn’t taken care of it very well because my first foray into birth control was the depo shot, which we now know (12 years later) causes loss of bone density and is not recommended to young people at all any more.
The schoolyard isn’t the best sex educator, and our friends can tell us some wild stories when we’re first learning about this delicate subject. My experience, my introduction to sex, was probably even more messed up.
I learned about sex from the 1987 movie Innerspace, starring Dennis Quaid, Meg Ryan, and Martin Short. Wait no. Let me clarify. I THOUGHT I was learning about sex from an 80s sci-fi rom-com adventure.
|I love a hand-drawn movie poster. Another example|
First of all, let’s take a look at 1987 Dennis Quaid at age 33, because YOWZA. He made my prepubescent body feel weird and tingly and, although I didn’t realize it then, he confirmed my heterosexuality.
So how did this movie teach me about sex? Let me explain.
The film opens with Meg Ryan storming out of Quaid’s apartment after what looks like a night of adult fun times. Is this how I learned about sex? By the implication of actual sex? No. It isn’t.
In the movie, SPOILET ALERT, Quaid is shrunken down in a teeny ship and he accidentally ends up inside Martin Short’s body. I don’t feel like explaining, so just watch it. You won’t be disappointed.
He communicates with Short’s character and eventually gets him to find Meg Ryan to tell her what’s happened. Ryan and Short go through all kinds of shenanigans together, and at one point (the details are fuzzy) they kiss. Quaid surfs a wave of saliva and enters Meg Ryan’s body.
Can you see where I’m going with this?
|Mini-ship and gooey bits|
Eventually he makes his way in his itty-bitty ship down to Meg’s uterus and… GASP! A FOETUS! She’s pregnant! It’s an emotional moment for mini-Quaid.
But for mini-Adelaide? This was a revelation. Here’s how my child-mind absorbed all of this: “Man and woman kiss. Fluids enter woman’s mouth. BAM – YOU MADE A BABY.”
It’s very simplified, obviously, but that’s how I perceived the baby-making process. I didn’t ask many questions, such as “Who’s the daddy? Is it Martin Short’s because he kissed her? Is it somehow Dennis Quaid’s baby because he entered her body through the mouth?” Needless to say I wasn’t concerned with the mechanism for how this was possible. All I knew was that kiss = baby.
On the school bus, a couple of years later, my best friend at the time proudly explained “The penis goes in the vagina and then a baby grows there!”
“You idiot,” I enlightened her. “You have the entirely wrong end of the body. Baby’s come from kissing!” I gave her the breakdown of Innerspace and all the valuable biology lessons I’d learned from it, to which she advised me that her mom had told her about sex so it had to be true. I remember feeling angry with her. Super pissed. But I didn’t know why. I couldn’t articulate it, but she had burst my bubble and I somehow knew she had taken away a piece of my innocence.
Funnily enough, this is the same friend who told me, SPOILER ALERT, there was no Santa Claus, just a few short years later. What a bitch, right?
From that point on, I accepted the reality that P goes in V, even though I never confirmed it with my own mom. My friend’s mom was a reliable enough source. When I eventually learned that penises get hard for intercourse, I had a narrow frame of reference for such things. More specifically, my friend’s big dog and the things I’d seen when he was excited to see us.
So, I went on to believe for about a year that men’s erections were red rockets that came protruding from a sheath of skin in a most horrifying way. And thanks to my know-it-all friend, I thought “I have to put that WHERE?!”
Regardless of this wealth of misinformation, I turned out okay, sexually speaking. I ended up getting all the right information and generally being a sex positive person.
In contrast, my older sister got a talking-to about the birds and the bees from my mother at an appropriate age. I asked her what was said during this talk.
“All I really remember is that I was eating a hot dog at the time and I spit it out.”
Did you have any hilarious misconceptions about sex as a kid?
If you haven't seen this movie, it's worth watching, if only for this part: