Sexual Health and Sexual Behavior
1. Examine both the pleasures and the dangers of sex.
2. Discuss the myths, facts and their feelings about sexual health, sexual behaviors, sexual responses and sexual anatomy.
Most sexuality education focuses on the dangers of sex – unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections (STIs) including HIV/AIDS and sexual assault. This reinforces the negative feelings many teens (particularly high-risk teens) already have about sexuality. Research has found that these negative feelings act as barriers to reducing high-risk sexual behavior. This lesson acknowledges both the pleasures and dangers of sex for teens and sets forth the goal of keeping the pleasure but avoiding the dangers.
Some negative feelings about sex are tied to a lack of information about sexual health, sexual anatomy and sexual behaviors. Even when teens are taught factual information, they rarely have opportunities to discuss how they feel about sexuality. This lesson examines common factual misconceptions about sexuality and provides the opportunity to talk about feelings related to sexuality.