Why Sexuality Health Education?

Parents are the foremost educators of a child, and it’s a parent’s responsibility to protect the child while also teaching the child to protect him or her self. In today’s times, children need to be safeguarded against so many issues, which weren’t a problem a few years back. Whatever may be the nature of the abuse against the child, in today’s scenario it often has to do with the body. Hence, knowing our bodies and embracing sexuality are less of a choice and more of a necessity.

According to data from the National Crime Record Bureau, as many as 109 children were sexually abused per day in India in 2018. According to the NCRB data recently released, 32,608 cases were reported in 2017 while 39,827 cases were registered in 2018 under the Sexual Offenses Protection Act (POCSO). In 2018 there were as many as 21,605 child rapes reported including 21,401 girls’ rapes and 204 boys. In 2018 there were as many as 781 cases of child use for pornography or storage of child pornography content, more than double that of 2017 when 331 such cases were reported. The data showed that total crimes against children have risen steeply; six times over the decade between 2008-2018.

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Break The Barrier

The term ‘Sex’ by itself has been a taboo in our society since ages, a repercussion of which is that we find it quite embarrassing to talk or discuss it in public or among family. This also leads to a communication gap between the parents and the child. When parents don’t educate their children on sex and sexuality, to satisfy their curiosity children will try to find other means or they may hear about it from someone else. But if parents talk about it with their kids, they will make sure that children get the right details.

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The hand that holds and guides must always be gentle

Talk More, Talk Right

To bridge this gap and to throw some light on the same, we got engaged in a discussion with a sexuality health educator in our podcast. The guest for the podcast was Swati Jagdish, a Psychologist, Counsellor, and the Managing Trustee of Coimbatore Parenting Network (CPN). She has also been conducting workshops on sexual health education for children across India.

In the podcast, Swati talks in length on the topic and also shares her experiences and struggles. The podcast also provides answers to the below mentioned basic questions that are bound to arise in any parent’s mind:

How do we talk about sex and sexual health to children? What is the appropriate age to start this conversation? What are the challenges faced by educators regarding this?

To continue to keep yourself updated, visit Swati’s Instagram page and her website. She is very active on Instagram in providing some incredible content in connection to parenting and sexuality health.

Sexuality health education is a way of knowing and understanding one’s body better. The absence of such an education about one’s sexual health can lead to a myriad of issues, more than what we can anticipate. In the discussion, Swati Jagdish has very beautifully put across the message of being more aware of one’s own body, which will, in turn, contribute to one’s own well being. As the popular proverb goes, ’Better late than never’. It’s time we take a step ahead and break the stereotypes. 

Listen to the full conversation on

Reference:

109 Children Sexually Abused Every day in India in 2018: NCRB(2020, Jan 12), India Today

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