Let’s get comfortable with being uncomfortable — that is what sex is about, right? Queer sex has always been a taboo topic for those not in the LGBTQ+ community and, at times, even for some who are.
Sexual education usually comes at a time in one’s life where sexual orientation is still in questioning, so there is not much brought up regarding the importance of learning about safe queer sex.
American sex education has made leaps and bounds since the 1960s when adolescent, premarital pregnancy rates increased, but the current approach remains “abstinence only until marriage” (AOUM) which neglects necessary information regarding the complexities of sexual engagements.
According to the Journal of Adolescent Health, the current budget of $85 million for AOUM education “was approved despite President Obama’s attempts to end the program after 10 years of opposition and concern from medical and public health professionals, sexuality educators and the human rights community that AOUM withholds information about condoms and contraception, promotes religious ideologies and gender stereotypes, and stigmatizes adolescents with non-heteronormative sexual identities.”
Heteronormativity plagues most prominent aspects of modern American sex education, meaning that it only explains sexual activities between heterosexual, cisgender males and females.
A common concern regarding the implementation of universal sex education is that those who identify as heterosexual would be learning information that is meaningless to them; information that could make them somewhat uncomfortable. However, that is how closeted individuals have been feeling when digesting a heteronormative sexual education.
Normal for some is not normal for all — but all sex is normal. In more recent years, sex positivity is on the rise, and with that comes the normalization of all kinds of sex. The only support this movement is lacking is the thorough education necessary to ensure safe and smart ways of engaging in sexual conduct and being comfortable with it.
Our whole lives we are taught that sex is something to be taken very seriously, but that severity is lacking within the American education system. If it was taken as seriously as it should be, the curriculum would be entirely inclusive so that no one has to seek out information on their own or simply never obtain the information at all.
That being said, there should only be information added to the course; there should not be another course created separately to go over queer sex education. In order to make closeted individuals feel safe about learning about their own sexual identity, there should not be a separation — so that no individual has to feel like they have been outed or are any different from those receiving heterosexual sex education.
There are proposals and support currently put in place to try and develop an inclusive, productive curriculum for LGBTQ+ sex education, so it is important to get involved and show your support as well.