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When I was about 5 years old, I went into the bathroom to shower with an older girl who lived with my parents. This was something we did daily. Books helped disabuse me of that knowledge, but scary were the times when I believed that. I grew up in a household that promoted and encouraged questions. No matter how sticky or taboo the topic was, we talked about it. Interestingly enough, I never got the puberty talk. I remember I was in the eighth grade i. I just calmly went to her, told her my period had started and she gave me p.
My mother never walked me through the ins and outs of feminine hygiene- for example, that tampons were a more convenient alternative to p for heavy bleeders. However, my parents did create a space of openness surrounding the topic of menstruation and all that it entails. My dad was the one who gave me the sex talk, cringely enough. He told me all the things I already knew from the books, and spared no clinical details. I had no Monrovia dressing curious wants girlfriend or myths around the act of sex and what it brings forth, this led to me being very conscious and aware when I became sexually active.
True to his character, my dad routinely asks me about my monthly cramps, flow and the severe, vomit-inducing pain I subsequently developed due to the existence of fibroids on my uterus. My parents made it okay for me to not feel ashamed about the things that naturally happen within my body.
I grew up in a household where we were brought up to have open discussions and ask questions no matter how uncomfortable we felt. My parents were very open with us because they cared about our emotional well-being and developments more than the awkwardness of a moment. Most of the kids in the family home when I was growing up were younger girls, the guys were mostly young adults, and I was the only teen boy in the house.
I think this made the girls I grew up with more ready and prepared for the consequences ahead. When I got older, I saw my Dad buying p in bulk for Monrovia dressing curious wants girlfriend girls of the home. When most of these girls were of age, and even the younger ones, they had this routine of going in for monthly check-ups. I think my parents were basically trying to avoid bigger issues by being more open up, in order to avoid going through future embarrassments and them having to blame their girls for what they had no idea on.
For me, I was 10 years old when I first had a wet dream. It was confusing and strange, but because I was taught to ask questions and open up about anything involving my development, I decided to ask my mom even though I felt shy to.
I am 30 years old and I have not had a single conversation with my mother about sex. There was never a time that was right to talk about it. Am I sexually active, ummm of course, but to my mother, I will always be a virgin- The end! This is the fantasy many of our parents live with so why disturb that? I remember when my period came for the first time, I was told that this means I could have children. She even went a step further to say my body cannot carry babies so if I did get pregnant at that young age, I will die.
So, basically, sex could kill me. I was never told how it works, what it meant or what impact sex would have on my life decisions. Sex education was not part of my upbringing.
I know my parents love me and wanted the best, but they left that part out and that is regular for most of us. The Liberian society completely ignores this subject or treats it as a Taboo. So, how are we supposed to learn about sex? Our parents will not talk about it, the schools will not dare add it to the curriculum and the community avoids it.
When and where are we supposed to learn about our changing bodies and body parts? We wonder why so many of the sexual assault and rape cases are swept under the rug.
The center of all these behaviors might be the lack of knowledge. We do not know what to do with the fact that sex is everywhere! We pretend that we do not engage in the act because after all, when was the last time you saw African adults exhibit some type of public affection? Sex is wrong and that is the narrative we grew up with. How can we change that? Collectively, this is a call to action for the next generation of Liberians.
We need to incorporate sex into our conversations in the home. If you have growing body parts, it is not time to start hiding it or pushing it away.
When our daughters start to bleed, sit them down and teach them. Do not scare them away from their normal body functions. When little girls and boys are bathing outside and ask questions about their different Monrovia dressing curious wants girlfriend parts, answer them without punitive actions. The lack of sex talk never stopped anyone from having sex. We still have it and have it often.
Until you diagnose a problem, you cannot solve it. Why do we tell them to cover up and not tell the boys to stop looking? We want them to grow up to be good mama and papa so why do we punish them for practicing? Is punishing them going to do anything but increase their curiosity? Knowledge is power, and we are not saying let our children be sexually active, we just want a collective wave of young people taking control of their sex lives. We need sex education in our schools as a requirement, just like physical education. Liberian girls and boys should be given the opportunity to learn about their bodies without feeling ashamed.
This is our hope for the next generation of Liberians: May we talk about it, do it, teach it and make it a part of everyday Liberian Talk. Ehn yor hear it ehn? You are either having it, talking about it, fussing about it or not having it but still thinking about it derisively or not. This is a compilation of stories from young Liberians and their experiences with the Taboo subject of sex with their Liberian parents. If you have Liberian parents African parents in general the age for this conversation never comes.
Some people had something that went like this:. What keeps sex out of everyday conversations in Liberian households? I asked a few young Liberians to share their experiences. As the next generation of Liberians, will we talk to our children about sex? Why is it still such a taboo to discuss sex in our families?
Fanoraine :. I was years old when I got my first period. I thought I had hurt myself and was beyond scared. This was around the time my mom had started traveling for work and I was in the care of her sister. So I went to her in panic and she kindly told me that the blood meant I was a woman now and that if I let a boy touch me, I would get pregnant. She also told me to expect it every Monrovia dressing curious wants girlfriend and to keep my body extra clean during this time. I was NOT a woman. I was still and I had always felt like and been treated like. But my aunt was telling me that this change in my body was a change in my status.
From child to woman. But I knew to avoid boys during this time because I was beyond scared of pregnancy. For years after I got my first period, I attributed menstrual cramps to me being a bad woman because I still felt like.
Still wanted to run around and climb trees like my friends, but I was a woman now so, I had to watch how I played, especially with the opposite sex. I was told never to let anyone know I was on my period, never to let anyone see me buy p because this whole menstruation business was a supposedly nasty business and people, not even other women, should ever be made aware that it was happening to me.
A year after that, I was spending a weekend with my dad when I got my period. Him being a man and probably not understanding the female anatomy assumed I was bleeding because I had had sex. He then called my pastor to say I had slept with an older man and that I was damaged. Pastor called my mom who was in East Africa at the time and she called in panic.
That was the last time I had a conversation about my body, or sex for that matter. Everything else I learned, I learned on my own.Monrovia dressing curious wants girlfriend
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