One cannot deny the importance of sex education in schools. It has helped prevent social vices like unwanted teen pregnancies and the spread of Sexually Transmitted Diseases. However, according to a sex therapist and top speaker, Dr. Laurie Mintz, the sex education curriculum of the U.S is obsolete and needs to be updated.
Dr. Laurie highlights the statistics about sex education in the United States, which are quite disturbing and call for immediate action.
Dr. Laurie highlights the statistics about sex education in the United States, which are quite disturbing and call for immediate action. Only 29 states mandate sex education, and only 15 states require that the information provided be medically accurate. 35 states require that abstinence be stressed. U.S Sex Education primarily consists of warning of the dangers of STIs and unwanted pregnancy. Abstinence is stressed and everything about pleasure is conveniently omitted. Dr. Laurie describes a typical American Sex Ed, “Scare them but do not tell them about pleasure!”
As a tenured professor and expert of Psychology of Human Sexuality at the University of Florida, Dr. Laurie has made notable efforts to highlight and promote understanding of sexual health.
She earned recognition from the University of Minnesota School of Medicine as one of the 50 Distinguished Sexual and Gender Health Revolutionaries. She has won multiple teaching awards including, William T. Kemper Fellow for Excellence in Teaching in 2001, Purple Chalk Award in 1992, and Socrates Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Mentoring for outstanding contributions to graduate teaching and mentoring in 1988.
Dr. Laurie has all the qualifications to be recognized as an authority on contemporary sexual issues. She has voiced her concern on the pathetic models of Sex Ed in America and believes that it is time to make reformations. She says,“ While it’s important to have safe sex, sex is supposed to be fun & pleasurable. And while we are at it, let’s throw in some porn literacy too! Research shows when you teach teens abstinence-only sex ed, teen pregnancy rates increase, and when you teach them sex-positive messages, they are more responsible, and teen pregnancies decrease.”
Dr. Laurie says that in the absence of sound and inclusive Sex Ed, teens turn to porn as the role model for sex. The inaccuracy and false notions around sex depicted in porn have distorted ideas of sexuality. Dr. Laurie firmly believes that through good sex ed in schools, including porn literacy, a change in the overall perception of sex and sexual behaviors is inevitable. And that is what she is striving for as a therapist, author, and influencer.