In my work as a sexuality educator I can report one thing for certain: everybody has questions about sex. They can come in the form of intimacy questions, relationship questions or just plain questions about sex. Sometimes when I am giving an educational program no one will ask a question but I will get stopped in the parking lot on the way to my car by someone who needs an answer to something they were too shy to ask in front of the group. Few things surprise me anymore.
What concerns me is where people get their information about sex. There is so much inaccurate information about sexuality floating around. People have told me they still believe you can get HIV from a toilet seat or you can’t get pregnant the first time you have sex. People who are very sex negative and want to push their value system off on others seem to stretch the truth more than a little to discourage sexual activity.
People are relying more and more on the internet for their sex education. Given the fact that many don’t receive it at home or in school they are not left with a lot of choices. If you Google any topic about sexuality millions of websites come up. How do you sort out the fact from fiction? It can be very difficult for someone who doesn’t know what they are looking for.
That is why is it is important to look for reputable websites that have people with good credentials working for them. People who have expertise in sexuality are the best resources. You can always Google them as well and check them out and make sure they are the real deal. Look at the “About” section of the website and see who is running the show. How are they funded? It is from a non-biased fact based organization or a place that has its own agenda? Do they have resources for you to find more information or go for help with a problem? If they don’t that may be a sign that they are not the best place for accurate information.
It can be hard to ask questions about what for many is a very personal topic. One benefit of the internet is it allows people to remain anonymous. And I have to give props to those that realize they need to learn or have an issue and know they need to deal with it for even taking that first step and starting to look for answers. They should just be sure they are looking in the right place.