It’s not all physical: Better sex and relationships through communication and less shame about sex

Contrary to stereotype about sex-crazed adolescents, this article that describes a study of 4,000 teenagers and young adults suggests that they want more information about aspects of sex that have to do with handling emotions, communicating needs and otherwise being successful at relationships. They also asked for smaller classes, separate by gender (at least some of the time), both of which would seemingly contribute to being able to talk and learn about sex with “less embarrassment”. Stigma and shame around sex have been described by former US Surgeon General Dr. David Satcher as contributing factors to cultures, like in the US, that have unusually high rates of sexually transmissible infections (STI) and unintended pregnancy.

Parents who want to learn more about raising sexually healthy teenagers might like this book. Adults who pretty much never got decent education about how to make their relationships work might check out this one.


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About Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at