Let’s Make 2020 The Year That Sex Ed Matters
Not so fun fact: It’s nearly 2020 and North America still hasn’t managed to figure out sex-ed. The debate rages on about who’s responsible (is it parents? or the school system?), and no one’s winning. Sex ed is inconsistent, it’s often inaccurate, and this affects everyone. And since progress doesn’t seem to be coming from Congress, the Blume team decided to kickstart some progress on our own.
Who are we? We’re a self-care brand created for young womxn, who believe in the power of their choices. We sell products like organic tampons and pads, all-natural deodorant, and natural skincare remedies to make puberty and beyond a little easier. We do this because over 60% of adolescents experience a serious decline in self-esteem during and after puberty. Now, we’re hoping to make learning about sex and our bodies, a little easier too.
Blume believes this isn’t just a matter of proper education—it’s a matter of public health, too. Countries where children are taught accurate, comprehensive sex-ed at an earlier age experience lower rates of teen pregnancy, assault, and STIs. And the U.S. could improve massively on all of those counts. Just take a look at the stats below to find out why.
The Current State of Things
The numbers are in and they aren’t good. So far, only 24 states in the U.S. have mandated sex-ed curriculum. And only 9 states (!) mandate that the information that’s taught be medically accurate. We wouldn’t teach science, English, or math in an incomplete or inaccurate way—so why are we teaching our teens about sex that way?
1 in 2 sexually active Americans will contract an STI before the age of 25. And the CDC estimates that undiagnosed STIs caused 24,000 cases of infertility each year.
It’s one of the hottest topics of the sex-ed debate, and it should be, because an American is sexually assaulted every 92 seconds. And yet, the concept of consent is only taught in 10 states. The problem is especially rampant on college campuses, where rape and sexual assault are still a huge issue. Right now, there are several bills fighting for the right to teach consent in the U.S. waiting to be passed. But the wait is only doing harm to those who aren’t educated in the meantime.
Trauma and Healthy Relationships
Sex-ed that includes information on violence and healthy relationships has the power and potential to prevent years worth of trauma and toxic patterns. To illustrate how bad it’s gotten, for every NHL player that suffers a concussion during hockey season, there are 7,000 women in Canada alone who will suffer the same injury at the hands of a romantic partner each year.
There are limits on what our teachers can say about homosexuality in 8 states. What sort of message is that sending to LGBTQ students in the classroom and beyond? As for trans people, they feel especially alienated, which is why 2 out of 3 of them report that they’ve recently committed self-harm. They’re also twice as likely to attempt suicide in comparison to their gay, lesbian, and bi peers.
Things are clearly beyond damaged. And we think it’s time we finally fix what’s broken. No more waiting. No more excuses. Just straightforward, factual information.
In collaboration with certified sexual health educator, Dee Stacey, Blume’s created a collection of downloadable and, more importantly, medically accurate sex-ed lessons and conversation cards on a variety of subjects aimed to help young adults through both their present and their future. The topics include:
- Gender, Puberty, Body Science, and Conception
Contraception and Pregnancy Options
STIs and Safe Sex Practices
- Consent, Sexual Decision Making, Healthy
- Relationships, and Online Safety