Wednesday, 9 July 2008

Ooooh, look a double standard..,,2288582,00.html

The link above will take you to an article in the women's section of the guardian. It's about Jenny Block, a woman who has just released a book detailing her experience of being in a Polyamourous relationship.

I have no issue with polyamoury - my attitude is the same as it is to other forms of sexual behaviour- providing one is safe and consenting then go for it and please feel free to get your rocks off however you and your partner(s) should jolly well please. I'm also becoming of the opinion that monogamy/non -monogamy is as much a part of someones sexuality as their orientation. So for the record I'm a monogamous bisexual.

The reason I'm blogging about this article is this paragraph :
"Jenny says she's bisexual but I do wonder if she is a lesbian who realised after she married and had a child that she prefers sex with women but is not willing to give up the conveniences that come with a heterosexual lifestyle. Reading between the lines, is she having sex with Jemma and simply living with Christopher?"

Throughout the whole article there is a badly disguised tone of condemnation for this woman and others like her who choose to have polyamourous relationships. It seems as a society we cannot grasp onto the idea that actually monogamy may not work for all people and that there are other options. Sure being poly isn't for everyone. I don 't think I could handle it if my partner wanted another girlfriend and I'm fairly certain he couldn't handle it if I wanted a girlfriend. But for many couples it is an arrangement that works. Given the divorce rates, pure monogamy is obviously something that for many people has it's flaws.

The condemnation of polyamoury isn't my only issue. It's also the fact that it leads into wider misogyny. Men can be non monogamous with or without their partners consent, men can sleep around, and it's widely accepted that men can have high sex drives. For a woman to participate in any of those behaviours is seen as deviant.

We may have the vote, but women do not have sexual freedom. And I'm not convinced its something we will achieve any time soon.

Friday, 4 July 2008

And the lack of logic award goes too...........

In my internet perambulations today, I discovered this article on the Guardian website,,2289256,00.html.

At the bottom of this article is a link to an article by Polly Curtis talking about how Pro Life groups are targetting schools (and their staff!!) which offer contraceptive/ sexual advice clinics to their students. These groups really do just show amazing amounts of narrow minded lack of logic!

In the first article it is reported that Brooks Advisory and the Family Planning Association are calling for kids from Foundation Stage (4-5 yrs) up to be given better sex education. Obviously this is going to kick up an absolute shit storm. Heavens forbid we tell our young people that a) sex exists b) at some point they are going to start having it and finally c) here are the risks and how to protect oneself from them.

I'm a Mother, ironically of 2 children in this age range and really, I have absolutely not a single ob jection to schools educating my children about sex, safe sex, contraception, abortion, relationships, self esteem, self protection and so on. For one thing I think they're better equipped than me to do it. I'm their mum and there's no way I can expalin to my kiddies about sex.

The UK has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in Europe. This suggests to me at least, that our current system of sex education is inadequate and isn't working. It also suggests to me, that perhaps as adults we need to take a damn hard look at ourselves and what we're teaching our kids.

We can't pretend that sex doesn't exist. Everywhere we look sex is there. So making it taboo isn't going to stop young people doing it. Whereveer they look, they see sex. I don't know what teen magazines are like these days but in my day both more! and Just seventeen spoke about sex and had sexual advice columns. Here, grown ups is the rub : Teenagers know about Sex!! More to the point Teenagers, are having, have had, and will continue to have sex!! Not educating them on the risks, the joys, the consequences............ that isn't (and is proving to not) solve anything.

We can't stop young people having sex. What we can and should be doing, is providing them with advice, information and access to contraception. We shoudl also be teaching them about realtionships, about self respect, self esteem, peer pressure (and how to avoid it) and removing the taboos and stigmas attached to having/not having sex.

What we also need to do is provide better support to those teens who do get pregn ant and keep their babies. Having a baby shouldn't condemn you to a life of poverty and better educational and financial support at that point means mothers, single or not will be better placed to have healythier, more stable lives and thus provide their children with healthier, more stable lives.

And finally, no telling teenagers about sex doesn't mean their going to go and do it any more than they already will. What it does mean is they are more likely to have safe responsible sex with people they actually WANT to have sex with. And they won't just be doing it becase they're drunk/they're mates are/they want someone to love them.

Wednesday, 2 July 2008

So then

Here I am, having just completed the first year of a BA(hons) programme in Sociology, Politics and Economics. Lying in bed with a migraine thwarted due to the wonders of modern medecine and stinking flu, reading through my bloglist, it suddenly occured to me that my brains burns every day with a million and one rants, ramblings and wonderings on subjects as diverse as 'Is motherhood used by the patriarchy to opress women?' to 'Will I ever wake up and find I look like Angelina Jolie?' and maybe I should start blogging.

The answer to the last question is of course a loud and resounding 'No'. The answer to the first is far more complex, and it's questions of that nature that insist on rattling around my head that I want to use this blog to explore. I would say answer but far better women than I have attempted and are I believe still attempting to answer those questions.

For now I'm going to go back to snuffling under my duvet,k watching House M.D and pondering whether or not I passed this term. Tomorrow hopefully I'll feel better and the first oif many no doubt nonsenical posts will spew forth. I shall label them my contribution to the purpose of the internet......................