Far from the average high school sex education class, the theme of “sexpert” Jay Friedman’s lecture in the Marvin Center Tuesday night was very simple: “Sex is good.”
Friedman has been a certified sex educator for the past 24 years, lecturing at college campuses around the country. He says his interest in sex education stems from his teenage years, when his high school girlfriend unexpectedly became pregnant.
“It startled me so much that I wanted to learn about sex for myself and then help other people avoid a mistake like the one that I made,” he explained.
During the introduction to his lecture in the Marvin Center Grand Ballroom Tuesday night, organized by Program Board, Friedman attributed the accidental pregnancy to the limited information he received from poor sexual education. He thanked National Geographic and the lingerie section of the Sears catalog, laden with images of scantily clad women, for filling in the blanks.
Determined to reverse such trends in sexual education and provide young people with useful information, Friedman spent most of the night doling out advice on a variety of sex topics. For those considering having sex with a partner for the first time, he suggested knowing the person’s name, being familiar with methods of birth control and having the desire to both give and receive pleasure.
In addition, he dispelled the “myth of the blue balls” – the belief that if a man does not orgasm after he has been sexually stimulated, the pressure in his testicles will literally cause an explosion.
“If this were true,” he said, “you would hear explosions all over this campus every single night.”
In his discussion of the orgasm, he related the male orgasm to the heating speed of a microwave and the female orgasm to that of a crockpot.
Friedman also tackled the political issues related to sex education, asserting that homophobia and other controversial issues are perpetuated by a “sexually repressive” society.
Despite a small turnout, the audience remained attentive during the entire presentation, raising their hands and responding out loud to Friedman’s inquiries.
Freshman Imani Camp said she found Friedman’s approach to discussing sex refreshing.
“I thought it was good because it was just a different way of looking at something that we view in America as taboo,” she said. “Whether you go to a Catholic school, private school, public school, no matter what, you’re not taught what we just saw.”
Friedman said that he would like young people to recognize one recurring theme amid his hints and facts about sex.
“Our most important love-making tools are not between our legs,” he said. “They’re between our ears, so it’s your mind with your imagination and your mouth and being able to communicate your hopes, your needs, your fears and your desires.”
This article appeared in the April 9, 2009 issue of the Hatchet.