Growing up, I remember a few people very distinctly who had a profound effect on the way I viewed my body and sexuality positively, besides the obvious large influences (parents, etc).
When I was about eight, my third grade teacher (who liked me enough to take me on vacations now and then and who was a woman who looked in every way so much like Hanne it's surreal) had taken me camping, and we were settling into bed. I got dressed for bed, and was sliding my pajamas over my underpants, when she very plainly and matter-of-factly told me it was healthier for me and my vagina to sleep without the underpants. She often delivered little bits about my body this way, without blushing, or making excuses, or using kiddy-language. Her name was Priscilla, and she was a great role model.
When I was in junior high I shortly realized I was the black sheep of my entire family (esp. on my mothers side) mainly because that half of the family made a point of noticing that not only was I a bit odder than the rest of them, I was also MUCH curvier. However, one thanksgiving, I arrived to hear a flurry of weird whispers and gossiping about one of my uncles' new wife. I slipped into the living room, and there, amid my mother's Irish Catholic family stoodf a curvy, brash, anbd hilariously funny Jewish woman dressed in Frederick's of Hollywood lounging pajamas and feather mules. She complimented me immediately on my buzz-cut and my makeshift tuxedo and later snuck me out with her when she went for walks to get some air and get out of the gossip den. My aunt Ginny is one of my favorite people in the whole family, and every time she shows up at a gathering I do, we end up dishing about everything, she makes flirty remarks about whoever I brought with me, and we get into plenty of trouble. Ginny and her p.j's were certainly role model material.
Next up, in high school and college, two gay men who I respected greatly (one was my music theory advisor, the other my finanical aid mentor and drinking buddy) had in their lives made incredibly brave and amazing choices about their sex lives. Both of then aren't alive anymore, one due to HIV. But they taught me a lot about being brave enough to make your sexual orientation and lifestyle as harmonious with your life as possible.
I could go on for days on this topic, and I'm sure I'll add more later (there's more, and I haven't even touched on people I don't actually have in my life, but have read or talked to), but you guys take a turn. What people in your life who perhaps don't get recognized every day have had a profound effect on your healthy feelings about your sexuality?
[This message has been edited by Miz Scarlet (edited 17 October 2000).]
ok this may sound corny but i'd have to say you Miz S!
i've never really had a sexual role model. all i've learned are by experience, cosmo (which is mostly false information) or magazines in general, and this board. i mean my parent "talk" with me was "use a condom" and that was the end of the discussion....forever.
so you see as to why Miz S is my role model. the only one willing to answer truthfully no matter what the situation.
*cheers Miz S* thanks for everything.
------------------ ~*GoDdEsS oF lOvE aNd BeAuTy*~
^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^*^ JaMeS & DoReEn 4eVeR ^*^*^*^^*^*^*^*^*^*^*
Honestly, I don't think I could name too many people. But something about the situations I've been in, where I often find myself the only one who cares much about responsibility, has been enough to force me into the attitudes I have now. I started reading what feminist literature I could find before I was ten, and when I realised how vindicated and sane what I was reading made me feel, I knew I had to find more. If I wonder about the sense of what my peers are telling me to do, that could just mean I',m paranoid, but when other women take exception too, I start to feel I may have a point. There's so much out there that exists only to erode confidence, and I've been exposed to some of the worst of it, but realising that reading Seventeen was masochism, but Gloria Steinem was nourishing was a big part of feeling more complete. And realising that sex isn't a bad thing; rather, it's something incredible and very, very human, with potentail for great abuse was part of that. I'm finally at the point where I'm realising how miraculous my body is, and what I must do to keep it that way. Being educated, and believing I need to enforce my sexual rights is my obligation, and spreading that information when people want it is part of being ethical. This site's given me a chance to give and receive info, and I'm grateful for that.
Posts: 5122 | From: I *came* from the land of ice and snow | Registered: Aug 2000
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Hrmm, well, this is probably going to sound bad, but... when I was younger, I always saw Julia Roberts' character in "Pretty Woman" as a sexual role model. That sounds bad because she was, well, a prostitute - but on the other hand, she was that "prostitute with a heart of gold" character. And I always loved the idea of a prostitute carrying around a huge supply of condoms in her boot. It seemed so responsible!
Mmm... as for real-life role models... I didn't have many. My parents were very close-mouthed about anything even remotely sexual: in fact, when I started my period for the first time at summer camp, I didn't even know what it was. I thought I was sick. I wanted to go see the nurse, but was scared and embarrassed, until my best friend said, "hey, maybe you started your period." As I grew up, I had to learn from other sources, like my peers, which is a pretty poor way to learn the important stuff (or even the truth).
Adolescents really need people they can look to as role models for sex, sexual health, etc. That's why I like this site so much, Miz S - you become that role model for a lot of people who really need you.
Funny how hollywood has a [insert "bad" profession here] with a heart of gold for everything?
I dont think ive had/have any Guess thats kinda bad. And for sure no one ever real. Maybe i could name off some fictitional characters that i bet none of you would know. But even those aren't really sexual rolemodels. Both my parents are cheaters, so definetly not them. Ive always been an introvert in a LOT of ways, and always thought it was better to make up my own mind. Not that i dont think role models are good. I think they are great and very important. I just never had any.
I read every single Judy Blume book in circulation during elementary school, and that's how I learned about sex. I greatly appreciated the honesty in them, such as when the characters in her books would talk about getting their periods, having sex, getting drunk, and stuff like that. That's something you don't learn from Beverly Cleary Aside from Judy Blume, my other sexual role model would be Queen Latifah. Large woman, like me, and she doesn't seem to make any excuses about it. And the woman is so, so sexy. Her, and Camryn Manheim. Gotta love a woman who makes you feel more secure about your body type by embracing her own
------------------ ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~ I need my conscience to keep watch over me To protect me from myself So I can wear honesty like a crown on my head When I walk into the promised land
Mae West (actress) Sophie Tucker (singer, comedienne) Kathryn Hepburn (actress) Kate Bornstein (writer, activist) Lisa Alther (writer) Ruth Gordon (actress) Leslie Feinberg (writer, activist) Patrick Califia (writer, activist) David Steinberg (writer, therapist) Annie Sprinkle (actress, sex worker)
And several people who have been my professors, teachers, advisors, friends, and lovers.
Corny, corny, but Miz Scarlet and Hanne definitely go on my list. Some more cool people are my aunts. My parents don't have a particularly lovely relationship so I've always looked at how much my aunts love each other. Without them I might have grown up thinking that when I was older I would just settle with someone whom I didn't really like all that much. Also, my aunt L is fat and I am fat. It pretty much makes it impossible for me to think that being fat means that I won't find love because I know she has. She also made it possible for me to grow up with no problem with my queerness. Seriously, I can honestly say that not even for half a second have I ever felt even slightly ashamed or bad for being bisexual. My English teacher from last year because she's a feminist and she slipped a sex-positive statement into a class that made me really happy. We were having a vocab quiz and one of the words was "sexton." In case you're wondering, it has nothing to do with sex. It means a church official who digs graves and rings bells. The way she did the quizzes was she would read the words out loud, and then we would write them down and define them. Here's what happened: M(the teacher): #5, Sexton. V(idiot in my class): Sixton? M: No, sexton. V: Sixton? M: No, sexton. V: Sexton? As in the nasty? M: Yes, V, sexton, and there's nothing nasty about sex.
It was great. She is cool. While we're on teachers, my second grade teacher was cool too. I don't know how it started, but one day in second grade during free time, my best friend and I started drawing pictures of nude women. I was very popular back then(my, how times change) so all the other kids in the class caught on and started doing it too. We saw the teacher walking our way and we panicked and thinking we would get in trouble, hid the drawings. Obviously she saw us stash them under the desks and asked to see them. We were all dreading a trip to the office(where you go to be "talked to" if ur bad), especially me since I started it. But she simply said, "Very nice. I have an idea. Since you all seem to be so interested in this, why don't we take a class trip to the Upper School library and look at books of antiquity art." And that's what we did. A whole gaggle of 7 year olds went up to the sixth floor and looked at books of antiquity art. Then there are all my cool cousins. They rock and they write really cool poetry about sex. Actually I first got the water method masturbation idea from a poem one of my cousins wrote. Okay, I think I'm done now. That was fun, yea. Maybe I'll be someone's sexual role model some day.
I don't think I really have any sexual role models. Miz s. and Hanne are up there on the list, since I learned about sex mostly from this site.
Posts: 252 | From: somwhere, usa | Registered: Sep 2000
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I don't think I really understand what you mean by sexual role models. I learned about sex mainly from my mother. I don't think that I can think of any one person who influenced me, maybe when I'm older I'll be able to look back and pick someone out.
Posts: 303 | From: Toronto, Ontario, Canada | Registered: Aug 2000
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