#Lesson101 : Sexual health and the role it plays in the society

In a conservative country like the Philippines, topics concerning sex education, sexual health, and the likes, are somewhat taboo. It's unbelievable that in this age of the internet and digital media, sexual topics remain prohibited in Filipino homes.

Despite the fact that sex education is now a relevant issue in the society and the Responsible Parenthood and Reproductive Health Law mandates the public schools to provide age-appropriate reproductive health education to adolescents; Filipino parents still refuse to discuss and teach the rudiments of sexuality to their children. This narrow-minded response to issues related to STI (sexually transmitted disease), HIV/AIDS, teenage pregnancy, and premarital sex leads to poor sexual health.

Most people aren't aware that sexual health is an important part of our emotional, mental, and physical health. It usually refers to the factors of sexual function and reproduction and disorders that can impact a person's well-being as well as his or her relationships and self-image.

More than intimacy, satisfaction, and pleasure, sexual health defines a positive, respectful approach to sexual behavior and relationships. And in the realm of sexual health, partners should be free of violence, discrimination, and coercion. This means that sexual health has something to do with recognizing and guarding sexual rights, which most society fails to do so.

To be able to achieve and maintain positive and healthy sexuality, education and communication play an important role. There are many self-help books and resources available. In some cases, it can be beneficial to speak to a counselor or a therapist who is knowledgeable and supportive of sexual health. These options can help people go through the issues of sexual health and can help people or partners communicate their boundaries and expectations respectfully, in a safe, judgment-free environment.

It’s also important to talk to a doctor about sexual health needs. There are also different organizations that are open to serving the patient’s sexual health needs. such as the proper sort of contraception for his or her lifestyle, and are also offering STI and pregnancy testing.

Sexual health is an integral part of living an authentic life. More than disease prevention, unplanned pregnancy, and the likes; sexual health is about us - our welfare, and how different sexuality can co-exist in a respectful environment and can together create a violence-free society.

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