Intended for healthcare professionals


Learning to be you

BMJ 1999; 319 doi: (Published 23 October 1999) Cite this as: BMJ 1999;319:1142
  1. Ann Furedi, director of communications
  1. British Pregnancy Advisory Service

    Remaining programmes (for 9-11 year olds), BBC 2, Tuesdays at 12 pm, 2 to 16 November

    Ihave never understood why the idea of starting to educate young people about sex from the earliest years of their life provoked such a hysterical reaction from so many social commentators. Motherhood has only reinforced my view that it makes sense to answer children's questions about their bodies and their origins simply, factually, and truthfully. But then perhaps I have been let off the hook by an excellent nursery and a delightfully down-to-earth pregnant friend The nursery, faced with the first second-time around pregnant mum, was totally up front about the fact that Sophie's mum had a baby in her tummy. And my friend was sufficiently self confident to field a 3 year old's quiz about her bump. “How does it get out?” “It will be born.” “How is it born?” “It will come out between my legs.” “Where?” “Through a special hole.” “Wow, have I got one?” “No, only women have them—you have a willy instead.”

    Sex is a part of life, and it makes sense to treat …

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