Episode 22: Sex and Relationship Education


Voice Over: You're listening to sex talk, a podcast all about sex. In this episode expect to hear some colourful language and conversations of a sexual nature. You may want to pop on a pair of headphones for some privacy during this podcast.

Voice Over: Sex talk. Coming up on this episode of Sex Talk:

Natasha: Hi my name's Natasha and I'm 15.

McKayla: My name's McKayla and I'm 15.

Natasha: I think they should be taught from not a young age, but from year 6 when we did sex education all we learnt about was periods, but I think you should be taught about contraception right from that age because you get kids that want to try things and especially when you see a music video or things going on in the world right now it's all to do with sex and drugs, they want to try those things, they should be taught about them things from young.

Voice Over: Real stories, real issues.

Adele : Welcome to Sex Talk with me Adele

Hilary: And me Hilary. Sex talk is the amazing podcast where we get to share some of the most interesting stories about sex, sexual health and HIV. We've had some amazing guests appear on this show tell their truth, live their truth and we hope we've shared so many interesting facts that's making you completely revaluate your sex life.

Adele: I've re-evaluated my whole life in this podcast.

Hilary: We were just saying that! What did you say you've come to realise since doing the podcast?

Adele : I'm rubbish at sex? No, it's just I've just learned so much and have been so inspired, each and every person that's been a part of this podcast has given me life lessons I feel.

Hilary : Indeed

Adele: On Sex Talk so far we've talked about loads of different things to do with sex, like sexuality and religion, Trans & Non Binary sexual health, consent and sexual

Adele: Okay, so on Sex Talk so far we've talked about loads of different things and sexual problems. Something which has come up time and time again, is the importance of sex & relationship education.

Hilary : Let's have a little listen back to what some of our previous guests have said about sex education

Dr Stuart: It's really important that we talk to young people about sexual health and how that is part of their experience as an adult. Sexual health is an important conversation to have.

Adele : I went to an all girl's school and we didn't have sexual health education, we didn't even have the banana, you didn't even do that.

Leasuwanna: I don't think people are having the best education when it comes to HIV. It's not in schools, the information online isn't detailed and correct.

Peter Tachell: We also work with people in the education field to promote better relationships with sex education in schools so that young people of whatever sexual and gender identity feel safe and secure so they make wise responsible sexual choices. That they have emotional back up.

Horcelie: Don't forget in schools you don't get taught about HIV, no one really knows what HIV is.

Abi: It's something I think we could talk about generally more widely with all children and young people but because of the connection with sex people think we can't talk about sex with children or people in primary schools wouldn't want to talk about HIV.

Sarah: It's a shame that in sex education things that can go wrong and be troublesome aren't talked about because it's extremely treatable.

Dr Stuart: Personally I think it starts at a really young age where we need to educate young people about sexual health in general.

Adele : I got some proper schooling off you then, you taught me more than my actual teacher when I was at school. This should be in school this stuff. It's true. I've learned more from this podcast than I did when I was pre 16.

Hilary: Absolutely, you couldn't have said it better Adele.

Adele : I think it's a little bit sad that out of everyone we've spoken to I don't think anybody has given a glowing review of the sexual education system, but the good news is it's getting addressed and we're going to talk about that today in this podcast. Sex education is obviously a very hot topic, which is why we've decided to focus on it in this episode of Sex Talk.

Hilary: Today we'll be hearing from three teenagers, who will be telling us what they think sex and relationship education should look like. We'll also be joined in the studio by our resident sexual health specialist, Dr Stuart Flanagan, as well as the lovely Lizzie Jordan who spoke to us about living with HIV in episode 18, if you haven't heard Lizzie's episode yet, make sure you go back and listen to it as it was a really important conversation.

Adele: Lizzie and Stuart will be talking to us about the work they're doing to educate young people about sex, and what they think needs to change...

Hilary: The current relationship and sex education guidelines were written 18 years ago, before the teenagers we're going to hearing from today were even born.

Adele: In the year 2000, mobile phones were only just becoming popular, and they were for making calls, sending texts... and playing Snake if you were lucky. There was no Snapchat, Instagram or WhatsApp, no Tinder, no Grindr…

Hilary : 18 years ago, just over a quarter of households had the internet, and it was slow, really slow... Now the world is at our fingertips, teenagers (and everyone else!) are accessing porn more easily than ever, and are communicating in a completely different way. Sexual health has changed massively as well, we've heard lots on this podcast about the changes in HIV treatment, prevention, and the changes in STI testing, but sex & relationship education guidelines haven't kept up with these changes.

Adele: The good news is, the guidelines are finally being refreshed in England, and new guidelines will be in place by 2020.

Hilary: Joining us now is HIV and Sexual Health specialist, Dr Stuart Flanagan, and Lizzie Jordan, founder of a social enterprise called Think2Speak, which helps staff working with young people tackle conversations they might usually avoid. Lizzie also speaks directly to young people about HIV and sexual health.

Adele: Welcome back to Sex Talk Stuart and Lizzie!

Dr Stuart : Hey Adele how are you?

Adele : I'm great thanks, I'm glad to see you got the memo about the dress code, you and Hilary match.

Hilary: Yes Dr Stuart Liverpool. I'm an Arsenal man.

Adele : Me and Lizzie are in blue, we're also Liverpool fans – her face is like 'no I'm not', yeah you are, just for this podcast and we've decided Liverpool have got a third kit this year which is blue.

Hilary: I'm a minority, I'll take that. You have both mentioned in previous episodes of Sex Talk the importance of good sex and relationship education for young people. A 2016Terrence Higgins Trust survey of young people aged between 16 and 24 found that one in seven had not received anysex and relationships education during their time at school, does this surprise you?

Dr Stuart : I have to say not really. You were talking earlier about HIV and how much work there still needs to be done about educating not just young people but everyone about where we are with HIV health and living with HIV. I think sexual health in general needs to be completely relooked at. It definitely needs to be looked at in the context of personal relationships. I think just in the last 18 months with the Me Too movement and all of the conversations about consent, the way we think about how young people relate to each other, the relationship they have with themselves in terms of their sexual health really needs to be thought about and really change root and branch. I think we also need to think about talking to little people, toddler age upwards about what consent means when saying no is respected and so the conversation about how we relate to each other needs to start at that age and then as they get older and start thinking about the context of sexual relationships it should all fit together really.

Adele : I think that's something I've thought about a lot doing this podcast, self-respect and self-love and that's something I thought about Lizzie when you came in to see us last time, you talked a lot about that and I thought about the younger version of myself and how I didn't respect myself enough. Could you tell us a little bit about the great work you do with young people?

Lizzie: Yeah of course so my social enterprise came about from my own personal experiences and how with my child the conversations we'd had to tackle and how other adults had shied away from them. Sex education is exactly that. Sex education's one thing, but relationship education's another thing. And that's often the great work that can be done in primary school to lay those foundations to understand what your boundaries are. Everybody's concept of risk is different, everybody's boundaries are different and actually that's okay but you need to equip people with those skills, and I came out of Uni still not having those skills to be able to negotiate and really respect myself, and there are a lot of people diagnosed with HIV that you can see the correlation between their self-respect and their getting infected and the behaviours that can lead to. Obviously that's much, much older but if we can go down to even 4 and 5 year olds understanding how to be a good friend, how to say stop, how to say go and all of those different things, and simply sharing and that's actually what relationship education is about and we get so hung up on – it used to be SRE so sex and relationship education and it's really important that we turn that around and put the R first. The relationship does come first, whether that's platonic, whether that's sexual or whatever it is. We all need those skills and so embedding those from small, we work with 4 years old and upwards is really important.

Adele : Dr Stuart what about you from a medical point of view?

Dr Stuart : Sometimes I worry that we maybe over medicalise this type of education as well because often someone like me is wheeled in to show the really… shocking pictures. This is what you're trying to not get when actually obviously a bit part of my role is to destigmatise STIs because they are part of life, they've been part of human health since humans first began so it's important to take some ownership of our sexual health and it's important for us to get tested for our own personal health but also for our own public health. It does concern me a little bit that if we just focus on sex means STIs or not or sex means condoms then sex is a lot of things. It's about maybe not touching at all but the way you relate to each other, the way you kiss each other the way you hold each other.

Lizzie: And actual pleasure! So often in the sessions we do, the teachers often aren't confident enough to discuss that sex is for pleasure, we're not just talking about conception, we're not just talking about preventing conception. There's so much more to it than that but generally the adults often shy away from even entertaining that side of the conversation, so it falls into this narrative of this is bad, this isn't good, you need to do this to prevent this, and this happening and that's why the HIV sessions that I do are really powerful when you go in and give them a bit of the biology, you give them the science, but then backing it up with the narrative of a human being stood in front of them that they go oh okay this could be me, it could be somebody I know. I can't tell looking at you and you can see their mind's blowing and the most powerful thing for me is always the teacher at the end that goes every single time, 'I've learned loads I didn't know any of that' and it's like oh wow. So we've got a long way to go but there are some great people out there doing some great work to try and step forward.

Adele : Let's get Lizzie and Stuart in every school across the country.

Hilary: Are you often surprised by some of the questions you get asked by young people?

Lizzie: They so rarely get the option to speak, actually where they have a safe space where they can ask you what they really want to ask, that can be so insightful of what comes out of that because so often it's either assumed that they know or assumed that they're going to google it and we both know what happens when you assume or when you google something, so being able to sit with somebody who might not have the answers but is able to have a conversation with you to say okay let's talk this through and let's signpost you, young people are living in a different world to the one we grew up in and we have to accept that and we have to move on with that. They have all this technology at their fingertips that can take you down very different paths. So actually if somebody's able to sit with you and have a conversation that is the most important thing because that can prevent so much.

Hilary: Adele and I have done myth busters with Dr Stuart and we've gone out to the streets and we've spoken to complete strangers and we've asked them what we think are general sexual health questions, and we're amazed by some of the responses we get sometimes. What sort of things do you pick up on in schools when you go in and speak to young people?

Lizzie: Often they don't know where to go to, they don't know who to turn to, they don't know where the sexual health clinic is, they don't know the sexual health clinic is a thing. Consent and actually what is a healthy relationship, and where those boundaries sit is a consistent thing that comes up and people don't necessarily have the communication tools or the confidence to say and it's usually my friend… It is very much that I feel something's not quite right but I just don't know who to talk to and we're having services cut left right and centre, young people are having to be more creative in how they find answers and that's not always in the way we'd want them to, to equip them with the skills that they really need to be happen and healthy.

Voice Over: You're listening to sex talk, join the conversation online using hashtag sex talk pod.

Hilary: Let's hear from two teenagers who spoke to our producer about their own experiences of sex and relationship education

Voice Over: Sex talk. Starting a conversation about sex.

Natasha : Hi, my name's Natasha and I'm 15.

McKayla: My name's McKayla and I'm 15.

Producer: How has your sex education been? Do you think you've been taught enough?

Natasha : No. I think girls should be taught more about their period and stuff, not just that you're going to come to an age where you start your period and you're going to start leaking blood. They should be taught how to deal with it because sometimes they can be scared to tell their parents or carers, so they should be taught how to deal with it and not to be scared, that's what you should be taught. And I think boys should be taught more as well because obviously, I don't know, but boys have got their sexual problems and growing up problems as well so they should be – I think instead of just telling them what's going to happen you should teach them how to deal with it. And I think boys should be taught that when they start being rude about girls they should be taught…

McKayla: They should be taught what happens to girls.

Natasha : Exactly, just because they got their education off of PornHub, allow it. They should be taught because they break girls' confidence by saying things like 'oh you're not clean' but they should be taught about a girl and her bits. It's true though, I get bare triggered you know. I think boys should know an equal amount about girls and vice versa. We didn't even learn about pregnancy, we just learnt about periods and that you're going to grow breasts and that and you're going to get hair and go through puberty, that's literally what they said. I think they should be taught what a toxic relationship is. Say you're in a relationship and your partner's telling you you have to do it, teach them how to say no and signs of a toxic relationship where you're getting forced to do things. People should be taught about transgender or lesbians and gays and things about them as well. Say someone saw someone who was gay or lesbian straight away they're judging, but they should be taught about how they feel and what they go through. I think they should be taught from, not a young, young age but you know in year 6 when we did sex education all we learnt about was periods but I think you should be taught about contraception right from that age because you get kids that want to try things and especially when you see, say like a music video or things going on in the world right now, it's all to do with sex and drugs, they want to try those things, they should be taught about those things from young.

Voice Over: Sex talk. Starting a conversation about sex.

Adele: A couple of things there, so I mean first of all, Natasha for Prime Minister. Move over Theresa May. So what really stood out to me was the assumed knowledge that Lizzie was talking about, what Stuart said about that it all sounded very biological and mechanical and medicinal and there was definite lacking of the human element, so relationships was mentioned quite a lot as well.

Dr Stuart: I thought Natasha was so insightful because she covered like you said Adele so many things. The biological aspects that are really important, but also the relationships and the power in the relationship and the shaming that can happen, and I think a lot of that is learned behaviour that maybe comes from peers but definitely from accessing things online. Definitely porn, even movies, TV what we see when we're growing up, the way we relate to each other comes from that kind of learned behaviour, this is what you're supposed to do when you're an adult or what you're supposed to do when you're in a relationship.

Lizzie: We get lots of that around body confidence and the bodies they see and in porn what they see and actually what's normal or what's not normal, the variety in life.

Dr Stuart: What do you think Lizzie, in terms of having education in the school system, my concern is always that young people mature emotionally and physically at very different rates so saying we have our week of sex education when you're in the final year…

Lizzie: The issue with that is if somebody's ill that week then they've not had that week of education, so it's got to be built on and we've got to trust and respect that educators are, for one trained – starting from a place that they're actually competent and confident.

Hilary: Can I ask both of you did it surprise you hearing those young ladies say that they weren't even taught about pregnancy?

Dr Stuart: It doesn't surprise me because there's such huge variability in what young people are taught and find out about and what the schools offer. It's such a wide range really and there will be gaps. It's really disappointing that there's such a big area that isn't discussed with young women and with young men and I think one of the points that Natasha made that's so important is that everyone needs to have the education about everyone else so boys need to know about periods, everyone needs to know about transgender people and gender identity. There shouldn't be any gaps, this doesn't apply to you so you don't need to know about it, because in the future those people are adults who become ignorant of what other people in society are experiencing so everybody needs to know everything. I think knowledge is always a good thing.

Adele : Well the girls have got some questions so we'll be back in a bit… The body language changes. We'll warm you up though with some questions from me and Hilary if that's okay. In today's round of word porn!

Voice Over: Word porn.

Adele : Okay let me get my Wordsworth dictionary of sex and I think it should be lady's first.

Hilary: Indeed well Lizzie's never played this game before so…

Adele : Okay what's going to happen Lizzie is you're going to give me a letter, I'm going to flick through the pages of this great book and then I'm going to pick a word beginning with the letter that you give me and see if you can guess what it means.

Lizzie: I'm going to go for J.

Adele : Okay no problem. Okay then we have landed on J and the word is jizzum.

Hilary: I expect you to get this, that's so easy.

Lizzie: It is what I think it is, right?

Adele : What do you think of?

Lizzie: All the kids in my head going 'are you talking about spunk are you talking about cum?' What's the actual definition?

Adele : Actual definition is a slam term for semen.

Hilary: Dr Stuart obviously we're not going to leave you out so we're going to ask you to choose a letter also.

Dr Stuart: I'll pick the letter P.

**Hilary: ** Dr Stuart you're probably going to get this because you're a doctor – I've flicked over to P…. PDA.

Dr Stuart: PDA? Personal… I haven't heard that before – PDA?

Hilary: We might have a new definition here.

Lizzie: Do I just say it? Or…

Hilary: What is the A part?

Lizzie: Affection.

Hilary: Okay… Dr Stuart do you think you know it now?

Dr Stuart: No. I've got a huge gap haven't I, in my experience or knowledge or both.

Hilary: Lizzie do you want to give the…

Dr Stuart: Public display of affection ah got it… I suppose it could be sexy in the right circumstances.

Hilary: That's right a colloquial American abbreviation for public display of affection which may include necking and petting.

Dr Stuart: Or dogging?

Hilary: Indeed.

Voice Over: Sex talk. Word porn.

Hilary : We've already heard what 15-year olds Natasha and McKayla think needs to change when it comes to sex education. We're going to hand back over to them, and 14 year old Claire, who has lost her voice a little bit! They have some questions about sex they want to know the answer to. We'll play each one, and Dr Stuart and Lizzie, it's over to you to answer them!

Claire: How do you catch STIs?

Adele : How do you catch STIs. Dr Stuart do you want to take this one first?

Dr Stuart: Sure. So I think the quick answer is condomless sex for the most part, but there are some STIs that are transmitted even if you use condoms and that might be for example be herpes which is skin to skin contact, so even if you're using a condom there are some areas where the skin isn't protected by the condom. For the most part though if you use a condom that will reduce the risk of transmission of all the STIs considerably so yeah that's the main thing to think about really. And also your definition of what sex is may not be the STIs definition of sex so for example some STIs can be transmitted through oral sex, through blow jobs, so that can be things like chlamydia, gonorrhoea, syphilis. It's a good idea if you're thinking of becoming sexually active or you've got a new partner, starting new relationships for you both to have a check-up and then your risks can be assessed, you can have the right tests for you and both of you can find out if you need any treatment and get some support thinking about contraception or what you need going forward.

Natasha: Do condoms have expiry dates? If yes then does it stop working?

Adele : Do you want to go with this one Lizzie?

Lizzie: Yes, condoms do have expiry dates, they're all on the individual condom and also on the box. They are not worth using beyond their expiry date, just get rid of them, you can get them often free of charge from your local sexual health clinic. Often you can get them in school if you ask for them and always make sure they're within the expiry date, they're in good condition, they've not been tampered with and it's not been damaged, it's not worth the risk so make sure it's in date and it looks like it's in good condition.

Dr Stuart: Like Lizzie says they're so widely available, especially for young people they're free in so many places and it's really important to use condoms that are in date and safe.

McKayla: How do you know that you've got an STD?

Natasha: What are the symptoms?

Hilary: Well they said STD, it's actually STIs now isn't it.

Dr Stuart: It is STIs Hilary, you are learning.

Hilary: Thanks to you Dr Stuart. Do you want to take that one first?

Dr Stuart: Yeah so first of all to say that lots of STIs present without any symptoms so for example chlamydia which is one of the most common STIs in about 80% of women they'll have no symptoms until it's progressed and has been around for a long time but the common symptoms to look out for maybe pain when you pee, may be unusual discharge so that could be a vaginal discharge, penile discharge. You might see some sores or ulcers on the genital area. They are the main things to watch out for and they're the main things people will typically come and get a check-up for but it's a good idea to get a check-up even if you don't have symptoms if you've had any condomless sex or you've had a new relationship or a new partner recently.

Natasha : What is the most common STD?

Hilary: Lizzie do you know?

Lizzie: Chlamydia, and actually most people don't even know which is a real problem, so we try and get young people thinking about how do they prevent and how do they own their own sexual health. So we use the analogy of going to the dentist so you know if you eat sweets you're going to have to get your teeth checked out and that's your own responsibility to look after your teeth, often we don't think the same way about our sexual health and our genitalia but if we can get into the mind set of preventative work and going for a sexual health check-up before you enter into a relationship then we can pick up things that may not have symptoms, we may have no knowledge of but we're preventing transmission which is a great way to enter into any relationship is knowing what your score sheet is or however you want to call it. Get treated, get checked, and actually then you can enter into a new relationship in the best possible health.

Adele : I just want to check as well because people might be like chlamydia is the most prevalent, it's not just women who get it.

Dr Stuart: No anyone can acquire chlamydia.

Lizzie: STIs don't see gender.

Natasha: Can you get an STD if you're a lesbian or you're gay?

Adele : Great question, does anyone want to go first on that one?

Dr Stuart: Yeah well as Lizzie says STIs don't see genders, they also don't see sexuality so any person to person contact is a risk of transmission really. So yes women have sex with women should have check-ups, can get STIs, again bisexual men should get check-ups, transgender people should also get check-ups. Anybody who is sexually active or has ever been sexually active should think about a sexual health check-up.

McKayla: Are there any different types of contraception other than the most common?

Lizzie: There's so many. We have tool kits and I'm a great believer in show and tell, seeing all the different things that are out there. There are so many options and it's not that there is one option that's for one type of sex or there's one option for one person. Sometimes it can take somebody a little while to find what works for them and what they're happy with. It's not one size fits all and there are so many different things out there that it's great to book into a clinic and have that conversation with someone of what you get up to, what you want to get up to and work with a professional to see what the best fit is for your lifestyle.

Dr Stuart: The most common I think the implication is maybe the pill there, but actually probably very soon long acting reversal contraceptives like the implant and the coil will become even more popular than the pill. I think a lot of young women are choosing those because it suits their lifestyle, suits what their needs are and I think in terms of education it's so important as well that we educate young men and boys about contraception because they should be part of that conversation as well. Especially if you're in a heterosexual relationship then it's really important to be thinking about pregnancy and it's not one person's role to think about that - it's your job to deal with that, it should be everyone who's involved so it's really important for us to educate young men about that as well.

Claire: Can you fall pregnant when you first have sex?

Hilary: That's a classic.

Adele : I think I saw this in a film the other day, I can't remember which film it was but the young girl in the film didn't know the answer to this.

Hilary: This actually happened in my family. One of my uncle's said 'I only went there once!' My grandad said 'that's enough, you are responsible'.

Adele : So it happens to girls and boys.

Lizzie: And sadly that's not a surprising question, lots of people don't think it happens that way and actually it takes two to tango but it only takes one time and yeah. It amazes me how many young people that still surprises. And adults sometimes are still surprised by that.

Hilary: Can you get pregnant from pre-cum?

Dr Stuart: Yes. So anytime there's sperm that can meet egg, it only takes one sperm to meet one egg so there are sperm in there, thousands of them so there's a possibility one of them will hit an egg if it's around.

McKayla: Is it dangerous if you have sex on your period?

Adele: Dangerous is an interesting use of word.

Lizzie: It's interesting how fear and danger feed into so much sex education and that's kind of learned and we know there's actually lots of benefits to having sex on your period and actually there's lots of endorphins and pain relief and lots of different things that can be good so from a pleasure side no it's not dangerous. I don't know if you have anything to add from a medical side?

Dr Stuart: I mean unless you mean is it dangerous like you could become pregnant when you don't want to it depends on your cycle. It always possible if you have condomless sex that you could become pregnant so it really does depend on what your cycle is like. If it's a very short cycle then you're more likely to become pregnant than if you have a longer cycle but in terms of is it dangerous to your health per say, no absolutely not like Lizzie says.

Adele : Can we just reiterate just in case anyone's wondering what point in the cycle period's are at and what it means.

Dr Stuart: Yeah so we talk about most women on average having a 28 day cycle and that means the first day of the start of your period is day one, and usually for most women their period will last for five days. Then if a woman has a 28 day cycle she will ovulate on day 14 so she releases an egg on day 14. The egg stays alive for 24 hours and if there are sperm around at that time then she could conceive and become pregnant. Sperm can live for up to 7 days so if a woman has sex on let's say day 7 and the sperm is still alive on day 14 and she ovulates on day 14 she could become pregnant. Women's cycles can change with their mood and emotional state. Any other health issues can be extremely variable so a woman who normally ovulates on day 14 could maybe ovulate on day 12 or day 16 so it's so hard to predict and that's why for example using a pill or any other form of contraception gives you the peace of mind that you're extremely unlikely to become pregnant if you're using contraception regularly.

Claire: Can you be pregnant and still have a period at the beginning?

Dr Stuart: So my answer is yes it's possible. Most times when you become pregnant your periods stop but sometimes women who are pregnant can get a period or spotting, something they think is a period so the answer is yes. If you've had condomless sex and you think you might be pregnant, best thing is to do a pregnancy test at the right time to check.

Natasha: Can some STDs kill you?

Lizzie: I'm a walking talking story of that. We lost my partner because he died of an AIDs infection – we didn't know he was living with HIV so if they're left untreated and unchecked and you're not tested and treated, it is that serious, it can lead to death so yeah it's just not worth it – go get tested, have that conversation.

Voice Over: Sex talk.

Adele : Thank you guys that was brilliant, I really feel like that will help people because you know what we were saying before about assumed knowledge, a lot of the stuff you've covered you can't hear it too many times. So, we mentioned at the start of the episode that sex and relationship education guidelines will be updated by 2020. The government are currently consulting with young people, parents and experts about what changes need to be made. What do you both think needs to be included?

Lizzie: For me there's a couple of things. At the moment LGBT inclusion is seen as nice to have, or you could possibly do that, it's not good enough it needs to be in there and needs to be a given. We have the equality act and the law to back up why you have to truly be inclusive. From primary school seeing for example same sex parents through to sex acts that involve whatever genders, that's really important. The other thing for me that's so important is children need to learn this. It shouldn't be that parents can remove them from it, because as the guidance currently stands that's out for consultation, a parent can remove a child from sex education. How does a young person that's potentially been exposed to abuse recognise that that's abuse? If you don't know actually and you've not been taught where those boundaries are, what possibly verges on not being safe and what is abusive the cycle perpetuates, so actually for me it's important that young people are given the chance to learn and for me it doesn't mean that a parent should be able to remove them from that.

Hilary: A really good point, in terms of safe guarding.

Dr Stuart: I suppose from my point of view I'd just add about healthy relationships generally and the importance of consent because that's been something that we've been thinking a lot about in the last 18 months, just, and it's something that needs to start with young people I think because they are going to be the adults of the future of the next 10, 20 years and I think it's really important we make a massive impact at this point when we've got this opportunity to say a healthy relationship is one that is completely consensual with all parties involved.

Hilary: For people that are listening to this, especially those who work with young people, what would you like to say?

Lizzie: I think grab the opportunity to feed into the consultation. It's open till the 7th of November and we know we've got young people here who are older than the guidance and that's just never right, so if this guidance is going to be around and set the tone for the next 20 years we need to get it right, so it's our opportunity to feed into it. Go online – you don't have to answer all the questions, just feed into the ones that are important to you and there's some great examples for example on Stonewall and the sex education forum where you can go to and they'll show you what they feel is important and you can feed that into your response.

Hilary: Can I ask in terms of the ongoing consultation, can young people feed into that as well or?

Lizzie: Yes there's two different versions and one is for young people to feed into.

Adele : If you go to sextalk.radio you can see how you can feed into the consultation and any young people who are listening who maybe have more questions, what advice do you have for them please?

Lizzie: This is where you've got such disparity depending on where young people are.

Dr Stuart: I think ask your teachers for good sexual health education because it will only happen if you really make your voice heard.

Lizzie: If you can go to the head teacher and the governors that's where you need to start. Go to the top and demand that because you deserve it.

Hilary: Maybe hashtag start something – twitter hashtag, like the Me Too campaign.

Adele : This is why it's so important though because the only time you both have been speechless today is on that point, there isn't any help for these young people. Unfortunately we're out of time on this edition of Sex Talk, but we just want to say a massive thank you to you guys, Dr Stuart and Lizzie

Dr Stuart: Thank you!

Hilary : We'd also like to say a massive thank you to Natasha, McKayla and Claire, you were absolutely brilliant so thank you for your questions and for letting us know what you think needs to change.

Adele : Unfortunately that's all we've got time for on this edition of Sex Talk

Hilary: If you have been affected by any of the issues raised in this episode of Sex Talk, you can contact your GP. They should provide out of hours contact details for emergency calls.

Adele : Brook are an amazing sexual health charity for under 25's. You can find out loads of information, including where your nearest sexual health service is by visiting their website,www.brook.org.uk/

Adele : And if you're concerned about HIV - Positively UK - can offer advice. Their national helpline is open Monday to Friday 10am-4pm on 020 7713 0444 and you can visit their website positivelyuk.org

Hilary : Don't forget to subscribe to our podcast to keep up to date with the latest episodes, and follow us on Twitter, we're @sextalkradiouk

Adele : You can join in the conversation using #SexTalkPod

Hilary : In the next episode of Sex Talk we're talking about women and HIV, and we'll be joined in the studio by a really inspiring woman living with HIV, Sophie Strachan, and specialist in HIV care for women, Dr Laura Byrne.

Hilary : Until next time stay safe

Adele : And keep talking

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