Why Education And Guidance With Respect To Sex Matters Are Necessary
( Originally Published 1923 )
The Results in Adult Life of Early Neglect or Misguidance.—We develop plans for avoiding troubles of all kinds only after we have experienced, or at least witnessed, suffering and disaster that might have been avoided. It is through generations of physical, spiritual, and social agony and calamity that we have at last come to ask ourselves what we may do today to prevent the repetition of similar miseries tomorrow.
For many years it has become increasingly evident that with vast numbers of men and women the sex life is far from wholesome. The failure of so many marriages, one out of every nine or ten ending in divorce, and many of the others simply hiding their failure, indicates at least that young people have not been adequately prepared for married life or for the selection of a mate. Another lack in the education of youth is indicated by the fact that so many of the men and women one meets every day have one or another extreme attitude toward sex—that is, some are over delicate, regarding the whole subject as beastly, vile, or indecent; while others are actually beastly, and wallow in sex. Finally, a lack of suitable guidance and training is shown by the large amount of sexual perversion, by the large amount of nervous disorder due to certain types of anxieties and worries, by the wide extent and far-reaching influence of prostitution, and by the wide distribution of the venereal diseases, with all of their by-products of blindness, sterility, insanity, paralysis, and defectiveness.