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Conversations About Sex

Conversations about sex are a paradox, particularly when we look back to our teenage years. On one hand, for so many of us, sex was the dominant thing we thought about. We imagined. We speculated. We strived toward it. And, yes, we talked about it—with friends, with ourselves, maybe a sibling. Sex is, simultaneously, the most horrifying topic to talk about. When it came to talking to parents, for example--the parties society has anointed as the most appropriate purveyors of knowledge about the birds and the bees, despite no parent I know of really being prepared for such conversations--the topic of sex is impossible. To talk about sex means revealing that you have thought about sex and, in so doing, probing crushes and hitherto-unspoken-of experiences and masturbation and insecurities and a laundry list of other topics you have no interest in sharing with someone you’ve desperately been keeping secrets from, and yet simultaneously seek the approval of. And all of that doesn’t begin

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