Sex and Contraception: A DESI Shame

It’s a cold Monday morning. The GP’s office is dark, grey, damp.

There is an awkward silence whilst the Dr (usually a man – fabulous I know) slaps his keyboard violently.

The sound echoes through the confined office.

You question if you should make small talk… “Um-…”

Abruptly he says, “Right… Miss… So, clears his throat… Are you sexually active?”

Your cheeks immediately flood with colour, and your palms begin to sweat.

Irrational thoughts come to your mind like, Will he tell my mum?

SILENCE…
Yep, she is gonna kill me

If you have grown up in a traditional household, then you are well aware that the topic of sex and contraception is not discussed, but why is that?

Despite living in a somewhat progressive society, there is still so much stigma surrounding sex. In particular attitudes towards sex and the use of contraception by women themselves.

In the Desi community, before marriage; a woman having sex holds negative connotations of impurity and degradation. However, after marriage, sex is almost celebrated as providing life and grandchildren.

Desi women are expected by their families to remain completely oblivious to this topic until they are married.

If young women are not educated on sex and contraception, they will not understand how sex should be safe, healthy and enjoyable.
This can also cause impressionable young women to find answers from negative and unhealthy sources.
Therefore, we must unify and fight against this hypocritical stigma. It is healthy to be curious and want to learn about sex. You should not suppress your sexuality out of embarrassment or fear.

Over 1.9 million women in England contacted NHS sexual and reproductive health services for contraceptive reasons in 2020/21.

Moreover, in 2018, the birth control pill was the most common method of contraception for women aged between 15 and 49 years, with 28% using it as their main method.

Contraceptive use among women in England by type and age 2020/21 | Statista

You should ask questions and seek advice from people you trust like your GP (trust me, they will not tell your parents!!), online organisations, friends and even school.
All young women and men must be educated on contraceptives and sexual health.
There are numerous contraceptives available and countless resources to educate you on where you can access them.

Sex should not be something to be ashamed of, and you should enjoy it without ignorant societal pressures weighing you down.

It is your body and your choice.

As long as you feel safe, secure and comfortable then do whatever makes you happy!


Here are some helpful resources for further information:

Written by Guest Blogger:
Harpal Kaur

Day Dreaming and Writing

britishbindi

An Award-Nominated blog which discusses what it's like to be a contemporary British Asian Woman.

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