Children to be given 'explicit' guide to joy of sex

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The Independent Online

An explicit "good grope guide" telling children how to have their first sexual encounters is being aimed at 14-year-olds. The booklet, published today by the Brook Advisory Centre, describes and shows how to get pleasure from sex.

An explicit "good grope guide" telling children how to have their first sexual encounters is being aimed at 14-year-olds. The booklet, published today by the Brook Advisory Centre, describes and shows how to get pleasure from sex.

Headteachers warned that the guide could encourage pupils to have underage sex. They said it could be seen as "titillation" and would raise objections from parents.

The 18-page guide, Say Yes, Say No, Say Maybe has sections such as "What's it like when you do it", including graphic descriptions of what happens during sex and cartoons showing the teenage fumbling that accompanies a first kiss.

The guide describes "all that touching and nibbling, sucking and rubbing" that turns sex from a "wham-bam thank-you ma'am bore into the fireworks that leave you feeling wonderful and your partner thinking you are the best thing since sliced bread".

It describes how teenagers can have fun without having full sex and insists that "the in-and-out of penis in vagina is just a small part of the pleasure of making love". The guide advises: "By the time you settle down for a good grope, he's already half-excited. If he doesn't take the trouble to find out what sort of touches she would like she is usually left high and dry and gets nothing from the experience."

But it does warn: "Your partner may really light your fire but you may still be happy not 'going the whole way' now or ever." A cartoon has a character called "Johnny Put It About" with a "macho bulge" in his trousers. That has a caption saying: "Knowing how to make love isn't something you are born with. You and everyone else have to learn."

Young people are urged to "slow down and spend some time on sexplay before or instead of getting straight on to full sex. Fooling around can be just as much fun."

There are lessons on howto use a condom, and a suggestion to "buy one of the coloured condoms and make like it's a party".

The guide describes how to tell whether someone else is interested in a relationship or sex. It says: "Does he fancy me? Will she laugh at me if I speak to her? How do I show I am interested? These are the questions we all ask.

"So, how do you make the first moves and how do you tell if the boy or girl you're struck on wants to get to know you too."

The final message is that young people should protect themselves if they decide to have sex, but that they should feel under no pressure to have sex if they do not feel ready.

Margaret Griffin, chairman of the Secondary Heads Association, said: "The age of consent is still 16 and if they send this out to schools and if they want to use this with 14 to 16-year-olds that would present difficulties. I don't think we would deal with issues of titillation. All the rest of the sex education deals with HIV, sexually transmitted diseases, birth control and other issues."

Kay Driver, general secretary of the Professional Association of Teachers, said: "Brook Centres are valuable because young people can drop in. But I don't think in schools people will be keen to hand this out to everybody because children vary in maturity."

Juliet Hillier, a spokeswoman for Brook, said: "Young people often find it difficult to ask direct questions about sex and adults often find them difficult to answer frankly.

"This booklet offers straightforward advice and information to young people and will enable them to make positive and safe choices about sex."

In Scotland, another argument over sex has broken out. Campaigners against the abolition of Section 28, which forbids local authorities from promoting homosexuality, are angry at the launch of a new edition of an American book called Heather has Two Mommies, which features the daughter of a lesbian couple.

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