Survey: Adolescents Get Sex Ed Mainly from Web, Friends

August 6, 2018
Editor: Liu Xiaochen

The main channels for adolescents in China to acquire sexual knowledge are their peers and the internet nowadays, since many parents are reluctant to discuss the topic with their kids, according to the latest statistics.

The Survey of Adolescent Sexual Health in First-tier Cities was jointly conducted by the Research Group of the Institute of Sociology of Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences; the Children's Research Institute of China Youth Research Center; and, the Guangzhou, Hong Kong and Macao Adolescent Institute.

Organizers questioned a total of 5,338 adolescents aged from 15 to 24 for the poll, including 1,486 junior school students, 1,716 high school students, and 2,136 college students.

Some 26.1 percent said they acquire sexual knowledge from friends or classmates, and 9.5 percent said they get sexual knowledge through school curriculums.

Meanwhile, 14.9 percent said they acquire sexual knowledge from their parents, and 12.1 percent said they get access through websites and social media.

The survey also indicates that most parents can positively face their children's sexual problems, but with different attitudes.

Some 59.1 percent of parents said they answer their children's sex-related questions completely and positively, and 63.6 percent said they answer their questions partially.

Meanwhile, some 34.8 percent of parents said they avoid to answer their kids' sex-related questions, and 6.2 percent of fathers and 6.1 percent of mothers don’t know how to answer them properly.

In addition, statistics indicate that parents with only one child and those who are highly educated are more active in dealing with children's sexual problems.

Meanwhile, positive sexual attitudes have gradually occupied the mainstream among adolescents, according to statistics.

More than 58 percent of adolescents said they consider sex to be happy and beautiful, and 64.3 percent of youth said they think sex is a kind of responsibility.

However, the survey also indicates that the acceptance of pre-marital sexual behavior among adolescents has increased significantly.

Specifically, the proportion of acceptance among male students is higher than that of female students. Meanwhile, adolescents, especially young women, have become more tolerant towards teen pregnancies.

Experts from the Shanghai Academy of Social Sciences research group said: "Amid the background of a growing openness among adolescents' sexual attitudes, issues such as irregular access to sex education and inadequate systematic teaching need to be taken seriously by all parties."

(Source: Xinhua/Translated and edited by Women of China)

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