Dear Wise Woman,

Tonight I watched those puberty videos you told me about. First I was only going to watch one and see how it was, but it was so interesting I ended up watching all eight of them.

It was kind of embarrassing that they showed real people’s bodies. And she actually touched some guy’s penis and some girl’s breast and stood next to a girl whose menstrual blood ran down her leg, and I don’t see how those people could just show their bodies like that! But even though it was embarrassing, and I’m so glad I didn’t watch it with other kids from my school, the truth is it was good to see what things really look like. Because otherwise you always think your own body must be weird, if you don’t know all the different ways bodies can look.

#sexed #puberty #lovemybod

Isn’t it interesting that the videos come from Norway, not from the U.S.? Do you think that maybe in Norway most people aren’t as embarrassed about their naked bodies? I was thinking that if that’s true, then maybe being ashamed of our bodies isn’t necessarily something natural. It is more like something cultural. And if it’s cultural, I mean culture is important, but it’s also changeable.

In the last video she showed how the penis goes inside the vagina when people have sex. (I can’t even believe I am writing about this. Don’t show it to anyone!) And she said it can be painful if the woman’s vagina isn’t wet or something like that. And I never heard that before, and I was just wondering how that happens. Does it always happen and what if it doesn’t? Then does it hurt a lot? Sometimes people act like sex is more fun for men than for women, or you read something like that in a book, and is that why? You don’t have to answer if it’s too embarrassing.

Also is French kissing really like moving your tongue around inside a tomato? That is so weird! I want to try that but I don’t want my family to know.

I think this whole topic is super embarrassing or at least it is for most people. Although the woman in the video or actually all the people in the video acted like it was just a pretty normal thing. I wish more people could talk about it like that. I wish I could talk about it like that. I’m glad you showed me those videos, and I’m glad you said we could talk about bodies and sex, and I’m glad they made those videos in Norway but put English subtitles on them.

Later I will read that webpage you told me about. And you can come back to my room and talk to me about this some more. Because my parents and my school and my society obviously do not know how to teach me about this in an un-embarrassing way, but it seems to me like something normal we should all learn about.

See you later and thanks so much,

12-year-old Q