Growing Up in a Sex-Positive Household

Once when I was in middle school, my parents came home from a bar, slightly tipsy, and my mom sat on my bed to chat with me. I don’t remember much of the conversation, but I know one of the last things she said (before I promptly kicked her out and hid under my comforter) was, “Sex is a beautiful thing.”

This wasn’t an uncommon occurrence in my house, as my mom, a blunt woman who had no problem speaking her mind, often dropped little nuggets of wisdom like that. She explained to me that she wanted to make sure I didn’t feel the same way she did as a teenager: afraid and ashamed of sex…