By GRACE STRATTON.

When I was a kid and I wanted to do something that my friend was doing, my mum would say to me: “If she/he jumped off a bridge, would you?”

I would stop and think, because maybe in one world or another I would jump off a bridge… perhaps in Queenstown?

My mum asked, “would you jump off a bridge?” because she thought I wouldn’t, because it seems so far out of this world. The truth is, it probably is out of this world. I am not much of a bridge-jumper.

But it is still possible and just as jumping off a bridge is possible for me in life, so too is it 100% possible that I will end up doing things, just because my friends are or because I am believing a false truth.

Even though it is 100% possible for me to blindly follow my friends’ leads and believe a false truth, I can beat the possibility. I do not have to do those things, because it is my choice what I do and what I believe.

It is our choice. One day we might want to go to Queenstown. I believe that the only way we make our own choices instead of following and believing what is false, is by talking to one another, sharing opinions and creating a space for truth. It’s no good jumping off that bridge if you don’t know what it means for you.

So now get ready, because we’re going to talk about sex. I am not qualified to talk to you about the ‘ins and outs’, so if you want to know those, there are places and organisations to help you with that. Ask an adult you trust, but maybe don’t go straight to Google. If you get anything out of this post, get the idea that your worth as a person is priceless and that sex is something that has to honour that.

You are worthy. When someone says that to you, you might scoff it off or question what it means, but put it this way: If you trample on a $20 note, if you put it in mud or scrunch it up, it doesn’t matter, because it is still $20. Your worth stays the same no matter what you do. At the end of the day, the way you live your life is your choice, but remember you are priceless.

No person ever has the right to make you question your worth or put you in a situation that is less than what you deserve. The moment someone does, you need to stand up for yourself; you need to know your worth first.

I am telling you that you are worth more than I could ever describe. So before sex is even discussed between you and your significant other, you need to make sure you both know that you are worthy and that sex is not something to be discarded; it is something that matters, just as you matter.

As you grow up, more and more of your actions involve your choice until eventually we’re all adults paying taxes, knitting in our free time and thinking about bank suffixes (I think that’s what adults do).

As you become an adult and begin to make more choices, such as choices that are about things like sex, you have to decide what you stand for, what your morals are and what you believe so you can make informed choices.

Katy Perry once said: “I stood for nothing, so I fell for everything.” As long as you stand for something and understand your morals and values, then all the choices you make will be made in strength, without false truth and the influence of other people. This is the most important thing to remember when we talk about adult subjects, whether it be sex or taxes.

Again, I can’t tell you the ins and outs but if you remember anything, remember your value and that you need to stand for something.

A friend of mine found it hilarious I was writing this. He said he’d have no idea where to start and he’s in university. In one way or another, when it comes to sex, we all are a little lost but we can take the jump and talk about it. Queenstown’s pretty great.

Oh and an organisation you can ask about the ins and outs of sex? Try Family Planning. If you just want someone to talk to, we recommend Youthline.

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