“Miss are you pregnant?” (unfortunately occasionally I have had to snarl back “no I’m just fat”- disclaimer -there were pies and water retention involved)
But occasionally (not that often -mind!) I get to respond with a smile “why yes, yes I am”.
Then you see their brains whirr. They want to ask more questions but they also know you are quite strict about your ground rules and the no personal questions, and then the penny drops. ….
……it dawns on them- THERE IS UNDENIABLE EVIDENCE YOU HAVE HAD SEX. LIKE AT LEAST ONCE. EWWWWWWW (technically I reserve the right to maintain I may not have had sex. This bump may be an immaculate conception or IVF you know? Or I may lie about the pies because its too early to tell the general populace about the bean)
The students are desperate to know more- (not about the getting pregnant part- hopefully I have taught them enough about that already and they appreciate that its personal) but they want to know about how it feels, what its like, what’s going on at each stage and what the baby looks like and so on. They may even want to know about the birth and life with a newborn.
And suddenly I become a perfect teaching resource. I am my own guest speaker. I am a visual aid, the kicking bump is kinaesthetic learning at its best, me wittering on for the auditory learners. Brill!
…what about my ground rules….
….the no personal stories or experiences?….
…surely I musn’t break that?
I ponder and then I negotiate this arrangement with the class- Personally I am happy to talk about my pregnancy and answer any questions they may have. If they ask any question I am uncomfortable with I won’t answer it and will let them know that I find that question too personal. The class are more than happy with this and our class boundaries are maintained. In the event they never did ask a question I felt crossed the boundary and was too personal.
I am also keen to reinforce that this is MY experience that I am sharing to help them learn about pregnancy but it isn’t necessarily going to be the same for everyone, as everyone is different (and some are lucky not enough not to puke their guts up for the first 17weeks like me whereas others more unfortunate may be sick all the way through!).
It was a fascinating experience being my very own teaching resource but am not dedicated enough to do it on a regular basis for my classes! Hehe. Any other pregnant sex educators got stories to share?
P.S. I haven’t yet taught a lesson about childbirth or abortion since being pregnant/having a baby and I think that will be an interesting challenge for me as an educator- after all your personal experiences do colour the way you impart information and its important to be mindful of that so you remain an unbiased evidenced based source of information as much as possibly (although I still inappropriately joke that I can single-handedly sort my borough’s teenage pregnancy issue out simply by telling them my horrific birth story!)