Am I Teaching Sex Education Now? And The Positive Experiment

It was bound to happen.

I just didn’t think it’d happen sooner.

My knees are all literally rubbery today from standing up and pacing around from 10am-6pm in class today. But still some unexpected things happened that allowed me momentarily to forget my burgeoning fatigue.

“Kate, what’s a virgin?”

“What does ‘gay’ mean?”

“Kate, I don’t understand why saying “I play with myself a lot” is a bad sentence to say to foreigners.”

“Kate, what’s SEX? And why do a lot of people laugh when I say it?”

Background song: Let me tell you about the birds and the bees…..

Honestly, I thought that most 18 year olds would be more worldly. Apparently, not the Chinese. I don’t have children and here I am initiating these adults (whose parents should have explained to them) into a world they should’ve known. I bet if I had asked them what’s round, juicy, hairy and full of white liquid, they’d have answered, “Coconut.”

I’m not teaching a SEX ED COURSE HERE! If you don’t know what FUCK is, then SHUT THE FUCK UP!

All said in a truly positive manner, of course with a bright wide smile.

And I’m not being sarcastic.

Background theme: The Twilight Zone.

I used to love teasing students this way minus the cussing. Warped? Demented? Nah, it’s just me.

“Kate, a handjob means a job you do with your hands right?”

Inner Kate snorts. The outer Kate arranges her face to a straight serious mask but her upper lip is twitching. “Why yes, Wilson. Uh, it’s hard to give an example.”

“Oh you mean like carpentry?”

Sometimes I love my job.


I’m on my second day on my trial run of the 7 days of positive thinking experiment. It’s not as hard as yesterday but the serpentine voice has become dangerous, persistent and seductive. Its whisper gnaws and becomes stronger and stronger under the thick blanket of positivity I cloaked around it. It’s sabotaging my efforts to think positively about that short story I sent to the editor yesterday which by the way, the said editor wanted to see.

I don’t want to set myself up for failure when I have just started.

But it’s so hard to silence that traitorous voice.

It’s always been my pet peeve of students whispering when I’m having a lecture. This happened today and I let myself slip and got slightly pissed off. I totally forgot about the positive experiment for a minute. I realized I could have just ‘gotten curious’ as what Tony Robbins would say and just asked why was she talking? Was she asking a question about the lecture? Was she answering her classmate’s inquiries on the homework? It could have been pretty useful and harmless for all I know.

Look on the bright side. Do not assume THE WORST because it’s just an assumption. To paraphrase Tim Ferris‘ quote, as long as an assumption is not tested it’s not fact.

Speaking of looking at the bright side, it’s great that I’m just having a trial run now and see how it goes before I totally commit to it. I’m toying with the idea of making the 7 days of Positive Thinking a group experiment if anybody is willing to join in and blog about their experience on doing it. If anything, it’s a chance to undergo one week, just one week of living life out of your comfort zone, the chance to try out a whole new mindset, and live life out of the box.

And I often ask myself this whenever I try out any new endeavor,

What have you got to lose?

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    6 thoughts on “Am I Teaching Sex Education Now? And The Positive Experiment

    1. Amanda says:

      Agreed, it definitely takes years but eventually there is nothing a student can say that makes you look surprised (but of course I still am, inside). It just takes a mis-pronounced consonant here and a misinterpretation there and the most innocent students can say the wildest things! But that’s half the fun.

    2. ksyu says:

      Oh, I agree. Most definitely! It’s the innocent look that gives it most of the fun. The other day I had to restrain my other worldly Hong Kong students from laughing when one of them commented that they’d really like to know what one of them was doing the other night at bed and nobody, nobody from Mainland China even nodded or blinked with the dawn of comprehension.

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