Transgender young people’s narratives of intimacy and sexual health: Implications for sexuality education
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Sexuality education as pedagogy is often fraught by the perceived need to balance the informational needs of young people with an investment in notions of childhood innocence. Nowhere is this perhaps more evident than in sexuality education that seeks to be inclusive of transgender young people, often resulting in the failure of such education to address the needs of such students. In an attempt at addressing the relative dearth of information about what transgender young people would like to see covered in sexuality education, in this article we explore transgender young people’s accounts of intimacy and sexual health and consider what this means for school-based sexuality education. To do this we analyse discussions of intimacy from the perspectives of transgender young people as narrated in a sample of YouTube videos. We conclude by advocating for an approach to sexuality education that largely eschews the gendering of body parts and gametes, and which instead focuses on function, so as to not only address the needs of transgender young people (who may find normative discussions of genitals distressing), but to also provide cisgender young people with a more inclusive understanding of their own and other people’s bodies and desires.
“This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in the journal of Sex Education on 19 July 2017, available online: https://doi.org/10.1080/14681811.2017.1355299” This manuscript version is made available under the CC-BY-NC-ND 4.0 license http:// creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/ which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. This author accepted manuscript is made available following 18 month embargo from date of publication (July 2017) in accordance with the publisher’s archiving policy