Saving sex for sexual health
Anisa Nasir argues for doctors to suggest abstinence as a solution to unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections
Sexual health is the topic of our times. It is a subject of amusement, fear, embarrassment, and complexity. From diagnosing the common sexually transmitted infections that blight fertility to the global epidemic of AIDS; from the young age of first sexual encounter to the near total disappearance of lifelong monogamy; and from the increasingly accepted practice of safe abortion to the high rate of teenage pregnancy: not a month goes by when sexual health is not widespread in the popular and medical media.
The West is a sexualised society—our literature thrives on sex, as does our comedy, art, music, film, and fashion—covering audiences from children to grandparents. Sadly, it is not sexual health in the spotlight, but sexual ill health. This article explores some problems in sexual health and presents a rarely considered potential solution—abstinence.
At first glance, contraception and barrier protection seem perfect counters to all the problems of