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“Shhh! There Are Children Present.”


“Shhh! There Are Children Present.”

A funny thing happened at yoga.

I’ve been taking Marcia (9) and Cindy (7) to yoga with me.  I agree with author Peggy Orenstein that it’s a wonderful practice for young girls.  My daughters seem to like it and the other participants seem to enjoy the youth factor and aren’t the least bit curmudgeonly… or so I thought.

Yesterday, the intention from the instructor was for fathers since this is Father’s Day weekend.  She talked about fathers and their roles and the love of a father etc etc.  I was in my own head at the time, but when we were warming up our spines in cat stretch pose she mused that the very first father cat knocked up the mother cat many years ago.  An older woman admonished the instructor out loud that there were children present.  The instructor was a bit confused, she must not have realized what she could have said in that moment that could have been offensive because she said “I’m sorry?” and the woman repeated “there are children present”.  As it was, neither of my girls heard the instructor’s comment and now wanted me to tell them what just happened.  I leaned over to Cindy and told her, “that woman didn’t want the instructor to say that the father cat knocked up the mother cat because you guys are here. Knocked up is another way to say got pregnant”.  Cindy, now
in downward facing dog pose, just slowly shook her head in mild amusement.  The instructor giggled after she saw me lean over to Cindy and asked incredulously, “Did you just tell her?!” Trying to regain the peace in the room quickly, I simply nodded yes.

This situation really amazed me.  Such an innocent comment WHICH NEITHER CHILD HEARD prompted someone to pierce the peace and serenity of the group with such sex negativity.  Even if they had heard the comment, my girls didn’t know what the term “knocked up” meant yet.  It was an adult projecting their own sex-obsessed thinking onto what children should or shouldn’t know.

Just think how much work we would have to do every minute of every day if we worked to censor everything that has a sexual meaning or connotation.  I can’t imagine that.  I think it’s best to talk about it and make it all a non-issue.  Sex is there.  Everywhere.  It’s present at the grocery store at the checkout aisle in the magazines.  It’s on TV in the ads during the sporting events they watch with dad.  It’s in the way teenagers dress (namely teenage girls) when we pass them on the way to school in the morning.  Plus, what would be accomplished by censoring?

A wise colleague, Paul Johannides, who authored the book The Guide to Getting it On, recently wrote that sex education has evolved into sex prevention.  As parents and adults who deal with children and their little persona’s and who want our children to grow up into sexually healthy adults, sex PREVENTION is not the route we should be going. Can anyone argue with that?

This article has been republished with permission from Lanae St.John. Please visit Lanae St.John’s website  to view the original post and more of Lanae’s works.

Images courtesy of Shutterstock.

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Lanae St.John

Lanae St.John is a San Francisco Bay Area based Sexy Mamas Blogger, BoardCertified Sexologist, and Sex Educator. Her work with clients normalizes conversations about sexuality between parents and children, while helping adults to discover a more sexually positive outlook. By teaching parents to nurture the budding sexuality of their children in ways that foster self-respect and acceptance for the totality of their personhood, she helps them raise children who become empowered, beautiful, strong, sexually healthy adults. Lanae also coaches couples and individuals on their sexual questions and concerns, helping them to optimize their sexual experiences and achieve healthy adult sexuality via a sex-positive approach to sexual education. Lanae received her Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a certificate in Women’s Studies from the University of Wisconsin- Madison in 1991. She completed the Associate in Sex Education and Clinical Sexology before going on to receive her Masters in Human Sexuality in 2011 from the Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality. Currently, she is a Ph.D. candidate studying Human Sexuality. Ms St.John is a contributing sexpert on the sex education site What They Are She is also co-founder for the site, a site that seeks to empower women to discover and enjoy their own sexuality. She is a Sex & Relationship Panelist for the popular site and is also an expert on, a website combining sex educators and medical professionals together to talk about the female orgasm. Her blog, “The MamaSutra®” on Good Vibrations’ website, was voted into the Top 25 SF Bay Area Mom Blogs in 2011 and she was listed #1 in the 30 Must-”Like” Sex-Positive Facebook Pages. Lanae also co-hosted Season 1 of a show called Sexxx Talk Radio on the Progressive Radio Network – the podcast can be found on iTunes. As The MamaSutra®, Lanae has been featured as a sex-positive parenting expert in SSEX BBOX – a web series documentary featuring people and experts from four cities around the world. Lanae is also featured in the not-yet released feature length documentary “Revolutionary Sex” (working title) by NuReality Productions. In March 2013, Lanae was part of a contingent of Sexologists to travel to China. She lectured on Childhood Sexuality: Fostering Growth Into Sexually Healthy Adults to the Chinese Sexology Association and was asked to submit her paper to The Chinese Journal of Human Sexuality. Coming soon, Ms. St.John can also be found as one of the Expert Faculty of Sex Coach U and as one of Dr. Ava Cadell’s “Love Coach All Stars”. A Board Certified Sexologist (American College of Sexologists, A.C.S.), Lanae is also a member of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (S.S.S.S), The American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (A.A.S.E.C.T.) and the International Society for the Study of Women’s Sexual Health (I.S.S.W.S.H.) Lanae is the proud mother of two daughters with whom she actively embodies her message of empowerment, freedom of expression, and a sex- and body-positive mentality.

Get in touch with Lanae via email at


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