How A Baby Is Made: How Sex Education Was Taught In The 1970s

How A Baby Is Made: How Sex Education Was Taught In The 1970s

While it’s a very important issue, many parents feel anxious when it comes to educating their kids about sex.

Some parents feel embarrassed talking about it, and others simply just don’t know how to start the conversation.

Should you go with the ‘birds and the bees’, or is ‘the flower’ a better analogy?

Of course, now we know the better informed young people are about sex, the better able they are to make good choices.

Parents are now advised to teach their children the correct words for the human anatomy, even from a young age.

Discussions about sex should be honest, open and age appropriate. Sex education shouldn’t be just a conversation, it should be an ongoing dialogue. You should always try to honestly answer any questions your child has about anything to do with sex and relationships.

How A Baby Is Made – 1970’s Sex Ed

In the 1970s, however, sex education wasn’t quite so forward. Many parents relied on books to educate their children about sex. One of these books. How A Baby Is Made, was pretty creepy and has recently done the rounds on social media after illustrations from the book were shared online.

The book published in 1975 was designed to educate young children about where babies come from, allowing parents to sidestep any potentially awkward questions. The illustrations in the book are a little terrifying, and were shared online with the hashtag #traumatised, and it’s not hard to see why. The illustrations are typically 70s, with big beards and colourful striped clothes.

Things start off well, with a brief description of love and an illustration of a happy clothed couple with their arms around each other.

How A Baby Is Made: How Sex Education Was Taught In The 1970s

On the next page, however, things take a turn. The couple are suddenly naked, and remain that way for most of the book. Readers are then shown the couple in what can only be described as a very starey sex session, complete with internal diagrams.

How A Baby Is Made: How Sex Education Was Taught In The 1970s

One particularly creepy page features an illustration of a baby being born. The mother is lying on a bed with her legs open, and between her legs we can see the smiley face of her wide-eyed emerging baby as he makes his entrance into the world. You know, because babies always smile their way right out of the birth canal, whilst peering intensely at the new surroundings.

How A Baby Is Made: How Sex Education Was Taught In The 1970s

You can pick up a copy of How A Baby Is Made for a bargain price of $100 here, or if you’d prefer a more affordable, modern approach to sex education, BellyBelly recommends It’s Not The Stork, aimed at children aged 4-8.

Recommended Reading

Check out BellyBelly’s article 9 Types Of Sex You’ll Have While Trying To Conceive

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Fiona Peacock is a writer, researcher and lover of all things to do with pregnancy, birth and motherhood (apart from the lack of sleep). She is a home birth advocate, passionate about gentle parenting and is also really tired.

One comment

  1. I do not know what age this is aimed for, but I do not agree at all that it is creepy. I remember the days of the vague information sex books of the 60’s and 70’s that left so many unanswered questions that the only way to get them answered was through experimentation. I consider this entirely appropriate for kids as soon as they are asking the question for which these illustrations provide answers. Not creepy to educate your kids. Creepy to leave it to the willing demonstration of predatory types. Could we please get grown up and not repressive ourselves.


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