MANILA, Philippines - Are senators opposing the reproductive health (RH) bill shy about people discussing orgasms and sex positions?
Senator Pia Cayetano on Tuesday said she has had arguments with her colleagues who don't want youths to learn about sex in their studies.
Cayetano, a proponent of the RH bill, told ANC Headstart that her own teen daughters are already debating with their friends about sexuality.
"These kids know so much, grade five dapat! Because they know, these kids know," she said.
"And then I also had to have these arguments with my colleagues who say, 'Hindi, hindi dapat turuan yan!' [And I was] Did you freakin' ever check the Internet and check what's on there?" she asked.
"Did you even open a glossy magazine, and see how they talk about orgasms? Talk about different positions, how you can have sex, to make it more exciting? What kind of sex you can have in the car?" she added.
"I mean, and you don't want to talk about this in an academic and a scientific way? I mean you know it boggles my mind," Cayetano said.
She believes that some Filipinos hesitate to discuss sex because of culture.
"I think it's because as a people, as children, we grew up and it's a cultural thing that we need to now break. Parang nahihiya tayo, we're in denial that people have sex. We're in denial," she said.
"I mean how many people you know can call their body parts by the proper name? When I even talk about, when the term 'masturbation' was taken up in the Senate, and abortion, parang sabi ko, parang no one even wants to talk about it, like it doesn't exist," she added.
"But you know these are things that happen, that people know about, pero parang doble-kara tayo. Like maybe the girls, the girl-friends will talk about it, pero in front of other people, biased ka," she said.
Cayetano clarified her version of the RH bill does not set the age on when youths must learn and discuss sex and gender issues.
"My bill is silent. Because I really want to leave this to the educators," she said. "I have never believed that kaming mga senators have to impose our will, our personal choices, on the experts."
Cayetano also said women must take the lead in discussing issues concerning their sexual health.
"That is why it is very annoying and very insulting to me, as a woman, that men who do not understand a woman's body, can even begin to dictate what is 'medicine' for us, or what our body needs," she said.
"Gender issue 'to. Who are you to tell me what my body needs? Babae lang nakakaintindi nun," she said.