July 14, 2011


Indian Express

Experiments in sex shocks teachers

KOCHI: Giving an indication that all is not well with the teenagers in the state, the adolescent clinics set up by the government in three districts have started reporting cases of substance and sexual abuse, homosexuality and criminal behaviour.

The teaching community and the health workers in the schools are alarmed at the ‘experiments in sex’ among schoolchildren, which include homosexuality.

“It is when we sit through the counselling sessions that we come to know about how badly teenagers need help. Many of them are carried away by peer pressure and those who get into these groups don’t know how to handle themselves,” says

Dr Gracy Thomas, Medical Officer, Adolescent Reproductive Sexual Health(ARSH)programme, Ernakulam district.

‘’The complaints and doubts are shocking. The teachers are aware of it, but most of them don’t know what to do,” says Dr Gracy.

So, when the ARSH medical unit team led by Dr Gracy, a counsellor and a primary healthcare nurse visit schools across the district, the children come crying for help.

“Some of them wait to just talk to me and ask me to help them. We identify such cases and try and make sure that they come for counselling at the adolescent clinics,” she explains. After hearing the stories, it doesn’t look surprising that Paravoor, Kothamangalam and Vettichira incidents happened.

“The mobile phones have been responsible for introducing the children to experiment in perverse acts after watching blue films and SMSes,” Dr Gracy Thomas said.� After the sex education class which explains to them that the changes in their body are all part of growing up, the medical team warns them of the health consequences of acquiring habits beyond their age.

“We show them pictures of diseases caused by free sex, tobacco and alcohol abuse and drugs,” she explains.

“Most of them are shocked and even the most unmanageable children listen attentively. The reaction from the kids indicate that most of them do not know� the harsh realities behind the fantasies.”

“Now, we are working on strategies to bring all problem children into these clinics.

‘‘The seven clinics in the district have started getting a good response. We hope to bring in new methods to address the psycho-social and reproductive health problems among adolescents,” says Dr K V Beena, District Manager, National Rural Health Mission. “The state government, as part of the 100-day programme of the Health Department, has okayed `50 lakh from the Child Development Centre for the clinics, says CDC Director M K C Nair.

“The fund will be used for the welfare of adolescent girls.� ‘‘We haven’t planned anything for the boys yet, though we are aware of problems like homosexuality and sexual abuse among them,” says Nair.

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