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From 1969 ‘Can Daddies have babies? and other questions answered February 18, 2013

Posted by irishelectionliterature in Uncategorized.

More 1969 advice from Angela McNamara, This time ‘Can Daddies have babies? and other questions answered.
On a slight tangent … I was born the very same year and later adopted . I’m currently trying to lower my cholesterol after my regular blood tests showed it increasing.
Anyway I was talking to my mother about the blood tests and she mentioned that the nuns had done some blood tests on me prior to my adoption and she had a card with the results somewhere at home. She found the results of the blood test…..
The blood tests were to determine that I was 100% white .
Different times ……

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1. WorldbyStorm - February 19, 2013

“The blood tests were to determine that I was 100% white.”

Definitely different times. The piece reminded me that about seven years later in Community School we were given pretty good sex education, IIRC we were shown a film – which wasn’t a million miles from the above though couched in scientific rather than Catholic/Christian language, and then divided by gender, and were allowed to ask any questions we wanted on the topic to the teacher. I think in retrospect it was a good approach, took a lot of the mystification out of it for some.

CMK - February 19, 2013

Hmm. In our school the boys were booted out of the class and sent off to play football while the girls were given the talk. Never saw that video or anything similar, ever.

Dr. X - February 19, 2013

And in my single sex boys only school, these issues were addressed in the biology strand of the inter cert science curriculum.

CMK - February 19, 2013

That was the extent of the sex education I received, too. Classy or what?

Dr. X - February 19, 2013

One thing I think they did get right was when the religion teacher sat us down and made us watch a Made For TV movie about date rape from the victim’s point of view.

The message being “don’t be that guy”, which was something all groups of adolescent males need to hear.

This religion teacher was a layman English teacher, doubling up to fill the gap: the year I left that rotten hole, they brought in a “dedicated” young woman who’d actually trained as teacher of religion, and who was all about the anti-abortion campaigning, to the exclusion of everything else.

Dr. X - February 19, 2013

“is something” rather than “was something” there. Stupid lack of an edit button.

CMK - February 19, 2013

I suppose that’s one of the paradox of Irish catholic upbringing. Sermons from the pulpit denouncing pre-marital sex, homosexuality and abortion one week and the next Sunday equally fervent sermons denouncing apartheid, US intervention in Nicaragua, the plight of the poor etc, the echoes of liberation theology from some of the younger curates and from the annual returning missionary.

Incidentally, the ‘don’t be that guy’ thing is being revived with, I think, UCC rolling it out and QUB also trialling it. Welcome developments.

Dr. X - February 19, 2013

Welcome, but long overdue.

Gearóid - February 19, 2013

Infuriatingly, NUIG Students’ Union rejected endorsing the Galway ‘Don’t be that guy’ campaign because it’s ‘prejudiced against men’.

My religious education veered between the reactionary and progressive (being curtly told that ‘abortion is murder’ by one religion teacher, with another organising a fairly progressive talk on AIDS, the only sex education we got outside Junior Cert Biology!) This was mid-2000′s

eamonncork - February 19, 2013

All we got was the Inter Cert biology class. We were told by our science teacher that we’d be going through the chapter in two days and that anyone who laughed would be suspended. Of course we’d already subjected that chapter to intensive study over the previous two years. Not a word on sex education.
When I was in second year, pro-life referendum year, I remember a nun coming in and giving us an hour on the various grisly ways in which a foetus was killed by abortion with gory illustrations. And we also had a, rather camp, priest for religion who spent several classes warning us about predatory homosexuals, the general message being that you’d be better off dead than being one of those lads.
I don’t think women were ever mentioned at all, it was an all boys school. Most of our sex education came from the dirty bits in The Day of the Jackal and The Godfather and the Channel Four Red Triangle films. There was a surprisingly large audience of teenage Irish boys for the obscure arthouse films in this strand though I do remember a certain embarrassment after Derek Jarman’s Sebastiane screened in this strand.

Mark P - February 19, 2013

We got a reasonably comprehensive class on the mechanics.

Then some late 70s American TV movie called “When, Jenny, When?” which I can’t really remember. From the title I’d guess that it was about not being a teenage date rapist or a pushy little shit more generally. But the very scattered bits of information I can find on the internet about it suggests that it may actually have been pious twaddle about not being too “easy”. Does anyone know?

Rather bizarrely, we then got a whole series of very detailed classes on different venereal diseases. Presumably this was a somewhat unorthodox method of trying to instill a good Catholic terror of sex.

(All boys, 1990s!)

WorldbyStorm - February 19, 2013

It’s kind of telling, isn’t it, the sheer spread of experience? It’s worrying that as recently as the 1990s there was no proper sex education and that across the totality no consistency at all.

eamonncork - February 19, 2013

My father was involved in the INTO to an extent and I remember him telling him me about the battle they had to get the Stay Safe programme through. The Church fought tooth and nail against it for reasons which in hindsight may not have been entirely disinterested. And the campaigners against it were also prone to quote material from some very dodgy American sources.
I often think that if there’d been an anti-sex referendum in the seventies, and maybe even in the eighties, it would probably have won. One against pre-marital sex would certainly have done it. The fulminations against fornication from politicians in the two main parties would have been laughable if they hadn’t been coming from grown men who should have known better.

2. Dr. X - February 19, 2013

“The blood tests were to determine that I was 100% white.”

WTF is wrong with these people?

Meanwhile in Tito’s Yugoslavia;

(Link slightly NSFW)

3. Jonathan - February 19, 2013

“Q: Seeing as mummy and daddy are fulfilling God’s plan, will God protect us from all harm, and not kill Mummy when she’s giving birth to me, or kill me with infection before I’m five, and ensure that nothing bad happens to us (as has happened since the beginning of history, seeing as God also created things like bacteria and viruses but wasn’t thoughtful enough to give Adam and Eve a basic manual on hygiene and the risks of infection?)
A: Er … look that way! [Sound of running feet rapidly getting more distant, a door slamming, and a car being driven away quickly].

4. TheOtherRiverR(h)ine - February 19, 2013

“The blood tests were to determine that I was 100% white .
Different times ……”

What the fuck were they measuring in the blood? Hell even in those days, using a blood test like that would be unscientific. Ok there’s a higher incidence of sickle cell anaemia and lactose intolerance amongst blacks, while asians have certain differences in the CPY450 isoenzymes (main one from a drug point of view is 2D6 and you’d do a liver function test for that) but come on ffs.

Guessing you were put on a statin for the cholesterol.

irishelectionliterature - February 19, 2013

No idea what test they did to get the result.
As for the cholesterol, no medication yet. I’m dieting and am rapidly going off fish and chicken.

TheOtherRiverR(h)ine - February 19, 2013

Standard stepwise approach (lifestyle first drugs later). Surprised about the fish though.

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