Wednesday, October 17, 2012 - 12:15

Tagged :
Text Size: Normal / Medium / Large
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version

The CWHN is happy to introduce to those who don’t already know her, Lyba Spring, a sexual health educator who spent nearly 30 years with Toronto Public Health. Working in schools with children and teens, counselling in a sexual health clinic, giving workshops, university lectures and doing guest spots on TV, Lyba has addressed every aspect of sexuality from safer sex and gender identity, to raising sexually healthy children and female ejaculation.  From sex workers and principals, to staff in long term care facilities, she has worked with them all—in English, French and Spanish.

Lyba will be blogging for us every two weeks on a range of topics relating to women and sexual health. She welcomes your feedback and suggestions

We think Lyba is a treasure. We hope you will, too.

You can contact Lyba at: springtalks1@gmail.com

Information provided by the CWHN is not a substitute for professional medical advice. If you feel you need medical attention, please see your health care provider.

By Lyba Spring
After nearly 30 years working as a sexual health educator in the public sector for Toronto Public Health, I realized that I wanted to “keep a hand in” after retirement. But posting medical articles on my professional Facebook page to help keep former colleagues up to date has not been enough. Although I have continued to do media work and present at the occasional conference, the need to make a difference remains unsatisfied. 

I became a feminist in 1968 in what was then called the Women’s Liberation Movement. Women’s sexuality was very political—and still is. The recent dust-up over an American politician’s ignorant remarks on rape and abortion got me posting and tweeting more than ever. The Canadian MP looking for the back door into recriminalizing abortion reminded me how important it is to be vigilant.

Although every aspect of sexual health is political, some are just fascinating to discuss: raising sexually healthy children, adolescent sexual health, romantic and sexual relationships, pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections (STIs), gender and orientation issues, late blooming boomers, seniors’ sexual health—all the beautiful and not so beautiful aspects of our sexuality—and who’s in control of it.

The World Health Organization definition of sexual health underlines the fact that sexuality crosses the lifespan.  Our sexual selves start with erections in the womb or a baby’s vagina lubricating at birth; it moves from the exploration of one’s genitals in that first year, to deliberate self pleasuring during puberty; from gender confusion to gender clarity; from attractions as a child to lustful desire in adolescence; from admonishments about safer sex from home and school, to the realization that we can have some control over our sexual expression; from sexual abuse or sexual assault to healing; from initial intimacy to longer relationships; from the desire for parenting to raising a child; from coupledom to singledom; from sexual maturity to sexual seniority; from ability to reduced ability; or from disability to full sexual expression...

I want to talk with you about any and every aspect of our sexual selves, starting with a piece on raising sexually healthy children.  While I take interest in the broader issues, like reproductive technologies or hormone replacement therapies, I will keep my focus narrow. For articles on the broader issues, see the rest of this site; or visit my Facebook page.

This is where you come in. If you have a comment about any of my blog articles, please send it to:  springtalks1@gmail.com.

More importantly, if there are other topics you want to discuss, let me know at the above link. I won’t be responding to any personal questions, but I would like to write about what interests you. I would like to include some of your comment(s) in my upcoming blogs.  

Looking forward to hearing from you.