A series of explicit sex education textbooks have been launched in Sweden, specifically aimed at youngsters with special needs. The books cover sex, puberty and masturbation for the disabled.
Sweden is one of the most “progressive” nations on earth when it comes to sexual relations; sex education has been mandatory in schools since 1955 and the age of consent is just 14. However, taboos are still being broken.
The books have caused some controversy by employing the word “knulla,” which literally translates as “to fuck,” instead of the more ambiguous “sex” which also translates as the number six in Swedish.
“We don’t necessarily feel comfortable using it ourselves, but it is a word that many understand,” said Margareta Nymansson, one of the authors.
Explaining how the project began, Nymansson said: “Ten years ago I talked to a mother whose daughter was autistic and was wondering how to discuss menstruation with her when the time came,”
“I wrote a book explaining that all girls bleed and what happens when you do and when she got her first period she was not worried because she was prepared for it, in fact she felt proud,” expanded Nymansson in an interview with The Local.
A decade on and her and two colleagues teamed up with Sweden’s education department in the district of Uppsala Council to produce a full series of text for children with special needs.
“It is a sensitive topic and therefore a topic where special needs education is very behind. We always felt it was something that had to be taught in class but we never had the right material. These books are supposed to form part of that future material,” said Nymansson.
One book covers the difference between romantic love and paternal/maternal love, and another is dedicated to consent.
The final book covers masturbation, which has been a hot topic in Sweden of late. Earlier in the year, a new word was adopted for female masturbation – klittra – after the campaign group RFSU ran a nationwide competition to come up with a term.