Why you should cover sex ed in your target languages

So, I got home late last night and my flatmate had an electricity crisis (long story), so I was a bit preoccupied.

Yesterday was quite similar to the day before. More Russian, more of my French novel, more Italian/Spanish laddering and yet again more Arabic (I don’t want to move on until I know all the vocab from the first two lessons).

Today, I did some slightly more formal French study, looking at some vocabulary on la vie sexuelle*, as well as les beaux arts, like la littérature and le théâtre, because the reality is that they are up there in terms of the subjects I love discussing in French. Oh! I also had a super long French conversation with this adorable Italian man. He had a very strong Italian accent, pronouncing jusqu’à (“jus-ka”) as “juice-kwah” and conjugating “venir” as if it was une bouteille du vin, but I managed to understand his issues with his employees and helped him translate.

Naturally, my Russian studies continued. My Russian has improved a lot over this week, at least in terms of my comprehension. I know feel comfortable with words like нада, нечево, игра, я можно и я могу and so on, after hearing them often and in many different contexts. I haven’t progressed much in the Ruslan books, and I’m yet to finish Babbel, but I think I’ve had valuable listening and speaking practice over this last week.

*Fun story: when I was 15/16, I stayed with a French family for a month and my period came earlier than expected. I was unprepared. We were staying in the middle of no where; I had no wifi or phone signal, either to find a shop, or to find a dictionary for help. I looked up what the word “period” was in the dictionary — nothing. Then “menstruating” — nothing. “Hormones” — nothing. ” In the end, in front of the family, because the daughter got very confused, I said something to the effect of “every month, I have blood. It happened today. Help me.” Naturally, they were very sweet, thinking that I had started for the first time. Somewhat embarrassing, but hey, we all can learn from this. So here’s some “key” French vocab, and feel free to share your stories with me.

Period: les règles

Tampon: un tampon

Sanitary towel: une serviette (hygiénique)

Menstrual cup: une coupe menstruelle

Condom: un préservatif/une capote

Pregnancy test: un test de grossesse [what a terrible name]

Morning after pill: la pilule du lendemain

One-night stand: une aventure sans lendemain

STI: MST (une maladie sexuellement transmissible)

GUM clinic: les consultations génito-urinaire

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