[LISTEN] Are topics like sex and sexuality still taboo for black households?

Are black parents in 2019 battling to have open conversations about sex and sexuality with their kids?

Presenter Eusebius McKaiser hosted a discussion on how traditional and cultural perspectives may affect parenting for black families.

Gender activist Matokgo Ndu Makutoane says it remains difficult for some black parents to start conversations about sex and consent.

However, these conversations have become increasingly important as a tool to help prevent teenage pregnancy, sexual assault or incest.

Makutoane says black parents need to initiate discussion about consent and relationship boundaries, so that their children are empowered to make better choices.

Read: What not to do when setting sexual boundaries with your teens

Cultural expert Pumla Madiba maintains that rituals and rights of passage to help educate children have always existed in African cultures.

She says that while these cultures and customs must adapt with the times, it should not be at the cost of African values.

Traditional leader Chief Sihle Makhanya agrees, saying it is important to preserve African culture in modern teachings.

We have to impart these things to our children but we cannot vaporise our own cultures while we are doing that. Our cultures are very conservative.

Chief Sihle Makhanya, traditional leader

Though we advocate for parents to speak to their children or to have comprehensive sexual education in schools, we aren't saying it's easy for black parents.

Matokgo Ndu Makutoane, gender activist

Research tells us that kids who have some kind of communication with their parents develop good relationships with themselves and others.

Matokgo Ndu Makutoane, gender activist

Black parents have always communicated with their children in a language of their families as communities. Africans communicate differently.

Pumla Madiba, cultural expert

Times are different. Culture is not static. We are in a different age now where children are exposed to so many things. Africans find it difficult to communicate more openly than they used to.

Pumla Madiba, cultural expert

The environment has changed, and so the language has got change. We've got to learn more open ways of talking using the language of today, as difficult as it is.

Pumla Madiba, cultural expert

Listen to the in-depth discussion on The Eusebius McKaiser Show:


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