For Goodness Sex: A Sex-Positive Guide to Raising Healthy, Empowered Teens (Paperback)
“A breath of much-needed fresh air around a very charged subject.”—Christiane Northrup, M.D., OB/GYN physician and author of the New York Times bestsellers Women's Bodies, Women's Wisdom and The Wisdom of Menopause
“Vernacchio's no-blame, no-shame approach will inspire parents to drop their fears, judgments, and inhibitions in order to help their kids navigate the teen years.”—Publishers Weekly
Updated to reflect societal changes over the past decade, an experienced educator’s effective and responsible guide to sex education for parents and teens that promotes healthy knowledge, values, and positive sexuality.
When it comes to talking to kids about sex, parents often don’t know what to say. But our kids are talking—and seeing and listening and learning—about sex every day. Our kids know more about sex than we think they do. But our kids don’t know as much about sex as they think they do.
Complicating matters, sexuality education in schools is often locally regulated, leading to medically inaccurate or faith- and abstinence-based curriculums, and in a growing number of states even that meager education is under threat. Enter sexuality educator Al Vernacchio, a teacher for more than thirty years, who has been an advocate of a new category: sex-positive education. In For Goodness Sex, he offers a realistic approach to teaching kids about this basic biological function, with advice and answers that go far beyond just the act itself. After all, Vernacchio argues, without a broader understanding to offset the damaging perceptions of sex that pervade much of our culture, adolescents and teens are unprepared for the complex intellectual and emotional decisions surrounding sex and consent.
Thoughtful and expansive, For Goodness Sex offers the tools and information adults and young people need to have important conversations about sexuality and to develop the safe and healthy values that will carry them through the rest of their lives.
AL VERNACCHIO is a high school sexuality educator and English teacher at Friends’ Central School in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania. In addition to his classroom responsibilities, Al organizes sexuality-themed programs and assemblies, provides parent education on human sexuality topics, and is one of the faculty advisors for the Gay-Straight Alliance. A human sexuality educator and consultant for more than twenty-five years, Al Vernacchio has lectured, published articles, and offered workshops throughout the country. His work has been featured in “Teaching Good Sex,” a November 20, 2011, cover story in the New York Times Magazine. Al has given four TED Talks and has appeared on national programs such as NPR’s Morning Edition and 1A. Al earned his BA in theology from St. Joseph’s University and his MSEd in human sexuality education from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a member of the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality (SSSS); the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (AASECT); and Advanced Sexuality Educators and Trainers (ASET). A lifelong Philadelphian, Al and his husband, Michael, live in the Germantown section of the city.
“Al Vernacchio has masterfully accomplished what good sexuality educators have attempted for so many years: he has created a work that is both a fun, easy read as well as a thorough and thoughtful guide.” — Don Dyson, PhD, Associate Dean, School of Human Service Professions and Director, Center for Human Sexuality Studies, Widener University
“Al Vernacchio has written a wonderful book that includes numerous model answers and a new way to think about adolescent sexuality—as a force for good in life rather than simply a problem to be dealt with.” — Leslie M. Kantor, MPH, Vice President of Education, Planned Parenthood Federation of America
“Vernacchio’s no-blame, no-shame approach will inspire parents to drop their fears, judgments, and inhibitions in order to help their kids navigate the teen years.” — Publishers Weekly
“At last a book that teaches parents how to talk to kids about sex in a way that is based healthily in reality and not fearfully in doom and gloom. I wish my parents had read this book!” — Lori Duron, author of Raising My Rainbow
“An engaging, much-needed new approach to teaching children about the human sexual experience.” — Kirkus Reviews