Talking about sex and relationships is often considered taboo, but young people tell us they want to be free to speak openly about their sexual and reproductive health and rights.
Based on research undertaken by Plan International which explored young people’s thoughts on sexual wellbeing and consent, artist Sonaksha Iyengar has created a comic book featuring stories about sex, relationships and consent from the perspective of young people.
Many sexual and reproductive health and rights (SRHR) programmes for young people take a ‘sexual risk perspective’, emphasising the negative consequences of sexual activity, such as sexually transmitted infections, including HIV, unintended pregnancy, and sexual violence. Less emphasis has been put on the positive or healthy aspects of the development of young people’s sexuality and sexual experiences.
Young people’s sexual wellbeing, including their positive sexual experiences and their evolving capacity to consent to sex, need to be better understood in order to improve SRHR programmes.
The comic book highlights the importance of taking into account young people’s understanding of, and perspectives on, sexual wellbeing.