“Close Your Eyes”: Talking About Sex In Ghana


In my younger days, whenever I was watching a movie or TV show and a scene appeared where characters would kiss each other on the lips or appear to be engaging in sex, I would always cover my eyes until that scene was over. My parents would always say “close your eyes” whenever these scenes were on.

That whole action of “close your eyes” seems to be on going when it comes to the issues of sex in our society. In Ghana, we have a culture which focuses on morals from the Bible. We tend to be a shy society. We don’t really do the whole “public display of affection”. When it comes to sex, it’s way worse. In fact, we consider the whole act of sex before marriage to be totally wrong. Most people  say it would be better to have sex AFTER marriage.

Is that really the right way? Does God really care if two consenting adults engage in sex acts even though they are not married but may get married to each other in the future?

Let’s go back to the whole morality thing for a second. Even though in Ghana, we seem to be very religious and want to be moral, people don’t really act that way. It was once reported that Cape Coast had the highest number of teen pregnancies in the country. If someone were to make a quick judgment, one might say that the youth in Cape Coast need more lessons in religious and moral education. But that’s the reality.

The question that needs to be asked: is the society in the Cape Coast region teaching the youth to “close their eyes” when it comes to the issues of sex?

Follow me for a second. I don’t know how much sex education is taught in the schools but I can bet a lot of money that it’s not something that’s being extensively taught. I wouldn’t be surprised if abstinence was something which would be more acceptable than teaching about sex education.

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In Ghana, sex is really not something which is spoken about. It’s like a taboo. People tend to talk about it in whispers it seems. I had a conversation with someone and we were talking about the whole “pre-marital sex” thing. Her position was that it shouldn’t be considered. She was very Bible heavy in her position. My position was that adults can decide to do what they want as they’re not doing it promisciously and having one night stands all over the place. That debate didn’t really have a winner because it’s hard to argue such topics when “Bible” and “morality” are being thrown around.

Funny enough, I have heard stories from the radio about women who are married who are actually disappointed that they waited until marriage to have sex. Simply put, they’re just not satisfied with their partner’s performance in the bedroom. But what would expect when two virgins decided to consummate their marriage? That sounds like a lot of awful sex.

But this piece is not meant to shame people who are virgins and slut shame people who have sex with their partners even though they are not married. I’m simply asking the question: In Ghana, is it bad that we’re are basically “closing our eyes” when it comes to the issues of sex?

Religion seems to be the central point in this discussion. If you’re talking to someone who is religious, they are more likely to be against the whole premartial sex issue and they are probably againts sex education in schools and in homes as well. But why hide that issue in the dark? Why are we so shy when it comes to talking sex?

In the American society and European, they appear to be sexually liberated. If you’re a teen in high school, being a virgin seems to be a black mark. Not having sex before you get married appears to make you standout from the crowd. I have heard stories about teens losing their virginity at 14, 15 and 16 years old.  A teen having sex before he/she turns in 18 is something that is immoral in the Ghanaian society.

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But it seems to me that in those American and European societies, they are clear minded when it comes to issues of sex. It doesn’t seem like a big deal to them. When you even look at statistics, teen pregananices in many states in the US and countries in Europe are not that high? But when compared to Ghana, it’s the opposite. What’s the matter here?

Personally, I think it’s because we’re still hiding in caves. We’re scared to talk about issues like this because we’re not used to it and we keep applying religion and morality to an issue that most people in the world would find trivial.

My position is this: I don’t think sex between two consenting adults is wrong even if they’re not married. I don’t think God really cares about that. I think God has bigger problems to deal with like wars in Syria and ISIS beheading people like they were in Games of Thrones. I don’t think God really cares where Kwame and Ama are having sex in a hotel room even though they aren’t married.

But if we’re talking issues of morality, I don’t think taking on multiple sex partners just because you want to is a good think. You can if you want but having a healthy sexual relationship with one partner is good enough. But that’s just my opinion.

I think we need to stop taking sex so seriously. We need to talk about this stuff more in the open and not be so afraid.

Be liberated. Have fun. Happy Vals Day