I see the phrase ‘sexual activity’ almost on a daily basis, mostly in newspapers or in online articles quoting what a government official said. What does it mean?
Is it a social activity or is it something you do on your own? Do you need to be a member of a certain club and pay a fee?
When do you engage in ‘sexual activity’ and where? Why are teenagers not supposed to take part in it?
Who invented it? Is there a manual on how to do it well? Can you make money from being good at ‘sexual activity’?
How should you dress when you want to be ‘sexually active’? Do you need things to get you ‘active’ or does it happen spontaneously?
Do you need special gear? Are there stores that sell you what you need to make your ‘sexual activity’ successful?
How common is ‘sexual activity’? Aside from teenagers (though still don’t know why), is it OK for other people to be ‘sexually active’?
Are there certain people that are better at it than others are? What makes them better?
If your age matters, does your gender or skin colour matter too: are there certain genders, ethnic groups that are supposed to be ‘sexually active’ and not others?
Is it OK to talk to your friends or people you trust about your interest in ‘sexual activity’? Or is it better to strictly discuss it with strangers? Or are you supposed to refrain from talking about ‘sexual activity’ completely?
Actually, is it OK to ask what ‘sexual activity’ is at all?
- Sarah Osman is Head of New Business Development at Marie Stopes South Africa. The opaque discourse around sex in South Africa exhausts her. She writes this piece in her personal capacity.