Sex in the Dark, a forum on healthy relationships and sex put on by Healthy Herd Champions, took place last night April 19 in the Century Theater.
The event consisted of five panelists, or “sexperts,” who answered both audience questions and questions submitted online. The panelists came from a wide range of backgrounds, including epidemiology, violence prevention and nursing.
The audience inquired about topics such as birth control and sexual activity, asking questions like, “What is the best form of birth control?” and “How can I last longer in bed?”
The panelists also discussed how to give and ask for consent from prospective partners.
Gift bags with informational pamphlets, an assortment of condoms, lube and barrier method contraception were given to attendees when they arrived. There was also a raffle for a $25 Amazon gift card and an Enchantasys gift basket.
Megan Olsen and Lindsey Beisner are part of the Healthy Herd Champions and helped coordinate the event.
“Essentially, we just wanted people to come and learn about their sexual health, women’s health, men’s health, just kind of health in general,” Olsen said.
The whole goal of the event according to Beisner was to attract people who are interested in the topic of sexual health and to give attendees an anonymous platform to answer questions.
Olsen said she was looking for a larger turnout for the event.
Despite this low turnout, Olsen said, “The audience that showed up, showed up.” Olsen said the attendees engaged with the panelists and participated in the discussions, and Olsen and Beisner believe the audience learned a lot.
Olsen and Beisner said college students come to school lacking a basic sexual education.
“Most of the people that come in come from schools who are abstinence-based, they’re taught ‘hey, you know, just don’t have sex,’ and I think it’s really important for them to know their options and know the risks,” Olsen said.
Beisner said she thinks students come to college realizing their ignorance about sex and relationships, but still never seek out information.
“People even don’t know … they should get tested for STDs,” Olsen said.
Olsen said she doesn’t think the people who should have been at this event were in attendance and that getting people interested in this event is one of the largest challenges of coordinating.
It was “interesting to learn about things I already knew about, but more in-depth,” Beisner said. Even though the topics discussed were a repeat for her, new perspectives and circumstances lead to more knowledge and understanding on the topics, according to Beisner.