When profanity becomes accepted
In class five when we first learnt the word “sperm”, not only did the students had a hearty and uncontrollable laugh, but the teachers had a difficult time teaching that small concept of fertilisation, that also in a cow.
In class eight, the chapter on reproductive organs was taught in small groups. I was lucky to have a teacher who first taught us why some babies become boys (XY chromosomes) and why some become girls (XX chromosomes).
In class ten, my biology teacher skipped teaching the reproductive chapter and made us underline in the textbook the sentences that were important for exam.
In class twelve, my biology teacher was an open minded being and he taught us the required bit in much humour. Sperms coming to fertilise an egg was compared to an Olympic race where only the best won the gold medal, and only the best sperm got to fertilise the egg.
As we graduated from one year to another in the medical school, we progress from reading the theories about sex and sexuality in book to real sexual problems in the real world.
Problems with sexuality are a real medical problem. While many become pregnant accidentally and unwanted, there are many who try to conceive and have difficulty in making a baby. There exist sexuality problems, both psychogenic and organic. The former occurs with regard to the mind while the latter occurs with regard to problems or abnormalities in reproductive organs.
While some become pregnant at seventeen years and are many years younger than us, there are women in forties who still wish to conceive babies. Some are on the verge of menopause and they still want the last few remaining eggs to be fertilised and harbour a baby of their own.
A woman who is gentle and tender becomes strong in spirit and body after child birth. Child birth may be the ultimate test of spirit, acceptance and dignity. Beyond that, a joke about brinjals brings laughter than offense.
One doctor involved in bringing out babies into the world is an obstetrician. It is widely known in the medial community about the dirty mindedness or the likelihood of making sexuality related jokes by the obstetricians.
Having worked under a senior professor of obstetrician who is known for his jokes with profanity, I have come all the way from giggling at the word “sperm” to accepting profanity. This is a progress toward becoming a doctor than loss of innocence when you have seen the exposed part of human existence coupled with “some imaginations”.
Written on the Pi day, 3.14 of the year 2015. I was inspired to write this piece after our favourite Professor CR at Obstetrics and Gynaecology department, University of Colombo.