Growing Up Sexually





IES: Philippines










Nydegger and Nydegger (1963)[1]state that sex training is “surprisingly meagre” in view of the adults’ lack of self-consciousness about sexual matters. Sex play “barely exists, only 17 instances being reported for the 83 children”. These were all interpreted as teasing (p839). Thus, “it is prerogative of young boys to lightly pinch girl’s genitals if they are exposed. The privilege is exercised with hilarity and enthusiasm and is a most effective training method”. “Of the 24 sample mothers, 17 reported no incidence of masturbation at any age. Three said it had occurred with their boys only in infancy”. The behaviour is physically punished and attributed to “insufficient cleansing of the genitals; most assume it is inherently pleasurable but must be prohibited before it becomes a habit” (p825). Erections, however, bring on a smile, or may be “tapped” until subsiding. Girls’ modesty is more marked than boys’. Parents argue, “By 12 or 13, sexual activity is already a plaything of their fancy”  (p863). There is much occasion for observing animals, parents, and overhearing discussions. Adolescents meet at dancings and play card games at puberty [14, 15 for boys], which is not marked officially.











Janssen, D. F., Growing Up Sexually. VolumeI. World Reference Atlas. 0.2 ed. 2004. Berlin: Magnus Hirschfeld Archive for Sexology

Last revised: Sept 2004


[1] Nydegger, W. F. & Nydegger, C. (1963) Tarong: an Ilocos Barrio in the Philippines, in Whiting, B. (Ed.) Six Cultures. New York: Wiley, p693-867