This Tuesday, the women of Omega Phi Beta played off the popular MTV show Girl Code, and brought the discussion of hyper-sexuality and sexual health to the SU campus with their Girl Code: Hyper Sexuality event.
The event was part of OPB’s Serving and Educating Week: First Love Yourself. This weeklong event focuses on mental, physical, professional and emotional health.
Held in Maxwell auditorium, the event had a massive turnout. The partnership with SEX S.Y.M.B.A.L.S., a sexual awareness club on campus, complimented the topic of sexuality and sexual education.
Though hosted by a female organization, the event had a male co-host, Andres Revera, social chair of SEX S.Y.M.B.A.L.S and a junior marketing major. “My concern was that I would sound hypocritical on stage,” said Revera. “But it turned out well because we set it up for the audience to lead.”
Girl Code: Hyper Sexuality touched on themes like body image, relationships, promiscuity and value systems. The event also acknowledged the lack of communication around sexual health, and how speaking out on a topic that is at times personal and uncomfortable can cause controversy between the sexes. “There is not enough conversation and we are not being educated enough,” said co-host Jamielee Polanca, a junior neuroscience and psychology major, as well as OPB herstorian, public relations chair and alumni liaison.
The PowerPoint and video testimonials shown by OPB facilitated discussion and provided facts for the audience’s review. Each topic proposed a stereotype and asked the audience to either explain or challenge it. The topic of promiscuity and amount of sexual partners a male or female should have caused a great divide. Men believed that if a woman had many past sexual partners, it made her undesirable in the long term. “ He is paying the toll while everyone is getting a free ride,” commented a male member of the audience when presented with the idea of dating a female who had multiple partners. However, some males emphasized the importance of new beginnings and leaving a partner’s past in the past.
How much sex is too much sex, and men viewing women as possessions, were also topics that sparked debate. One topic where there was agreement between both men and women was contraception – both men and women should carry condoms.
OPB provided an interactive way to speak out on sex which used a familiar show with a SU twist. Women are often the victims of sexual abuse and face several social pressures, and this event encouraged them to have a voice.
“Women do have agency over their sexuality and a woman’s sexual desire should not be dependent on men’s desire or ideals,” said Polanco.
The event culminated with the distribution of condoms, dental dams and female condoms as a reminder from SEX S.Y.M.B.A.L.S and OPB to protect your body. OPB’s week health awareness ends October 19. Until then, they will be hosting events all over campus.
By Onaika Mootoo