Some content of the below entry may not be appropriate for your children if you have not had the sex talk with them yet.
So one thing that was kind of weird as we were going through Lesotho is that so people would start to ask Aaron and I, “Are you married?” - No. “Are you boyfriend/girlfriend?” - No, just friends. “But you still….” -No, we don’t. “I don’t believe you!” and then they would interrogate us for like 10 minutes about not having sex. It was very weird, I’m not sure if you’ve had a complete stranger inquire about your sex life…and I can’t even count how many times I had to have this particular conversation! Police officers, random people along the road, school teachers, it became a very common question. One guy asked me, “what happens if you get pregnant”, “Well, I’m not planning on it”, I said. “But sometimes it just happens, what happens if you fall pregnant?”; apparently it’s also not controllable to be pregnant or not…
Anyways, a few weeks later we learn a bit more about the culture and their views on sex. Now because people are very poor, often times men go away to work. They may only see their families a few times a year. This was the start to it, but now no matter where your spouse lives, it is common to have multiple, concurrent partners. If you are married, you also have a boyfriend or girlfriend, or multiple. Sex really is something that “just happens” in their culture. Men and women, aren’t really friends. If you are a woman, and a man enters your house , it is assumed you are having sex with him; and vice versa.
Now the HIV/AIDS rate is 33%. 1 of every 3 people we saw have AIDS. In our age group, almost every 1 in 2 have HIV or AIDS.
But somehow I don’t think the problem is that they don’t have condoms or antiretroviral drugs.
But something does need to change. In places like Lesotho, we are literally wiping out entire generations, leaving many orphans behind.
I hope you can learn this perspective with us so that we can learn to help WELL, for countries that need to tackle the AIDS crisis, and not just help in ways we think will work.