In Conversation With Atumita Modie: Being A Sex-Educator
When you are a sex educator, people assume that you are available. However, that is not so. The everyday fight against society to live for what you believe in is a constant struggle. That is what stops you, but also what makes you go ahead. This is a conversation that I had with Atumita Modie, wherein we discussed the dynamics of being a sex educator.
I must say that I am impressed by your boldness and how relentless you are. Could you give me background on how exactly you have become the person that you are?
So, there is a small story behind it. I will give you a trigger warning. If you don’t want me to include that story, I’ll skip it.
Well, can it like kind of trigger something or is it that intense?
It’s about sexual abuse.
Are you okay with it?
I’m fine with it.
Then we can carry on with it.
Okay. So I was a very timid child back then and I was very timid even as a young person. I am a young person, however, this is a few years back. I was sexually abused by my first cousin, after which I realized that it was not me, but him who should be knowing my boundaries. I should be my own self. I realized and I started working on myself. I started working to be upfront and that’s when I started learning about sex education which has helped me empower myself. And that’s how I think I’m the person I’m today, whatever I’m today.
That is so great to hear. So, my next question is that as a sex educator, what is one thing that you find difficult to convince people off?
The first problem is the linguistic problem. Most of the terminology and other information is primarily in English. We cannot convert the same meaning to Hindi or other languages. So that is one problem because of which I am unable to convince people. So one thing which, I really find difficult to convince people of is masturbation. The method masturbation that masturbation does not have any side effects or problems.
Right. Yeah. That is a little bit difficult to explain also. And even society is very conservative regarding all these things.
And also because they start talking about theological things, I am unable to counter them back.
Have you thought about actually going and checking the scriptures? I say this because I’m a history student. For example, have you heard of the Khajuraho temples?
So, you’ll find sexual depictions, which have been done in the temple. It’s like in the scriptures also. So mythology as a point of view is kind of a little bit wrong according to what people say.
You are absolutely correct. But the thing which they have in their mind, I cannot change it.
That’s what I’m saying a lot. It’s like they’re literally on that thinking. A girl is supposed to be pure and blah, blah, blah, blah.
So, you constantly post content on sexual education, which is necessary and important, but sometimes, people just don’t like it. So maybe the topic is not acceptable to people or maybe, you are a female, which makes it more not acceptable. Have you ever gotten in trouble because of this?
I’ve never gotten in trouble because of this, but yes, I have received very unsolicited messages and pictures. Sometimes I get unsolicited pictures in my dms. Sometimes I get very bad abuses. Sometimes I get rape threats. Yeah, but getting unsolicited photos is very triggering to me.
Okay. Moving on ahead to the next question. How important do you consider sex toys in the lives of sexually active people or a couple?
I feel this the first from person to person. Like some people would love to have it, and some people would not like to have it. Some people would have their own opinions on it, that if a person is in a relationship or they have a partner, they would not need a sex toy. But, yes, it, enhances your pleasure and that’s what I think. But it might differ for each person.
That’s amazing though. A lot of research is being done on sexual lives and all in recent times. If you see 10 years back, this was a very, like not a chosen topic. It’s only recently and all because of social media and all. Very recently I saw a social media post on the increasing orgasm gap. Like just because a female is not able to experience orgasm easily and they of course cannot like to speak about it, this stigma in society further discourages females from having a healthy sexual life. What are your views on this increasing orgasm gap?
Okay. So I feel that first of all, orgasm is not equal to pleasure or orgasm is not. The end goal should not be the end goal of sex. Because if you are focusing only on orgasm, that’s when the performance pressure comes in, that you have to have an orgasm to finish sex. Sex is not a battlefield that you want to fight. Sex must be very pleasurable, and very calming. So I, first of all, feel that orgasm should not be the main ingredient of sex. Secondly, I guess communication could fill this. Communicating to your partner that you want to be touched here or you want to be stimulated here, is how you can decrease this gap.
I agree totally with whatever you’re saying. There’s one question that I really want to ask. So you are in college?
So, of course, people would know who you are, a content creator on Instagram. Have you ever had maybe students or people come up to you like, I am having problems with this? And asked you to give them some education on this.
So this is very common to me. Like, and sometimes they want to fulfill their ulterior motives. They do come, but I do help them with their problems. But when I know that their motive is different, I refuse. I think maintaining the space is also required. The boundary is very important.
Exactly. Because sometimes people just understand, don’t understand. You have a personal boundary, even if you’re outgoing. Sex in India is very patriarchal wherein only the male has the right to have authority over it. Do you think that this can actually reduce if we focus on sex more and on female pleasure?
You are absolutely right. If we focus more on female pleasure this I think would be not an issue. Actually, this is not embedded in their minds. So, drastically that it is really hard to. But then, still focusing on female pleasure could reduce the patriarchal norms. Sex is just for having babies, so they don’t recognize female pleasure. If they don’t recognize it only, I don’t know what to tell you.
I don’t think it hardly men know where the G-spot is in basically.
It is actually a fact that females don't orgasm easily. And it's like recognized. What do you think that females can do to experience the same at the beginning when they're inexperienced and all?
I think not just females, but everybody should know the anatomy of their bodies, of everyone’s body actually. So even if it is the opposite sex, they should be knowing the anatomy of that. Actually, women don’t orgasm easily, but if you find the right spot, they would orgasm very quickly, you communicate with your partner or if you own yourself. You should know where your endogenous zones are and how you would be trying to reach orgasm.
You’re absolutely correct on all that. You are not getting the right spot. I thought I used to think the same because. I read books and all, and that’s where I get the sexual education from. I never did proper research. So, we are placing a lot of emphasis on sex education in recent times, only very recently. However, it is like very heteronormative matter today. I have hardly ever come across any social made post or anything that is actually catered to sexual education among homosexuals. What is your take on the same?
When you were talking to me about orgasms and relationships, I never thought about heterosexual relationships. I thought about any person, with any person. So I guess this is only about the mindset that people are having. When we are talking about relationships or sex, we only see a heteronormative couple in it. There’s a lot of need for unlearning and re-learning.
I totally agree with that. We need to re-learn a lot of social concepts that we have been literally conditioned to know and all. My last question that I would like to really ask you is that what are your future plans? Do you have any plans in doing something in the sex-ed and all?
I am studying law at NMIMS Mumbai. But I want to go back to my hometown now, and I want to start an organization or NGO wherein I could start helping people start taking workshops for little kids in the school first and also do every age group.
That is amazing. I like it, I absolutely adore your work. You would have to face many conservative things you might not like and come across many obstacles, but I think you’ll endure.
Thank you. What do you do?
I am doing history honors from LSR.
Oh, wow. Which year?
I’m in my second year right now.
Oh, that, wow. All the best for this.
Thank you so much. Anyways, thank you so much for today’s interview and for agreeing to it. Thank you so much.
Thank you so much. Bye.
Good day. Bye.