Body Awareness/Meanings

I. A. I found the reading about the full body exploration and genital exploration to be quite interesting and informative. Doing this exercise does not only help people feel more comfortable with their bodies but doing this kind of exploration exercise on a regular weekly or monthly basis could be used as a self exam/physical. In doing this on a regular basis, you would know more about the changes that your body has been through in the allotted amount of time since you last did the exercise. In doing the exercise, you are acting as your own doctor in many ways. If you do happen to find anything different, which you are concerned about, you will have more information to tell your doctor when you meet with him about your findings. I donít respond differently to the exercise from any different point of view because I feel that any point of view the exercise is looked at in, could also then be looked at from a health perspective.

B. Doing the exercise was not anything new to me. I have been accustomed to this type of exploration since the end of my high school years. Some of the male members of my family have been diagnosed with testicular cancer and also skin cancer. In knowing this, I have been checking myself periodically throughout the past few years to make sure I do no have any of the signs associated with these diseases. Every time I do the exercise, I feel good about myself because I know I am checking myself for possible complications, which I may have. I believe it to be quite immature for the people who believe it is disgusting or absurd to do such an exercise. In the end, if they do not do the exercise and find out at a later time they have something wrong with them, then they have only hurt themselves by allowing the problem to worsen. I also feel that doing the exercise helps a person to become more comfortable in his or her own skin. This could in turn help them feel more comfortable in front of the opposite sex whenever a sexual encounter arises.

C. Kids these days are starting to become more sexually focused about themselves and others at a much earlier age. Iím not sure at exactly what age I would encourage body awareness in my children if I had any. Although I would say that a reasonable age would be toward the end of middle school, around the seventh or eight grade. At the ages of 3 and 7, children may begin to explore themselves out of curiosity, which is part of human nature. I would not encourage them to keep doing such a thing at an early age but I would not frown upon it if they had kept doing it. Age 13 is around the age when I may start to encourage a child of mine to begin the exploration. This would help them to familiarize themselves with their bodies and make them feel more comfortable with themselves. This is a time in a childís life when they are reaching their teenage years, which is when both the male and female bodies go through many changes. Children are starting to become more sexual at a much early age, so I feel this would be a good time to let your child know about this exercise. By the age of 16, I would strongly encourage my children to do this exercise, if they were not already practicing it themselves. By this age, Iíd say about 95% of the people I know were engaging in some kind of sexually focused activity, either by themselves or with others. As a child reaches their teenage years they are also susceptible to more health related diseases and should have the basic knowledge of how they can check themselves for signs and symptoms.

II. - I chose to share the body exploration article with my roommate, who is a 22 year old male. He has been my best friend since elementary school and I chose him to read the article because I wanted to see how closely related, if at all, our thoughts and ideas were about