Beds emphasize sex responsibility
February 27, 2006 —
Students passing by Zahnow Library and the RFoC last week were reminded to practice safe sex in a different way than usual - a bed.
BACCHUS Peer Educators along with the Safe Spring Break committee led several activities promoting safe alcohol usage and awareness of sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
On Monday and Tuesday, students were curious about the beds, which read, "If this looks like a place you want to be, go ahead and sign on me!"
"The intent was to be mysterious, to see if students would sign if interested," says Tony Thompson, director of the Student Counseling Center. "We wanted to do a different activity that would grab their attention."
Without knowing what they signed the bed for, the outcome was well over 200 signatures. On Wednesday and Thursday, new signs were posted to inform students what the activity was about and educate them on STIs.
One sign read, "Just as students signed this sheet w/ very little info., they also make decisions about sex w/o enough info.!" The purpose of the activity was not to scare students but to make clear to them that their decisions in life can either save them or hurt them.
"We hoped that students would see the information and results of what they signed," Thompson added.
Another sign read, "Do you know who has been in the bed before you? Don't be afraid to ask questions before you engage in any sexual relationship." One thought behind this sign is that when a student has sex with someone who has had multiple partners, he or she is having sex with the other partners as well.
This mysterious activity was not the only one to grab the attentions of the students. On Thursday, the SSB committee hosted an alcohol awareness video in the Rhea Miller Recital Hall.
The tables outside the hall were filled with pamphlets about sexually transmitted infections and pregnancy, along with free candy, pens, and condoms.
There were also games played that left students feeling "punk'd."
"Would you like to try a taste test? Which one of these pops are regular, which one is diet?" Thompson asked. At the time, Thompson was a stranger to the participants, but his appearance was "normal," friendly, and welcoming.
The purpose of the game was to see if students would accept drinks from a complete stranger.
After the "taste test," the participants were given an orange sheet that instructed them that there was pixie dust sprinkled in their drink and they trusted Thompson without knowing him. The drinks were not really spiked; however, students learned what to do next time they were offered a drink.
"Go with the person to see where they get it from," Thompson said. "If the drink is in a can, open it yourself because they can easily slip something in it. Cover your drink with the palm of your hand to ensure nothing can get in it."
The one-hour video showed how drinking and driving has affected the lives of many young people. The real life stories presented footage of teenage car accident victims and how their lives have changed as a result.
The video was not shy, with graphic material of open surgery, broken parts, damaged vehicles, and vicious patients. Some students walked away silently after the video, while others had a look of disbelief.
To encourage students in the future, e-mails will be sent out to those who viewed the video. In addition, t-shirts were given to show gratitude of supporting SSB.
For more information or questions about safe sex, go to www.smartersex.org.