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For most children, playing is learning and learning is playing. Sex games are exciting, and instructive, like all games. But they also have a special kind of excitement, because they give a special kind of secret feeling.
Secret sex games
Sex games are mostly played in secret, because children feel that they are forbidden. But some games, like ‘tig’ or ‘hide and seek’ or ‘kiss in the ring’ are not forbidden, though they are a little bit sexual. It’s very exciting to run after someone that you find attractive, and to try and touch them. Normally you would be too shy to do that, or the other would find it unpleasant and become angry. But when you play a game, it’s a rule that you must run after them and touch them, so then it’s all right. The same goes for hiding in a secret place and waiting for someone to find you: it’s a little scary but very exciting, not only the hiding but also the seeking. And then there are games where boys and girls have to do something, and one boy and one girl have to kiss each other in front of the others. Sometimes you’re lucky if the boy is your favourite, sometimes you get the ugliest and meanest boy in the class to kiss, so you show that you don’t care for it at all, which makes him blush like a beetroot.
Adults and sex games
The secret games are not all equally secret. For instance, you can imitate famous singers or movie stars. Girls like putting on make-up, changing their hair or wearing a wig, high heels and a sexy dress, and put on a show of dancing and singing in front of the audience. Some grown-ups find it ok if you play such a game, others forbid it, because they feel it has something to do with sex and they are very afraid of that and hate it. They want children to remain ‘innocent’ for as long as possible. They feel guilty about their own sexual feelings and actions and they think it’s better for you not to know anything about sex except that it’s dangerous. Of course they were young once. Who knows what made them afraid.
Boys and girls can show each other their sex organs in a game like ‘doctor’. One plays the patient and the other then does the examining, usually with one or more ‘instruments’ such as spoons from the kitchen or a real thermometer. Sometimes the doctor is not gentle enough, like in real life, and that spoils the fun. But some doctors are really very nice and then it’s a pleasure being poked and felt, and you want to do the same yourself.
Playing ‘house’ is the most complete game of all. You play a married couple, like father and mother. They do lots of things together, like coming home from work, eating and drinking, feeding baby, watching a a little TV, maybe talk about work, and then finally decide to go to bed, brushing teeth, lying under the blanket together, turning off the light and…. What exactly they do then is not always clear. The game may be finished, or an imitation sexual intercourse is played.
Most people start playing sex games before they are ten or twelve. They play games with friends or brothers and sisters, or other relatives, sometimes younger, sometimes older. Games are ways of discovering the world and of developing social skills and intelligence. Children who grow up without playing any games (there are very few such children) become seriously handicapped. They do not know how to behave with others, their thinking is confused and their posture and movements are clumsy. Similarly, sex games probably play a positive role in the formation of sexual skills in relationships later in life.
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