I recently took my thirteen year-old daughter on a Carnival Cruise - and she got a big dose of sex education at sea! We saw lots of skin and some doors were opened for good conversations.
I’m actually okay with this. The week before the cruise, my daughter asked me “What’s a boner?” while we were driving. Her BFF said she thought it was something boys put inside their pants for a trick.
I explained erections. I always answer her questions about body and sex stuff honestly.
Here's what we saw on the ship:
We went to a show the first night of the cruise. All of the female dancers had on bustiers and thongs. We saw a whole lot of tiny, toned tushies. All of the shows with the dancers were a bit risque. During the final show on the last night, two of the male dancers stripped down to their underwear. Little black briefs.
The waiters did a dance at dinner most nights. There was a particular waiter that seemed to think he was a stripper. He was working a pole and everything. The ladies at the table next to us pulled out cash and shouted, “Make it rain!”
If something says it is recommended for 18 and up, you should probably listen and get your kids and teens out of there. Since I’m open about sexualityand pretty lenient on what my daughter watches as far as language and innuendo go, I thought she'd be fine when we went to an adult's only game called “Quest.” We were divided up into teams and then our team leader had to run up on the stage to show the host whatever item was requested.
- Me (with my daughter watching)
- A college guy who was sitting next to me who wascruising with his parents (they refused to play from the start)
- A newlywed couple sitting in front of us
The newlywed husband was our captain. The game started off innocent enough. The hosts requested:
- a schedule of the ships events
- two Sail and Sign cards (room keys)
- A lady wearing men’s shoes
- A picture of a baby
Then it suddenly got way more intense! They went from requesting a photo of a baby to wanting a dirty photo of someone on the team! The newlyweds quickly pulled some up on their phones and the husband ran to the stage. Then the wife turned around and SHOWED it to us – ALL OF US, my daughter included. It was her husband on his stomach in a bathtub. Naked. My kiddo still says her eyes are scarred for life.
Our team kind of fizzled out as the antics got crazier and other teams were much more enthusiastic. We were done playing long before they asked for ”two team members demonstrating a favorite sexual position.” However, we were still watching. The girlio was so embarrassed she censored the game herself and covered her own eyes during the really "mature" parts!
Love and marriage show
The “love and marriage” show did not say it was for 18 and up. My little travel buddy and I went last year and other than the “strangest place you’ve ever made whoopie” question (someone answered “Wendy’s drive-thru”!!!!), it was tame.
Our newlywed pals from the Quest game were chosen to go on stage to play. They’d been married three days. There was a couple married 17 years and one married 35 years.
The host was the cruise director, who decided to refer to sex as “ice cream” since there were kids in the audience. Thus I have a teen still giggling at the mention of ice cream weeks after getting back on land.
Most of the questions were tame. ”Describe your husband’s last girlfriend before you” got some colorful responses, which he spelled instead of actually saying. ”W-h-o-r-e,” “S-k-a-n-k,” “crazy b-i-t-c-h.” The newlywed man apparently didn’t end his last relationship on good terms!
My girl didn’t have much interest in “the strangest place you’ve ever had ice cream.” (Answersincluded this cruise ship, the kitchen and a jet ski in the lake – that one was from the couple married 17 years.)
However, “How many times a month do you and your partner agree you should have ice cream?” caught her attention. The couple married 17 years got a match with 21 times. The host questioned how they got to that number. My daughter whispered “because of her period!” Someone else wrote down 30.
While we were floating in the ocean the next day, my princess said, “There’s no way someone can have ice cream 30 times a month! It just isn’t possible.”
I asked why she thought that. I learned she thinks:
- you can only do it once a day
- can only do it at night
- can only do it in bed
- and can’t do it on your period.
I explained that none of that is actually true. Blew her little mind.
There you have it – sex education on Carnvial cruiseline!
More from parenting