I've been thinking a lot lately about talking to teens and pre-teens about sex. My parents' approach to the sex talk was basically DON'T DO IT and that was it. I know that approach absolutely did not work for me (I became sexually active as a young teen), so I try to be very available to my 14-year-old daughter for questions, and I also let her know about the mistakes I made at her age.
I feel like the better informed she is, the better the chances are that when a time comes that she is being pressured to have sex or is thinking about doing it, she will be able to make a smart decision or at least have the information needed to keep herself safe and protected.
I'm interested to hear how other tween/teen-Mamas are approaching the sex issue with their daughters.
I've started. I agree with you that the less you talk about it, the more likely it is to happen. And if you think they haven't already heard about it, you're misinformed. This age group is more than aware of the sex around them. Best to talk about it, leave the lines of communication open, and never let them feel like it's secretive. If they don't talk to us about it, they WILL talk to someone!
My boy gets really grossed out when I try to talk to him, but my daughter is more open. They are at a curious age. I don't give her more info than I think she can handle, but I'm glad I've made her comfortable enough to know she can ask me anything. She also opens up a lot right before she goes to sleep when I am saying prayers with her and telling her good night.
"She also opens up a lot right before she goes to sleep when I am saying prayers with her and telling her good night." Isnt' this the coolest thing? When they're relaxed, comfortable and their guard is down, it's really surprising what they'll come to you with, right? I love that. It's wonderful that you've instilled that trust in your daughter.
I so agree with you about leaving the lines of communication open. It's not just a one time sex talk like they used to portray it on television. It's an ongoing discussion that never really ends. And with all the mixed sexualized messages that kids get from TV, music, magazines and classmates, can you imagine the questions they must have?
I've got a few more years before I have to start chatting with a boy (my boy is 5), but if you do figure out a way to get yours to open up, do share. I'll write 'em down and save them.
I have started talking to both my kids (8, 14) in an age appropriate way. I want them to know all of the correct names for their body parts, feel comfortable talking to me about any of it and not be ashamed of sexuality. Of course, I don't want them to start early, who does? But I also want to be prepared...ie, avoid pregnancy and std's...
My daughter got the book "The Care and Keeping of You: The Body Book for Girls" at a fairly young age. I wanted her to be fully prepared for what was ahead....which I wasn't at her age. I started my period at 10 and it's proven that family history has a huge part in when girls start. There was no way I could let her head into that unprepared. She's always asked tons of questions and I've always answered. I never just sat her down and talked to her, but told her if she needed to know, I'd tell her or she should ask. She's always asked!!
Not long ago (now about to turn 13), I asked her if she knew what sex was. She rolled her eyes and said "yes MOM, and we don't need to talk about it and I have NO questions". I left it at that!! I have total confidence in her and the information that I've given her. She's not the least bit shy when it comes to life situations. She knows right from wrong and I'm just going to keep believing in her and what we've taught her....even into the teens!!
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