Saturday, May 31, 2014

Uh oh...we're talking about...SEX! *gasps*

When I was pregnant with my first son I of course thought of a million things I had ahead of me. One of those things was the inevitable sex talk that would come when my son was in the pre-teen years. But one thing I wasn't quite prepared for was that particular talk wasn't going to fully wait until then.
Let's face it, kids have questions, they are curious. And you are not going to be able to avoid that particular talk until the pre-teen/teen years. And you do not want to wait and let school teach your child about sex. I have heard many stories that some parents actually do rely on a school to have that talk with their children. Many figure well that's what sex education classes are for right? WRONG! You do not want your child walking around unaware of everything. I'm not saying go full hog and sit your toddler or elementary aged child down and have the whole talk with them at once. But let them know what their body parts are called. And let them know what they are for and that it is not okay for anyone to touch them there. Let them know they do not have to be ashamed of their body or their body parts but there is a time and a place for bringing up those subjects.

A lot of parents get worried to even tell their children a correct term for their body parts like penis, vagina, breasts, testicles, etc. But it's nothing to be embarrassed about and it's nothing to be ashamed about. It's awkward to talk about more than anything, but just push past that feeling. When you get nervous and uncomfortable and try to cover up the actual name for these parts then your children could pick up on that and be embarrassed also. Not to mention they won't be getting accurate information. And that's not good, you want them to be comfortable with themselves, and they need to understand.
Because girls and boys alike are going to be curious about their parts and how they differ from other childrens. They want to know what certain things are for and why they have them, and it's up to you to give them that information. My kids know the names of their body parts, and they know that nobody other than mom/dad/themselves/doctors are allowed to touch them there. And when they have questions just answer them. My oldest son asked where babies come from recently and how they get in and out of a woman's belly. He also asked why boys can't have babies. I explained these things to him in a way he can easily understand. About how men have sperm and women have ovaries and eggs. How the sperm and egg meet and make a baby. How boys have a penis and girls have a vagina, and only girls carry babies. Once I answered his questions he didn't ask any further questions, but both our boys know they can ask questions. They know it's natural to be curious. I don't want to send them out in the world and have their questions answered by anyone else.

If you consider something taboo and you don't broach the subject or answer questions as they come up then you are just teaching your children that they should be ashamed of their bodies. Not only that but when the time comes for them to make a decision they may not have all the facts to make a decision. Kids are a lot smarter than many people give them credit for.

So don't be ashamed to talk to your child about sex and body parts. It's important that you answer any questions they have, and give them the facts in a way they can understand. Don't recite from a book but really talk to them and listen to them. Don't send them out in the world curious and unprepared because you don't know what kind of answers they could get from someone else. It's our job to teach them. It's not something to be ashamed of, don't be embarrassed.
And you will probably find that if you answer the questions they have now and at least teach them the basics that your future "talk" won't be as bad as your dreading it to be.

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