Growing up, I never had a sex talk until the night before my wedding. My sister sat me down (thank the Lord) and told me a few things she thought I should know. Being inexperienced in the area of sex meant I did not have a clue. I am grateful for my sister giving me the lowdown.
Bean and I decided early on that our kids were going to know about sex and their bodies, whether they liked it or not. Generally, they cringe every time we bring the subject up. I tell them one day they will be happy we were so open with them. The man-cubs keep assuring me that will never happen. So, let’s begin.
“How to Talk to your Kids about Sex”
1. Start talking. Now. Jump in.
- One morning, a certain man-cub who was seven years old at the time, came in with an erection. It was such a surprise to this boy. Bean handled it like a champ and said it was perfectly normal, happens all the time for man-cubs. From that moment on, we talked about sex and our bodies very normally because it is NORMAL. We are all sexual beings! Just be age appropriate. Also, make sure you talk about their private parts by their actual name. Penis, vagina, breasts, etc. Don’t be shy. This could possibly help protect them from sexual abuse. Take any opportunity to talk about sex. Create a safe place for them to ask questions. No question should be out of bounds or shameful! Be prepared because it could get awkward…
2. Make friends with the awkward.
- It might be awkward! However, don’t let it stop you. Do you think I loved talking to my man-cubs about masturbation? Be honest. Tell them it can be a bit awkward. The more you broach the subject, the more normal it will become. I have a unique philosophy on masturbation and needed to communicate it to my boys because there are different messages being preached at church and out in the world.
- If you are not comfortable with your own sexuality, your kids will pick up on that right away! If there is shame or a bad connotation to sex, it will be communicated, whether you think so or not. Seek counsel, healing, therapy. Please don’t pass it on to the next generation.
4. Don’t wait!
- When should you start? When your child begins to discover their body. There are lots of books out there that can help you. We used The Boy’s Body Book and Almost 12 as well as Every Young Man’s Battle.
5. Put your teenage kids in charge of their own sexuality.
- I did not come up with this one on my own. A friend discipled me in this aspect. What do I mean? Trust your kids. After talking with them and giving them the lowdown on all aspects of sex, trust them to take charge of their sexuality. I don’t have tons of rules on my man-cubs. They come up with their own rules. Yes, indeed they do. I’ve raised them believing that sex is natural, sex is fun, sex is best when it’s one on one. I am here to offer advice and help, but they are in charge of their own sexuality. It has been communicated from early on that we believe sex should be saved for marriage and to have multiple sexual partners can damage their bodies and their souls. It has also been communicated that sexual desire is normal, particularly for teens! It’s what you do with the desire that is important. I communicate often that I trust them. Bean and I have a healthy sexual relationship. This is embarrassingly clear to my boys. I ask them how they are doing, particularly with the temptation of pornography. Yes, I will be writing a post on How to Talk to Your Kids about Pornography.