When is it appropriate to talk about the birds and the bees?

There is a lot of debate on how much information is TOO much information. When should you teach your children about sex education?

40  Answers

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If you believe in the Bible, and believe in training up a child in it as the way they should go so that they will not depart fromit, then there is no age that is too young. I have 1 stepdaughter, 6 boys, and 1 daughter. My husband and I have ministered to many families in inner healing and deliverance. Thus, we have trained our children according to the Word of God about the "birds & the bees" based on the Word of God, and NEVER lie about anything for any reason. My youngest is 5 years old and may not understand how "it" works or what exactly happens, but he knows it is a very sacred act between a husband and his wife, whatever it is. And when he reaches the age to understand fully, he will remember first that it is a sacred act, and he will know that Mom & Dad have continually provided teaching and answers to the questions he may have, and he will know what God has to say about it, that sex outside of marriage is sin and there are consequences to sin. Our 19 year old son is still pure- waiting for marriage. He has a girlfriend and it is deep in his heart to stay pure and not take advantage of his girlfriend , or any girl for that matter. He regards women as precious jewels and does not want to shame her, his parents, or his Lord and Saviour Jesus, or himself, or bring grief to God, his Heavenly Father. Be Blessed!

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Leslie that is the most wonderful thing that I have heard another parent say. We have pretty much told our children the same and it is very enlightening to know that other parents use the Word of God in their teachings.

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I have 18, 14 daughters and 11 son. I told them about their body parts every time they bathed beginning at 2. At age six I can them an overview about their bodies and sex and Gods design for it. Then from that day on I watched for teachable moments. The biggest help was I started when they were young having sit downs with them so they could pick my brain so they would always feel comfortable with telling me things they heard in the world or on tv.

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Like most everyone has stated, it depends on the child. My older daughter started asking me about how I got a baby inside of me at the age of just 2! I only gave her enough info to satisfy her questions, nothing too detailed. She's 16 now (almost) and scared to DEATH of sex (yay! LOL) since there are fluids involved and she thinks bodily fluids are disgusting. Actually, her BOYFRIEND explained it best to her I think. He's a little older, has had sex but is not pressuring her in any way (I'd tell his mother and we would both kill him). He told her that when 2 people are in love, they don't really think about all the bodily fluids much, but after the fact, it's gross (yay again, LOL!). She knew all the body parts REALLY young though and when I had to take our son in for a re-circumsision (it re-attached, office proceedure and she was there with me - I'm an Army wife so hubby was away). I was so embarrassed when she was jumping up and down to see her baby brother yelling, "MOMMY! THEY ARE CUTTING OFF HIS PENIS!" Ugh. Memories....

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Almost from day one ! .. Talking about body parts, hers mine and daddy's .. then I was pregnant with her brother and talked about the baby being inside me [she was 3] she knew where the baby would get out .. and how .. and what a c- section was - and we watched all those birthing programmes on TV .. she loved that. Gradually I told her .. and her brother everything, slowly over the years. Eg, our bathroom door was never locked - so she and he learned about periods and tampons and about me being crampy !! I answered questions as they arose at a level that they could understand - and never shyed away from any of them.

My children are now 31, and 27 and are fine! And my daughter has children of her own who know all about bodies too !

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My mom was like that with me.. i knew everything about sex by the time i was 5 and I waited till i was married to have sex myself. I now have a three year old and a boy on the way and I have already started talking to my daughter about things.. but like my mom, I answer the questions and if she askes more I give more information.. she knows that babies come from a sperm and egg and that the baby will come out of my vagina and she loves to watch the shows like A Baby Story or Baby's first day. I want her to know she can talk to me about sex or her body at anytime and i'll answer it. My mom never had that.. and she learned from her peers in highschool about sex and she experimented with it because she wanted to know more about it.. and she was glad that she told me and my sisters everything we wanted to know. When i got married my mom and I sat down and had a nice long talk.. it was refreshing to know that I can talk to her about such things and even after my wedding I still ask her questions that she answers.

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As soon as they start asking questions. make sure what you say is age appropriate though. it is important to talk to your kids about this topic as it will make it easier for them to come to you when they are teenagers. It worked for me all 3 of my teens came to me when they were thinking about taking that final step. I only have my 9 yr old to go and hope for the same outcome.

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I always followed mu "gut" and used timely situations to discuss the subject. I never shyed away from their questions and at times, felt uncomfortable but knew it would pay off someday. Now my 18 and 16 yr old daughters know they can come to me with any issues and I will be open and honest with them. My 6 year old son is another story for me anyway... I'm hoping my husband steps up with this one=)

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When my kids (now 11, 7, 6) were beginning to ask questions I was given some helpful advice. Ask them a question about their question. Ex, if they asked about body parts I would first ask what they had heard and then clarify if I did not agree or had more info for them. That way I knew exactly what they were thinking and knew just how much info to give. They have continued to come to me with questions they hear from friends at school and I am glad they are comfortable coming to me even after hearing it from their friends.

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Say nothing until they ask and then keep it simple. Only answer what they ask and nothing more. As they grow they'll ask more poiniant questions and then they'll
be ready for your answer

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268 33

i did mostly the same asd well and being open and as honest as possible due to what ever age they were. From the age of 5 the boys aksed basic questions upto mid teens about more sexual questions and activities. i felt i did right

22 0

We've always been frank and direct with our kids. We use the correct terms for body parts. If they come to us with questions we give what we feel is the correct age appropriate response. More often than not kids are just looking for a simple answer not a biology ln.

When I was pregnant with my 2nd daughter my oldest(5yr at the time) became obsess and worried about how this baby was going to come out of me. Apparently she & her cousin(-also 5) had discussions on how this happens. My sis had a c-section so my niece insisted that's how babies are born. When my dd asked why I don't have a scar like her aunt I explain the natural birth process. Her response at the time was to shout out in shock : "I came from there?" as she pointed down to her legs..as we were on a crowded train at the time it was quite experience...lol

Now 6yrs later she just turned 11 and just started middle school and because she will now be going to school with other kids that are much older I wanted to arm her with proper and correct information before her head gets filled with some of the nonsense I've heard Tweens & teens talk about. I started off by asking her question so I could know just how much she knew and didn't know we had a long conversation that covered periods, babies , boys, sex and love, more importantly I stressed how important it was for her to respect her own body and not to expect less from anyone else. When we get a chance we plan on getting some books on puberty and a young girls body to read together. It surprised and delighted me that she wasn't at all embarrassed to have this conversation. Her only thing was she was horrified by the idea of monthly periods. She asked me when does it end, and I tried to explain and she shakes her head no. When does it "end" as in don't have to deal with it anymore.I told her about menopause and that more than likely be around the same age as my mother which was pretty late...my poor baby looks at me and says:"you mean I'm going to have this thing for at least 40 years?" my answer "welcome to womanhood sweetie"

I believe we should be open and honest with kids even when if we're given them a water down version of the truth. Body parts and what goes on inside their bodies is natural. When things are hush hush it brings a level of shame. That's the last thing I want my girls to feel about their bodies.

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I answer my kids when they ask me. Depending on their age and what kind of question, that is. My son is 9 and he knows the whole story about how babies are made. As he grows older he will also be taught how to protect himself and his partner and that no means no! My daughter knows almost the whole story and she´s 7. If I can give them facts I will. Without shame!

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I told my daughters when they were 5, 7 and 9. My five year old took it all matter-of-factly and the older girls were embarrassed. I was glad to have the youngest ask a million questions like it was no big deal because her sisters would not have gotten the nerve to ask but listened very intently to the answers. My children are now grown and all tell me they were glad they knew because they were able to correct a lot of misinformation that their friends had.

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I began with my now adult children when they were very young, answering their questions (with age-appropriate responses) as they asked, if I didn't know the exact answer then we would find out together if possible. If your small children don't get the answers they need from you, then you can't really expect a young teen to turn to you...they'll simply go where they've always gone before, to their friends, and are in great danger of getting the wrong information.

But be careful, the first questions "where did I come from" doesn't necessarily indicate a need to know how babies are made, very often it means from what country did they come from, as their world is enlarged by beginning playgroup or kindergarten. So try to determine exactly what they mean by their question first before launching into an unwanted dialogue. God bless.

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I am a parenting expert . As a columnist for Pediatrics for Parents I wrote an article that answers this question: http://www.drkarenruskin.com/articles/the-birds-and-the-bees/ Listen to my audio interview on this topic on demand where an MD asks me this question and all the most commonly asked parenting birds and bees questions: http://www.pedsforparents.libsyn.com/ Show #109. In addition to providing counseling in my private practice and also being a parent, I am the author of a parenting book: The 9 Key Techniques, I am the regular mental health expert for FOX 25 News Boston, and am often on national radio programs. I hope this info is helpful. Let me know. Warmly, Dr. Karen Ruskin http://www.drkarenruskin.com/

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First, please know that my advice is free which is why I provided a link to an article and a link to a radio interview, both for free. As a fellow mom busy like the rest of us between transporting to and from activities and pick ups, to doing laundry, dishes, cooking, working full time balancing work life and home life as a parent, a spouse, and of the sandwich generation, providing counseling to clients full time, being on the radio, television, and writing articles-- just like most moms reading this we are all busy and can all share our many things we are so busy doing. I was taking time out to provide what I thought was an answer to genuinely concerned parents. I am sure most moms would understand my "short cut" was sincerely trying to help, especially those that know me. Since I had already documented a clear answer to this question in article form, instead of copying and pasting I provided a link which took less time for me. Anyone who knows me knows that. I have many free articles on my website about lots of parenting topics genuinely to help others. With that all said, for those that do not feel like clicking on the article link to read my answer to this question nor the radio link to hear a full 30 minute discussion on this very topic which gives it the full attention that I sincerely feel it deserves, here is a quick answer to a question that deserves more: Children, when they hit puberty, do not suddenly become curious about their body; it happens way before that, to the surprise of many parents. So it is never too soon to talk about how and where babies come from. Certainly the details must be tailored to your child’s age due to comprehensive abilities and emotional development, but it is important not to ignore your child’s questions nor change the topic. The young child wants to understand his body, and that is why he asks questions and makes comments. A young child can indeed develop discomfort in discussing his feelings if he feels his parent is uncomfortable discussing it, and very quickly even the young child will learn not to express himself if time and time again his voice is stifled by the lack of responsiveness. To help parents feel more comfortable in talking with their children about sexuality, I typically recommend that parents think about themselves as an educator. For young children the topic of sex and sexuality is not taboo, rather, they are curious and interested in their body. You should take each of your child’s questions, each comment, and each behavior and view it as a window of opportunity for you to help educate your child. It when your child is young that it is best to have these types of discussions. If parents have not discussed sexuality with their children when they were young, then their children will be less likely to go to their parents as their source of information. As parents you want your child to learn that you are interested in discussing this topic, and any topic, with her. You do not want your child to feel you close the door to her thoughts, or that the topic of sexuality is wrong. I hope this info helps the many moms that are wondering about the answer to this question. Best, Dr. Karen Ruskin http://www.drkarenruskin.com

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As an elementary teacher I would say it is truly a mistake not giving young children the facts. Maybe it forces them to grow up faster than you'd like, but then a baby will do that too. And that is a reality in the elementary schools folks, with kids getting their periods at 9, waiting until 10 is often too late. I'd say a very basic explanation needs to be presented by around 7 to avoid accidental pregnancy.

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I have a 7 and 5 year old. My kids can differenciate male parts from female parts and they know that they are private. We have had the discussion over keeping our special parts covered and never letting anyone see them or touch them unless it's mommy or a doctor. ( Only if she is having issues of course.) My oldest is learning about the menstrual cycle and why we grow hair in different places as well as use deoderant. Soon, we will be approaching the "talk" but I feel that 2nd grade isn't quite the time. I am trying to maintain her innocence as long as I can but I know the conversation is approaching! I feel that in this day and age, kids are being more and more educated at earlier ages. I am trying to wait it out but if she starts coming home with questions about sex, I will address them at that time. The time is right when the child is ready and that is for every parent to decide.

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i love that my daughter's doc at her check up a few months ago said that only mommy and yur doc can look down there but yeah she knows the name of her girls parts she knopws the word vagina except she calls it her " gina " " mommy can u check my gina ? " i check down there cuz sometime she doesnt wipe very well and can get red

4 6

I started really early. They become curious about there bodies before they can even walk (or maybe that's just boys). I used age appropriate discussions. But, I was adamant about avoiding cutesy terms. A explanation of girls bodies happened at around 3 yrs old after a quick trip to a public restroom with me and a horrifying (for him) and comical (for me) realization that I was missing something. We started having very organic conversations about sex at about 5. We've had open and frank discussions every since.
Like other moms have commented, I'm really afraid of the wait until they ask approach. Your kids don't live in a vacuum. By the time they get around to asking you, if ever, they've already seen and heard a lot of possible inappropriate and/or inaccurate information.

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It depends on yor child, AND how comfortable you are answering questions. We tailored it to our daughters age. When she was little she was happy with babies coming from two parents that love each other so much they got to have a baby. We answered questions as they came up instead of sitting her down for the talk. Our daughter gets overwhelmed easily and that would just not be productive for her. We talked about periods when she asked at the grocery store. Then safe sex came up as we walked by condoms in the store another day. We waited til we got to the car though because its embarrasing for kids. Just try to gauge when you are giving good info or too much and you will be great. There are very good websites that have info on how to give "the talk" as well.

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Argghh!!! I have a 10 yr old daughter and a 4yr old son! And I'm scared to death!!!

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When they ask. And they will. My daughter was picking her underwear out of her bottom one time (and she still does) :), when she was 2 years old. I asked her why she was scratching her bottom and after she told me why, she asked me what a "bottom" was...then she asked what THIS part was (it was her vagina) and I told her. Then a few days later, she came home from daycare and told me she wanted a kiss. I gave her one, and she said, "No a kiss like Grammy and Grampy give each other!" I explained that we don't kiss like that, that it's not appropriate or necessary that she and I or she and anyone else should ever do. She was confused about how grammy and grampy like each other enough to kiss like that, and don't I like her enough to do the same? Had to break it down and explain it to her, and in doing so, I explained about touching other people, permission to do so from others, etc. I didn't necessarily go into the sex talk at that time-just the edges of it.

I actually just had that talk with her-not sex-but intimacy-2 weeks ago. And it was because she asked. :)

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It should be an ongoing conversation starting as early as potty training and continuing through to adulthood. Just let your kids questions guide you.
My six year old son has asked about my period and knows that it happens because women's bodies get ready for a baby every month, but don't always get pregnant. We are expecting in December and he knows that daddy put half the ingredients for the baby in my body and God mixed them with my egg to create the baby. He didn't ask how Daddy put them there so we have not talked about that yet, but we have talked alot about how the baby will be born and he plans on attending the birth, so we have watched video and looked at books about pregnancy and birth.
My three year old has even asked some questions about why his penis stands up (he is potty training) so I explained that there are a lot of nerve endings--things that let to feel things--that make it stand up when it is touched a lot. He was happy with that answer and less concerned about why his body was doing something he didn't understand.
I don't know when we will start discussing intercourse or other sex acts, but I think by making sure my boys are comfortable asking questions by giving them simple honest answers we are laying a good foundation.

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well as I see it I feel from the age of 10 years old and its up to the parents whether or not they have sex ed taught at school but you do get the parents that still live in the stone age and those that are responsible enough can explain to their children but hey sex ed is taught at the school Im at and My own child attends although a note was sent home for parents to allow their child to attend and I also explain to my child about sex and shes 10 and also the proper names are given when I tell her

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what age is appropiate to talk about sex i have a 9 year ols boy who is asking questions

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When my son was 6 he went to San Diego with his dad and saw a well dressed man in a convertible with lots of women in the car. He came home and said " mommy, mommy!!!! I want to be a pimp!!!!" OMG Is what I thought, then the next step was to talk to him and tell him and tell him what a pimp really was. We sat on the stairs and I found the correct words that he understood....I have always been open about sex and the pro's and con's it has. He is now 17 has his first girl friend and no she is not pregnant. We as parents have sat down with him and had the "talk". He is the oldest of 8 between his dad and I remarrying and wants nothing to do with kids...he is a well focused young man who wants an education first then a well paying job, then comes marriage and by then hopefully a child...any age is appropriate...my daughter is 7 years old, but we I have been talking to her since she was 5 years old....there is so much sex on tv, even when trying to watch National Geo Animal Channel the animals are "mating"...she had questions so I answered them!

8 25

I gave my daughter a book about the changes a woman's body goes through during puberty when she was 8 and, as an avid reader, she read it cover to cover four times. In fact, when her period came at 10, she was cool, calm and collected, calling me from school. When she was 11, we sat down together and watched the Oprah episode with Dr. Laura, after which, we talked as much as she wanted to. At 12, she was taught about the "Human Endochrine System" in science class. She wasn't terribly comfortable with some of the homework. Other than that, I have answered questions as honestly as possible, but have not given any formal speech. (She turns 13 in September).

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I, too, bought books for my oldest daughter when she was 9. One was about puberty and was "Where did I come From?" Both of which were extremely helpful! I told her to read through them as slowly as she wanted, and to come to me or her daddy when she had any questions. She did. And we explained to her everything she wanted to know....which happened to be everything. lol She is now almost 13 and I feel totally comfortable knowing she knows how things work. My now 9-year-old daughter (my second child) knows as well, to some extent. We will do the same thing with her when she is ready. As for my 7-year-old son? That is a day I am dreading. lol

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Like Lukithia Evans, I started it when they were old enough to identify their 'hands', 'eyes', etc. It was a gradual thing. Having 3 girls & 1 boy, the girls were prepared about what would be happening to their body around 7 or so, just in case if they started with their periods early, they wouldn't be scared. Don't get me wrong, talking about the birds & bees doesn't mean you have to give them absolutely every single detail. Take into consideration their age & the individual & tell them what they need to know - you can always add more information along the way, especially when they have questions...
It's better the kids get their information from their parents/doctors than their friends

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Talk to her and ask her who she wants to do birds and bees with

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This topic is nothing to be ashamed of or embarassed by, especially if you are a mother opening the sacred door of knowledge to your daughters. A young girl's transition (having her period) is natural, and it should be honored. I especially think that multi-generational aspects are important (involving aunts and grandmothers and female cousins). It’s really very special to celebrate such milestones of change together, growing close with other women, and I regret that this was not done in my family. Instead, menarche was nicknamed "the curse" and it was something gross and dirty. Not true! Discussion regarding how adults fall in love, how babies are conceived, and how families are raised are special and blessed. GOOGLE "The Red Tent" ... this shows modern gatherings that mark an empowering connection among females of all ages, from young to old. Menstruation brings us into womanhood – a time to rejoice and be supported by other women. From this point onwards, our lives are filled with occasions when empowerment by and between women is the perfect way to celebrate... and sometimes, the support is more important than the celebration! From the first time a female falls in love, to the hot flashes of menopause, a Red Tent gathering honors the collective power of women. For instance, have a look at what this website offers: http://redtentparty.wordpress.com/ There are many more such groups... perhaps in your own area... or perhaps you should start one with your daughters.

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I'm a mother of all boys 15 1/2, 13 and 10 and i think i waited to late for my oldest I just tried since he's now girl crazy, but seems like his friends has already filled his head with what THEY! think they know so what ever I say about sex he thinks he knows everything already and I'm just old fashion (I'm 39...) so my answer is start early before they learn elsewhere.

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When they start asking. My daughter age, maybe one, asked me the difference between boys and girls. I said: "Boys have a penis, girls have a vagina." When she asked where babies come from, I said "Heaven." Keep it simple at that age. Keep the conversation going throughout their chidhood. It's going to get more complicated as the child grows, but life does. Explain what you need to as you find the need. When I was a child, my step mother broke her arm, I was probably 4, and non verbal. I thought they were going to amputate her arm, because I didn't understand that sort of stuff. You need to explain what you need to explain whenever you need to explain it, reguardless of the subject.

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I think from when they can talk. Begin to teach them the body parts and let them know those parts ared precious and it is not for anyone to touch them.

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My daughter is six and my son 10 and we are very open with them both about the basics on sex and how babies are made. I don't feel sex is actually anything to be embarrassed about; we all came from two people having sex and it's a very natural thing.

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2 0

I think you should talk to your daughter when she has her period.

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0 8

I believe we must answer our children's curiosity! Without delving into details. Lying to the children will only cause them confusion.

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I have a 10 yr old and a 4 yr old and everytime I take my little one a shower I talk to her about her body parts and how to clean them, I also tell her that no one is allowed to touch her in her privite bo parts. Those are only for her eyes to see and that if anyone touches her she should tell me. It's better to let your kids know things then to keep them in the dark. Thats sad to say but with the way the world is now days we have no choice. My 10 yr. old knows quit a bit and I know its crazy but kids talk at school and give other kids alot of info so it's best that you are educating your kids and not there friends. We as parents need to just talk to are kids both as parents and friends. I tell my 10 yr old that if she has a question ask me or her father. She said my father and I said yes their is no reason you should be scared to talk to both of us becase there is only so much info that I could give you and there is so much your dad can give you. Hope I helped a some.

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My youngest is 5 and knows the proper name for body parts and that is all she wants or needs to know. My 10 year old is starting puberty. We checked out a book about the changes she is going through. She read it herself and will ask questions from time to time. She knows what will happen when she gets her period, but not really what it means. When she starts asking more questions, then I will tell her what it means and about sex. She is going into the 5th grade and I am expecting any day for her to start asking more questions. I will tell her all she needs to know.

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There's an old saying, "Curiosity killed the cat!" I think anytime that your children come to you and ask you questions, and the first one is "Mommy, where does a baby come from?", this is the perfect opportunity to begin small sex talks. Answer truthfully, but it only has to be as detailed as the questioning. Eventually, your child will ask the questions that matter and you will be fully engaged in "the talk". I learned this over the years, and it has been beneficial for me.

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HI there, I have three children the first two are boys and the last a girl...for many reasons I did no want a girl, but I had one and boy do I know why I did not want one...lol While I would not change her for the world I have to admit when she was born I knew why I did not want a girl, boy was she BORN with attitude..and I can just see my Mum had she lived long enough to see her say...pay back time...

Well I know things r being said in the playground from snip bits she drops but this last year she has been developing buds, I have bought her basic thin bras but have now moved to more padded ones..at first she did not want to wear them cause the boys commented as they all change together a they where only 8 but my Kaitlin is big boned and I thought maybe this was why she was budding..

last week we had a big issue at school that seemed to be so so so out of character that I had to fact the reality of hormones and periods so the reality that boys were now not to be joked about nor was the chastity belt. However this so scared me.. what do I tell her, firstly she has to understand that she will have periods but to be honest its easier to explain the WHOLE process/cycle thus we have the SEX talk...

Even at 9 she is embarrassed and cringing when we speak of these issues and to be honest I personally believe such issues really are not a general gossip subject.

We discussed periods, and why you have them and what they were all about...we then went to tesco's and brought some pads...

I saw some books at a car boot and thought I wanted an easy way to explain periods, hormones etc I did not want to make her look at books with lots of boys penises as I thought this would embarrass her especially if I gave it to her...

Personally this was a shock to me as I was 15 and a half before my periods and so never discussed it in depth with my mum but my heart so goes out to my baby girl who appears to be going though this so much earlier...and she is still my baby.

I have explained the basis bits and answered questions both asked and not but I have with held the boys erections, wet dreams etc as I do really believe at 9 she is so to young even if she has periods.

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God all these Mums think they need to inform so early, I personally am so scared that I personally will take her childhood away hence I did not want books that had detailed pictures in. Last week her elder brother broke up with his girlfriend and she whispered to me she had her William for a year and her brother had only managed 8 months...while shocked I do know in my heart she is still an innocent and I want that for her I dont want other girls telling her facts she does not need at the moment,,

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Like others, I started with my daughter very young with body parts, good touch/bad touch, and answering questions as they arose. When she got her first "boyfriend" in the 4th grade (mainly that just meant they ate together at lunch and waited for car pool pick up together after school), even at that age we sat down and had a talk about if a boy ever tried to make her do something she did not want, kick him to the curb. I was really proud of her when she broke up with him for being mean to her (not in a sexual way, just a bratty way) because it showed me she was willing to stand up for herself. Now that she started her period and she had to get the Gardisil shots, I have had some more pointed and detailed discussions with her about STDs (she wanted to know what the shots were for so that was a good teachable moment) and that biologically she would be able to become pregnant as of now. Like another mom on here said, so far she is still at the bodily fluids and functions are icky phase so that is at least some protection and she does not currently have a boyfriend. But I continue to make my beliefs clear to her, make sure she has the facts, and try to keep the communication lines open. I think that is the most important part so that if something more serious does come up for her, she feels comfortable coming to me. I was raised by a mom that was very open about talking about sex, believing that it was better coming from her than someone else who might or might not get it right. I believe the same thing. I don't think talking about it encourages them to have sex. But if they don't have the facts and they do choose to have sex, they might have consequences that will change their lives forever.

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So many moms on here are saying that they only answer questions their kids ask. My mom told me the same thing, but what if they never ask you? My daughter is 6 and I have explained everything to her except the mechanics of sex. We call it "special hugs". I didn't want to tell her special hugs happen while naked, but she caught a scene on a show on accident, where the characters were naked in bed and asked me why they were naked. She has known for years about how babies are born and I let her watch a vid of it on youtube years ago. She knows about my periods and that if I have one, it means I am not pregnant yet (hubby and I are trying somewhat). I'm sure she will figure out soon that male and female parts can fit together in theory. I say this because she is a very smart and curious child. God forbid she see dogs mating...I'm not quite ready for her to ask me about that part yet! I will answer her if she asks in the next few years, but if she doesn't ask by the time she gets her period (I got mine at 10), I will tell her. Let's be real folks. If we don't tell our kids the truth, they WILL hear it in school, and yes, even in elementary school. She is starting 2nd grade in July, so I'm sure the questions will be coming soon. Good luck to other moms on dealing with this delicate subject.

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Due to TV sitcoms and kids being sponges, she had already figured out a general definition for the word sex at age 4-5 and shocked the heck out of me and my friend as she explained the def. to him in the car as I drove! He had said 6, but his speech wasn't totally clear at age 4, so she thought he was saying "sex" and she didn't understand why he was saying sex was out the car window. She proceeded to tell him that sex was something a man and woman did when they love each other! I try to censor my daughter's tv time, but I guess they can pick on up more than we think. His response was to put his hands over his ears lol. His mommy was proud of him and said it was okay that my daughter said that, since her son has said worse (violent, not sexual) things to other children at times. I was glad she took it so calmly, because I was mortified. After we dropped them off, I let my daughter know that "sex" is, in fact, another name for what we call "special hugs", but that she is not to use that word and that she is not to talk to other children about it.

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I was given good advice. I was told when they ask they are ready. I was shocked by the knowledge my third grader had learned from peers. With her younger brother and sister I have tried to talk more about the subject from a younger age. Would rather them be armed with some real info before their peers share what they think they know. Really, earlier is better. When you are still cool and know things and you haven't reached the point where parents are lame and don't know anything. Then the door can be opened and they can come if they have additional questions and feel safe asking.

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I think you can approach sensitive subjects like this at any time as long as it is framed in a way that is age appropriate. When my children began to ask questions that danced on the surface of sex (eg, menstruation, wooddies, kissing, etc.) that was the perfect opportunity to find out what they knew and correct any misconceptions and/or definitions. Once puberty hit then talking about sex became more focused. We did not have one talk, it was a series of conversations, not planned, per se,like in the way we plan vacations, but planned in knowing what I wanted them to understand at that particular time. My girl is 18 and we still have talks which makes it easy for her to come to me when and if she is ever ready.

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