Talking about the birds and the bees is a very difficult thing for most of us. If given a choice between doing household chores and having ‘the talk’, most parents will choose the former.
Why is it necessary to have 'the talk'?
We live in a highly sexualized world. From food advertisements to automobiles, sexual content is everywhere. Our human need to sort, label and categorize everything has put the term sexuality in a pickle! Identifying your sexuality is not the same as getting attracted to the opposite sex anymore! Gender fluidity exists, so does gender neutrality, genderqueer and various other confusing terms. So riddle me this. Would you still want your kid to just believe that the stork brought them into your lives? Heck no!
How do you talk about the birds and the bees?
Just like every other topic under the sun, sexuality must be a topic that must be open for discussion in every family. The veil that shrouds clarity must be lifted! No, you can’t postpone it till they are in their late teens. And no, you can’t just give them a book on Biology to let them put two and two together!
Parents must sit down and have the talk with their kids. As responsible adults it is our onus to not leave them in the dark, guessing for themselves. New research conducted by Brigham Young University has revealed that a once-off, rushed-up talk isn’t going to cut it. You can’t escape that easy, dear parents. You may think that dropping hints here and there or even flipping the channel will help shield your innocent child from sexuality. The truth is you can’t 100% shield them from sexuality. Would you rather they learned the truth or some twisted version of it?
So, be more open to answering questions, as and when they have it! Here is where the one time approach fails. Treat it just like any other subject and answer them with clarity on the matter. Educate them on all matters including abstinence, chastity and even safe-sex, instead of advocating only 'no-sex-until-marriage-or-you-will-burn-in-hell'.
Why do parents fear having ‘the talk’?
If you think that having ‘the talk’ is going to make your children more promiscuous. Don’t worry, that is not the case. However, if you are the parent of a LGBTQ teen who worries that you can’t really relate to what sex is like for the opposite gender. Don’t be anxious, because you are not alone. This was revealed in a research conducted at the Northwestern University. There are various programs and portals that will help you relate to your LGBTQ child’s sexuality.
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How much information is too much information?
It all depends on the age of the child. The answer to your 10 year old’s epiphany on how they came into this world would be different to the one you’d give to your teen. Teenagers are past the stage of listening to your “when a man and woman fall in love…” stories. They need credible information that will help them make wise decisions. Abstinence until marriage is becoming a thing of the past. By talking about safe sex and the use of contraceptives, you are not encouraging them to be randy or immoral. You are teaching them to be responsible for their actions.
In a way, sex education is just like how you would teach your child not to play with fire. Better safe than sorry!