Mar 16, 2011

I'm Not Ready For This

It never ceases to amaze me how much I THOUGHT I knew about parenting...until I became a parent.  I really had it all figured out I my head.  I knew the many things I felt my parents really got RIGHT, and planned to follow that and then I figured I'd correct those things I didn't think they got so right.

One of those things included talking to my kids about sex.  My mom's version of the birds and the bees, was short and sweet, "you better not be doing that, and if you do, it better not be under my roof."  That was when I was 16 and well...if you've read my blog long, you know that 'talk' was in effective.  And honestly came a little too late, thought I'm not sure if she ever realized that or not.Obviously by this time I had had 2 extensive health classes, I knew the ins and outs of sec and I KNEW the risks.  But when I think back to my earlier years, I realize that conversations about sex were happening MUCH earlier.  I can remember as far back as second grade that this topic was fairly regular playground talk.  SECOND GRADE, people!  As in the same grade my oldest son is in RIGHT NOW!!  This thought has been rolling around in my head for awhile.  I wonder, what have my kids heard and what do they know (or think they know, because Lord knows I had things all kinds of confused back then)? 

But then this weekend we were talking as we drove about babies, and if babies are babies before they are born.  Darn, deep thinking 8 year old.  So we talked about how babies develope, starting from two cells and how they look early on and how babies who are delivered early look and the things that Drs worry about with them.  And then somehow it switched a bit to talk about ladies who for soe reason or another are told they really shouldn't have babies (or addional babies) due to health risks.  His own cousin was told this after having her first child in what was a VERY difficult pregnancy but despite the warning she went on to have 4 more kids with one more on the way and all those were healthy and uneventful pregnancies.  But then he asked, so then you just have to keep the baby in your belly forever?  I sort of got confused for a minute.  No why would you do that?  And that's pretty much impossible.  "Well then what do you do if you aren't supposed to have anymore babies?" I told him, you don't let a baby get in there to begin with.  And then of course he wanted to know, "well how does it GET in there then?"

This is where I dodge the question and tell him we will have to talk about this rather involved subject at a later time, preferably while I am NOT driving.  You know so when I have a heart attack I won't veer off the road and kill anyone else!

I'm not sure if it's truly time to have the full blown talk yet.  As regular church attenders and a believer in abstinence, even if I didn't practice it, I do plan to encourage my children to wait. I will suggest that waiting until marriage is a great idea, as each partner you have complicates things in so many ways.  But I know at some point in the scarily relatively near future, it will be time to talk to my babies, as young men and talk about the risks of having sex.  Pregnancy is clearly a big one that will change your life forever, but it's not the only one.  In a society where 'hooking up' is noticeably more acceptable than even when I was in school, the chances of being with someone who's been with someone else is high.  But if my kids get to that age and are exclusively involved with someone, I won't be so naive as to assume it won't happen.  I will arm them with the knowledge to be educated and safe.  They will know about all the options for the safest sex possible (there's really no such thing as safe sex, trust me on this one!) as well as  the option of anonymous std testing.  I know asking someone to submit to such a test is about as romantic as asking them to sign a prenup.  But if you believe you are mature enough for a sexual relationship, you should be mature enough to have these types of conversations as well.  If you can't talk to the person you're with about how to keep both of you safe, then you simply aren't ready to be taking that step anyway.

Have you had 'the talk' with your kids yet?  What advice do you have for starting to talk to kids about sex?

I am participating in the Let’s Talk about STDs Campaign for I received compensation to facilitate this post. However, the views and opinions are my own.


  1. I have a 6 year old & a 4 year old - both boys. They are very aware of the human body & like to touch their own and look at females. I'm petrified of having the talk with them but I know it will come early. Better to explain things early instead of after the horse is out of the barn. However I'm sure it will be easier with boys than with girls. I don't envy parents of girls.

  2. yep, we've had the talk. I've always felt age appropriate, accurate answers are the best way to go. It's worked well, the older two watched their sister being born when they were 2 and 4. Now we're having conversations about it again. But finally my almost 8 year old was not satisfied with the two cells joining and HAD to know how it all worked out. It was a surprisingly easy conversation, I'm sure we'll have it again soon because she doesn't remember every bit of info and asks for a little "fill in the blank" from time to time. But we've always talked about what we believe is appropriate.. according to our religion and our family values and I think that's the most helpful as they learn the physical details.

  3. I am not looking forward to this talk. It never said anything about having a SEX talk in my parenting manual. UGHHHH

  4. I had the talk with my oldest, who is 16, starting at a very young age-- like first grade. She was hearing stuff at school, so I started SLOWLY talking with her about what she was hearing. I would ask her to tell me what she heard, I would correct and then ask her is she wanted to know more.

    She was in total control of the amount of information that I would give her. I feel like it was a good thing that we started so young because now, being a Teen, she is very open and willing to discuss things with me.

    If you wait until they are older, its just awkward and weird. If you start talking about it at a young age-- it's just normal dialogue with the parent, and they DO come to you with questions, rather than being creeped out that their Mom said the word {sex}.

  5. My girls are 5 and 7 and we just had this conversation. My 7 year old said "WHY did you tell me that mommy? WHY? I didn't need to know that much!" LOL! She kept asking so I wanted her to get it from me, rather than her friends at school. The stuff she comes home with...

  6. My kids are two and 4mos. They'll NEVER be old enough for the sex talk (or so I keep telling myself...) I just want my babies to stay babies. I don't want them to get big! :(
    But yeah I'm sure we'll have the 'talk(s)' sooner than later...

  7. UGH, I am NOT looking forward to that talk. My kids are 3 and 5, so I still have a while.

  8. 1st- thanks for commenting on my WW and we're following you back!!!
    This is such a loaded post for me!! I really hope you and your church are successful in teaching abstinence to your boys. Most ppl have NO IDEA how bad sex can mess up your life!!! I am saved now and celibate but I still have 3 kids to care for... The consequences don't go away.
    My oldest girls are 7 but very immature with some extra issues added in there. They are homeschooled so they aren't exposed to as much of it as other kids are. I think one of the reasons I'm putting off the talk is because I'm going have some big time explaining to do.
    Best of luck!!!


Thanks for leaving me a comment!!