“Mommy, how do babies get in their mommy’s tummy?”
Bam! From out of nowhere, my second grader hit me with the question. Geesh — You’d think the kid would have given me a warning!
“Well, sweetie,” I stammered with a deer-in-headlights expression on my face, “When a mommy and a daddy love each other, God puts a baby in the mommy’s tummy.” My daughter gave me a big smile and responded with “Oh. Okay, mommy.” Then she scampered off to play with her toys.
Yeah – I could tell that this answer was only going to satisfy her for a few months. Soon she’d be back with more questions. I decided that I wasn’t going to be blind-sided by a primary school kid with sex questions again. So I headed to the internet to find tips for having “the talk.”
I was happy to find several tips including:
Set a good foundation at an early age. The website www.simplemom.net advises talking to your children about the correct names for their body parts from birth. Helping your children use the correct names for their anatomy at an early age lays the foundation for conversations about sex without embarrassment.
Take the lead. The website www.webmd.com, advises parents to take the lead and start talking to their children about sex before the children have questions (Hmm – I wish someone had told me this earlier!). Sharing the facts about reproduction and sex in an age-appropriate manner early on shows your children that the subject is not taboo and that you’re willing to talk to them.
Use resources. If you’re like me, you may wonder where to start. No need to reinvent the wheel. There are plenty of books and resources designed to help you talk to your children about sex.
Check out this great link for books for kids of all ages: http://www.seemore.mi.org/sex-ed/picture.html
Don’t stop at just the facts. As children get older, they’ll want to know more than just the “birds and bees” of reproduction. Webmd.com advises talking to your children about the emotions involved in sexual relations and the consequences of sex. Issues like date rape, sexual orientation and sexually suggestive clothing are all important topics to cover with teens and even preteens. Remember, if they don’t hear it from you, they’ll hear it somewhere.
Keep the conversation going. Expect “the talk” to be a continuous dialogue with your child throughout the years as they grow. What they want to know about sex at age 6 will be dramatically different than what’s on their mind at age 16.
Now that I’m more equipped, I’ll be ready for the next time my little girls comes around with questions. Or better yet – I’ll initiate the conversation!
Moms – Has it been hard for you to have “the talk” with your kids?
Words By: Yolanda Darville