Talking to Your Child about Casual Sex
(There have been no ratings yet.)
Knowing that sexual activity carries with it the risk of HIV and cervical cancer, along with a host of other sexually transmitted diseases, it can be literally life-saving to talk with kids about sex.
If you start early, you’ll find that it’s really not so daunting.
Take advantage of teachable moments. Be an “askable parent,” starting with your child’s earliest questions. This avoids the awkwardness about “The Talk” that may lead you to postpone it. Just field the questions they ask, as they arise.
Take the time to develop a strong relationship with your children and continue this as they move into their teen years. Have conversations on a regular basis about important issues. Your interest in and respect for your teen’s point of view builds trust, and that’s what’s needed in order for him to look to you for guidance on a topic as important as sex.
Teach teens about intimacy, not just about sex. Whether it’s in a movie or in real life, observe out loud to your kids when you see a poignant example of a powerful relationship. Talking with your kids about the value of a committed relationship gives them a foundation for developing standards for their own relationships. Be clear about the risks:
- Make sure your teen understands that intercourse isn’t the only form of risky sexual behavior.
- Talk about STDs. Educate yourself first, and be open to questions.
- Discuss emotional risks. Sexually active teens are at greater risk for depression, anxiety and even suicide attempts, because most teens simply do not have the life experience to manage the ramifications of sexual involvement.
- Discuss the possibility of being exploited by someone who does not have your teen’s best interests in mind.
- Help teens realize that unwanted pregnancies do occur even when contraceptives are used.
Teach kids to avoid being pressured by peers into sexual activity.
Talk about responsibility. A healthy sexual relationship means accepting responsibility for the emotional and physical well-being of another person
Create a picture of what’s possible. Talk about the richness of a strong marriage, and what it takes to create that. Explain that true intimacy is worth waiting for, and show them by providing the best role models you can offer.
© 2007 Beech Acres Parenting Center