One of the best ways to start a conversation with your child about sex is to invite a bunch of his friends over, pop some popcorn and get out the visual aids.
Kidding. Totally. Kinda fun to think about but not recommended.
Being available to talk when a child is ready to talk about significant topics is important. However, don’t wait for your child to bring up the conversation about sex and relationships. You will probably need to initiate these conversations. There are many everyday situations that can provide opportunities to engage in conversations about sex (movies, TV. school, sports, shopping, etc.)
Her are some helpful ways to start the conversation:
- Have you noticed that TV shows rarely talk about people getting STDs. Have you ever heard of anyone at school who has gotten an STD?
- That’s a really popular song on the radio, I hear it everywhere. It seems like it’s talking about having sex to prove that you are man (or woman). What do you think about that?
- I overheard some teens saying that it’s okay to have sex with someone to show them your love. How do you feel about that?
- I saw this commercial on TV about the vaccine for HPV. Have you heard anything about that?
- A teacher at the game last week mentioned to me that there were at least 6 girls at school who were pregnant. What do you think about teenagers having babies?
- Did you know that a part of a guy’s paycheck can be held back for 8 years to support a child he had outside of marriage?
- The news this week reported a student at a nearby school was killed in a car accident. They suspect drinking was involved. How do you think alcohol could affect the decisions some of your friends are making?
- I saw some teens buying condoms at the drug store. Do you think they know the effectiveness rates for condoms and different birth control methods for preventing pregnancy? What about protection from STIs?
- A well-known teen actor gets pregnant. Use this opportunity to ask your child how the pregnancy will affect their life.
- You and your child/teen are watching TV and a scene comes on where a teen couple are alone and the show implies they are sexually active. Use this opportunity to ask if you think this is a realistic show and why or why not.