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What's the best age?

Any opinions on what the best age to start talking to my daughter (10) about sex, drugs, dating violence, etc. What topics (if any), should I avoid at her age? My oldest daughter started asking me (female/body/period only) questions around age 9. I answered them with age-appropriate answers and talked to her more extensively about a year later. But my youngest daughter doesn't seem the least bit interested, concerned, curious about anything? I just want to know where she is and what she does and doesn't know so I have a better idea how to start and guide the conversation. Thanks everyone.

Answer Question

Asked by Anonymous at 2:51 PM on Apr. 8, 2013 in Tweens (9-12)

Answers (6)
  • By 5th grade.

    Answer by QuinnMae at 2:52 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

  • 8-9. I got the American Girl The Care and Keeping of You and we read it together, a chapter at a time each night and then I asked her if she had any questions. It was a great book that spurred some excellent conversations. It doesn't go into sex, it's just about puberty changes in her body, physical, emotional, etc. My dd is now 11 1/2 and something we heard on the radio last night spurred a conversation about abuse while dating. It's been a slow gradual process over a long series of talks. We didn't ever have just one time where I sat down and talked about everything. We just talked briefly about birth control recently - she's not ready for sex but I want her to have correct answers way before she needs them!

    Answer by missanc at 2:55 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

  • I start long before those issues are "real". I want them all to have the correct information etc.. It is several small talks over years. Not just one :)

    Answer by midnightmoma at 3:36 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

  • That's what I was thinking too but I don't want to overwhelm her.

    Comment by Anonymous (original poster) at 4:30 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

  • I answered the questions as they came up, and I only gave as much information as it took to answer her questions. She married at age 31 and was still a virgin. When she was in her 20's, she told me of her own volition that guys wanted to marry a girl like her, but they wanted to "date" the other kind. When she was 30, she met a guy who wanted to date and marry her kind of girl. That was more than 8 years ago and they have two beautiful little boys. I don't believe in the "we have to give them the information because they are going to have sex anyway." Her daddy and I taught her instead that she was so special that she should save herself for the man who would love and cherish her forever. And lo and behold, she believed us.

    Answer by NannyB. at 4:53 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

  • I have boys, but I started talking to my now 12 yr old when he was around 10ish. I kept it really basic at that point - basically that puberty would be coming soon and it would mean things like having to wear deodorant. As it got closer, I went into more detail (hair would grow where it hadn't before, etc.) and now at 12, we are just beginning to really discuss sex - right now, he knows that babies result from sex and that he should not have sex until he's prepared for taking care of babies. I mostly (and again, I have boys, so this might be different for you. I'm a single mom, dad's gone, so I'm the only one who can talk to him but it's not the most comfortable of conversations lol) let him come to me when he has questions. We discuss things as he wants to know about them right now.

    Answer by wendythewriter at 6:28 PM on Apr. 8, 2013

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