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Asked by Anonymous at 11:03 AM on Oct. 2, 2009 in General Parenting

Answers (11)
  • From the time they are very little.

    Answer by Gailll at 11:05 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • I think it should be an ongoing process. They ask a question, you answer it. You see a situation in a movie, or out in public, or whatever, and you can talk about it. I don't think there's a "magic age" where you sit your child down and tell them all about it, and before that, they knew nothing and afterward, they know the whole thing.

    Unfortunately, often parents will try to put it off too long, or avoid the issue because it's embarrassing to them (not to the kids - if you stay pretty matter of fact about it, and do it from an early age, they will, too), and they wait too long. At that point, the kid has already gotten all sorts of mis-information from other kids, or, in some cases, are already sexually active in some way.

    (scary as it is, there are kids as young as 6th and 7th grade sexually active in some way, and who truly think of blow jobs as no bigger deal than a kiss goodnight...)

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 11:09 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • So I would make it an ongoing conversation. The library usually has some really good books on how to approach it on age appropriate levels. I wouldn't follow them exactly - read them, then use their ideas, based on your own individual kid's maturity level, and go from there with the conversation.

    Honestly though, I would say probably no later than about 4th grade for girls (some start their period that young) and probably no later than about 5th or so for boys.

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 11:11 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • When they start asking questions. I used to tell my son "I'll tell you later" whenever he asked me a question about sex, then I started thinking, who would I rather he get this info from, his friends or me? So now I try to have an open mind when it comes to sex questions. I want him to be informed so he can make the right choices. I don't want him believing the "a girl can't get pregnant the first time" argument!

    Answer by Anonymous at 11:11 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • When they start taking interest in it, and watching programs that discuss/joke about it. Even pre-teen shows these days explore sex more than I would have ever thought was possible for 8 pm shows on family networks. anyhoo, i agree with the anon, if a child is asking, he will get the info from someone so its best to be you, and any details that come from friends, well , you cannot stop that. I believe my school started the sex classes around 5th or 6th grade, so anywhere in there , but i wouldnt wait longer than that.

    Answer by CurvyMommato1 at 11:18 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • I just realized... I am going to have to discuss this with my son one day! i cant imagine what things will be going on in society by then. I am scared!

    Answer by CurvyMommato1 at 11:19 AM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • this is a series of conversations that start practically at birth, by teaching your child the correct names for body parts and their functions. always answer questions at their level and be sure that you are answering the right question (where did I come from might mean where are my ancestors from). Look for teachable moments (a litter of puppies, a pregant relative, etc.).

    Answer by rkoloms at 12:24 PM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • OH - LOL - if you do keep it as an ongoing, matter of fact conversation where they can talk to you about anything, be prepared for some pretty off the wall and funny stuff that they come up with!

    Like my ds, who came in one morning when he was little and was like "MOMMY - when I woke up my penis was HARD!" (He was about 7 at the time.) I told him all that meant was that he had a lot of blood flowing through the veins in it, and that it was normal for that to happen to boys and men in the morning. (He was too young for it to be sexual, and it is a normal thing for boys - even baby boys can have this happen...) He was like - well, it doesn't happen to Daddy does it?! (My dh was deployed, or else I think he would have asked him). I reassured him that it did sometimes, and that it was fine, nothing to worry about.


    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 12:49 PM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • cont
    next I knew, he was saying he was Never giving blood - he thought since he had all that "extra" in his penis, that's where they would withdraw it from, and he didn't want ANYBODY sticking a needle there! LOL

    Or my dd - when she was turning 5, she wanted to wear bras. I told her (in a nutshell) those were for grownup ladies, and to not rush things. A few wks later, she wanted her ears pierced, and we talked about how that was a big, grownup girl step, and about keeping them clean, etc. (dh and I knew she wanted this for her b-day and had agreed).

    When dh came home, she went running up and said "Daddy - guess what! Mommy said I can get my ears pierced for my b-day and it's gonna make my breasts grow!" lol - she thought since they were both "grownup things" they must go together ;-)

    Answer by sailorwifenmom at 12:52 PM on Oct. 2, 2009

  • I started with mine when they started asking questions....where do babies come from, what's that (pointing to private parts), etc.. My oldest was around 8 and my younger 3 listened to the answers (they were 3, 4 and 7 when he was 8).

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:03 PM on Oct. 2, 2009

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