When I learned how important it was to talk to kids about puberty and sexuality, I said, "Absolutely!" When someone taught that the Dad should lead the conversation, I wholeheartedly agreed.
It's easy to talk about theory and general ideas of growing up. But now that we are closer to talking specifics with our kids, it makes my gut tighten up.
Despite my nervousness, I know that my kids need me to lead and to engage them. So I will. In fact, we've already started.
Beyond "THE Talk"Talking about sex with your kids is less about "THE Talk" and more about it being one large conversation over a long period of time. And when you think of it like that, you can feel more comfortable answering kids' questions at the level they can handle at the time. You don't have to download everything at once.
My wife and I have researched books. Some of these books will give us ideas and discussion prompts, so that we can better educate our children. And other books we will read with our kids.
This series of four books was recommended, and we've already began discussing with our kids (keeping in mind the age-appropriateness):
- The Story of Me (for ages 3-5)
- Before I Was Born (ages 5-8)
- What's the Big Deal? Why God Cares About Sex (ages 8-11)
- Facing the Facts: The Truth About Sex and You (ages 11-14)
Pros and ConsI loved how this series takes the conversation in a step-wise fashion. And each book has more than enough information for the child, so a parent can easily skip over parts that he or she feels is not necessary. For example, I didn't feel like our youngest needed to know about Cesarean sections.
Maybe I'm too conservative or our kids are more sheltered than most, but I think the recommended ages were too low. I might add a year or two to the age range for each of the books, based on the content covered in each one. Alternatively, you could just skip sections of each book, and come back at a later time.
Another great part of this series is it doesn't matter if you're "starting late." For example, I read the first book with my 9-year-old son, and then will continue with the second book at a later time. Your child doesn't need to know that the book is too "young" for him or her.
If you have a child that is at least 3 or 4 years old, I recommend that you buy this series. It will help give you a starting point for this one long-term conversation about sex.
(You can purchase each book from Amazon, or the entire series, by clicking on the title of the book.)