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When should Children be taught about Sex

KEY POINTS: 

● Children should get the best sex education from the beginning and should be taught about other non-binary sexualities. They should know the fact that while many people are heterosexual, some are homosexual, bisexual, etc. So they don’t make wrong assumptions if, and when, they come across such people.

● You should disclose all this to them step by step, instead of saying everything at once and overwhelming them. You can start with a conversation on private parts of a human body, pregnancy, and babies, and then with time, you can start a conversation on the process of sex. This strategy would help them gather proper education related to sex and at the right time. 

● Not all children are the same. Hence, here is a guide of how you can do about educating your child on the topics of sexuality, reproduction, and sex. It is very important to give them the right knowledge, at their right age. 

PRESCHOOLER: 2 to 4 years old

boy-with-question-mark

At such an early age, children do not know what is right and what is wrong It is our duty to tell them the difference between the two. We should teach them the name of their body parts, including their genitals. We should also teach them the difference between a right and a wrong touch. This will let them identify any kind of injury, pain, or sexual abuse, and will help them communicate it to you as soon as possible. 

By this age, children understand the difference between a boy and a girl. They explore their own body, which includes them touching their genitals. Though this is completely normal, they need to understand that their body sensitive and should be handled with care. 

By this age, children get curious about the process of birth and pregnancy. Their questions should not be brushed off, rather answered honestly, so they gain accurate knowledge. You can give them an overview of reproduction. 

Teach them they allow no one to touch them without their permission, just like they cannot touch anyone else without their permission. We should teach them about bad touch. Tell your children that if anyone touches them inappropriately, they should come to you right away and tell you about it. 

Some things might look innocent to others, but are highly embarrassing for the person who experiences them. They should be able to differentiate among such activities and avoid them. You cannot teach them all this in one go. Hence, do it little by little regularly. 

SCHOOL AGE: 5 to 8 years old

parents-with-son

This is the right time to start a conversation with them on sexuality. We should make them aware of the different sexualities, including heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality. Hearing about them from you is better for them so that there is no window left for inaccurate knowledge. This will also encourage them to share their thoughts freely with their parents. They won’t need an extra someone for that. Teach them that gender doesn’t define sexuality and the role of sex in one’s life.

Encourage them to ask whatever questions they might have and get their doubts cleared. Also, tell them about the responsibilities and consequences of sex. Always answer their questions honestly, without twisting the facts. Explain to them the difference between rape and sex. This will help them make appropriate decisions when they grow up.

PRE-TEENS: 9 TO 12 years old 

mother-with-daughter

At this age, children go through various important changes in their bodies. This is the time where they can easily get mislead, and showing them the right path is your responsibility.

Almost 98% of children try to understand sex through pornography. This gives them the wrong conception of sex. Also, they would not understand the importance of consent as they will never get the reality check this way.

They will never know the importance of having open conversations with their parents regarding such sensitive topics. Porn can not teach them what they need to learn about nudity and privacy. Not only this, but there are other related topics too, like health and hygiene of their private body parts, the process of reproduction, etc. that they can not learn from adult videos. 

Introduce them to other important topics like safer sex, sexually transmitted diseases, and sexual bullying. Tell them that asking for some’s nudes is as inappropriate as someone asking for nudes from them. Tell them about the different ways people might try to influence them to share their nude pictures. Tell them that they can turn to you anytime for answers or solutions to any of their problems.

TEENAGERS: 13 to 18 years old

mom-with-daughter

It’s the best time to discuss with them what a healthy or unhealthy relationship is. Now that the children have already entered their teenage, they crave privacy. Hence, taking the first step forward and holding an open dialogue with them becomes the responsibility of the parents. Talk to them about dating, romantic and sexual relationships, break-ups, etc. Talk about the importance of feelings, others, and their own. 

Tell them about the reasons for getting an erection, the process of masturbation, etc. Tell them about the stigma attached to such activities in our society. Make sure they know that all this is normal and acceptable, but only if done in private. Fathers might discuss more openly and communicate better with their sons on such topics. Boys might feel less reluctant in asking questions while talking to their fathers as compared to their mothers.

In case you are a single mother, try talking to your son on this subject. If he tries to avoid the conversation or seems uncomfortable in having a face-to-face chat, you can also help him by forwarding him some articles and videos on sex education. In case he has an elder brother, ask him to approach his younger brother.

Similarly, talk to your daughters about fingering and periods and explain to them how it’s a part of the reproductive cycle. It’s a sign that your body is mature enough to reproduce. Mostly, it’s mothers who talk to your daughters about this subject. In case you are a single father, try helping and explaining these things to her through videos, books, blogs, etc. 

Teach your children to always be respectful towards other children, never step out of their boundaries, and create a safe environment for each other. Tell them about the importance of consent. Make them understand that NO means NO, whether it be a boy or a girl who is saying it. Along with sex education, parents should provide their children with moral values too.

NOTE:

Kids are immature. Molding them such that they grow up to be reliable, ethical humans are in our hands. Proper sex education at the right time is crucial. This is the first step towards making this world a better and safer place. 

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