Hopefully, this will not seem completely out of place, but I was wondering if some of you fellow home schoolers would mind chiming in a little. I know there are many other places to post this question, but I feel that the home schooling community will have a more similar environment regarding this situation. I was wondering when you fellow home schoolers thought that giving "the talk (sex)" was appropriate. At what age do you think the talk should be administered? I realize that there are many different schools of thought regarding why or how or when, and I would love to hear anything and everything that would like to be shared! I am really stuck here. I have five girls and I am concerned that when I tell the oldest, that she will tell the next and so on.... I don't know... I just don't know. Help me out ladies (and fellas..if there are any here) Thank you so much!
Homeschooling mommy to 5 girls with number 6 on the way!
I have an 18 year old son, and we've never had "the talk". We've talked about sex since he was a little boy, starting with answering his questions about where babies come from, and why I don't have a penis, and things like that. Over the years, we discussed every aspect of sex that I could think of, some things in great detail, and some more as an overview. (As an aside, ds1 knows more about pregnancy and childbirth than any other teenage boy I know, as I got active in cesarean awareness during my 3rd and subsequent pregnancies...when he 12, 14, and 16. I don't think this hurt him at all!)
Loving my amazing dh, James & forever missing Aaron Ambrose (11/07)
I agree with the PP. We talk about it as much as anything else that is important that they will need to know and have questions about. We started with It's Not the Stork at around 4 or 5 and moved onto It's So Amazing after that. I keep them on the shelves so that the kids can go to it whenever they want to. I start reading at the beginning and found that they self-regulate how far they want to go. Pregnancy is another great time to educate. I feel fortunate that there will not need to be a big scary conversation because so far they know as much as they can at their ages. Also, DS has come to me upset before by horrible things kids at youth sports have said about bodies/sex I have been able to comfort him by saying that he knows more than most kids I know at his age and I promise that if he hears something that doesn't sound right, it is probably not true. GL!!
Tassy mom to DS(13), DD(8), and twin DDs (7)
I agree with the PP's - having one big "talk" is not the way to go. A lot of people like to wait until their kids are asking questions, and then just answer those specific questions as they come up, but I don't see any reason why it should be that way. If you never bring up sex yourself, and never give any more information than is needed to answer the exact question your kid asked, I think that gives your kids the message that it's something you'd rather not talk about, and makes them less comfortable asking questions. I didn't wait for my kids to start asking - I gave them information about sex from the time they were old enough to understand it. A lot of our earliest conversations were about insects or animals mating. I let them know what mating was - a way for the male's sperm to get inside the female's body to fertilize her eggs - and let them know that it works the same way with people. Both of them had heard about the basics of sex by the time they were 3.
I don't think there's any age that's too early to know about sex. Why would there be? So I don't think you need to worry about your oldest child telling the younger ones. Go ahead and let her tell, or better yet, tell them yourself. How can having the information be harmful?
For us, it was also a series of age appropriate discussions from the time dd was young starting with body parts around age 3ish, birth around age 6, and the actual mechanics of sex around age 8.
When dd was 8 I got the book It's So Amazing by Robie H. Harris and The Body Book for Girls (American Girl). We talked about the changes that would happen in dd's body in the next few years.
I believe that children should be told the facts well before they are teenagers whether it is a series of discussions or one big talk. I think by age 10 at the very latest I would have had a frank talk with my child about sex. I feel that more information is less harmful than not enough information on this subject matter.
Kim ~mom to one awesome dd (12)
Hmmm...I like all of the opinions so far. I do like the books too..especially for my younger kids. I have never denied them information on their body parts or how things work. I have always addressed their questions with answers that are accurate and hopefully comprehensive. I have a Greys Anatomy book that they are welcome to look at at any time. I guess I have not had many questions and that is why I am here. They have asked a couple of things, but never the "how does it work". Perhaps they already have an idea. We are very into nature programs and I have quite a few that display the mechanics of mating, and we introduce that around toddler age...I always point out the mating animals that we come across in nature. Maybe I should ask them if they have any questions. All of this is helping me relax for sure! It is so helpful to listen to other peoples stories and opinions about this! My parents never talked to me about sex...I just learned in school...ugh! I know for my kids, I really want them to understand the bond of love between a man and woman that fosters love making. I'm not sure of how to explain how important that is, but yet that is not always how it happens, you know? Maybe just build that as a base and see what happens. Thanks so much for offering your thoughts on this, as well as letting me speak mine. It is very comforting to be able to seek support for this. Have a pleasant evening!
Homeschooling mommy to 5 girls with number 6 on the way!