Top 4 Tips For Talking To Your Kids About The Birds And The Bees
Sexuality is an integral part of our lives as adults, but we often feel uncomfortable talking about it with our young children. The vast majority of parents know that sex education is essential, but they don’t always know how to answer children’s famous questions… Is there a specific way to go about it? How should we react when our children ask us questions? Should we anticipate the questions or let them come?
Why are we uncomfortable with sexuality?
When our children ask us questions about sexuality, we are often uncomfortable and don’t know how to handle the answers. We need to understand that the problem is often in our heads because we visualize a complete situation and don’t know how to choose the words to define it…
Of course, explaining sex in detail to children may seem too explicit, but it is not usually what they want to learn. They are often satisfied with a simple answer to a simple question without trying to learn the details of sex in a graphic way.
A progressive approach
On average, children begin to learn about sex at the age of three. This process takes several years and is about much more than sexuality as we understand it as adults. It is more about psychological development related to sex (male or female), love, the body, what can and cannot be done, etc. The questions children ask and the answers they expect are not as complicated as they may seem at first.
The importance of values
Every family has its value system, which may be related to lifestyle, religion, or anything else. This will inevitably show up in the way you approach the subject. However, it is important to remember that being overly intransigent and strict is never beneficial and that regardless of your personal beliefs and those you are trying to instill in your children, respect for others is always paramount.
Here are a few things to guide you
If you don’t know the answer to a question, your child has, you don’t have to answer right away. Be honest and say that it’s a good question but that you need time to think about it and research. You can do the same if your child’s question makes you uncomfortable. However, it’s important not to ignore it and come back with an appropriate answer. Children’s books on sexuality help answer questions.
If talking about sex with your child isn’t easy for you, get another adult who is more comfortable discussing sex with your child.
Consider your child’s age.
Be honest but straightforward in your answers. Because your child’s learning is gradual, give them just a little information at a time. Then, gradually add more detail to the topics you’ve already covered.
If your child wants to know more, they will ask more questions. Be attentive to their needs. For example, if they ask about their conception and birth, start by asking them what they know and how they imagine things. Their answers will tell you what they understand and what you can tell them.
Use the right words
Words are important. When you talk to your child, use the right words to identify body parts. For example, during bath time, remind them to wash their arms, legs, and vulva or penis. This way, they learn about all parts of their body, including their genitals, without any taboos.
Encourage them to talk to you
Build a trusting relationship with your child so that they can ask questions and talk to you about their concerns. Remind your child that they can talk to you in confidence if they see or hear something that makes them uncomfortable, whether at home, at school, or on the Internet. As much as possible, set aside a time each day when you are calm and fully aware of what your child might have to say, no matter what the subject.
Put yourself in their shoes and don’t judge them. If necessary, ask questions when the opportunity arises to encourage your child to talk to you: “How do you feel?” “What do you think?” or “What do you know about this? By talking to your child in this way, your child will have the reflex to turn to you when they have questions.
Don’t always wait for questions.
Some children never ask about sex. But they need the same information as everyone else. Use everyday situations to discuss sex with your child. For example, help your child ask the right questions when reading a story or watching a movie together. Pay attention to their reactions. Ask questions to find out how they see things.
If a scene on TV, an event, a word, or a gesture seems to upset them, talk about it with them. Help them name what they are feeling and think about how it might affect them, others, the characters in the show, etc.
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