What to say, how much to say and when to say it are just a few of the hesitations. Many parents believe their kids don’t want to discuss the subject with them or that they’ll just learn it from school, from friends, or the internet. The truth is though that kids do want to talk to parents and other trusted adults in their lives about sex and relationships and we might have been getting what conversations they want to have all wrong.
According to a report from Harvard’s “Making Caring Common” project, 70% of kids surveyed wished they had gotten more information from their parents about managing the emotions of a relationship.
They want guidance on:
There's no sugarcoating it: It's likely your kid will come across porn online, even through completely innocent searches. In all honesty, haven't you come across adult content when searching for something unrelated? I once looked up Girl Scout cookies under Google images and stumbled across some different "cookies" I wasn't looking for if you know what I mean? Parents may find themselves confronting this issue much sooner than imagined, with kids who may not even understand exactly what sex is yet.
It's a good idea to implement some of the following prevention tactics to reduce the chances they'll be exposed to inappropriate images or video.
I have an amazing framework to share with you. It's how to answer any difficult question. Any question! These are some steps that I recommend that parents consider when they get stumped by a question. Even when your child asks something that just floors you. In these moments you might feel very surprised, shocked, concerned, or scared. There's a lot of different feelings that can come up for us when our children are asking questions. It can even inhibit us from having certain conversations because we're fearful of some of the difficult or tough questions children may ask.
I’ve created a simple framework that parents can use when they find themselves answering a difficult question. Whether it’s a question about sexuality, violence, a belief, or a question about something that you've experienced. Anything that may freak you out.
I'm going to walk you step by step through a simple strategy. Are you ready to feel more empowered and certain talking to your...
"Mommy, what's sexual harassment?" Have you gotten this question yet? With all the accusations in the daily news reports it wouldn't be surprising.
With very young kids there is no reason to talk about it unless they bring it up. But be prepared in case they do. Here are some tips to help you broach the subject.
Ask questions. "Where did you hear that?," "What do you think it is?," or "How did it make you feel to hear that?"
Watch your tone and be reassuring. Kids can sense if you are upset or angry. Be sure to let your children know you aren't mad at them. Try saying something like: "I love when you come to me with your questions and it's OK to ask or tell me anything even if you think it's something bad."
Keep it simple. There is no need to over-explain to young children. You want to satisfy their curiosity though and use terms they can understand. Try saying something like, "Harassment is a fancy word for bullying. Sexual harassment is when someone...
First thing Monday morning my husband told me the news about the Las Vegas shooting. It was a news alert on his phone and he gasped as he shared the awful news with me. We both poured over the little bit of information that was available about what had happened. Just the weekend before we were both in Las Vegas which made everything hit home just a little bit more. I immediately jumped on Facebook to check on two friends of mine that I knew were at the concert to see if they were safe. Thank goodness they were not harmed physically but were definitely traumatized by the whole situation.
Over the next few days, I kept hearing stories of friends of ours that had loved ones there. One friend had a loved one that was shot in the leg and was one of the 500 injured. Two Manhattan Beach residents including a middle school teacher (Sandra Casey) and police department employee (Rachael Parker) were killed. I know many of you had friends and family there as well,...
We get many requests to address parental control apps in our social media classes. In fact, recently a friend of mine had asked me how to handle an incident she had with her 15 year old son. While confiscating his phone after getting in trouble, she saw that he had messaged every girl in his contact list on Snap Chat to "exchange nudes".
She was livid and needed advice on how to handle this!! She decided to delete the app off his device and take his phone away for a few weeks. During that time he downloaded the app on a different device and was accessing his account.
This got me thinking A LOT! What do parents do in situations like this? What would you do in a situation like this? The question of how much monitoring should I do is a gray area for parents and we struggle with the right answer. And really the right answer is, it depends. That can be the frustrating part. What I mean is ideally when a child gets a device (e.g. cell phone, tablet,...
This past February on Super Bowl Sunday (2017) we watched an amazing half-time performance by the performer Lady Gaga. Love her or hate her, I'm sure you are familiar with many of her popular songs and found yourself humming along. Social media blew up about her performance and once she shed her bodysuit for a pair of football pads and briefs, the incredibly fit 30-year old's stomach became a HUGE topic of conversation.
There was even someone who posted an image of a Pillsbury dough roll busting open and said that it looked like Lady Gaga's belly. I was horrified when I saw this in the news and on my social media feed. If Lady Gaga was considered fat, what does that mean about my body? This type of body shaming is so prevalent and it got me thinking about young people today. The fact that both men and women were making these comments about her and how these trolls thought it was okay to make hurtful comments like these. It reminded me why I do...
Our first Tip is to Prep!
Are you ready to have THE Talk? Many times parents are wondering if their child is ready to learn about sex and growing up, but often times the real question is Are YOU Ready? Have you taken the time to think about what your beliefs and values are and which you’d like to leave behind and which you’d like to instill in your child. A great place to start is to inventory where you learned about sex. What values did your parents instill in you? What beliefs and values do you have about sexuality?
How about your partner? It’s equally important to have important conversations with your co-parent about this topic. Get on the same page and discuss tactics and timing of your talks. You both need to talk to them as well. Don’t leave this up to one parent to do. Kids need both of your perspectives. If you are a single parent or separated from your child’s parent it may be difficult to get on the same...
Before we dive in and get into the 10 toughest questions, I want to go over some quick guidelines no matter what your child's question is, because let's face it, there's more than 10. So, in general, some things to keep in mind always when your child is asking a question that is a sex related question, or even just a question that really surprises you is you want to do your best to have a poker face. Meaning, try not to show your emotion if it's one that's shocked, embarrassed, or maybe concerned. You don't want to show that expression on your face right away. What that will do is shut the door to them talking to you. That's definitely what you don't want to have happen.
The other thing you want to be really careful about is your tone. Your tone says so much. Next to your body language, it's the second most powerful communication tool that we have. So, if you say, "Where did you hear that?" Or, "Where did you hear that?" Is different than, "Huh, where did you hear that?" The...
Jen Elledge here Sexual Health Expert and Founder of The Talk Institute here to share with you 5 things parent do wrong when Talking “The Talk”.
Want to avoid making some of the most common parenting mistakes? Of course you do. Go ahead, start by taking a second to think about what you expect would be on this top 5 list! I’d like to begin with a quick story as I actually remember one of the first questions I had about sex. I didn’t ask a parent though, I asked my oldest sister...I was about 5 years old, we were in the car, and I asked the most popular sex question, “Susie, where do babies come from”? Her reply, “Honey, I think we need to talk about that when you are a little bit older.” I may have been young and I know she thought so and maybe she wasn’t comfortable or sure how to share that information me. Either way, I wasn’t happy because later that day I had a smart aleck comment for...
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