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Talking to kids about sex (5)
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Sex education: Talking to your school-age child about sex
Responsibilities and consequences
Talk to your child about the emotional and physical consequences of becoming sexually active, such as pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections and a range of feelings. Discussing these issues now can help your child avoid feeling pressured to become sexually active before he or she is ready. While you're telling your child about the dangers of sex, don't be afraid to mention the joys, too. Let your child know that sex can be beautiful in a loving, committed relationship.
Everyday moments are key
Use everyday opportunities to discuss sex. Teachable moments are everywhere. If there's a pregnancy in the family, talk about how a baby develops inside a woman's body. If you see a commercial for a feminine hygiene product, use it as a springboard to talk about periods. If a couple on a TV show begin dating, talk about relationships and falling in love.
Take your role in sex education seriously. Encourage your child to take care of his or her body, develop a healthy sense of self-respect, and seek information from trusted sources. Your thoughtful approach to sex education can help your child develop a lifetime of healthy sexuality.Previous page
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- Talking with your young child about sex. American Academy of Pediatrics. http://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/preschool/pages/Talking-to-Your-Young-Child-About-Sex.aspx. Accessed Feb. 8, 2011.
- Talking to your kids. American Social Health Association. http://www.ashastd.org/parents/parents_overview.cfm. Accessed Feb. 8, 2011.
- Growing up. The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. http://www.acog.org/publications/patient_education/bp041.cfm. Accessed Feb. 8, 2011.
- Talking to your kids about sex. American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. http://www.aacap.org/cs/root/facts_for_families/talking_to_your_kids_about_sex. Accessed Feb. 8, 2011.
- Harris RH. It's Perfectly Normal. 2nd ed. Cambridge, Mass.: Candlewick Press; 2004:22.
- Hutcherson H. What Your Mother Never Told You About S-E-X. New York, N.Y.: Berkley; 2002:49.
- Spock B, et al. Dr. Spock's the School Years: The Emotional and Social Development of Children. New York, N.Y.: Simon & Schuster, Inc.; 2001:164.