Talking about sexuality with your children is for many parents a total nightmare. Our culture, families and moral values shaped us to dread these talks usually. But does this attitude towards this topic really help us or our children in any way? Sexuality plays an important role in our life. Children are exploring their bodies and desires and constantly trying to figure out what is wrong and what is right, what is healthy and what is unhealthy, what to do and what to avoid. Leaving your child’s education in the hands of his peers and society might not be the safest option.
Society makes us see sex as something evil even if it’s constantly present everywhere we look. Society gives power to sexuality but it makes us feel weak and bad for having sexual desires. It’s unhealthy and confusing to have these mixed feelings about sexuality, so try to help your child makes sense of his own desires and the ways he can integrate them in a healthy manner in his life.
Keep in mind that society and his peers will influence his opinion no matter what so make sure you talk to your child about this topic so you understand how they shaped his view on sexuality. You need to be able to understand clearly his opinion in order to clarify the things he didn’t understand and balance the negative things he might have heard.
Clarify your own point of view. In order to provide a healthy education to your child in this area, you must first understand your own sexuality, your own desires and biases regarding this topic. You might be surprised to see that this has nothing to do with age and you might be still in the dark. This could be a good opportunity for you to improve your own relationship with your body and his needs. When you understand that your own body is beautiful, when you accept your own desires and thoughts, you will be able to help your child handle his own sexuality in a healthy manner.
Sexuality is healthy and normal. You need to approach this topic in a relaxed manner since it’s not good or bad, it’s just an aspect of our life. Your child will copy your attitude towards sexuality so make sure you are the one with a healthy attitude towards this topic in the first place. If you choose to talk to your child about sexuality and help him clarify his issues towards it, he will become more relaxed and less curious. He will be able to control his desires better if he is able to understand them and they don’t overwhelm him.
While talking to your child about sex, you need to help him understand these important aspects:
- his own body and how it’s developing
- his thoughts, emotions and sexual desires
- how desires and feelings connect in a healthy and balanced relationship
- how much he should share with others about his sexuality
- that the people around him have similar needs
- the benefits of sex and a healthy sexual life
- what he should be careful with about sexuality at his particular age
- how his sexual desires will evolve in time
- why everything is so confusing until he reaches adulthood
- how to understand what his real desires and needs are
- when he should start his sexual activity
- the risks of engaging in sexual activity
- how he can manifest his sexuality in a healthy manner towards the people around him.