Starting The Conversation

Many parents are looking for tips on how to start this conversation with their son or daughter. Here are a few avenues that may help you as you seek to look for everyday things that can be used as “teachable moments” with your child.
Use the popular trends in the culture as a means of relating with your teen. Use TV, movies, articles, and real-life situations such as a friend’s pregnancy to begin talking about sex. Examples could include:

  • “Are you scared of an unplanned pregnancy happening to you? Would you be prepared to handle a pregnancy right now?”
  • “It seems like this TV show spends a lot of time focusing on students your age having sex. Do you feel like they show a realistic view of the consequences?”
Share a personal story about a way you dealt with relationships, peer pressure or sex when you were their age. Think back to what your sex talk was like. Is this what you want your kids to remember? Example:

  • “I’m going to be honest with you in sharing some of my experiences at your age, even though it’s a little awkward. I want you to know that I’m willing to be open about choices I made in the past so that I can be a better example to you.”
Ask your teen, especially if they are in a dating relationship, at what age do you think a person is ready to have sex?
Be involved in your teens life by knowing who their friends are, what they enjoy doing in their free time, and how you can help support them in the pressures of our sex-saturated culture.
Here are some questions that teens are asking that you can help answer:

  • How do I know if I’m in love? Will sex bring me closer to them?
  • How will I know when I am ready for sex? Should I wait until I’m married?
  • Will sex make me more popular?
  • How do I tell someone no without them breaking up with me?
  • Can you get pregnant the first time?
  • Does contraception always work?