I’ve been reading a lot of research studies lately that focus on how parents talking with their kids about sex impacts the choices that those kids make. Over and over again, I’m reading that when parents take the time to talk with their children about sex, it tends to increase the age of first sexual encounter and the adoption by the child of values and beliefs that prevent future risk taking. In several studies, the fact that parents had open conversations about sex with their kids decreased the chances that their child would engage in risky sexual behaviors.
As a parent, this seems to be important information to me. Engaging in risky sexual behaviors increases my child’s risk of both emotional and physical harm. So, whatever I can do to decrease that kind of behavior is something I want to know more about. In the next few blog posts, we’ll explore how we talk to our kids about sex, what makes it difficult to do so, and what kinds of things kids need and want to hear.
So, how about you. What are the conversations that are most difficult for you to have with your child about sex? Or, if you’re a teenager, what kinds of topics are hardest for you to talk about with your parents?