I see so many parents waiting until their kids are in their teens to talk to them about sex, drugs, and alcohol. In the society we live in today, it’s vital that we talk to them early about these things. The minute they start asking questions about what they see on TV or hear from their friends is our indication that they need answers. My kids all started talking about these things when they were about 6 or 7. I have never shied away from giving them honest and thorough answers. As parents, we need to start having the talk about sex, drugs, and alcohol when our kids are small enough to value our opinions and input.
How to Talk About Sex
Sex seems to be the hardest talk for parents to have with their kids. Considering sex is mentioned all around us every day, you would think it would be the easiest subject to cover. Somehow though, parents feel uncomfortable diving into this topic with their kids. Here’s the thing though, sex IS a part of our lives.
It should be something we readily want our kids to know as much about as possible. This will protect them from becoming victims of sexual abuse as easily. It will also help them to make better decisions about their own sex lives when the time comes.
As a victim of sexual abuse, I was growing up having one opinion and mindset about sex only to find out that I was completely utterly WRONG! It wasn’t until my first marriage that the harsh reality of what sex was supposed to be like hit me. My lack of knowledge killed my marriage!! I’ll go to my grave saying my first marriage falling apart was completely on me.
I have been open and honest with my kids about sex since they were little. I never wanted them to fall victim to being sexually abused. I wanted them to have their bodies to give to their first lovers willingly. I also warned them of the side effects of having sex on relationships and themselves.
I was honest with them about my past. I have had MANY sexual partners throughout my life. I have dated MANY guys too. Unfortunately, out of those guys, I can honestly say only three of them have had a part of my heart. I married two of them. However, the other one has remained an acquaintance and I know if I needed him, he’d be a phone call away.
I have watched my teenagers make wiser decisions than I made at their age. They are choosing to be more sensible about sex. They want it to be meaningful and not just quick actions with random people. I’ve watched them lose potential relationships because they want to wait, and they do not worry one bit about it. It warms my heart to see them taking these routes in their lives.
While I encourage them to wait until they are married to have sex, I also know that hormones don’t always allow a person to hold true to that decision. I have stressed to my kids that if they decide they feel they are getting close to wanting to have sex or if it’s on their minds more, then we will get their protection items needed for both of them.
I would much rather have my kids have sex with me knowing about it. I don’t want them to feel like they have to sneak or hide the fact. I want them to have safe and responsible sex. Plus, this way, when their emotions go crazy (which it will happen) I’m also prepared to help them with that too. Let’s not forget that everyone wants different things when it comes to sex.
My kids know I’m not going to judge them about their decisions concerning sex. If they decide to sleep with many partners, I won’t hold it against them (I can’t! I did it.) They know that I have always stressed that sex within marriage outranks anything that is done outside of it. I have made it clear that sex without emotions involved is great for a physical release, but it can lead to bigger issues than what it’s worth.
Provide a “Safe Zone”
If you can’t freely bring yourself to talk about it on your own. In our family, the car is the “safe zone” to talk about anything without worry about it being repeated or talked about outside the car. So, I give them an open opportunity to ASK any questions they have about my life. Sometimes I regret giving them that freedom because they have asked some tough questions to answer because they do know about my past digressions. By allowing them to ask questions, I know what they are curious about. That has helped me to be able to give them my thoughts and opinions on things. I have stressed numerous times that they have to make the decisions that make them comfortable when the time comes.
The bottom line is again, sex is a natural part of life. There should be no shame in discussing it freely.
Talk About Drugs and Alcohol
I have always talked to them freely about drugs and alcohol too. However, I will admit it’s not a talk I have with them quite as much because it’s not something I have personal experience with directly. I just know what’s it’s like dealing with a drug addict brother and seeing alcoholic family members growing up.
In our family, they have to worry about becoming an addict themselves. Hence why they don’t see me drink alcohol but maybe twice a year (if that!) I have NEVER been drunk in my life, and I don’t intend to ever be that way.
My kids have made it clear to their friends and other family members that they don’t need drugs or alcohol to have a good time. They’d much rather remember everything happening.
They’ve seen first-hand how having an addiction to these items can destroy a person’s life. They don’t want to experience those heartaches themselves.
Having the talk about sex, drugs, and alcohol with your kids should come naturally. If it doesn’t then I suggest finding a way to make it happen. The last thing anyone wants is to have their child making poor decisions with these things because they don’t have the right facts.
If you have a religious belief concerning these things, don’t assume the church’s teachings are going to be enough for them. If anything, that may be causing them to have even greater mixed emotions and issues.
Regardless of whether your kids are 2 or 22, they still value our insights and seek our approval in their lives. They may not want to admit it though!
Tell us in the comments:
Have you had the talk about sex, drugs, and alcohol with your kids yet? Do you have any advice to give fellow readers?