Though it’s never too late to initiate a talk about sexual health with children, but it is always best to start it in their early childhood. It’s common for parents or kids to feel embarrassed or uncomfortable while talking about sex and sexuality at first, but it gets easier with time and practice.
There are many different ways to start conversations about sex and sexuality with youngsters and the best key is to keep the conversation open and ongoing. Try to listen and understand what they have to say regarding this topic. Paying attention to kids shows them that you are keen to know what they think and respect their thought process.
Here is a checklist about ways in which you can teach your kids about sexuality without making it explicit and improper.
- Never scold your children if you catch them staring at each other’s genitals or private parts. This is the most usual and common way, through which children become aware of the opposite sex. Creating a fuss at home would only make them scared and defensive. A tactful approach is required.
- Being a parent or guardian, you must clearly understand that if your child is touching someone else of the opposite sex, it may be unintentional and not an aggressive sexual act. Your scolding might make it turn into one. There are better ways to handle this situation. Children are curious and do not necessarily have malicious intentions.
- While discussing sex with your kids do not isolate them in closed rooms and subject them to a stiff conversation. Sharing a snack in a park or talking it out while taking a walk does help the child to relax and not make them anxious about it. A tactful parent is always calm.
- Take the help of that good old fairy tale book. Tell them how the naughty characters always fell in trouble. The message should be clear in terms of how too much of inquisitiveness can lead one into trouble. Children should not be too eager to show their body parts at all times to people.
- Quote an instance, which might necessarily not be an example of a sexual act, but from any mundane activity. The significance is to tell them that impulsive behaviour has its side effects.
- A parent however, must realise that curiosity should not be treated as a symptom of guilt. Never make your kids feel ashamed. Help them locate new activity games and creative activities that would divert their mind and keep them busy.
- Spend as much time with your child as possible during the growing years. This will help you monitor them closely and be friends with them. Distancing and avoiding them is definitely not the solution. This might even damage your child’s psyche forever.
- Try to understand your kid’s friends. At times, peer pressure can force your child into these sexual curiosities. If this is happening in schools and extracurricular clubs, inform the nearest authorities or parents of the children involved.
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