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How Would I Respond...

Updated on 7/14/2010 03:11:00 PM

Pretend your son or daughter has asked you one of these questions. Choose the letter that most closely represents how you would respond?

1. Do you have sex?

  1. It’s none of your business – you shouldn’t be asking questions like that.
  2. That’s a good question. Yes, we do because we love each other and this is one way we show it. I believe that sex is something very special and private that two people do together and shouldn’t be taken lightly. I’m glad you came and asked me. If you have other questions, let me know.
  3. Go ask your mom/dad.

2. What’s a ho/whore/prostitute?

  1. Where did you learn that word? I’m going to take away your music if that’s all your hearing!
  2. It’s a word that refers to a person who has sex or sexual contact with another person for money or sometimes for other things like drugs. I feel as if this word is used too often in music or in the movies to describe someone who really isn’t getting money for sex but instead as a way refer to women in general. What do you think about it?
  3. It’s nothing you need to worry about.

3. When is it ok to have sex?

  1. There is no specific time or age when it is ok. I believe that people are ready to have sex when they are (insert what you believe). There are many reasons why waiting to have sex is a good idea. When someone has sex they need to worry about protecting themselves from STDs and pregnancy.
  2. Never! That’s all I have to say!
  3. Sex is a bad thing and you are too young to even talk about it.

4. Some girls were talking at school about jilling off (term used to describe females masturbating), what’s that?

  1. I’m not sure what that is. Give me a few minutes to look it up on the internet and then we can talk about it.
  2. Who knows? But it’s probably something you shouldn’t be talking about.
  3. I’m sure it’s something one of your friends just made up.

5. What’s a blow job?

  1. A blow job is another term for oral sex on a guy/man when the mouth or tongue is being used to stimulate the penis. Oral sex can also be performed on a woman when the mouth or tongue is used to stimulate the vulva of the woman. Some sexually transmitted infections can be passed from person to person during oral sex. It’s important that people having oral sex are safe and use a barrier to protect themselves from STIs. I feel that oral sex is (insert your belief).
  2. Something you should never do!
  3. Don’t ask me such questions! That’s not appropriate.

How should you respond?

Here are some tips to responding to big, difficult, and uncomfortable questions. Remember these 4 points:

  • Facts
  • Rights and Responsibilities
  • Family and personal values
  • Your feelings and your child’s self-esteem.

Be factual and answer honestly. Give accurate information and clear up any myths.

If you don’t know the answer, don’t pretend you do and give false information. Tell them you don’t know and look it up. Make it a parent-child activity and find the answer together.

Help them understand the possible consequences and how to take responsibility for their decisions and actions.

Help them develop communication skills to resist and confront peer pressure.

Share what you believe and what is important to you.

Don’t be a hypocrite. Be sure that you are being a good role model and showing you son or daughter how you expect them to act.

Discover your feelings about sex and the reasons for them. Share them with your son/daughter.

Be encouraging – help your child feel good about themselves and what they are going through.

Affirm and validate your child. This will help them feel better about themselves and promotes healthy communication and relationships.

Treat them with respect and keep the communication open.

Listen – that’s the most important part of communication.

Don’t overact and think immediately that this is a crisis or something that is happening to them. It may be related to a friend at school or something that they saw on TV. Don’t assume that it’s a situation happening with your child.

- Cody, A., and Detwiler, J. Four points to remember when talking with your child about sex and sexuality. Planned Parenthood Federation of America, 2007.
- American Social Health Association, Becoming an askable parent – how to talk to your child about sexuality. 2006.
- Planned Parenthood Federation of America, Conversation started for parents to talk with you about sex and sexuality. 2007.