It’s an uncomfortable subject for parents, talking about the Birds and the Bees but it is necessary in today’s world. The average age a Black teen has his or her first sexual intercourse is 15 (2013).
One of the most important decisions you will have to decide beforehand is whether you are going to teach abstinence, protection or a combination of the two, just in case. Either way, The Talk isn’t easy for most parents and know that you do not have to teach everything at once. Visual aids are usually not appropriate for young children unless they have stumbled upon an anatomy-book and are inquisitive. Explain this subject on a level that your child can understand.
The appropriate age is once your child can understand the consequences of his or her actions. For girls, a great milestone is once they enter menstruation-age around age 10-12.
“The average age a Black teen has his or her first sexual intercourse is 15.”
How To Initiate the Conversation
Start by asking if your child has a girlfriend or boyfriend. Mention that he or she may have heard some things in school but that you want to set the record straight. Be sure to listen and don’t interrupt once your child starts talking or asking questions.
It’s important to teach your child about healthy and unhealthy relationships whether he or she is having sex or not. Respecting themselves first is the overall message here.
Don’t leave out STD-education. Your child needs to know that besides pregnancy, sex is a risky behavior
No means, NO! Teach your child that if he or she says, “no” then they should walk away and not pursue the other person. Teach them touch by consent.
Teach your child about the dangers of sexting. Did you know that your teen can be charged and arrested for having child pornography on his or her phone, or computer if another child sends him or her naked or semi-naked photos? If these photos are shared in The Cloud to a family photo source, any family member with these photos on their device can also be charged. In addition, teach them that photos on the Internet are not temporary and the dangers of posting compromising pictures.
Don’t assume your child’s sexual orientation. Let him or her tell you.
Keep It Together
Don’t gasp or look shocked at anything your child says. You don’t want to scare your child away from talking about this subject. Talking about sex shouldn’t be taboo.
Bad news, the talk is ongoing. Your goal is to encourage your child to come to you, instead of anyone else, when he or she has questions. Let him know that he should come to you with any questions, help or problems that might arise in the future. Your attitude about this subject will mold your child’s confidence lsevel.
Also that this talk doesn’t give your child permission to have sex but you know it happens, and you want him or her to be educated about sex so it doesn’t complicate your child’s future. Although the rate of teen pregnancy has fallen for Black girls, they are still three times as likely to have babies compared to white girls.
“Although the rate of teen pregnancy has fallen for Black girls, they are still three times as likely to have babies compared to white girls.”
When Talking Fails
If your teen refuses to talk to you about sex, write a letter and encourage your teen to write back.
The Talk, is an uncomfortable discussion for many parents. Confront your embarrassment before approaching your child. Make bullet points of the things you want to talk about before having The Talk. If your child approaches you and you’re not ready, it’s okay to say let me find out more information about that and get back to you. Then get back to him or her immediately after you have pulled yourself together. You can do this!