14 February 2013

What do you know about sex?

Sex Education Portfolio, 3
Sex Education Portfolio, 3 (Photo credit: Ross Griff)
It wasn't until I was in high school that I heard an adult really talk to me about sex. The sad part is, it wasn't my father, it was a female teacher who was approaching sixty. My father never had "the talk" with me. Instead he just forbid me to have sex before I got married, followed by the death threat in the instance that I got a girl pregnant.

These days, children start sexual education in elementary school. They are taught the proper verbiage to describe the anatomy of the opposite sex before they comprehend the functionality of their own. Once again, the government has gone just a step to far in an effort to combat a problem stems from society itself. Though sexual education in the schools helps, it is up to parents to educate children on their bodies and sex.

I am determined to do a better job with my sons than my father did so when my eldest was eight I asked the most awkward question.

Me: "What do you know about sex?"

Son: "What?!"

Me: "What do you know about sex?"

Son: "Daddy, why would you ask me that?"

Me: "Because I know your friends are talking about it at school and I want to make sure that you are getting the right information."

Although he was reluctant, my son began explaining what he knew which was mainly false information. I listened intently to everything that he said and fielded questions as we went along. Correcting him was the perfect opportunity to teach him what he wanted to know, which made an easy transition into what he needed to know. That first question that I asked made all the difference. Instead of me giving him a lecture or using some analogy that would ultimately confuse him (birds and the bees), he initiated the conversation and he was able to control the flow of information.

Since then we have had talks more often, always when we spend our "man" time together, usually fishing. He doesn't shy away from the asking me about the truth of the newest rumor that some kid has conjured up. I always try and use the medical terms for body parts and actions, when explaining slang terms. In the end I always express both the joy and danger of sex. I'm positive that armed with the right knowledge he will make the right decision.
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