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Old 02-12-2008, 12:35 PM
 
Location: Dallas, NC
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My son is 8 and when he asks questions I tell him to go talk to his dad b/c I don't have those parts Just kidding (ok, not really) but when I feel like it's something I can answer (not specific to why a certain anatomical feature reacts a certain way b/c I have no specific knowledge of that) I tell him the truth. We explained about private parts and all that a long time ago. Now he's hearing all the words like sex, gay, and he said lesbian the other night totally out of context and we're like where did you that b/c that's not what it is. Honesty is the only way to survive raising kids now. You can't make them ashamed of their bodies or feelings b/c if they feel they can't talk to you they could make some bad mistakes later. I remember not even thinking about boys that way until 7 grade and then anything more than kissing was unheard of. Wow.....times have changed in 20 years!
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Old 02-12-2008, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Oz
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Quote:
Originally Posted by austinsmom View Post
Now he's hearing all the words like sex, gay, and he said lesbian the other night totally out of context and we're like where did you that b/c that's not what it is.
LOL I remember that coming up with my son when he was about that age (he'll be 24 this week, OMG). Anyway, I explained basically what gay and lesbian were, and that people should be loved and accepted no matter their preference and he thinks about it for a moment and then says to me "Mom if I am gay would you still love me?"

I said "Of course dear, it doesn't matter one bit because you would still be the same wonderful boy you are right now." And then the little joker looks me straight in the eye, says "Just kidding mom, I'm not gay! I don't like girls but I'm not gay!"

LOL...
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Old 02-12-2008, 12:44 PM
 
Location: San Antonio
1,222 posts, read 4,110,378 times
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I remember when my son was about 8 and Freddie Mercury died he said Mum do you know anyone who is gay. My best male friend who I grew up with is , so I said yes Uncle ##### he went oh and that was it. But over the years we have talked and both my boys are understanding and are not homophobic - thank goodness. He is still their favourite Uncle too.
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Old 02-12-2008, 12:55 PM
 
Location: Dallas, NC
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We had to have that conversation in kindergarten but I didn't use the word lesbian. There is a little boy who was in his class (still go to school together) who's mom had him via in vetro. Her partner at the time is also his mom. My DS asked my why C has 2 moms and no dad. Up to then we had told him the whole get married and have babies story. Well, that doesn't wash anymore. I just told him that C's mom's love each other like his dad and I do and they love C and are good parents. That's all that matters. I never thought I'd have to have that coversation living in a small town like I do. He was fine with it and has never said anything to C and has been nothing but polite to either mom. I'm acquainted with both and other the drama of their break up, they are both very nice and love their son. Hard to explain when you try to teach your values but want your kids to be accepting of others too.
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Old 02-12-2008, 01:00 PM
 
Location: Oz
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Originally Posted by austinsmom View Post
Hard to explain when you try to teach your values but want your kids to be accepting of others too.


But being gay or lesbian has nothing to do with "values". It's just how people are. It's not something that is learned or taught.
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Old 02-12-2008, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Chicago 'burbs'
1,022 posts, read 2,979,770 times
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Originally Posted by tiffela74 View Post
Somethign else that really worked well for us, is since she can be shy, and some things can be harder to say/ask then others, so she sometimes writes (usually me) a letter w/the basic question/thought/idea, then we go in her room and discuss it from there.
That is a great idea. I think I'll use that one with my kids!
Thanks!
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Old 02-12-2008, 02:00 PM
 
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My kids are 7 and 5... they know so far that it takes a sperm cell from the daddy and an egg cell from the mommy to make a baby, and that the baby comes out of the woman's vagina. They have not yet asked how the sperm gets in there to begin with. Since I have a boy and a girl, they both know that boys have penises and girls have vulvas with vaginas. They both know that babies are supposed to come after marriage, and sometimes if we see kissing on TV, I'll say, "wow, do you think those people are married?" just to kind of point it out. (No, I'm not thinking that they will save kissing for marriage, but I do think that it's a good way to start the idea that certain things take place between a husband and wife.)

So it's been years and it will take more years, but eventually they'll know it all... my own parents did not really sit us down at all, and I had no idea what sex was until I was in the 5th grade and during the "period talk" that all the girls got, they asked if there were any questions and I asked how babies were made!
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Old 02-13-2008, 09:29 AM
 
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Rather than having "the talk" as in a one-time big deal serious episode, I was told (and it worked with all 3 kids) to have it be an ongoing conversation, that is age appropriate, work it in to regular conversation. That worked great and took "the pressure" off both kids and mom and dad.

So when they were toddlers it was just names of body parts (just like learning arm and leg and elbow, including vagina, penis, testicles, no big deal), and through preschool and kindergarten it was answering the normal questions that came up. In middle school it was not just safe sex and contraception, but also naturally worked into how they see boys and girls treating each other, stories they tell. Age appropriate, so as they got older different words, different content, longer more indepth talks.

As far as who did it I did, I am the mom, and I did it even they were all 3 boys/sons. Their dad had way too many hangups about talking about sex and his family just avoided the topic all together. I on the other hand wanted my kids to see sex as a normal healthy natural topic, I wanted them to be at ease with their body and sexuality (not full of shame and guilt), and I wanted them to have a happy sex life when the time came, which starts with seeing it as a natural easy part of living.

Also I'd rather they get accurate information from me that reflects my values, then the alternative which is inaccurate information picked up from other 4- or 9- or 12-year olds on the playground. So we included things like "Sometimes men marry men, sometimes men marry women, sometime women marry women," and it was no big deal. Masturbation? No big deal, it's natural, just keep it private in your bedroom or bathroom; not in public; and your private parts are you own, Nobody else gets to touch them including relatives (as they got older this part changed to include dating behavior).

Another great conversation opener was when they came home from school repeating what they had heard, usually "dirty" talk. I would tell them exactly what the words and actions meant such as who was doing what to whom. Usually once they knew, and had listened to their mom describing to them in detail what those actions were, they were quite reluctant to use such phrases in their conversation. I'm big on "if you're going to talk about something, anything, use the right words at least." I can't stand all the "euphemisms" and "baby talk" that even adults use around sex, for body parts for instance.

Last edited by Tzaphkiel; 02-13-2008 at 09:38 AM..
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Old 02-13-2008, 09:50 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
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Well said thats exactly how I was with my 2 sons and I too did the talking.
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Old 02-13-2008, 12:28 PM
 
Location: UK
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In our family it has happened gradually. It has been an ongoing process. We have always felt quite comfortable in bathing with the childrenwhen they were younger and allow them to ask questions as they came up.

But I remember that once when my daughter was almost 8 she picked up a book in the library called "Mummy laid an egg" by Babette Cole. We read it together and I thought it was a fun and not threatening way to explain to children how babies are made.

The same author published "Hair in funny places" and it explain to children how their bodies are going to change and develop. I read this book with my daughter too. She had a few questions but generally we both felt quite comfortable with this topic. The books definetely made the whole process a lot less "formal" or dramatic.

With my son (8)we are at the stage when we should think of getting the books back from the library but in some ways he has an elder sister and he is already noticing changes happening in her. We also have had a baby recently and so a lot of questions have been answered during the 9 months of family wait.

Whatever one decides to do I think that it is very important children learn the facts from us as they will inevitably find out from school a lot of information that sometime might be incorrect. If we are confortable about it all, the children will also feel alright about this topics and will be able to ask us questions if they need to.
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