“The Talk”, or what is happening to my life?

I think it might be time to tell a couple of my kids about the birds and the bees. Not literally, they have literally been aware of birds and bees for some time now. In fact, one of my children will only go outdoors to get in the car, because of bees. (solidarity, Toby) But in a metaphorical sense, I think it’s time to talk to my kids about sex. If your internet filters let that through, let’s continue.

We’re approaching puberty here, which fills me with terror. I still have tiny red cowboy boots in the closet, aren’t they still that size? WHAT HAPPENING

Maybe it was time a long time ago, I don’t know. We have talked about babies, and some body and puberty basics, and even pornography, because this generation is super tech savvy and the internet is a cesspool. With all this openness, however, I have kept the actual sexuality parts of the conversation… out of the conversation.

My own education was pretty limited. I remember a “uterus” talk when I was about 4 from my oldest sister (who was grown, with kids). Then I gathered some highly inaccurate information from a couple of “last chance” boys that got sent to our private school.When I was about 13, I think my mom might have taken a good solid shot at teaching me but all I remember is some cave drawings and crushing embarrassment, and then I went to public school and gathered a few more inaccurate details on the bus. The rest of it learned on the field, if you will.

When Toby was about 5, he put a couple of things together. “I think I know where babies come from,” he told me, “and I do NOT want to know.” I took that cue and did not tell him. But I’m thinking these days that I want to be the first voice on all this (or pretty close to the first) because 2016 is VASTLY different than 1988, when I was 10.

I’ve got a couple of quandaries. First: awkward.SO AWKWARD. “Not for me,” you say. “I talk openly with Henna and Barista all the time. They are very comfortable with their 4 year old sexuality.” Bully for you, great work. I am just having some trouble making the words come out of my mouth. I mean, they know their body parts and all, but geez.

Secondly: how do I say “This is good and great and wonderful and normal but DON’T PLAY DOCTOR or explore these topics with your friends and also GET MARRIED first. I am just giving you some info for you to hang on to for 10-15 years.” ? I hate anything that seems like sex and sexuality is illicit or unholy in and of itself, but I also want some great boundaries. There’s a spectrum here and I tend toward the fundamentalist side of it despite myself. I think I have a better grip on how I want to handle “modesty” and shame but this is tricky stuff.

Anybody want a soapbox topic? Why is all the burden for purity on the girl? Why is there something inherently shameful about being female, with feminine features and shape? Is it really right to make our daughters carry the burden of their male peers’ burgeoning sexuality? Isn’t that really on the boys?  < / soapbox> </ for now>

Back to the ol’ B&B. So I asked the internet, and you guys have lots of book suggestions and I am going to read them. The kids in question are endlessly bookish so it will probably be relatively painless for them to work through this via mom-blushingly-reading-a-book and then doing a brief Q&A, which will open the lifelong Q&A.

Also maybe I need to round up some cave drawings.

010_clark_2010

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2 thoughts on ““The Talk”, or what is happening to my life?

  1. Angela says:

    I currently have 6 teenagers, and have answered the how did the baby get in your belly question many times, and my eldest has just survived a year in a state university, so I have had many such talks on multiple levels, some better, some less better 😉. This is best not as an isolated, whew I’m glad that’s over talk, but as an open, anytime you want you can always ask me about this talk. I think talking about this can be one of the great talks we have with our kids, about God and His design and creation and the fall and redemption. God made us perfectly to go perfectly together, pre-fall, pre-sin. He made us to be delightful and to delight in a safe protected cherishing worshipful environment. He made us perfectly with parts with specific jobs that we protect because he made us special to belong to and be enjoyed by one other person. But part of what happened when Eve and Adam sinned is they told God to butt out and they decided to be in charge, and that was the beginning of the corruption of what God made perfect. So when we see or hear bodies or relationships displayed in a way that is outside God’s boundaries, know that He made it perfect, for one man and one woman to belong to each other privately and perfectly, body, soul, spirit, and this is just another version of Satan stealing and killing and destroying. But Jesus is still perfect and He still makes all things new.
    I guess it’s a little like telling someone about Jesus (because that is sorta what it really is), and you will get better and more comfortable as you do it. But tell them about Him and how good He is and that He made this great perfect thing for us to show us His love, and Satan tries to mess it up, but God wins. That’s the context. The rest is just details, but those are less important. You’ll do great!

    Like

  2. Katrina Bocanegra says:

    Interestingly enough, we have discussed this, off and on, in my Child Development class this semester. My professor thinks that sex-ed is entirely ineffective and horrid – “It’s only about the worst possible case and once someone starts kissing on your neck the first time and you realize you like it and you aren’t actually going to get every disease and then die, those who taught you lose all credibility.” I thought that was probably pretty true, and even listened when he said that sex-ed should discuss the great parts of sex and how giving knowledge doesn’t actually mean that someone will go and do something (which is why most people don’t want to talk to their kids about it). He did lose me when he stated that technique should be taught….by teachers….in school.

    All in all, good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

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