How I prepared to talk to my daughter about SEX
How many of you have had “the talk” with your kid? We live in a time where sex is everywhere. Sex sells and social media gives you full access to sex right at your fingertips. The time was near to talk to my oldest. She was almost 11 at the time. It’s a fact that most teenagers learn about sex from the media. The more they are exposed to sexual content, the more likely they are to engage in it earlier. I want to be ahead of the game with my kids and I needed to start talking to my daughter about the changes that were going to happen to her so she’d be able to have an open dialogue about the three-letter-word.
S. E. X.
Let me give you a little background on how I was raised:
I grew up Catholic, (enough said, right)? Growing up Catholic, we did not discuss sex. Sex was taboo, it was mysterious, it was as if sex did not exist. You might as well cue the X-Files music if the word “sex” was even mentioned. Being Catholic, Sex is for marriage only and needs no further discussion. If you have sex before you’re married, you are pretty much tainted and God is very displeased.
I did not discuss puberty with my parents or what was going to happen to my body as a young woman. I learned about the “changes” by watching a video in fifth or sixth grade. Having not discussed puberty with my parents, I went through the weird “changes” by myself, never fully understanding what was happening and why. But, hey, at the time it was okay. I am happy to say I made it through puberty.
Now, the topic of sex is a different story. I learned about sex in the seventh grade, from my friends who were already having it. Quite the crash-course I’d say.
When I was about 13, my mother sent me to a biblically based class called Pearl Talk. Pearl Talk taught me what the Lord wants for me as a young woman; that my body is a gift and sex is only for marriage. I’ll never forget the analogy that the instructor used. She has us all open a sucker and lick it. She tells us to wrap it back up, hand it to the person next to us and they are instructed to open the same sucker and lick it. Of course, no one wants to lick off the same sucker someone else has just licked! This was the quintessential meaning of the class. Once you’ve had sex with one person, it was pretty much nasty as hell to go have sex with another person. No one desires a licked-all-over sucker as their life partner.
As harsh as that sounds, I truly thank God, and my mother, for making me attend the class 50,000 times. Between the nasty sucker and what God wants for my life, the message stuck with me and was always in the back of my mind.
That was the extent of my sex education. It went no further than that class. What was missing was teaching me about my body, the changes that were taking place and what sex was really about.
I want different for my daughters.
I absolutely do believe that God wants you to be married before sex, that our bodies are temples and that sex is intended for two people that love and are committed wholeheartedly to each other. But, with I also believe we live in too much of a different time to keep sexuality and sex hidden. Kids are being exposed to sex at a younger and younger age. I personally feel my daughters need the reality of it all.
A biblical foundation will still be used, but I want them to be aware of what might happen, what is going to happen and what will always happen around them. I don’t want them to be blind and naive. They need to be equipped with the proper sexual-education so if, and when they are faced with a real situation, they will be able to make an informed decision. I want to be the one to lay the foundation, to teach them what God wants, teach them what boys may want and talk to them about the pressure they will face. I most certainly don’t want them getting their sexual-education from their friends or the internet, therefore it needs come from me. No matter how much I want to keep puberty and sex locked in a safe and never speak of it because it makes me uncomfortable, I must.
How was I going to talk to her? After the way I grew up, talking about puberty and sex to my baby made me feel super uneasy. But, Karmyn is starting to ask questions about her body, about my body and why I did certain things at certain times of the month and I know she needs an honest, raw answer.
I remember someone mentioning a class called, “Great Conversations.” It was broken down into two sections. The first session talked about the changes a girl was going to go through during puberty and the second session was about what boys go through during puberty… and then, “the talk.” The class was for girls only with one parent, (they have classes for boys, too). This is a great way to get the dialogue going, so I signed us up!
The day of the first session came.
On the way to Overlake Hospital, I think I am more nervous than Karmyn. I know the subject matter that we will be discussing. I know we are only going over puberty, but the thought of having to look Karmyn in the eye while discussing bleeding out of our vaginas once a month makes me slightly anxious. On the same token, this is going to be the start of a more mature relationship between my daughter and I. Right? The questions and doubt start swarming my head. I’m not sure if I’m ready. Did I make a mistake? Am I bringing her too soon? Will this be received well by Karmyn? Or will “Great Conversations” make it awkward between us?
As we walk into the room with auditorium seating and small desktops attached to each chair, Karmyn was given a piece of paper, a pen, and a picture of a woman’s uterus. Here we go…
Stay tuned for part II!