Sex & Knowledge
What Teens Really Need to Know About Sex
Besides physiological facts and
pertinent warnings about sexually
transmitted diseases, there are five important, and all too
often overlooked, facts that teens need to know about sex. This
is what you might tell your teenager:
1. Sex is an acquired skill. People expect
miracles when they first have sex, not realizing that people need
time and experience and patience to grow in their capacity to
give and receive pleasure.
2. Sex is best enjoyed by those who are grown
up, emotionally as well as physically.
3. Men and women have some important different
physiological responses to sex and it's important to be aware
of these to avoid misunderstandings.
4. The anxiety of a first time ever or with
a new partner can create problems with one or both partners. Patience,
understanding and gentle reassurance are vital.
5. Finally, mature love and commitment can
make sexual experiences much more satisfying. Tell your teenager
that sex is best when one truly trusts and can be completely one's
self with another.
If Your Teen Is Having Sex
It is a definite shock to discover
that your teen is having sex. You may feel anxious, angry, disappointed,
and distressed, and wonder "What do I do now?" Here
are some suggestions:
1. Take time to collect your thoughts. Calm
down if at all possible before discussing the matter. Lashing
out at your teen can only escalate the conflict between you.
2. Let your teen know how you feel in a caring
way, and then listen to his or her feelings as well. You'll get
through to him better with dialogue than with a ranting monologue.
3. Realize the limits of your power and set limits
as you are able. Teens don't usually stop having sex just because
a parent demands it. But you can let your teen know that you disapprove
and will not permit his/her sexual activity in your own home.
There is a fine line to be sure
between accepting the reality of your teen's sexual
activity and condoning it. But you can let your
teen know that you disagree with his sexual choice, while letting
him know, too, you care enough to emphasize the importance of
safe sex and consistent use of birth
control if he or she doesn't choose
Disciplining Your Teen
Rules & Limits
Sex & Relationships
Talking About Birth
Talking About HIV &
Talking About Self-Image
Talking About Puberty
Drugs & Pre-teens