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At what age do you think it is appropriate to speak with Children about Sex?

Most parents are apprehensive about telling their children information concerning sex and sexual development. They often times will not say anything for fear that it may cause their teen to be sexually active at an early age, but statically this is far from the truth!

The problem with that theory, is by the time parents think children are old enough to know the information concerning sex, they have already learned it from the computer, television or the neighborhood kid.

The best way to teach children about sex is to start answering their questions about their body when they are young.……..

For some people this may sound alarming but put into the most basic terms it is a natural way to slowly break the ice and make it comfortable for both a parent and child to be open with each other instead of them feeling like they can’t speak with a parent.

When adults are armed with the proper information from a clinical sexologist, or sex educator, or have gotten help for themselves then they can be more pro-active with their children. What is most disturbing are the issues that could have been prevented with a parent allowing the child to feel open enough to speak with them about sex. For some people the curiosity as a youth and not being open and able to talk to speak about it with their parents can lead them into getting into more trouble. Children are curious and will go to great lengths sometimes, especially as they develop into teenagers, exploring sexual outlets for that reason alone. Some get involved in situations or do things that can affect them for the rest of their lives, when it could have been prevented with proper sex education. Some even develop sexual issues into adulthood, along with sexual trauma, unwanted pregnancy, sexually transmitted diseases, erectile dysfunction, and negative views about their bodies.

What stage of development is it appropriate to speak with children about their body and sex?

The first stage is when they begin to be curious about their own body or a parents body.. When they ask a question about their penis or vulva, a parent should answer it with the correct terminology. This is a "penis" and this is a "vulva." The parent does not have to go into detail, just simply answer the question. If they touch themselves in front of the parent, don’t freak out, because it is normal for children to touch themselves and be curious, just like they enjoy picking their nose and eating their boogers….It feels good to pick their nose and the boogers are interesting to look at and play with. This applies to their penis and vulva, if they are touching themselves in public, the parent may want to say “You know how it not alright to pick your boogers in front of others, but you can do it in your room or bathroom, you can touch and explore your own body that way too." ----Going into more detail is not necessary, simply answer that question.

When a girl reaches an age of more understanding and this can be differ from child to child, they may ask mommy or see mommy have her period (menstruation). This is a time when the parent can explain in simple terms, that women bleed once a month and sometimes it can make mommy a little emotional or crabby but also it is a wonderful thing that happens when a little girl ages and turns into a teenager. Give the child information that is correct without having to go into detail or make a big deal about it. If she asks more question then answer them, that is how a parent can understand when their child is ready to learn the information, simple questions, short answers, they will ask if they want more detail. This is a way for a parent and a child to have open lines of communication surrounding their body.

When parents talk openly with children at a young age then children are less curious and can feel comfortable about asking mom or dad instead of the school kids. When watching television with kids and they see something that they don’t understand, then sitting with them and asking them what they want to know is another way to open the lines of communication without it feeling forced. Most children will feel comfortable asking if they feel that mom or dad is open and willing to answer…..…When answering always remember to be honest, brief and positive, allowing them to continue to ask what they want to know.….One day they may want to know how they were born and a parent can feel comfortable with the conversation and not make it into the "big sex talk"…since they already know about their body parts by name and function.

Once they hit puberty they will know what is happening to their bodies as they go through the changes of childhood to adulthood. Speaking to them about condoms, birth control, and the risks involved in having sexual relationships with others, they will know how to protect themselves. Statics show that the more curious a child is about sex the sooner they will have it, the less curious, they are and already informed and armed information, they don't have to search it out in an unhealthy way. Arm children with knowledge and that will be their best protection against unwanted pregnancy, sexual trauma, and getting an STD, HP V, or AIDS's……

One last bit of advice for parents, is that in school and educational programs they have given youth the idea that AIDS is no longer a real threat, putting more teens and young adults at risk for contracting HIV! Remember there is no cure as of yet, for AIDS only prevention, pills and a slow painful death!

Statics From the CDC

HIV and AIDS Diagnosesc and Deaths Among Youth (Aged 13-24)

An estimated 10,456 youth were diagnosed with HIV infection in the United States and six dependent areas in 2011, representing 21% of an estimated 50,199 people diagnosed during that year.

Seventy-eight percent (8,140) of these diagnoses occurred in those aged 20 to 24, the highest number and population rate of HIV diagnoses of any age group (36.3 new HIV diagnoses/100,000 people).

By the end of 2010, of the estimated 39,035 youth living with diagnosed HIV infection in the United States and 6 dependent areas: An estimated 27,621 HIV diagnoses were among young men. Of these, 77% of HIV diagnoses were attributed to male-to-male sexual contact and 13% to perinatal exposure.

An estimated 11,413 HIV diagnoses were among young women. Of these, 56% were attributed to heterosexual contact and 34% to perinatal exposure.

In 2011, an estimated 3,004 youth in the United States and six dependent areas were diagnosed with AIDS, a number that has increased 29% since 2008.

By the end of 2010, an estimated 11,731 youth with an AIDS diagnosis had died in the United States and six dependent areas since the HIV epidemic began.

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