How To Talk To Your Kids About Sex

How To Talk To Your Kids About Sex

As a sex educator and researcher, one of the more common questions I get asked is when and how to talk to your kids about sex. Case in point: a reader of the blog recently asked, “At what age should parents talk about sex to their children—or at what age do children need to know about sex?”

So when should you start? And what the heck do parents need to know about navigating this discussion? Here’s a brief guide to help you get started.

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We Tend To Select Romantic Partners Who Look Like Our Parents

We Tend To Select Romantic Partners Who Look Like Our Parents

Throughout the animal kingdom, scientists have found that early caregiving experiences shape later patterns of sexual attraction.

For example, if you ever took an Introductory Psychology course, you probably learned about Konrad Lorenz’s discovery that baby geese “imprint” on the first moving object they see shortly after birth, meaning they treat that object as if it were their mother and start following it around [1]. Perhaps your textbook even included some adorable photos of Lorenz being trailed by a gaggle of geese that had imprinted on him. However, what’s even more fascinating than this is that, when they grew up, these geese would attempt to mate with human men that physically resembled Lorenz himself—in this case, white dudes with big white beards!

This isn’t a phenomenon unique to geese, though—something similar happens in humans. I know some of you will find this creepy, but humans have a tendency to select romantic partners who physically resemble their childhood caretakers.

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Does The Size Of A Man’s Testicles Say Anything About His Parenting?

Does The Size Of A Man’s Testicles Say Anything About His Parenting?

A new study looking at the link between men’s testicular size and their parenting qualities has been making the rounds in the media lately, with provocative headlines ranging from “Choose Dads with Smaller ‘Nads” to “Dudes with Smaller Balls are Better Parents” to “Big Testicles Indicate Rubbish Dads.” The message is pretty clear: if you’re looking for a baby daddy who’s going to stick around and take care of your kids, look for the guy with the smallest testicles you can find. However, before you go and dig out the measuring tape, it's worth taking a closer look at the details of this study.

 
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When And How Should You Talk To Your Kids About Sex In The Age Of Internet Porn?

When And How Should You Talk To Your Kids About Sex In The Age Of Internet Porn?

How are adolescent boys learning about sex these days? By pointing, clicking, and streaming through a seemingly endless supply of Internet pornography. That’s right, online porn is now the default form of sex education for a growing number of young boys because they simply are not getting the information they need elsewhere. Personally, I find this prospect kind of scary. I mean, do you really want your son to learn everything he knows about sex from watching Ron Jeremy? And do you really want him to think that the bodies that he sees in porn are “normal” for men and women, or that the sexual script that plays out in porn videos is how real life relationships actually work (i.e., plumber arrives, clothes are torn off followed by extensive oral sex, pizza deliveryman arrives followed by tag team intercourse and gratuitous money shots, etc.)? I didn’t think so. Although it’s unlikely that anything you say will prevent your son from eventually searching for porn, what you can do is teach him about sex in a responsible way so that porn does not become his “how-to” guide for sex and relationships.

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