One of the questions I ask when I teach Awaken-Love is “How did you first learn about sex – not just how babies are made – but sex?”
Some of the more common answers I hear are:
- On the bus
- From friends
- From romance movies, books or magazines
- My mom handed me a book
- My parents sat me down for an awkward talk
But every once in a while – a woman shares that even though she doesn’t remember a specific talk, she knew that her parents thoroughly enjoyed sex and it was a great part of their marriage. Conversation about bodies and sex was open and there was nothing embarrassing, dirty, or secretive. There was no talk, just conversation.
The amazing thing is that these same women were confident enough to remain pure, even though many of them dated their future husband for years. And these same women, easily transitioned to figuring out sex and thoroughly enjoying it within marriage.
Talking to our kids about sex is important – but more important – is figuring it out ourselves. We cannot talk to our kids about how awesome sex is within marriage, if it is not awesome for us.
Figure it out yourself – We all have lies about men, women, or sex, that we have bought into from the culture. You have to look to God’s word to know what his intent is and what is true. For example, don’t assume that sex is not important to women because we constantly hear how important it is to men. What does God’s word say?
We also carry lots of baggage – especially women. Don’t use your baggage as an excuse for not changing. God can and will heal you from anything – but will you receive it? God wants you to live in freedom, but it is up to you.
Take the time to figure it out. Read some good Christian books on sex, read Song of Songs, or do an Awaken-Love study and ask God for answers. You, your marriage and your kids are worth it. The first step to communicate to your kids about sex is pursuing God’s best for your marriage.
Start talking to your spouse – If you cannot talk to your spouse about sex, how the heck are you going to talk to your kids? Can you talk to your spouse about your past, your desires, or your body? Can you talk without getting embarrassed, uncomfortable or defensive? Can you say medical terms and slang terms for sexual anatomy and for different sex acts without sounding embarrassed? We need to get to the point where talking about sex sounds like everyday conversation. In fact, we need to enjoy talking about sex – because it is amazing and it is a gift from God.
Equal Opportunity – It is important for both mom and dad to get involved in the conversation. Daughters need to hear from their dad how beautiful they are and that they are worth the wait. Sons need to hear from their mom how much it means to them when their dad keeps his eyes pure. Daughters need to hear from moms about their own experiences of having their heart broken and the importance of depending on God, not a boy for their worth. Boys need to hear from their dads the challenges of a changing body and how to be a real man that is a protector of women. Share the privilege of speaking God’s truth to your kids and insight into how great God’s design is for our lives.
Embrace every opportunity – Isn’t it funny that when our kids are curious and comfortable talking about sex, we think they are too young and by the time we think we should talk to them about sex, they are embarrassed. Do we teach our kids to be embarrassed about sex or do we just miss an opportunity? The best advice I’ve read is to embrace every opportunity to talk about sex. From the time they are young and curious about how babies are made or the difference between boys and girls bodies, have conversation in age appropriate ways using real terminology and names. It is never too early to talk to your kids. Make it a natural conversation that is as ordinary as talking about why some people have red hair and some have black.
One of the books my mom read to me and that I read to my kids was “How Babies are Made” by Andry and Schepp. It is a story book written in 1968 that uses cutout pictures with proper anatomical terms to describe how babies are made – from making a flower, to a chick, to a puppy to a baby. I remember reading the book to my kids at bedtime when they were just toddlers and they were mesmerized. There was no discomfort or awkwardness; we were just reading another story about life.
Look for opportunities to speak God’s truth to your kids about sex at every age, whether it is discussing the latest news, what they see on TV, or the struggles of a single person living in a sex filled world. The world is screaming lies to your kids about sex and we have to speak the truth with love and compassion.
Wednesday I will share some tips for conversations with your kids about sex….