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Teens and Sex

Teens and Sex
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We all know how hard it is raising teens. This stage is where communication is so very difficult, yet so essential. Sex is certainly going to be a struggle during their teenage years, but this is the time when you are needed the most.

  For the Parent: Coping

How can you cope with your teen having sex?

I know it can be difficult to admit to yourself that your child is having sex. Admitting it is the biggest hurdle and everything after that seems to be a bit easier. Please understand that your child is not a child anymore. S/he is a young adult. A young adult with desires, primitive instincts, and the ability to make their own decisions. Just think of it this way- whatever advice they are not getting from you, they are getting from their friends, books, movies, the internet, and magazines. You cannot stop your child from experiencing the real world anymore. The real world doesn't care about age appropriate exposure and the only way to stop your child from being miseducated is to educate them on the subject yourself. If you don't know an answer to their question, find the answer- or better yet, find the answer together.

My mom used to have an "office drop box." That's what she called it. If my sister or I had any questions that we were too afraid to ask her in person, we were to type up the question, print it out (for fear of her recognizing one of our handwriting), and drop it in her "drop box" that was a pretty pink cardboard box with a slit in it. The box stood on a stand right outside of her master bedroom. My mom would check the box every day and she would construct a reply. She would place the replies in another two boxes outside of the kids bathroom. Each reply had a date.

She constructed an excel worksheet that listed the date the question was received. My sister and I remember the date we sent our questions and looked on the excel chart that was overhead of the box. We got our replies back from whatever box coincided with our date so the other sibling wouldn't have to know what we asked our mother. I think this was an excellent method because it kept us anonymous. And sometimes, the unbiased reply made my sister and I want to strike up a conversation with my mom about it. But sometimes, we did prefer to have our answers in the reply drop box.

Parents, please make an effort to be as unbiased and nonjudgmental as possible. This will help you cope with your child, but also make your child feel as if they can come to you with anything. Be sure to also tell your teen that if they can't talk to you, although advised, they can speak with another adult that is experienced enough to answer their inquiries. There are plenty of resources out there for them. If your teen has a question about sex, STDs, abortion, etc, they can call Planned Parenthood at (800)-230-7526 or American Pregnancy Hotline at (866)-942-6466. If they feel as if there are some LGBTQIA related issues that need to be discussed, they can call the Trevor Project hotline at (866)-488-7386. The Trevor Project even has an online chat during certain times of the day. The opportunities for you and your child are endless. It is indeed a journey, but you have to start somewhere with your child, before your child starts the journey without you.

"Take the first step in faith. You don't have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step." -Martin Luther King Jr.

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Comments

Great article! I never had anyone there to answer those questions for me, and now I am 20 years old and still figuring out how to protect myself from STDs because of a lack of local resources. I really love this article, and appreciate that you included your own experience in talking with your mom, as well as hotline numbers for teenagers to get advice at. However, I feel like the image used was a poor choice. Other than that, great article, thanks!

06/20/2013

This conversation never gets discussed.
I know growing up I wish I had someone to break down sex for me. All I had was Google and a health text book.

06/21/2013

great article I 100% agree with you. And will be bookmarking this marking this for future reference.Thanks!

11/18/2013

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