best age to talk about sex

(38 Posts)
mrsrat Tue 23-Feb-10 20:56:00

I keep asking my 9 year old if she wants to have THE talk but she says no ! When should I just bite the bullet ?

gigismummy Tue 23-Feb-10 21:41:50

I leared at 7 from other kids in the playground and then my mother insisted on telling me. She was so embarrassed it was painful, and I already knew anyway. Are you embarrassed about it?

Answer the questions as they come up. Surely by age 9 she will know what's what. My now 8.9 dd asked me when she was about 5, I explained it very simply and have just answered truthfully every time she asks a bit more. I also got her a book because she didn't belive some parts of what I was telling her

cory Wed 24-Feb-10 09:59:15

tbh I would be fairly put off if someone asked me if I wanted to have The Talk, with capital letters.

Ime the trick is to keep drip feeding, bring it into conversation when you see an opening, don't try to do it all at once. Far more manageable- and easier to remember- if it's spread over a period of time. She does need to learn about periods now, as many girls start having them around age 10.

UpYourViva Wed 24-Feb-10 10:51:54

Sorry but cringe at 'when do you want to have The Talk'

My mum asked me this when i was younger and i always rejected the idea. We never did end up having 'the talk' and i ended up learning about sex quite late.

As cory said, just drip feed, saves on the embarrassment

notnowbernard Wed 24-Feb-10 10:53:10

I think it's best to answer question by question, as they come up

Am suprised nothing has come up for you and dd already?

cory Wed 24-Feb-10 11:26:05

If you have the kind of child where questions do not come up, I think you do have to introduce them at some point (can't let someone reach puberty without knowing about periods just because they never asked). But all sorts of things can be conversations openers: a packet of sanitary towels in the bathroom, a nature programme, a film about love.

notnowbernard Wed 24-Feb-10 11:36:48

Agree, there are loads of in-roads to it...

Tampons/STs

Pregnant women/babies

Seeing people kissing

I've just been truthful with questions as they come up, or given age appropriate answers when they say something.

Or sometimes I will just lead the conversation when there is a programme on or they see adverts.

I don't want to have to have "the Talk" with any of them, I don't want it to be that big a deal for them, more of a natural progression of understanding iyswim.

They are 7,6 and 4.

mrsrat Wed 24-Feb-10 12:40:25

Thanks for advice. I think I am making a bit too much of a big deal about it. It's so difficult to know what they do and don't know. DD going through a "teenager" stage so doesn't respond to me about anything and generally thinks all adults are old foggies.
Will drip feed as suggested. Thanks

weegiemum Wed 24-Feb-10 12:47:08

I had "The Talk" with dd1 about a year and a half ago - was during the summer hols after she was 8 in Feb. One night she was unable to get to sleep so we went out for a walk and this was a great chance ..... she was being "grown up" by getting to go out for a walk (via the late night shop => sweeties) after 9pm and it was dark so she couldn't see me blush!

Explained the whole periods thing to be met with "but how does the baby get in there??

So I told her.

She said "do people do that for fun then?"

I said "yes"

She said "even you and Dad?"

I said blush "yes".

She said "I'm never doing that!!!!!!!"

I will tell her that at about 17-18 or so!


Ds (8) has now started asking questions like "how do you get babies?" and "why does my willy get stiff?"

It's Daddy's turn!!!!!!!

sandyballs Thu 25-Feb-10 14:18:01

I agree it is best to drip feed if poss.

My nearly 9 year old DDs do know about the basics as one of them has always been very curious about everything and has asked lots of questions. I bought them the book called 'Let's Talk' which they either giggle over, pointing at willies, or hide away saying how disgusting the whole thing is grin, depending on what sort of mood they are in.

sandyballs Thu 25-Feb-10 14:18:57

Weegiemum - my dd also said that, 'how gross, i am never doing that' grin.

LollyG Thu 25-Feb-10 15:39:01

My DD had "the talk" in the autumn, and she was 10 in October - I can't remember how it came up, but she was asking questions. We went into full details, got the kids' encyclopedia out for diagrams, and she seemed happy by the end of it! Her younger brother was out somewhere, so he missed it - have to do that later, if she hasn't already told him!

That said, I'd told her about periods a year or two ago - following on from the embarrassing questions in public loos ("what are tampons, mummy?", looking at vending machine - I remember doing exactly the same to my mum blush).

I've bought her a book (from Usborne, I think), explaining all the growing up stuff - she says she doesn't want it yet, so I'm checking back with her every few months to see when she's ready to face it all!

She's quite a young 10 year old, I'd say - not into all the teen stuff at all yet - which may make a difference.

Pam100127 Thu 25-Feb-10 16:43:31

When my now 9 year old was about 3.5 we were going past the hospital where she was born and I pointed it out to her....right away she said how did I get into your tummy?....I said that she was a little egg that was fertilised by Daddy and she grew and grew. Ever since then I have answered as simply as I can the questions as she asks....she thinks it's no big deal

My now 4 year old son asked how the baby got out and I said the Mummy's body opens to let the baby out then closes again...he said where in the body...so staying nice and matter of fact ....I said ....the vagina...he said 'oh' and went back to playing.

Kids just want information....and it's best to answer as the questions come up rather than put them off....keep it simple then it doesn't becomes a big deal.

My daughter read in a Jeremy Strong book about a mother going into labour and right away ask if having a baby hurt...again staying nice and calm I said 'Mummys' bodies are made to have babies....and sometimes(!!!) it doesn't hurt at all...and if it is going to hurt they give you an injection called an epidural that takes the pain away....she doesn't need to know the agony of giving birth at the moment.

I'm also telling my daughter 30 is a good age to have a baby...when you have had a good time and gained lots of experience....I'm hoping these little snippets will be remembered when she is a teenager and in the throes of young love.

Nymphadora Thu 25-Feb-10 16:54:48

I have been trying for about 2 years to talk to dd1 (10)but she won't have it. I gave her a book but she put it away for when she is olderconfused dd2 knows some stuff and is more interested.

Dd1 keeps asking me to BUY a baby and I keep trying to explain baby in tummy etc but she just blanks it. I am hoping she knows and is embarressed cos I'm stuck now!

KCMC Thu 25-Feb-10 17:01:07

my daughter was 7 yesterday and somehow we ended up talking about cesearans!!! i was trying to explain that babies don't normally come out that way but usually out of a ladies bottom to wich she replied in a very surprised voice 'so you poo it out then?!!!' to which i replied 'well sort of!!!!' to which she was quite happy!!! i agree with others on here that graduall drip feeding of info when asked is better than trying to give it all in one go. that waty then you know they are ready for it.

I can remember my mum starting to give me 'the talk' and not actually telling me anything so i ended up being more confused than ever!!!

Carulli Thu 25-Feb-10 21:45:23

The Family Planning Association do a great set of books and leaflets that you can buy on-line called 'Speakeasy.' Some of them are for older children so I put them aside and used the suitable ones a few weeks later when I spoke to my 9 yr old DS. In particular, there is a small book called Mummy Laid an Egg by Babette Cole which he thought was funny, although the cartoon pictures of mummies and daddies doing it whilst on a space hopper did make me feel a bit inadequate! www.fpa.org.uk/Shop

ponto Thu 25-Feb-10 22:53:25

Dd1 (age 6) has got the Usborne Flip flap body book, which explains that babies come from eggs and sperm, but doesn't go into any detail about how they actually get together. I came across this online picture book on MN ages ago which I thought I would show her when she wants more information about the mechanics of it. I especially like the picture of the baby emerging face-first into the world!

bluetits Thu 25-Feb-10 22:55:31

age 5

Ellokitty Thu 25-Feb-10 23:08:13

My 6 year old DD has been asking questions already. She says she knows that a baby comes from the seed in mummy's tummy, but wanted to know how the seed got there... Then she wanted to know whether the Daddy uses gloves when he puts the seed in the mummy's tummy.... followed by whether the mummy has to stand on her head when the seed goes in. When I asked her why - she replied, so that the seed will fall in easier!

Its logical I suppose!

Oh, and we're going down the drip drip method!

Hellcats Fri 26-Feb-10 01:52:15

My 4 year old knows where babies come from but he hasn't asked how they get there yet but little and often as everyone said. My Mum tried to sit me down for the "talk" and I climbed out a window to get away from her because it was soooooooooooo embarassing.

nooka Fri 26-Feb-10 06:20:01

I reckon from about three to pre-teens (hopefully beyond that but I haven't got that far yet as my two are almost 11 and 9)). I have two "why" children, and if they have asked I have answered. I also initiative conversations every now and then to check that they have remembered things right, and if there is anything else they want to know/talk about.

For example dd looked over my shoulder when I was typing the bit above, and it led to a conversation about her best friend having "The talk", and then to growing public hair, wearing bras, and then for some reason to being a lesbian, oh, and then to what puberty was like for boys. That's the only thing about talking to children, you never quite know where the conversation will go!

LoveJules3 Fri 26-Feb-10 10:22:14

I've started drip feeding my dd1 already! She's 6 and it was sparked by the 'How did that baby get in there?' question when i was pg with my now 5 month old. She got an accurate but very concise version of the process, and for now she seems happy with the explanation. My MIL was horrified i'd even consider telling her! (she'd prefer a 'fairies' or 'cabbage patch' explanation ). Which kind of explains why my sister in law thought it had something to do with fish till she was about 14. Dd2 (4) asked too, but lost interest within 30 seconds. Think i'll leave it a little longer for her!

WonkaBar Fri 26-Feb-10 12:05:17

I am actually amazed in this day and age that some people are actually uncomfortable talking about puberty, bodies and sex. Do your children not see you naked? Ask about hair? Ask about boobs? Ask about their Dads Penis? My three year old asks all these things. We are no hippies, but just answer straightforward questions in an honest fashion as they come up.

I think "The Talk" is a miserable idea. If you have to do that you have actually missed your window where this information can be done in a comfortable way.

I think children should know that their parents also have ...OH MY GOD...SEX!!! The world has sex....get over it.

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