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At what age would you have "the Talk"?

(28 Posts)
Geekgirlmum Tue 12-Jul-16 19:25:45

Our DD is 11 and starting secondary school in September. She is really innocent and naive. My husband and I are really conflicted about whether or not to explain about sex before she starts school. At what age did you have the sex talk with your child?

PS my parents never had the talk with me. DH and I want to be open with her, but are not sure when and how to do it.

Lilly948204 Tue 12-Jul-16 19:29:02

Yes have the talk, in year 7 science we teach genetics and reproduction in my school. Not until the end of year 7, but you don't want her sitting there in the lesson having no idea until the teacher breaks the news.

TheoriginalLEM Tue 12-Jul-16 19:32:41

She will have "the talk" in year 7. If she hasn't had it already. My dd goes to a Catholic primary and they had the puberty talk this year - about periods etc but no sex. This will be covered by secondary school.

I apoke to dd previous about periods and she was fine with it. Will leave the sex talk to the biology teacher but will follow up with talk about relationships etc

dementedpixie Tue 12-Jul-16 19:37:07

You're kinda late already. My 9 year old DS knows about sex already as does his 12 year old sister. Has she started her periods yet?

dementedpixie Tue 12-Jul-16 19:37:43

You can't leave it to the school!

megletthesecond Tue 12-Jul-16 19:40:50

You're really late tbh. By not telling her she will have picked up nonsense from the playground. I told mine at infant school age.

BackforGood Tue 12-Jul-16 19:41:47

Surely they did sex ed in Yr6 ?

We've never had "the talk", as education isn't about "one lesson" - we've always addressed things as we go along, answered questions as and when they've asked them, discussed things if they've come up, or if something has happened in the news / on a film or prog they've watched, etc., or gone into more info as their bodies start to change.

TheyOnceSaid Tue 12-Jul-16 19:43:36

I'm glad someone has posted this.. I remember my mum giving me the talk in year 6 I remember crying when she told me about periods!

I'll be here watching with interest.

Miloarmadillo1 Tue 12-Jul-16 19:45:00

Why is it 'The Talk'? If you treat information about puberty, sex, relationships like some big shameful secret that's how she will view it. Much less melodramatic to have a series of little chats whenever something comes up in conversation. Has she never asked how babies are made?

ElsaAintAsColdAsMe Tue 12-Jul-16 19:50:04

I've never had 'the talk' just given information when relevant throughout the years since as far back as I can remember.

You need to explain sex to her asap before someone else does in a way that might be harmful.

Open the lines of communication and then she will come to you with any issues hopefully.

You've left things very late imo.

PatriciaHolm Tue 12-Jul-16 19:50:51

ASAP quite frankly! Has she had no sex ed at school? Mine have been covering sex in simple form in PSHE since about yr4. Does she know anything about periods? That could be imminent!

mushroomsontoast Tue 12-Jul-16 19:50:55

My DD1 is 8 and already knows the basics, through a series of little chats as and when the questions come up. She also knows about periods- not in any great detail, but she asked what the tampons in the bathroom were for and I told her.

I think you definitely need to tell her before secondary school. I am a secondary TA and have sat in many a Y7 science lesson, they definitely assume some prior knowledge and it's more about the science of it than the emotional side.

Geekgirlmum Tue 12-Jul-16 19:51:52

I have spoken to her about periods openly and honestly and her school has done very basic stuff about puberty, but nothing about sex as such. As I said she is very naive. I don't really feel she is ready, TBH. She asks me questions e.g about the puberty lessons, and knows she can come to me. When I have wanted to explain to her e.g. About boys and puberty she has not wanted to hear. I feel like it would be taking something away from her to do it before she is ready.

TheSecondOfHerName Tue 12-Jul-16 19:52:09

It wasn't one big Talk, it has been more of an open conversation from the age of about 6 or 7 and is ongoing. Our children know they can ask us about anything, whenever they need to. Most recently, the 16 year old wanted to discuss consent issues as a result of something he had witnessed at a party.

MyBreadIsEggy Tue 12-Jul-16 19:52:10

Please don't leave it to the school to teach her in science lessons.
I vaguely knew where babies came from (talking about sperm meeting an egg, like it was being done it a Petri dish, not from a penis inside a vagina shock) when I was about 10/11 by reading a tiny paragraph in a children's encyclopaedia confused
I was astounded and frankly disgusted when I learned in science, in yr7 that a man and woman had to put their privates together to make a baby!!
And when my periods started at 13, I knew what was happening (again because of school!), but was absolutely mortified to tell my mum, because we didn't talk about anything from the waist down hmm I ran into my older sister's bedroom and cried because I was scared to tell mum!
Why not have a casual conversation and find out what she already knows?

Geekgirlmum Tue 12-Jul-16 19:53:49

No, she has not started her periods yet, but does know all about them and is okay with that information. She was a prem baby and has always been small. I think she will probably be a late bloomer. None of her friends have started periods yet either.

mushroomsontoast Tue 12-Jul-16 19:56:46

I honestly don't understand what it would be 'taking away' from her. I think you need to tell her, maybe start a conversation about periods and pregnancy and go from there. Or get her a book?

JustABigBearAlan Tue 12-Jul-16 19:56:51

No, please tell her. My mum didn't tell me until I was 11 and by then all my friends knew. It wasn't until I knew that I realised what all the little references etc that had been made over the years were about. I felt really embarrassed and wish I'd been told earlier but I think my mum was also a bit embarrassed.

At the very least get her a book that explains it. She might sense that you are uncomfortable, which might be why she appears not to want to talk about it, but you are opening her to a lot of teasing if she starts secondary school with no idea.

hazeyjane Tue 12-Jul-16 19:57:53

Since they were tiny.

As in bits of info appropriate to their age when the opportunity presented itself. No big 'talk'.

Now dds are 9 and 10, and they know about periods and hormones and puberty, and they know the basics of sex and where babies come.

CheeseAtFourpence Tue 12-Jul-16 19:58:31

We started when the questions started which began at age 4 and then we've had more specific questions since then. I can't think that I would ever leave it as late as starting secondary school.

Natsku Tue 12-Jul-16 20:01:54

Please do it casually and don't make it into a big thing like The Talk. And maybe get her some books she can read by herself to help explain in further detail. I remember my mum made such a big deal out of it that I hid the book she was reading with me and refused to talk about it. Definitely don't make it into a shameful thing like my mum did.

Geekgirlmum Tue 12-Jul-16 20:07:22

As I said, I have been speaking to her about periods and puberty and how babies are born from when she was smaller. What I have not yet broached is the actual practical part of sex. We only came to the UK at the beginning of Year 5 and in our country sex ed is not covered until much later. In fact, children only go to high school at 13 and sex ed only starts then. I am not uncomfortable talking to her about it, but I do still feel it is early. My feeling is that a child should enjoy being a child as long they can. That being said, I do want her to learn about it from me rather than from friends or school. So I guess I will start chatting to her about it.

mushroomsontoast Tue 12-Jul-16 20:12:14

But... My DD is 8, knows how babies are made, and it doesn't stop her enjoying being a child!! It's just another interesting fact of life to her, the same as, I dunno, how rainbows are made or where electricity comes from.

dolphinsanddinosaurs Tue 12-Jul-16 20:12:52

I agree with the others saying you are very late telling her about sex. My 8 year old knows the basics. I can assure you he is still innocent, and has had nothing taken away from him! It is no different to discussing how food is digested, or how the nervous system functions.

Lilly948204 Tue 12-Jul-16 20:22:50

As a science teacher your child will find it difficult if they first learn about sex during their science lessons. I'm not sure exactly when it is covered in PSHCE sessions, possibly year 7, but in science we approach in a very practical sense. I.e. this is how it works, we don't go into all the relationship side of thing which I think it is really important to talk about. From some of the questions I get in science lessons I would suggest that a lot of kids have totally the wrong idea about things and often even their form teachers who usually deliver PSHCE aren't comfortable talking about in any depth so kids end up with loads of misconceptions. Better to make sure they are fully aware of the correct facts rather than made up rumours.

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