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Sex Ed - is 9 too young?

(34 Posts)
Emlou1984 Sun 08-Dec-13 22:19:48

I've had to give my 9yr old son the sex ed talk tonight. Although I think he is too young my hand was forced after he managed to watch some very questionable videos on a website whilst staying at his Dads. (he was shown a website whilst staying at his Dads relatives and curiosity got the better of him, which after seeing his scared face I am 100% sure he wont do again for many years, parental locks and laptop supervision all re-thought and amended accordingly!)
He is quite disturbed by what he saw, as am I, so have tried to explain to him the baby making process, and that what he saw is not 'real life' and that it was just actors for a camera etc
My main worry (aside from a now traumatised boy who probably wont sleep well now, but thats a seperate issue) is that by giving him this info, he will then think he has something new and exciting to share at school and go to tell all of his friends how babies are made, who in turn will mention to their own parents and it brings a world of trouble, is 9 too young?

Theas18 Sun 08-Dec-13 22:25:29

9 is not too young to have "the talk" but really, hasn't it been an ongoing thing since they first asked "where do babies come from?".... Surely 5yr olds know babies grow in mummies tummy and details are added over time? So actually it shouldn't be that z"new and exciting" and maybe tell him that really he shouldn't tell everyone, as it's better that there mums and dads are able to tell them...

But for " seeing a dodgy website" at his dads - that is so many shades of wrong... Have you had it out with dad?

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 08-Dec-13 22:29:04

Nine is definitely not too young.

I say this as the mother of a 6yo that I had to have the "talk" with a couple of weeks ago after discovering he had looked up Sex on YouTube.shock

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 08-Dec-13 22:47:55

I had the talk when DD was 6, she asked exactly how did the babies get into the Mummy's tummy. From what I have seen 9 is relatively late.

incywincyspideragain Sun 08-Dec-13 23:05:41

9 is definitely not too young - I agree with Theas18 the whole conversation starts earlier and you add in the detail as they get older. Some girls start their period at 9 yrs so I would expect it to be covered by then in a matter of fact way - the dodgy website thing is different though that I can imagine was more difficult to explain!

ravenAK Sun 08-Dec-13 23:10:54

It is, to put it mildly, quite unlikely that his new found knowledge will rate as new or exciting amongst his peer group at school.

I think it would be unusual for a 9yo not to have a straightforward, factual grasp of how babies are made.

Dodgy videos at his dad's is much more of an issue...

LauraChant Sun 08-Dec-13 23:12:33

I have tried to ensure I never have to have "the talk" by ensuring my two have always known how babies are made. They are six and three so I don't think nine is too young.

Wouldnt fancy explaining porn yet though.

Emlou1984 Sun 08-Dec-13 23:15:57

Theas18 - yes I have discussed with his Dad, it was a new laptop so parental controls weren't set up, but an 11yr old relative thought he would show him while he was visiting their house and playing upstairs, I am livid and it will be getting discussed further with all parents involved, as he has given himself a shock,
I only have the one child, and suppose I constantly worry weather im doing things right, too early, too late, how much info to divulge etc,
I think that because 5mins after the sex ed discussion I then played him the message that 'Santa' sent him I just felt totally confused, old enough to know about sex yet young enough to still believe in a magical fat guy who brings pressies if you're good, threw me off for a minute!
He is quite grown up for his age in a lot of respects, and he knows where babies come from but has never asked how they get in there in the first place,
I did stress that what we were discussing was only to be between us and not between him and his friends, and I think he gets it, and I especially didn't want him discussing the website, as explaining that while he cried telling me what he saw had scared him was hard and didn't want others to have to do the same!
Thanks everyone, new to this website and its always good to get a bit of back up from others, especially as a single parent trying to do the best job I can xx

Emlou1984 Sun 08-Dec-13 23:17:23

Although now I feel I may have left it way to late ha, can never win can we ;)

PolkaDotParty Sun 08-Dec-13 23:23:36

My 4 year old asked, "when you grow the baby Mummy, how does daddy's seed get into you?" at the dinner table tonight. So I told her and read "Mummy laid and Egg" again at bedtime. So, no, 9 is not too young to have a good grasp of sex imo.

However, porn etc is not something I'd want them to stumble across. Keep the lines of communication open I'd say, answer questions as they arise and maybe buy a suitable book for him to read in his own time?

DioneTheDiabolist Sun 08-Dec-13 23:29:28

Emmylou, we do our best. Have you spoken to him about what is online, what he saw and why it isn't a good idea to be looking at this stuff?

TheRaniOfYawn Sun 08-Dec-13 23:37:38

9 seems a bit old to me.

NoComet Sun 08-Dec-13 23:50:06

I told DD2 when she was 7, in the way to Brownies.

I have no idea when I told her big sister although her DF filled in the details at Guide camp, when she was 10, hence talk with DD2.

I have never not known, very dark DDad and why as a favourite word.

NoComet Sun 08-Dec-13 23:50:30

Very frank DDad

IdaClair Sun 08-Dec-13 23:57:39

I certainly knew all about it when I was 9, as did my friends. I don't think there is a right time (or one talk) any more than there is a right or singular time to learn about anything else, I'm in favour of gradual assimilation.

Hence my DD knows all about it too. She's been present at a birth so I would hope she did know where babies come from!

Emlou1984 Mon 09-Dec-13 20:29:56

DIONE yes we had a frank and long chat about how here are lots of crazy things online that aren't for kids and how the things he saw aren't probably true to life and he shouldn't be worrying himself about all that stuff at his age, had a very long talk until he calmed down! Love you all for your frankness and I'm now thinking he might not have been as shocked if he'd knew about birds and bees sooner, the subject have never came up though to be fair, although we are very open and he knows he can talk to me about anything. Feel a lot calmer about the situation today, and he seems fine too, still going to get him a book though! xx

Emlou1984 Mon 09-Dec-13 20:31:17

PS what does DDad, DF DD2 etc stand for, as I'm new to this lark lol!

cupcake78 Mon 09-Dec-13 20:33:41

If he's old enough to be exposed to it he's old enough to know about it!

NearTheWindmill Mon 09-Dec-13 20:39:10

I'd be more worried about the 11 year old who showed him on the computer to be honest. I'd be having a firm chat with his dad about requiring parental supervision when that 11 year was around.

We talked about it openly from when the children were tiny and never really had an issue. I'm the mother whose son texted her once that his girlfriend was coming to stay the night (they were 17) and texted back to say "make sure you have plenty of condoms then" and then realised that he had texted me from his girlfriend's phone blush. There was a very long discussion a few weeks before that though about whether she was allowed to stay the night and relationships and responsibility and whether her parents were happy with such a decision.

It's hard being a parent - mine are 19 and 15 now.

motherinferior Mon 09-Dec-13 20:42:20

How on earth did he not know at age 9?

titchy Mon 09-Dec-13 21:08:58

You realise he probably joins in the magic of Santa for you don't you? Not because he really and truly believes?!grin

kla73 Mon 09-Dec-13 22:22:00

Not too young. It might also be good to have a discussion about internet safety. This website (run by CEOP) is really good to help you talk through aspects of this -

pyrrah Mon 09-Dec-13 22:25:24

Age 9 is getting late IMO. Sex ed should start as early as possible (appropriately presented obviously). Considering how many 13 year-olds were bonking away at my very naice boarding school, you need to get in early on the mechanics, contraception and above all on teaching young people to value themselves enough not to be pressured (consciously or subconsciously) into having sex early.

DD - 4.5 years - knows exactly how babies are made, having found the book 'How A Baby is Made' by Per Holm Knudson that I had as a young child in the '70's. Fab book, but pretty explicit and hilarious illustrations - her main question at the end of reading it as her bedtime story was whether 'daddy and you enjoyed it'...

In countries like the Netherlands - which has the lowest teen pregnancy rate in Europe, sex ed starts at 6.

ShoeWhore Mon 09-Dec-13 22:31:09

What a shock for your ds - and you!

As for knowing about sex though - are you sure they haven't already covered it at school? My ds is also 9 and last summer (end of year 4) they had quite a detailed sex education lesson, after which we had a really good chat and I told him he could ask me anything (which he did!) He'd already picked up quite a bit from the playground I think so it was good that we had a chance to discuss the facts. I felt quite nervous but it was fine once we got into it, in fact I think this age might be ideal - they are old enough to understand a bit more but not old enough to be too embarrassed about discussing it with their ancient mother! grin

Emlou1984 Mon 09-Dec-13 22:33:03

MOTHERINFERIOR - it's never come up , he has no siblings and I'm a single mother raising a boy, and as he is my only child I never knew when would be best, if he'd had any questions I figured he'd ask, or I'd do it when the time felt right. A few friends I've asked also haven't had 'the talk' yet either, so I'm obv not the only one, helpful comments and advice would be great, rather than what feels like sarcasm x
TITCHY - yup that's what I figured but it works for me lol, what is Xmas if you take away the magic, just an expensive lunch lol x
Have spoken to the parents of the other child who is going to deal with the porn issue, and going to play Xmas films on repeat in the hope he forgets what he has seen, he swears when he realised it was a rude video he turned it off, so hopefully not seen too much x

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