Teens & SexMay 5, 2011
Last night, our town sponsored a talk for parents of middle school aged children. The talk was given by Planned Parenthood, and it was about sex. Actually, I first thought it was about sex. Turns out it was about talking to your kids about sex, and the importance of talking to your kids about sex.
I played Lazy, and didn’t go. WD took Lemon to an appointment in the car, and if I went, I would have had to walk in the pouring rain, and it would have meant leaving Mouse home alone. Of course, at 19 days shy of 13, she could hand that. But if I went, I wouldn’t have been able to introduce her to the joy and pain (simultaneous) that is Grease 2. Boy howdy, that was a blast from the past.
I didn’t go, though, in addition to the laziness, because I talk to my kids about sex already. All the freaking time. I may even drive them crazy. I talk about birth control, I talk about readiness, I talk about safe sex (not just birth control, but “no sexually transmitted diseases” control). I also talk about my own history.
My kids know that I was too young when I had sex for the first time. They know that I took my own self to Planned Parenthood when I was 16 years old and got myself on the pill. They know that I had to do it myself, because my parents were so religious and would be so upset to know that I was having sex that going to them wasn’t an option. They know that, in fact, when my parents did find my birth control pills in my room where I’d hidden them, I was grounded for 2 consecutive years as a result.
They know that this is not what I want for them. That I will help them, whether I agree with their decisions or not, to be safe. They also have been told that IF, despite my completely willingness to help while holding my tongue (as much as possible), they still don’t want to come to me, that they should go to Planned Parenthood, or someplace similar. Not wanting to talk to me (their mom) does not mean that they should take on the risks of unprotected sex.
There are still some things I feel like I need to figure out how to talk about, and what to say, though. What if my girls don’t want to have sex with boys, but rather with girls? I need to figure out how to talk about that with them, too. What precautions need to be taken, etc.
Somehow, despite the fact that I live in a liberal and accepting community, I doubt that they addressed this at last night’s talk. Can you imagine if I asked the question? The gossip I’d create! ”Does she mean Mouse? Or Lemon? Are her girls lesbians?”
Yet, that is information I’m on a hunt for. (I bet I have it, under my roof, in the awesome book Changing Bodies, Changing Lives, made by the same people who did Our Bodies, Ourselves.) (And, just in grabbing the links for those books, I ended up finding a new book, that I ordered.)
Any way – Mouse knew last night that I blew off the parents’ sex-talk meeting, and I was kind of making light of the fact that we had to find our own opportunities to talk about sex. Watching Grease 2 helped, that’s for certain.
And we talked a little bit before she went to bed. About readiness, and about mutual respect, and about relationships.
So maybe even with my laziness, things are okay in our house. Kinda scary, though, to think about how my girls are so close to the age I was when I became sexually active. I have friends with slightly older kids, and they are sexually active.
Actually, now I’m scared. I probably do need to kick it up a notch …