By Analissa Louden

You may be thinking that you can put off the sex talk until they are in middle school, but nothing is less true. Children will be exploring and learning things themselves from a very early age onwards. Thus, it is essential that you start making sex a discussable topic early on, this way you know that your children aren’t hearing all kinds of confusing messages from the outside world regarding sex.

There doesn’t need to be one big talk

You don’t need to have one big nerve-racking ‘birds and bees’ talk with your children, you can simply talk about the entire matter casually as they age, and always answer the questions they ask. There is no definite age for you to start talking to your children about sex, but it’s earlier than you think. You could start as early as three years old with talking about the parts of their body. You may think that it’s bad for children to hear about such matters that early, but when children from an early age on learn that sex is nothing shameful and they will struggle a lot less with their sexual development in the future.

Actually, name their body parts

When you do start mentioning body parts to your children, make sure to use the real names for it, like vagina, vulva, penis, scrotum etc. Teaching your children to reference their private parts with code names like ‘butterfly’, their ‘Charlie Browns’ will only create more shame and hiding around the subject, which is the last thing you want.

How to deal with your toddler being a sexual being

Many first-time parents will be surprised by this, but children are actually interested in sex from birth onwards. Many children under the age of 2 will masturbate, even in public, this is where you already need to start talking about sex to them. Never approach the subject with anger and shame, just make sure that they know that this kind of practices are very normal, they just need to be done in private.

Answer all the questions

I’ve already mentioned this a little bit, but it’s essential that you answer all the questions that your children have. This is also the easiest way to talk about sex and know exactly what they are ready to here. When your child asks where babies come from, then you don’t immediately need to explain the entire process, start with a simple answer instead. When your child has more questions then they will ask. Now I don’t mean that you shouldn’t talk about when your child doesn’t ask any questions, as some are too scared to ask you about it, and they’re just learning things for themselves. Many children will learn about sex from pornography, which isn’t a good resource when it comes to sexual intercourse.

Don’t ever make it taboo

This has been sprinkled throughout the entire article, but I want to press it onto you one more time. Don’t ever shame your children for asking questions, exploring their own bodies or even other people’s bodies. You only need to teach them the boundaries that come with it, so learn them what is private.

Follow these tips to teach your children about sex in an age-appropriate way to ensure healthy knowledge on sex. This will not only be good for your children now, it will help them throughout their entire life when they learn about sex in the right way now. You may feel awkward and want to avoid the subject, but that’s the last thing you want to do.