We know how difficult it can be for parents to talk to their children about sex and relationships, especially with the new things teens have to cope with – social media, mobile phones, pornography and sexting…
We have many conversations with both parents and young people about their concerns – and the topics they worry most about. So we decided to make three short “how to” films to help. These films have been made especially for parents – and are full of tips and information from both young people and professionals to try and bridge the gap and help you tackle the issues that you say are most pressing…
We hope they help… Click on the links below
- How to talk to Children about sex and relationships
- What you need to know about Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE)
- Talking to young people about Sexting
- Be honest in your response
- You may be uncomfortable, even embarrassed, by some of your children’s questions (especially those asked in a public place!). Remember that this is perfectly normal. You may find it helpful to share and laugh about some of your experiences with friends, perhaps other members of your group, you’ll find other parents know exactly where you are coming from.
- If you don’t know the answer to a question, say so – but tell them that you’ll find out and tell them when you have. Or perhaps you could find out together
- Use humour in your response (if appropriate)
- Check out what’s behind the question (why they are asking it): is it curiosity or does the child have any underlying anxieties?
- As you respond, find out what they already know and understand (e.g. by asking ‘What do you think it means?’). This can then be built upon and any wrong information corrected if necessary
- Remember that the responses to questions received by young children will lay the foundations for patterns of communication in later years. Treat the questions seriously and make every effort to respond effectively
- If it is helpful, use books, leaflets or pictures to explain things.
- Always finish discussions by praising them for asking the question and reminding them that you are always available and happy for them to come to you with any future questions.
- Remember that children need facts but they also need to be able to share feelings and concerns and to seek guidance in making decisions.
For specific help with talking to your child about relationships and sex then you can download the leaflet ‘Talking to your children about relationships and sex’.