Whether you refer to it as The Facts of Life, The Baby and the Stork, The Birds and the Bees, or simply “The Talk,” most parents dread talking about sex with their kids. Yet, it’s something that needs to happen and should not be avoided. Our children need to learn about sexuality sooner or later, so why not learn it from someone they trust and respect?
A new global survey suggests that parents are talking to their kids about sex at younger ages than ever before: 62% of parents are now talking to their kids about sex before the age of 10. That’s five years younger than most of us remember having the talk with our parents. So, why are parents talking to their children about sex at such a young age? Two words: THE INTERNET.
So, why are parents talking to their children about sex at such a young age? Two words: THE INTERNET.
With today’s “hook-up” and “sexting” culture displayed all over the media, parents are afraid their children may be exposed to inappropriate content via their computer, their smartphones, or their friend’s devices. However, some recent evidence suggests that parents may not have to fear as much as they think. Access to information about sex hasn’t led to an increase in teen pregnancy. On the contrary, teen pregnancy rates are lower than ever before.
Despite the historic lows in teen pregnancy rates, parents do have a right to be concerned about what their children are viewing via the media. Studies show that the average American child between the ages of 8 and 18 spends a shocking 7.5 hours consuming media every day.
Studies show that the average American child between the ages of 8 and 18 spends a shocking 7.5 hours consuming media every day.
Even babies and toddlers receive about 2 hours of screen time every day. That means that many kids are getting introduced to sexual topics from a screen rather than from their parents or educators. Which means that they still have a lot to learn about sexuality and sexual health. That’s where parents and teachers can help. They can educate children on what they are seeing or hearing about and help them develop healthy dating and relationship skills.
Talking about the birds and the bees is especially important when it comes to a special education setting. Children with special needs are often left in the cold when it comes to sex education. Often they are disregarded by others and they may have trouble expressing their feelings in a healthy manner. This is a terrible mistake that can lead to serious and sometimes harmful consequences. Parents and educators should inculcate personal safety and proper dating skills for children, especially as young people get older and start exploring their sexuality.
Read more on the causes and concerns behind teens and “sexting” here.
At Stanfield We Think You Should Know:
In today’s world, we often hear terms such as “sexting” and “hooking up” from kids in their early teen years. Though the thought of having such young children engage in sexual activities is frightening, at the James Stanfield Company, we think it is vital to sit down and talk to your children about sexuality and relationships. That’s why we have created our LifeFacts series that features several programs about sexuality and relationships. Our programs are designed to provide you with the essential materials and information necessary to teach human sexuality to young adolescents with learning disabilities. To learn more about our different LifeFacts programs, click here!
The child who is ‘left behind’ most is the one who leaves school without transition readiness.