Sex Ed For Parents

If we want to raise children into adults who respect their bodies and others' we need to start talking early. BUT HOW? What do you say? When do you start?

Video transcript

So, hello and welcome. So, we are doing sex ed for parents. So, it's gonna be kind of two parts. So, part of the sex ed for parents is how do we talk to our children about sex, how do we start these conversations early. And then the other part is going to be our own sex ed or how do we make time for our own sex lives, because when we're taking care of children, that often gets quickly thrown to the wayside. We'll get started here. If you have any questions, please put them in the chat, and we'll answer questions as we go along. My name is Lydia Bowers. I was an early childhood educator for about 15 years before expanding into the sexuality field. And so, now I do consulting on young children's sexual development and growth. I also am a parent. I have a 12-year-old and a four-year-old. My spouse and I have been together, well, have been married for six years. And I have had my own struggles, and we've struggled together with how to have a healthy sex life. I have quite a few utero vaginal painful conditions that have made sex uncomfortable or painful at times. I've had some past trauma issues that kind of turn into sort of mental hangups when it comes to sexuality. So, that's something that we have struggled through on our own and really work towards. If you're tuning in, this is absolutely one of those things where you are not alone. I am right there with you. So let's start talking about the sex ed for children. So, when we talk about sex ed, a lot of times we think about sex ed in schools, right? And we think about things like puberty. And a lot of times in schools they'll, if they have any sort of sex ed at all, a lot of times it's things like this is what puberty looks like and this is why you should wear deodorant, and this is why you should take a shower. A lot of schools don't even teach about sex at all. Many states don't require it, and there are several state that don't require medically accurate information. And whether we realize it as families and parents, whether we realize it or not, we are sending and giving children messages about their sexuality and about sexual development. And so, many times for those of us who feel worried about talking to children or we think, "Oh, well, "that's a conversation we'll have later," or, "They're too young for the talk." We're still sending messages and probably not even realizing it. Because sexual development starts from the very beginning. It starts at birth just like all the other areas of development. And what we model for children, what we are showing, the way we are interacting with them, are still growing these ideas, and the internal messages that they're going to get about things. A lot of us didn't have great sex ed growing up. Probably most of us didn't. It's sort of rare to find people that say, "You know what, I had really great messages "and education when it comes to sex and sexuality." Those are sort of hard to find. So, the fact that people are even interested in this topic at all shows that we recognize that maybe there are some things that haven't been explained so well in the past, so maybe let's find a new way to do it. So let's talk a little bit about young children because we don't think of young children as being the sexual beings. And a lot of times when we think about young children and sex, we immediately think abuse. And abuse and safety from abuse is certainly something we need to take into consideration and help protect children from, but children are still sexual beings. Sexuality is just a part of humanity, whether you have desire or not, whether you choose to engage in sexual activity. Sexuality is just an aspect of humanity, and it contains things like maybe sexual activity, or sexual desire who you're attracted too. It also can be things like just regular interactions, relationship, hygiene, how you take care of your body, things like reproduction. There's all sorts of things that sexuality encompasses. So, when we are dealing with children, we kinda have to keep in mind that it's not about a formal conversation that these things, the ideas of sexual development and sexuality, are things that we can start having conversations about from the very beginning. Now, obviously, infants aren't going to be conversing back and forth with us a whole lot, but they still have non-verbal communication, but we can do things like use the correct terms for their body parts. And it is okay to say things like, "Yes, that's your penis and this is your vulva." And when we do things like change diapers, for example, we can't ask a child, "Hey, may I change diaper?" because that can be a health hazard, especially if a child is verbal and says no. However, what we can do is show them the respect of "I'm gonna talk through this with you. "Alright, it's time to change your diaper. "So, we're going to take this diaper off, "and your vulva will feel a lot better once we get it wiped, "and then we'll put the clean diaper back on." And even when we take those moments to just make eye contact and explain to a child what it is we're doing, that still give some foundations for consent, and the idea that their body is worth the respect of it. Now, when it comes to things like hygiene issues and medical issues, as parents, as families, we sometimes have to just pull rank and sometimes kids have to have procedures that they don't want. That's understandable, and again that's why we explain it to them. When it comes to other areas like hugging, or cuddling, or tickling, it's very important that children know that it's okay for them to say no to that. They don't have to give someone a hug. And being able to say, "No, I don't want that right now," gives, for one, a sense of autonomy and "I own my body and I get to make these decisions." It also helps them to trust their own instincts. And just because you love somebody, just because someone is safe, it doesn't mean that you owe that to them. It also means that the more they trust it, their no, their yeses are going to be acknowledged and respected. They're more likely, later on down the line, if they feel uncomfortable with something, to be able to say no because they've had that validated the whole time. There's also things like when we're tickling a child, to even model for them, stop and check in. With my four-year-old, my four-year-old loves to be tickled. I hate it. I hate being tickled, always have, but he loves it, and he'll come up and ask, "Mom, tickle me." And so, I'll start tickling him and he's cackling, and I'll pause for a second and say, "Okay, are you good? "Do you want more tickling or do you want me to stop?" He takes his big gasping breath. Tickle me more. And so then we tickle some more, and then we pause again and check in. And even those little moments just help acknowledge that it's okay to check in, and that consent is something that we continue to give. And just because he said it the first time, "Hey, mom, tickle me," doesn't mean that he wants to still be tickled 10 minutes later into it where he's laughing so hard he can't say anything. So, even just those moments where we kind of check in with the child, "Is this okay? "Do you still like this? "Are you still enjoying this?" helps them understand that long before it's about anything sexual. Welcome everybody. I know there's more people who have joined since we started. So, feel free to jump into the chat if you have questions about things I'm talking about. If you have your own questions, please feel free to share those. Or if you have stories about your own experiences with parenting, or young children, and asking questions about sex, feel free to put it in there. We'll talk about it all. We're talking some about how sexual development is just part of the rest of development. It starts from the very beginning. A lot of times the conversations we'll have with children are based on questions they're asking. A lot of times one of the first thing that comes up, especially if a young child is in childcare of some sort, because that's when we tend to see a lot of pregnancies going on, whether it is other parents or teachers. And so, a lot of times that first thing is what our children's first questions is, or going, "How did that baby get in there? "Where did that come from?" And it's okay in these moments whether the child is young, whether the child is older. My method is to first stop, take a deep breath, because I know you're panicking internally. It's okay. And just say, "Tell me what you think, "or what do you know about that?" And give them some sort of question to ask, basically to find out what they know already or what they think already. And this does a couple things. So, first, it lets you take that minute to just kind of breathe and stop panicking, because sometimes we do. This is what I do, and I still sometimes panic when I'm caught off guard by question I didn't expect, but it also helps clarify, and let you know what it is they're really asking sometimes. You may have a toddler, if it's older verbal toddler and they say, "How did that baby get in there?" And you say, "Well, how do you think the baby got in there?" And sometimes they may say things like, "God put it there." we hear that a lot, or "Maybe she swallowed a watermelon seed." I've heard that one before, because sometimes people have talked about if you swallowed the seeds, a watermelon will grow, and kids kind of takes things all over the place. They may have a better answer that you didn't know. Maybe the baby is just growing there. It could be all sorts of things, but it gives us a place to say, "Okay, here's where we start this conversation from," and it helps clarify, too. Here's my personal example. When my daughter was several years younger, she came up to me and said, "Mom, what does cumming mean?" And the internal panic set in. I'm going like, wait, what? Who's talking to you? Where have you heard this? And I'm preparing in my head how I'm going to explain to her the slang language for orgasm and ejaculation. But, thankfully, I stopped and said, "Well, tell me what you think." And she just goes, "Well, I'm not sure. "I was reading this book and it said coming of age, "and I don't know what that means." The shift that happened, I almost collapsed. It was such a dramatic shift from what I've been thinking and planning on talking about. And no, she read in a book that someone was coming of age and didn't know what it meant. So, just asking can be a huge clarifying issue to even know where to start from. But when we are asking or answering the questions that are actually about sex and bodies, it's a good thing to remember that the names of body parts are absolutely normal. They are good and they should be used. They're not bad words. And children from the very beginning can use them. When very young children are asking about how a baby gets there, they can know at that point, even as toddlers, young preschoolers, that there is a tiny thing that's an egg, and there's this other tiny thing that's a sperm. And when the egg and the sperm connect, it starts to grow a baby. At some point, they may be fine with that answer. It's always good to follow up with, "Did that answer your question?" Because if they said, "Yeah, that's fine," and run off, you're good. If they're saying, "Well, no. "How about this?" Then you just take it a step at a time. Sperm are made in testicles. It come out of a penis. Eggs are in ovaries. A baby grows in the uterus. Those are absolutely just very simple basic things. Any child is old enough to hear that. It's not a problem. Later on, they may be more interested in how that sperm and how that egg got there. And that's a good opportunity to... You may have a conversation about sexual activity, but it's also good to recognize that not all babies, that sperm and egg don't always connect because of a penis inside a vagina. There are plenty of babies that are born through in vitro fertilization, and sometimes that's done a little differently. The baby always will grow in a uterus, and it always starts with an egg and a sperm, but there may be different ways of getting there. There is a great book called What Makes a Baby. And it goes through just a basic explanation of the body parts, and it's a great way to kind of look at these bright colorful pictures and talk about... It's a perfect way for young children to explain how babies are made. So, when we are having these conversations, when we feel uncomfortable, sometimes it's important, too, to recognize that what we think of when it comes to sexuality, we are viewing through an adult lens. We have these glasses, and it is our adult understanding of, experience with, education about sexuality, sexual activity. And a lot of times we put that onto children. Because children's sexuality is much different. It is innocent, it is playful, it is curious. They learn about sexuality the way they learn about everything else. And a lot of it is just trying to ask questions and get in the middle of things and get involved. So, when we see children doing something like, for example, when we see a toddler or a preschooler who just wants to keep pulling out their penis and play with it, sometimes we kind of panic, because we're putting our understanding of masturbation onto this young child when they're just touching themselves because here's this body part, and it's here, and it kind of feels good when I do this, and it's completely separate. So, a lot of times when we have those moments of discomfort, it's a good thing to just kind of again stop, take a deep breath, and think about what is it about this that's making me feel uncomfortable. Is it because of something that I don't understand or I don't think they should be doing it and why. And sometimes really before we correct or redirect a child, sometimes it helps to think through. Why am I thinking this? Because when it comes down to it, healthy sexual behaviors in children are going to have a few things in common. So, it's going to be playful. It's going to be curious. That's normal. It should be easily redirected. So, when my toddler kept pulling out his penis and I say, hey, I know you really love your penis, but it's time to put it away, because we don't pull it out in front of the dinner table. Let's go do something else. He can be redirected into doing some other activity. It shouldn't cause harm to themselves or to others. And if there's any sort of sexual behavior or play acting, it's always with children at a similar age or developmental level. So, if those things start happening, that's when we start going, "Okay something is not right here. "This is maybe a red flag. "We need to kind of look into this." It is something where a child is playing and it's upsetting them or they keep pushing onto other children. That's when we start going, okay, let's sort of go over this kind of look and see what's going on here. But children who are playing with their genitals or even rubbing up against things, that's all normal. They're experiencing, they're exploring their own bodies. For a lot of children, rubbing their genitals is just a soothing thing, pretty much on par with like sucking their thumb. Because here is this body part, when I touch it, it feels good, and it makes me feel good. And that's a completely normal thing. And it's okay for us as parents to say, "Yeah, I recognize that. "I know that that does feel good." But we can also teach that there is an appropriate time and place for it. So, not out in the living room, not when we're out to eat some place. But that it's okay to say, "Hey, I know you like doing that. "In your room is the place to do that. "That's a private activity for you and your body." And those are things that are absolutely okay. And again, that starts helping early on children understand, one, that there is a time and place for it, that their body is private, that it does belong to them, but also we're gonna respect the space of other people, and acknowledge that just because you are in charge your body doesn't mean you get to just do whatever you want with it all the time. As kids get older, the conversations we're gonna have are going to change. They're going to develop. They're gong to evolve. We start hearing things and questions more about, okay, well, how does the sperm and the egg get there together? Or, particularly as we're sort of heading into, sort of heading towards puberty, children heading into middle school, there's a lot more that starts coming at us, especially with the prevalence of digital and mobile devices everywhere, access to computers and technology. It's almost guaranteed that your child is going to come across porn at some point. And that's another area where it's good for us as parents to be prepared for that and prepare ourselves. In the chat, Maya has listed. There's a link that says Lydia's resources, and I've got several things on there that can be helpful. There are a couple playlists of some videos from amaze.org, which has great little videos to kind of help cover some of these topics. The ones... Goodness sake, sorry. The playlist for about young children is geared towards their parents. But the playlist that's for middle schoolers, those are ones those children can watch. They talk about things like how to be safe online, about bullying, about having these conversations. There's another resource on there. The site is... The site is called The Porn Conversation. And it has a lot of information on how to talk to children about porn. It's got some tips for even making sure devices are safe and kind of monitored. So there's a lot of really good information on there to help with. The resource guide kinda looks like this, it just real brief, except it's in color. But it's got links to different videos. There are some different websites where you can get more information. Since we know these conversations are coming, these questions are going to happen, it's good for us to be prepared. So let's start reading about these things before it happen. A good example of this is, I don't know if any of you watching, know about the show Teen Titans Go. It is a favorite in my house. And it's a cartoon and based on some super heroes, but while they are teens. And a movie just came out recently. It was a huge hit and everybody loves to see this movie, but there were several people very concerned, because at the end of the credits, one of the main characters pops up, and asks the children in the audience to ask their parents where babies come from. So, there were several parents that were very concerned, were super upset. And while, yeah, maybe that's not the ideal way to end a movie, we have to recognize though that a lot of times these questions and these images are going to come at us or going to come at our children without us knowing that they're on their way. A lot of times children will come home and say, "Well, somebody told me this," and these things happen younger and younger, the words that children hear, what they're exposed to. And a lot of times, children will come at us with questions that they've heard or seen from somewhere else, and we think, "Oh my gosh, "I thought I was years away from this conversation." So it's a good idea to use the resources that are out there, because there really are some great resources. There are a lot of videos. There are books. This is one that I like, too, called The Parent's Guide to Talking About Sex. It's pretty easy. There are also a lot of great children's books, and they're nice for us family members to get in advance, you read through it. Janine Saunders is an author in Australia who writes a whole bunch of children's books on these topics. This is My Body! What I say Goes! And this is Let's Talk About Body Boundaries, Consent, and Respect. And they're all bright colorful pictures. And I think almost all of them have in the back discussion questions for parents, and talking about how to go through these conversations with children. So, we have, let's se here. Oh, we're like right at the halfway point. That's awesome. So, if you are... Excuse me. I'm gonna take a water break for a second. If you do have questions, please put them in the chat if there are things that you in particular want to know about, or if you have a question that you are expecting soon from a child, or that you've already been asked by a child. Please put that in the chat. It's always nice to know who's on, and we can talk about those. We'll just talk about them right now. So, as we kind of shift then, we've talked about young children, and even as they get a little older, and kind of how to start these conversations about sexuality. We do this knowing that what we're hoping is that our children will someday have healthy sex lives, that they'll be able to make safe choices that they will be able to set their own areas of boundaries and what is okay for them, and that they can respect that in others, and understand the ideas of consent. But we also, if we are wanting our children to have healthy sex lives, we have to work on ours as well. And when we're parents, that can be really rough. Caring for children is a full-time job. And then you may have an additional full-time job on top of that, or you manage a household, or you have school obligations, or trying to maintain a relationship with a spouse or a partner, and whether you're together or maybe you're separated, and you're trying to deal with your children with another parent. There are all these different things that constantly come at us. And it makes it easy for us to put our own pleasure and our own sexual relationships on the back burner, and it kind of drops in the priority list. I'm terrible about this. I have to very consciously think about how I'm handling it, and that's something that I've gotten better at, but it certainly wasn't the case all the time. And that was sexual pleasure, sexual intimacy was the very bottom of the priority list, because, you know, there's doctor appointments to make, and school forms to fill out, especially right now when everyone is getting ready to head back to school. The amount of paper work is absurd, and school supplies, and new clothes. There's all this stuff, and it just overwhelms, and sex tends to just drop to the bottom. So let's think about this for a minute. Here's the thing, is that whatever is most important to us, we're going to prioritize. And a lot of times that's what happens. For me, I'm speaking as a mom. Mom guilt is, I think parent guilt is terrible anyway, from my own personal experience. Mom guilt is awful. I constantly am questioning, how bad have I screwed my kids up? So we feel guilty to take time for ourselves, and we feel like this is selfish if I try to use the bathroom alone sometimes, especially if you have young children. And so, not only do I feel guilty if I'm just going to take a few minutes to sit by myself, let alone take enough time to have an orgasm, or masturbate, or be sexually intimate with a partner. That ends up being something that we don't prioritize, and we have to think about the fact that it really is an important thing, and it's something that we have to intentionally move up on the priority list. And that can look different for different reasons. Sometimes that means blocking off a time on a calendar, blocking off 15 minutes, blocking off 20 minutes, and just saying, "This is a moment I am going to have "for myself." There are all sorts of different things you can do. How you have that time for yourself is gonna look different. Maybe it is sexual. Maybe you have a sex that you're gonna try out, or maybe you have a trusted one that's always worked for you. So, maybe it is something like masturbation, or time to just explore your own body. It can also be things like taking a few minutes to read something, even if it's just some short story. And if you're wanting to kind of stoke that the sexuality, that sort of sexual fire, there are all sorts of places online where you can read free erotic or sexy stories. Even if you go to Amazon and just put in free erotic stories or free romance stories, it'll come up with all the ones for Kindle or the digital ones. You can read one in four or five minutes, depending on the story. Some of them are longer. You can even do things like that where you're just gonna take a few minutes for yourself, kind of just enjoy being in that moment, enjoy probably being alone. My sister has what we all like to lovingly refer to as nonya chocolate, because it's none of your chocolate. So, it's not for the kids. It's your own. You can have a nonya stash of whatever it is. Do you need to have a special locked box that is your favorite, snack, or candy, or something that is going to not be where the children can get into it. So you'll have a moment where you go, "Okay, this is my moment. "I'm gonna eat some of this chocolate. "I'm gonna read a little bit of this story. "I'm gonna put on this music "that just makes me feel calm, "maybe makes me feel sexy." What are those things that we can do to kind of make ourselves a priority, but also kind of stoke that sexuality fire. Because when we watch movies, or listen to music, and read stories, even these, yeah, free erotic stories, everything is very much that this person meets this person, and they're instantly turned on, and they fall into bed, and everybody is super aroused and just ready to go. That's not typically how it works. There are some different types of desire, and one of the types is responsive desire. So, that one is just like spontaneous. It just happens, right? Usually, what happens is that we have this desire that responds to other things. So, we intentionally start engaging in sexual activity, and then that desire kind of builds, or we do read a story, or put on some music, or just kind of just gradually start touching your own body. Sometimes those things kind of, it stokes that. It's sort of this simmering, this simmering, like the hot coals that kind of build. I heard the example used before of a microwave and an oven. So, the spontaneous desire, that's like you pop in the microwave, boom, you're ready to go. But with an oven, you have to turn it on, it has to preheat, it has to build. Especially if we're parents, if you're taking care of children, if you're dealing with a daily living, a lot of times we are not at a place where we can straight from that to boom, turn on the microwave, we're ready to go. And so, it does take some preheating and some warning up, and that can even be over several days. So, having those moments of time for you is not only just kind of a mental break when you're in the chaos of daily life but it also kind of starts preheating that oven and starts that simmering. It starts in your brain kind of going, "Okay, no, look, I still am a sexual being. "I still feel this sometimes." So then when you get to a point where you are engaging sexually with a partner or even on your own, it's kind of been simmering there. You've been preheating a bit, so you can feel it a little bit more. And there are issues, too, where maybe if there's a partner or a person that has erectile dysfunction, or someone has pelvic pain, those things can all, can affect as well. And they're incredibly common. It's hard to find exact statistics because people don't usually like to talk about it, and people don't like to admit it, and not everybody goes to get help for it. The statistics that I found was basically for under the age of 40, erectile dysfunction happens to usually between five to 10% of penises. Over the age of 40, it goes from 22 to over 50%. And so, again, that's something that's very common. Sexual pain, that is usually about 14% of men, 30 to 60% of women have experience sexual pain. It gets huge, right? And those are things where it often just feels like it kills it. In that resources guide that I listed, there's some information, there's an article that gives ideas for experiencing sexual pleasure with a partner that isn't penetrative. If penetration isn't an option because either the parts that you as a couple have together don't work together, or they're not the insertive type, either way, there's options for things. Also, when were talking about erectile dysfunction or pelvic pain, there are toys as well that are designed for this. This is called the Pulse Duo, and it's by a company called Hot Octopus. And so, it vibrates, but it's designed that a penis sits in here, and a penis doesn't have to be erect for this to work. A penis doesn't have to be erect to have an orgasm. Most people don't realize that. But you turn it on and there is a remote as well. So this part vibrates so this would sit against a partner, particularly it fits someone with a clitoris, then that could go there, and the penis can't sit here, and it kind of vibrates back and forth. So you can still engage in pleasurable sexual activity and without penetration. And so, this gives both partners the ability to have this vibration at the same time. So, that's a kind of cool thing. Technology is amazing. It's pretty cool when technology starts happening with sex toys as well. So, whether or not you're dealing with pain or with physical problems, there are... Many of us still struggle with how to make time for sexual activity and how to make time for that physical intimacy. And many of us have probably heard that we should schedule it, and many times when we hear that, we just go, "Are you kidding me?" That is the most unsexy turn off I've ever heard. Why would you schedule it? But again, here is the thing. We prioritize what is important. So, if we do schedule sexual activity, then what we're saying it's not that, "Oh my gosh, we can never find time. "Our sex life is so awful that we have to schedule it." No, what we're saying is my sex life and my intimacy with you is so important that we're putting it on the calendar to make sure it happen. And sometimes we just have to change how we think about it like that. Instead of saying, "Oh, this is terrible, "we have to schedule things." Recognize that, no, when we put something on a calendar, it's because it's important and we're making sure that that block is, that is taken. And when we can help our partners recognize that, no, you are important. This time with you is important. It doesn't always have to be sexual intercourse or a specific sexual activity. It's nice sometimes to even reframe our definition of sex as not being this body part in or on this body part, but just as a time for intentional intimacy, intentional pressure. So that can be different. Maybe you have Tuesday night scheduled for once the kids go to bed, Tuesday night for 15 minutes, we're gonna have this intimate time. Maybe it's sexual activity, maybe it's not. Maybe it's just laying in bed with most of your clothes off, just touching each other and feeling skin. Maybe it is playing a game. Ha, we're gonna pull this out. Now, here's the thing. I wanna give one of these deck of cards away. To do that, we're gonna have to start talking in the chat. But what we'll do is we can do it now, or you can also send stories later. So, what we're gonna do is, because we have some time still, so we have time to talk about this, is if you have either stories about you sex life as a parent, and sometimes that means when the kid walked in on us, which in the resources document there's a guide on how to handle that one. So, maybe it's stories about that. How does your sex life look different? Or, what something that's happened now that you take care of kids as well? As well as if you have tips or ideas for how to help make a sex life more doable. That's probably not the word. But if you have thoughts on what works for you, what is a tip that you might have to make sure that sexual activity, that sexuality is still a priority as a parent. You can put it in the chat, or you can send it to submit@o.school. We're gonna put that in here. It's not a link, so you have to just do that. And we will pick someone and we'll send a deck of these cards. This deck is called the Desire Deck. There's an app called Desire, and you link up to it with a partner, and then you send each other dares. Some of them are more mild, things like, "Hey, write me a romantic note, "and leave it in my bag before I go to work." and others are more like hot and heavy. So, you send each other dares, and you get points based on how many, if you complete the dare and how many points. But they came up with a card version. And so, the way you play this game is it's very open-ended. So you can decide whether you want to earn a certain number of points or just do it for a certain amount of time, or however you want it to work. So, you mix up the cards, and the ideas is you're gonna create dares. But each of these cards, they have different point values, and they just have images. There's no words on any of these. And so there's these different images and, oh, there we go, and you have to, you draw two cards, and you have to try to come up with a dare based on these two images. So, before there was one. At the very start of the stream, I pulled up, I think it was lips and a couch. So, you know, I don't know, make out on the couch for a while. There's a super. Now this one. Okay, this one there's a police badge and then feet. Man, I think if whoever can come up with that dare probably wins this deck right now. That's a good one. I might have to think about that. So, you come up with these dares. So here another way of just being playful, being creative, just kind of having fun with your partner, and it absolutely can be sexual. It can also be funny. Honestly, like being able to just relax and laugh with a partner can be one of the biggest turn ons and one of those best ways to kind of kick start that sort of latent responsive desire. So, there are, yeah, there's all sorts of these cards. So, if you have ideas of things that, that work for you, maybe what works in your relationship, how do you make sexuality, how do you make sexual time important to you, put it in here or send it to the submit@o.school email address. We'll take those and we'll pick somebody to win those cards. But while we are... In the mean time, since I know there's not a whole lot of us on at the moment, the others... Let's talk about some other things though. There are other ideas here. For example, if you do get a date night and you're going out, it's always a good idea, sometimes especially if you don't get dates very often. It's easy to want to just, we're gonna eat this huge meal, and I'm gonna have all the glasses of wine that I can totally drink in one moment or all the cocktails. I don't drink wine. But it's important, again. We're thinking about what's our priority here is this relationship, kinda go easy because we wanna be able to be functional. We wanna be able to have fun and feel free. It's always kind of like the nonya stash. You can always have snacks on hand. Post-sex snacks, always a good thing to have. Because then you have a meal, you have a drink if you drink, and enjoy each other's company while you're out, and then you come home, and then you make up random dares based on things like handcuffs and a pillow. Hand cuffs and a pillow, there's another one. But then when you're done, when you're relaxing together, and you're still hungry, then you have snacks right there. That's always a good thing to have. And sometimes, especially as parents, we do worry about what if our child walks in. That is another great opportunity. We talked before about sex ed for children and the message they receive being things that kind of come up naturally. And sometimes that's a parent's worst fear is for that to be how their child learns about things or asks questions, and it's important again to stay calm. And you're not going to, first of all, you're not gonna traumatize your child. I know that if you are a child who saw that or heard that, you will say probably like, "Oh, I was so traumatized." It's more like it's not traumatized, it's embarrassed. And so, a lot of times it's embarrassing. Sometimes it's just as embarrassing for the child, especially if they're older, then it is. Now, when they're younger, a lot of times they may not fully have even seen as much as you think they have. Maybe they have, but it's a moment where you can, again, say, "Hey, "let's talk about this for a second." And you can ask them about what they think, as well as just explaining that when you are having an adult relationship with, maybe it's the other parent or maybe it's a different partner, that this is one way that grownups show that the care about someone. This is how grownups sometimes have this time, and it's okay to talk through that with children. I think it's harder for us to maintain our own level of calm and our own level of trying to get passed the embarrassment of it to be able to have this conversation. But in that resource guide, there is a website, it is Sex Positive Families, and I love what they do. They have so many incredible resources on their site. But in particular, there's a blog article, and that's what's inked in the resource guide is what to do if a child walks in on sexy time, and how to respond, and how to talk through that with them. Because again, however we do respond, whatever we do or don't say, are still going to be messages that we're sending to children. And maybe it's that , "Oh, this is a "dirty terrible thing. "I can't believe you caught us. "You shouldn't see this." or, "Hey, this is something we do. "We enjoy this time together, but it is a private thing." It's also a good time where you can kind of talk through privacy in the household. "When we have our door shut, "that means that that's our time together, "and you'll need to knock before you come in." And just kind of reinforce some of that. And so, it gives a great opportunity to have these conversations, although it may not be the ideal situation to have these conversations. We're not always prepared. We're not prepared always for the questions that come up for the things that children walk in on or see whether it's at home or somewhere else, which is again is why it's good for us as parents to have a level of sex ed and prepare ourselves so that we know ow to answer some of these things, or at least we have slightly a better level of, of comfort with it than we would have previously. Now, when we're talking about the fact that many of us didn't have fantastic sex ed, if you are able to stay for the next stream that's coming on in about 10 minutes, the people streaming are going to be reading from some of the old texts about sex ed, just kind of showing the absurd way that things have changed. I love showing this book, because I think, again, this is an example of how things have changed so much. So this book is called Once Upon a Potty. And this was a very common book back in the mid '80s, I guess. Yeah, '84. For teaching children how to use the toilet. And so, there were two versions, and one is about Prudence, and the other is about Joshua. But they basically look the same, except one has pig tails and one doesn't. And it's the same story. And it goes through this whole story of how they learn to use the toilet. However, when it first starts talking about their bodies, it says that, "Just like you, Prudence has a body, "and this body has nice and useful parts." That's wonderful, right? So that starts naming parts and what they do. "So, there's a head for thinking. "Eyes for seeing. "Ears for hearing. "A mouth to talk and eat with. "Hands for playing, "and peepee for making weewee," which is absurd, because right off the bat then we're telling children that this has this different name that we're not giving it the accurate name. Everything else we can name, but this we don't. The other thing is that the book for Prudence and the book for Joshua, even though they visibly have very different parts, in both books, it's referred to as a peepee for making weewee. And so, it just sort of shows that this sort of... Goodness sakes, I'm sorry. It just shows that these ideas of shame that the idea of that we can't really say these words, these are bad words, or these are secret bad parts, we often, for most of us, that was the messages that we received. Whether it was intended or not, even things like children books give that, and we kinda have to undo that damage. So again, that's why it's important that as parents, as caregivers, as family members, that we're taking the time to sort of reeducate ourselves, and go, "Okay, I realize that what I learned growing up maybe wasn't entire accurate. So, let me see what I can learn now so that my children don't deal with the same thing, because we certainly don't want our children to grow up thinking that everything is called a pee for making wee. So, kind of in summary, there are plenty of resources out there. And as parents, it's good for us to utilize those resources, kind of prepare us because we know the questions are coming, we know the situations are going to happen. So, how can we get ready? How can we address these things? And the key is to take a deep breath, answer calmly. First, get the background information. Tell me what you think about that. Why do you think that happens? How do you think this happens? And calm, breathe, you've got this. It is always okay to say, "You know, I am not sure about the answer to that. "Why don't we look it up?" Or even, "Can I find out and we'll talk more about this?" That's also an acceptable answer, and it still shows your child that their question is important, that what they're asking is important, and what they're asking isn't shameful or bad. But that if we don't know, there are places to find out. Conversations happen all the time. There's not a formal the talk. There is not a the birds and the bees conversation. It's just going to be ongoing. We're going to have these conversations. We're just going to talk about things as they come up. If children aren't asking questions, we can still bring these things up. Just like we bring up any other thing, when we are watching movies, we recently were watching one with my children in where a certain prince is going in to kiss a certain princess who is asleep, and it's a magic kiss to wake them up. As that's happening, we'll say, "Now, really, is it okay to kiss someone "who hasn't said yes, "or kiss someone who's sleeping?" And they're like, "Well, no, it's not." You're right it's not. And we can recognize this is a movie, this is a story, it's not reality. And even just in those moments, have conversations. Excuse me. And just say, "Yep, I know the prince is kissing "Snow White, or Sleeping Beauty, or Fiona." There are way too many princess kissing sleeping princesses. But we can say things like, "Hey, is this okay? "Is this how this works? "Remember, this is how we do it instead." And we can have those moments. Or when we... If a child hasn't asked about babies, and you see someone that is pregnant, we can say, "How do you think that baby got there?" Ask them the question. You can start it out as well. But it always helps that if you have done the homework first. Maya said, "I love that. "It's so important to help your kids "deconstruct those problematic stories." We don't think about what we're taking in a lot of the time, and what is okay. Is this how reality works? Is this really okay for this person to do this? And it doesn't mean that you have to say "All these movies are garbage, don't watch them." Of course, if you choose that too, that's fine. But it's also part of helping to teach children media literacy, how to... When you are a media consumer, do you just accept everything that comes in as fact, or do you say, "Okay, I can recognize this as being entertainment value. "However, this is what this is saying and I recognize this," or "This is a problem because," or "I would do this differently because," which can help children as well if we're starting that early. It's okay to talk through these movies, and it's okay to say, "I really like this movie. "However, this is not okay. "And in real life, we don't do this." Again, whatever we're doing, whatever we're saying, we're sending messages about sexuality. We're sending messages to children and modeling for them what they're going to see and use and take into their future relationships. And then, as well, we're going to have to prioritize what's important. So, for us to have healthy sexual lives as adults, as parents, we do have to prioritize that. We have to make room for that. And that can look different for different people, depending on what works for you. Maybe that is setting a schedule. You're finding that time of day that works best for you. Maybe you are someone that can set an alarm and wake up at 5:00 a.m. before the kids are up. Hopefully your kids aren't up at that point. If the yare, I am sorry. And have some time with your partner. I am not a morning person. I couldn't handle that. So, for my spouse and I, what works is once the kids go to bed. Or are there times, especially if it's not with a partner, if you're just having your own sexual time. Maybe it's after kids go to school, before you go to work. Explore, experiment, figure out what works for you. So, schedule a time. Think outside the box. You can be creative. Come up with a way to use ice cubes and, oh man, that's kind of a dangerous one. And a lamp. Ice cubes and a lamp. If you can be creative and think of a way to make ice cubes and a lamp a sexy dare, let me know. I'm asking my spouse that. So, thank you for being here this evening. Thank you for tuning in. I know Maya put the information up in the chat for my website and my Facebook, you can find me on there. There is the resource guide, so feel free to check on that, and click on that, check on that, check it out. Click on it and check it out. You can see different places to go to get more resources to kind of find out how to have these conversations, how to keep your self safe, how to keep children safe as well. I know, sometimes... It's only eight o'clock my time, and I'm already just kind of scatterbrained. But I hope you have a good evening, and enjoy finding time for you, finding time for your sexual activity and your pleasure as well. Have a good night.

Sex Ed For Parents

Date
Tue
Aug 21, 2018
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2:00 pm
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Calendar
Tuesday, August 21, 2018
|
2:00 pm

If we want to raise children into adults who respect their bodies and others' we need to start talking early. BUT HOW? What do you say? When do you start?