In the good old days (how we miss’em!), when the world was not as enlightened as it is today, knowledge about the rudiments and nitty gritty of sex was delayed until you reached your teen years. Today, however, a six year old could see and hear sex at the snap of a finger. With this in mind, we must come to terms with the fact that new methods must be required to deal with this new occurrence.
Gone are the days in which a woman waited for her daughter to see her first period, then sat her down to give her a comprehensive lecture about sex and its implications. Today, toddlers are so curious to know about sex that you may wonder if they were born with the knowledge, given their age.
A seven-year-old these days knows what you knew at 25, in the year 1995. Hence, the first way to let the message sink in is to ACT EARLY. Children are much influenced by whatever source of knowledge they come across first. Hence, if you leave the job of their early sex education training and sensitisation to the internet, friends and neighbours, by not acting early enough, it is to your own undoing. Starting early in child sex education guarantees better results than the converse.
Secondly, it is very important not to ignore the sex-related questions from your child. Children are naturally inquisitive. They yearn to fill up their emptiness and they seek out adults, whom the regard as symbols of knowledge, to guide them through. It might be surprising when a child first asks you questions about sex, but it is your responsibility to respond to their questions and satisfy their curiosity. Many parents erroneously dismiss the child, or even scold them for asking sex-related questions. Even the society itself has branded any talk about sex as dirty, but all this is wrong.
What you give a child as response is also very important. Do not give a dismissive, or an outright ridiculous answer. Respond calmly with candid answers. When you begin to discuss issues candidly with your pre-pubescent child, they will not be shy when talking to you when puberty comes knocking, because discussing these things will be normal between you and your child.
Finally, lead by a good example to your kids. Practice what you teach them and do what you would have them do. This gives them confidence in applying the methods you teach them. Remember they look up to you and are influenced more by what you DO than what you teach. Don’t leave them confused and disappointed.