Today’s internet sites and social media are filled with hyper-sexual content, which misguide teens in preparing for regular bodily changes. The media glorification of irresponsible sexual behavior, peer pressure, adverts, and written literature such as pamphlets and teen magazines; are not enough avenues to teach your teen about sexuality. It is the prerogative role of a parent to let your child understand sexuality right before puberty. So, which is the best way to educate teens sexually, and why is that?
Start conversations about sexuality early before puberty
Let the teen get accustomed to terminologies surrounding sex. It is a complicated topic, but start by teaching with what they hear, read and see, then gradually let them in. Be aware that sexuality is not about whom they have sex with but their thoughts, feelings, attractions, and behavior towards other people.
Teach them the basics of sexuality
Through their schooling, teens come across topics about sexuality. However, it is good for them to hear from a parent’s perspective. Teach them about their physical body and sexual development. Let them know feeling comfortable with sexuality is essential for healthy growth, and it is an integral part of who one is. Assure them that exploring their sexuality is beneficial only if done correctly.
Teach them responsibility
Perhaps you may begin by teaching your teen to develop a sense of responsibility. Being responsible is the most critical part of a teen’s life. Discuss decision-making and consequences of certain decisions if they do not take responsibility for their actions. Guide them to make healthy decisions and choices regarding their bodies.
Teach them standard sexual practices, problems, and concerns
Different societies and social groups have their own perceived sexual practices and concerns, including taboos and customs. Your teen needs to know the standard, acceptable, and desirable sexual rules in society. While some institutions agree on certain sexual practices, others view them illegal. As they socialize in different groups, the practices will guide them not to be victimized.
Promote open communication about sexuality.
The best way to teach a teen sexually is by way of open communication. Open communication is an essential skill for a sensitive topic of sex. Support healthy sexual development by talking openly about it. Accept their inquisitiveness about sexual identity and sexual orientation. The teen relies on you to give facts and not opinions. Avoid funneling them. It will help clear their unresolved issues and bring up a healthy adolescent.
Internet sites and social media as avenues
Use everyday opportunities on TV, and radios, ask their views, be ready to talk about issues they raise themselves, don’t shun them, be honest in everything, including what you don’t know, ask what they know, and begin from there. Turn the social media encounters into teachable moments.
Discuss values, morals, and ethics concerning sexuality
Morality is the fabric of society. A morally upright teen is the joy of every parent. Help them understand that the values of honesty, faithfulness, and humility hold relationships. These values will help them express feelings of intimacy, attraction, and affection for others.
Use active listening
Employ active listening during your conversation with your teen. Read your teen’s reactions, body language, and signals. Show them that you are listening and ready to help when they are stuck in decision-making. You will be able to read the teen’s mind on what he thinks about himself and his sexuality. If the discussion sounds strained, you can negotiate and set boundaries.
Show importance of developing and maintaining relationships
Help your teen understand the importance of keeping healthy relationships. Empower your child with the belief that nobody should force them to have sex, and encourage them to bring such concerns to your attention.
Why educate teens sexually
As young as the teen is, being educated on sexuality will help in several ways, as seen;
- It builds their self-esteem once they understand the anatomy of their physical body.
- It helps them to know and appreciate their physical body reducing the anxiety of looking good and wanting to fit in social groups.
- It will help them know their sexual orientation and make effective decisions concerning their future.
- The teen can deal with sexuality and mental health issues such as feeling unsupported or misunderstood, discrimination, being rejected, or being bullied.
- The teen will be able to make effective decisions regarding sexuality.
To you, the parent educating your teen about sexuality is an added advantage to your parenting skills and will guard you against future mishaps and blame games.
- It will help you solve sexual problems that your teenager undergoes before they escalate.
- It will help you as a parent to accept your teen’s sexuality irrespective of societal misjudgments.
- As a parent, you can realize the weakness of your teen and always come through for guidance and give the right direction.
- It will give you peace of mind about having fulfilled your end of the bargain as a parent.
In summary, teaching and knowing your teen’s sexuality is the best way of bringing up an informed child who can handle himself and others. As a parent, early engagements with your teen about sexuality, using open discussions, exposure to various helpful educative channels, and being there as a guide every step is the best way to teach your teen about sexuality.