They can obsess over their friendships, monitoring social ups and downs in extreme detail.What kids think about sex might surprise you, but what they're doing sexually—and when they're doing it—might surprise you even more. How do you feel about your daughter going steady or dating several boys casually? If they tend to say "uh huh," try asking open-ended questions or suggesting a variety of possible ways someone might feel in a relevant situation. Restate in your own words what you hear and identify feelings. Help your child consider the pros and cons of sexual choices. Relate sex and physical intimacy to love, caring and respect for themselves and their partner. Or she may not know she can set and stick to a clear rule (such as no touching below the waist). If your teenage daughter or son is spending every afternoon alone with a main squeeze, and you're simply hoping they're using condoms, go ahead and ask whether they are sexually active and using birth control. Make the conversation ongoing—not a talk that happens once or twice.In a study this year of more than a 1,000 tweens (kids between the ages 11 and 14), commissioned by Liz Claiborne Inc. Instead of saying "it's time to talk about you-know," let the topic arise naturally—say, during a love scene in a video, or while passing a couple on a park bench. Discuss the fact that "no means no." A simple strategy like getting up and going to the bathroom can give a girl time to regroup. You can buy a box of condoms and talk about how to use them—practice on a cucumber. For more tips on talking to kids about sex and other sensitive issues, visit Children Now, a nonprofit nonpartisan organization's guide to talking to kids of all ages about sexual subjects.
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They "finally sit down to have the Big Talk," says Dr. Parents who participated in a training program about how to have those difficult conversations, Schuster reports, were six times more likely than a control group to have discussed condoms with their children.
Mark Schuster, chief of general pediatrics at Children's Hospital Boston, "and it turns out their teen is already having sex." (The average age of first intercourse in the United States is 16, according to the Centers for Disease Control)The good news is that there's plenty of evidence indicating that kids whose parents do discuss sex with them are more cautious than their peers—more likely to put off sex or use contraception.
It’s an impossible ask (and one I've studied for over a decade) – so girls respond by taking their true feelings underground.
Enter the Internet, and Instagram: a platform where emotions can run wild – and where insecurities run wilder.