Parents let their kids know about how vaginas and penises work.

Here goes nothin'.

So you made (or know) a curious and smart human whose thirst for knowledge about the world and all it encompasses includes a thirst for knowledge about bodies? It's time for a sex talk.

Congratulate yourself! You have a totally great young person in your life who is curious and open to knowledge!


But now the gauntlet has been thrown. So wait, how DO you talk to kids about sex?

So with the birds and the bees...

Is there a right way?

Is there a wrong way?

Some couples make valiant, generous, and awesomely awkward (but in the way that is super sweet) attempts...

Basically, when you find yourself on the stage of life being asked to perform what may be the first of many sex talks with young and impressionable people in your life, the answer is not "you're doing it right" or "you're doing it wrong." The answer is this:

You're a good person, you are honest, you are kind, and you are inquisitive. And your instinct to be simple, honest, and humble with the kiddo in your life is *totally right.*

Yep! You're right! Sorry, shame, this is not where you are welcome. Sure, you might feel like you're making an awkward moment here and there (everyone does, this is life!), but frankly, you got this.

The simple truth is if this kiddo is old enough to wonder, this kiddo is old enough to know. And how great that they're learning new things from a safe, trusted adult like you.

STILL, much like kids want some details about the birds and the bees, you might enjoy some do's and try-not-to-do's about the birds and bees chat specifically.

WHY HAVE THIS CHAT?

An honest and candid and curious sex talk gives kids:

  • language to use their whole life that will keep them healthy
  • a way to prepare for sexual maturity without having to *experience* it
  • a big old hunk of trust-building moments with you

Show your kid or the kid in your life that you'll help them get answers. If you don't show them that you're the source of answers, your awesome and intuitive kid will find their own answers ... somewhere else.

Here are a few do's and try-not-to-do's to remember.

DO:

Teach words.

Words like vagina, scrotum, testes, anus, clitoris, intersex, sex, and diversity are ideal to introduce when kiddos are learning words like dog and cat. They're on the same difficulty level, and the result is we have a whole generation who knows the name for both farm animals AND body parts.

Use correct language yourself.

You're modeling for this kiddo, and you're teaching them about honesty and integrity AND bodies all at the same time.

You're being honest! It's all good.

Stay chill, stay real.

Often our instinct after hearing a sex question from a kiddo is to go "eeek!" first and "OK, so here's the deal" later. But with some practice and yoga breathing, you can skip the "eeek" and go straight to The Deal. And if you don't find the answer...

Be curious.

Figure it out together! Be curious time is also a great time to practice the "stay chill, stay real" principle. When kids are curious about "grown-up" stuff, just answer 'em!

For example*:

What's this?

"It's underwear that holds up special socks!"

What's this?

"It's a condom. It goes over the penis."

What's this?


"This is a tampon! Look what it does in the sink!"

*A big thank you to Dr. Doe for these examples.

TRY NOT TO DO:

(BUT IF YOU DO, IT IS OK!)

Use language that presumes heterosexuality is the norm.

"When a man and a woman love each other they have sex!"

Use language that assumes that gender identity is set in stone.

Easy on the penis=boy and vagina=girl stuff. It's not all black and white!

Use language that is very "BOYS THIS" and "GIRLS THAT."

This is a good time to adopt a "people are people" kind of vibe.

ALSO, try not to beat yourself up if you aren't perfect. It's all good.

So, enjoy the talk! And remember, this kid might just teach YOU something!

So true, little lady. So true.

More
Facebook / Mikhail Galin

Putting your pet in cargo during a flight isn't always safe. In 2016, the Department of Transportation reported a total of 26 pet deaths and 22 injuries on flights. Because conditions in cargo can be uncomfortable for animals, the Humane Society recommends taking your pet aboard when you fly, or just leaving it at home.

It's not surprising that one Russian man didn't want to put his overweight cat in cargo during an eight-hour flight from Moscow to Vladivostok. What is surprising is the great lengths he took to fly with his four-legged friend.

Russian airline Aeroflot allows pets to fly inside the plane's cabin, as long as the cat weighs under 17.6 pounds and stays in its carrier during the flight. When Mikhail Galin went to check in, he was told he couldn't fly with his four-year old cat, Viktor. Viktor weighed in at 22 pounds and would have to be relegated to cargo.

But Viktor was sick from their earlier flight from Riga, Latvia to Moscow. And besides, Viktor had been allowed to fly inside the cabin during that flight. The airline staff didn't even bother to make Viktor sit on the scales. Galin was unable to persuade staff to bring his fur baby on board.

"To all attempts to explain that the cat won't survive there on an 8-hour flight with the baggage and would haunt her in her nightmares for the rest of her life, she (the Aeroflot staff member) replied that there are rules," Galin wrote in a Facebook post translated from Russian.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
Photo by Kelvin Octa from Pexels

Newborn babies don't seem to do much beyond eating and pooping and, of course, hiccupping. A lot. Parenting advice on how to cure a baby's hiccups runs the whole gamut. It's recommended parents try everything from nursing to stop feeding the baby so much, from giving the baby gripe water to letting the hiccups play their course. But when your baby hiccups too much, you shouldn't freak out. There's a good reason why.

A new study published in Clinical Neurophysiology found that hiccups play an important role in a baby's development. Researchers from the University College London found 217 babies for their study, but only looked at 13 newborns with persistent hiccups. Ten of those babies hiccupped when they were awake, and three hiccupped during their "wriggly" sleep. We have no idea how the scientists got any work done with all that cuteness lying around.

Keep Reading Show less
popular
via The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon / YouTube

Actress Kristen Bell and "The Tonight Show" host Jimmy Fallon showed off their vocal and comedic chops on Tuesday night when the performed a medley of 17 Disney songs, spanning nine decades, in just five minutes.

The duo started with 1940's "When You Wish Upon a Star" and ended with 2013's "Let it Go" from "Frozen."

Bell will reprise her role as Anna in Disney's upcoming "Frozen 2."

Keep Reading Show less
popular

Ask almost any woman about a time a man said or did something sexually inappropriate to them, and she'll have a story or four to tell. According to a survey NPR published last year, 81% of women report having experienced sexual harassment, with verbal harassment being the most common. (By contrast, 43% of men report being sexually harassed. Naturally harassment toward anyone of any sex or gender is not okay, but women have been putting up with this ish unchecked for centuries.)

One form of verbal sexual harassment is the all too common sexist or sexual "joke." Ha ha ha, I'm going to say something explicit or demeaning about you and then we can all laugh about how hilarious it is. And I'll probably get away with it because you'll be too embarrassed to say anything, and if you do you'll be accused of being overly sensitive. Ha! Won't that be a hoot?

Keep Reading Show less
popular