Some parents find it difficult to discuss sex with their boys. But, the alternative is not ideal. You definitely don’t want him getting advice from his young friends? Not only that, teaching your son about sex is vital in a world where STDs, unplanned pregnancies and issues of mutual and non-consensual sex often affect an individual’s long-term health and career. Here are ten topics you should plan on discussing with your son when he starts thinking of beginning his young sex life.
1. Unplanned Pregnancies
An unplanned pregnancy could be potentially devastating to your son and your family. The impact of an unplanned pregnancy should be the subject of a thorough and inclusive discussion. The issues of responsibility, timing and prevention regarding an unexpected pregnancy should be framed within an accepted and shared moral framework and that of society at large. The legal and health-related effects should be fully understood. This should not, however, sound like an attempt to employ scare tactics to convince your son of the merits of abstinence. It should instead focus on taking responsibility for one’s actions and understanding that in-the-heat-of-the-moment sex can result in life-changing consequences for him, his partner and both families.
2. It’s a Beautiful Way to Share Affections When the Timing and Circumstances Are Right
Discussing sex with your son should definitely contrast from what he may be hearing from his young friends. Aside from some of the more unrealistic biological details that may be circulating among his peers, he could also get the impression that sex is a type of competition. Adolescents are barraged with imagery and societal conceptualizations of a “Top Gun” score-card approach to a young man’s sex life. This is when you need to demonstrate that sex needn’t be that way. The connection between appropriately timed sex and a genuine and sincere mutual affection between two people is the heart of the matter. It’s not all about self-gratification and status despite what the movies, TV, Internet and school-yard pundits often promote.
3. The Mechanics… How Everything Works
Teach your son the basics about sex so that he knows how everything works. It sounds simplistic but it’s better to start from the beginning so everything is covered and nothing is assumed. He may be getting totally incorrect biological facts from who knows where.
4. Effective Birth Control Methods
Your son should know what works all the time and what works some of the time. Teach him about all the natural, contraceptive and prophylactic measures available to him. And most importantly, teach him that birth control is a mutual responsibility. It is not solely his nor his partner’s responsibility. It is the moral responsibility of both. Try to frame your argument around the principals of self respect and responsibility.
5. Sexually Transmitted Diseases
Teaching him about STDs is mandatory. Safe sex is a subject not to be taken lightly. If your son should err in his judgment, it should always be on the side of caution.
6. Mutually Consensual vs. Non-Consensual Sex
Your son should be well aware of the meaning of “no”. No means no regardless of the nature of the relationship. He should know that any act that is not fully consensual could lead to legal issues. Remember, if he respects the other person and they respect him, he shouldn’t have any issues.
Porn is easy for kids to come across, even when they’re not actively seeking it. Be sure your son understands porn is a fantasy. It’s neither a real-world nor an ethical representation of what sex is about.
Sending or receiving sexually explicit pictures of yourself or someone else can lead to serious legal issues. The laws differ from state to state, but it should be avoided everywhere. Digital pictures can show up in unintended places that could bring long-term negative consequences.
9. Mutual Enjoyment; the Giving-and Receiving Aspect
Let your son know that sex is both an enjoyable and positive experience when performed within the framework of respectful giving-and-receiving. It’s never about self-gratification or “scoring”.
Once again, let your son know the discussions you have with him may conflict with what he hears in the streets. So, listen, be open, non-judgemental and straight forward. He needs to know that promiscuity shouldn’t be viewed as a means of achieving street cred. He should also know that promiscuity can be dangerous if he doesn’t protect himself.
An overwhelming task?
If thinking about “the talk” seems overwhelming, don’t fret. Help may be around the corner. There are local educational and community-service organizations, both secular and faith-based, that can help provide your son with the information and guidance he needs to make informed decisions about his relationships and his sexuality. There are also online resources and books on parenting that provide qualified advice on the subject of home-based sex education. If you need help, you can get help.