Don't tell them too much too soon. Consider these factors:
- Introduce the subject in the safety of your home, so they're not shocked at school.
- How physically developed are they? Look for signs of puberty so the more mature are prepared for body changes.
- Are they asking or talking about sex? Try to answer any query in an age-appropriate way. Explain the meaning of words they may know, and don't use euphemisms for body parts.
Mum or Dad?
What matters most is that kids find out from either parent what's happening to their bodies and what relationships and sex are about, not whether it's Mum or Dad who teaches them.Time to bond
If the initial talk seemed to cover it all, the main work's done. But you need to tell your child they can come to you with questions. Leave them a book to flick through. Most kids will want to read more in private and some will come up with a whole new bunch of questions after they have had time on their own.
Talking to our children about the birds and the bees is just one more opportunity we have as parents to develop a strong bond.Advice by the book
'Sex, Puberty And All That Stuff' by Jacqui Bailey or 'Where Did I Come From?' and 'What's Happening To Me?' by Peter Mayle are full of solid information but in a light-hearted way.Read the chapters on boys and girls so kids know what's happening to the opposite sex. Then, nearer adolescence, they need to know about sex. By 13 or 14, it's time to talk to them about relationships and the ups and downs of having a boyfriend or girlfriend - even if it seems a long way off.