lkauffman asks:

Eleven-Year-Old Male Hormones and "The Talk"

A recent question posed by Kate:

Hi folks. My son is 11 and has hit that stage where he is aware of the female form. There is a lot of whispering between he and his friends whenever a "hot chick" comes on tv, etc. His father and I have tried to be very open and available for any questions he may have. Do I wait for my son to come to me with questions or should I try to find out what all the whispered conversation is?
In Topics: Communicating with my child (The tough talks)
> 60 days ago


Answers (1)

lkauffman writes:
Kate,<br />
<br />
I imagine that the community will have varied views on the topic, but I think it might be useful to consider research citing the value of parent-child communication on topics related to sexuality. Many studies show that parents who actively initiate conversations with their children have children who engage in more healthy behaviors related to sex.<br />
<br />
I can tell by the way you describe your son and his experiences with his friends that you have a very open and understanding view on this phase of his life. Thus, I imagine that you have gone a long way toward creating an open space in which he can ask questions, but...your son is eleven and probably in the midst of puberty! Thus, he is that much less likely to initiate a conversation with you or your husband because, well, it is just a little too close to home, a little too intense. This, together with the research, suggests that it might be time for you or your husband to open up the dialogue a little more directly.<br />
<br />
You might start by saying something like, &quot;I remember back to what it was like when I was your age and it was a strange, exciting, confusing time!&quot; Go on to explain what your experiences were like talking about sexuality with your parents. Did you have conversations? What did you learn from those conversations, and what would you like to extend to your son now that he is the same age? Also, here is an article about discussing sexuality with eleven-year-olds.<br />
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Information Center on Child and Adolescent Sexuality:<br /><br />
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Good luck!<br />
> 60 days ago

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