Better And Better

If you don't draw yours, I won't draw mine.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

So I've got this girl that my wife and I are rearing. . .

She's just about eleven, and she's a very bright girl. She's bright enough to pick up on things that are not talked about, as well as those that are. And it occurred to my wife and me the other day that she knows a fair bit of things that we've not formally talked with her about, including, apparently, sex.

So, in an effort to find out where she is on the education of the subject the other evening, my wife and I asked her questions in a frank one-on-two discussion. It did NOT go well. She was embarrassed. So much so, in fact, that she actually cried when we asked her to be specific about what she knew. Oops.

So, last night, as I made chipped beef over rice for me, and quesa dias for her, my daughter and I talked one-on-one about sex. Apparently this more conversational approach was FAR less embarrassing, and she was forthcoming about her knowledge.

The girl is bright, and evidently a pretty good researcher. We went over mechanics, which she understood, and nomenclature, and Problems.

Really this last section of our chat was the meat of the discussion, and in it I explained the really pragmatic reasons behind moral guidelines on expected behavior. This part of our chat was supplemented by educational photos of advanced cases of incurable STDs, found by simple Google image searches on the house desktop computer. (Heh. She may be off her feed, today.)

She also got reassurance that there were NO topics that she couldn't bring up with her mother or me, and that we would be unembarrassed and straightforward in our answers. She was also ordered not to try to "educate" her school friends, and was explained to why not.

All in all, it was a good chat, and when I sent her to bed, she seemed to regret not being able to stay up and talk more. That's good. These are important things to talk about, and I feel like her mother and I are actually pretty good sources of such information.

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16 Comments:

At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 10:47:00 AM, Blogger Kristopher said...

Maybe the only time you both confront her at the same time is when she's done something bad?

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 11:00:00 AM, Blogger Matt G said...

Realize that this wasn't a mean interrogation. It was just an interview by her parents. But it tweaked the Weird-O-Meter just a bit to hard for her that night, I'm afraid. :(

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 11:21:00 AM, Blogger Jay G said...

Yeah, having both mom *and* dad corner you and talk about sex might be a little intimidating.

TheBoy is 8. It's only a matter of time before I have to have the same talk...

*sigh*

I'll be sure to offer more than what Papa G. told me: "You knock 'em up, you own 'em". That was the extent of sex talk in our house...

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 11:24:00 AM, Anonymous Shrimp said...

I'm about two years behind you on that. My oldest is turning 9, and I'm dreading that conversation, not so much because of the conversation, but because it means my little girl isn't so "little" anymore. Wow, they grow up in a hurry.

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 12:00:00 PM, Blogger Casey said...

Good job. I've got a few years to try and get prepared for discussions like that, and I think I'm going to need everyone of them.

casey

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 4:15:00 PM, Blogger Sabra said...

Just make sure your Problems talk involved emotional attachment, Matt, & you're good. That's the one thing no one told me about, & I really wish they had.

 
At Wednesday, August 12, 2009 7:44:00 PM, Blogger Old NFO said...

Well done Matt!

 
At Thursday, August 13, 2009 7:26:00 AM, Blogger Farmmom said...

When I was growing up sex was a taboo subject in our household.

When I grew up and had kids of my own I made a promise to myself that my kids would be able to talk to me on any subject. It was a hard promise to keep. But the kids knowing that they could talk to us about things and getting straightforward truthful answers paid off in the long run. I have both a son and a daughter and it worked well with both.

Good for you and your wife for keeping those lines of communication open. I wish more parents would have the same attitude.

 
At Thursday, August 13, 2009 8:56:00 AM, Blogger Snigglefrits said...

I've found such conversations are best one parent to one child. Don't know the psychology behind it, but it seems to work best.

In the car seems to work best too- they don't have to "look at" you, sparing the embarrassment of the conversation AND they cannot escape. ;)

 
At Thursday, August 13, 2009 9:20:00 AM, Blogger Tam said...

Matt, you are a prince among men.

 
At Thursday, August 13, 2009 10:59:00 AM, Blogger Crucis said...

From the interviewee's perspective, even if innocent, two parents asking questions is a formal interrogation.

When my daughter was the age of yours, we talked to her individually. My wife talked about some subjects, me about others. It worked well for us.

Two on one, however, is usually viewed as negative even if that is not the intent.

All-in-all, you still handled this well.

 
At Friday, August 14, 2009 1:21:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm glad to see somebody talking to their kids.

The only advice I ever got was,

"Son, be good. If you can't be good, be safe. If you cant' be good or safe, name the kid after me or your mom."

I think your way is much better.

 
At Saturday, August 15, 2009 6:34:00 AM, Blogger Brigid said...

I got this little booklet about sex in sixth grade. I read the mechanics of it, was disgusted with the "side view" pictures and then realized "hey, I'm adopted, my parents didn't HAVE to do that".

Ha! Times have changed, and even they, still very loving in their 80's, laugh when I tell them that story.

You are a wonderful father. Would more girls know men like you in their lives.

 
At Saturday, August 15, 2009 9:55:00 PM, Anonymous Steve said...

Matt,

Congrats on what appears to be a successful talk. I pray you can have many more like those as she continues to grow.

As I get to that stage with my child, I wonder if one talk will do it, or if I should revisit the idea periodically.

Thanks for sharing your experiences and lighting the good and correct way for us to walk with you.

Steve

 
At Sunday, August 16, 2009 7:05:00 PM, Anonymous TBeck said...

Yeah, mine are ten and eight. We had the first in the series of "talks" a couple of months ago. The first one was about the physiological and biological aspects of things. They have a theoretical concept of the "how" but the "why" is still fuzzy.

As they get older we will tailor the talks to the "why" part, the emotional and psychological aspects of human sexual development.

The "talk" will take place over several years, I'm sure.

 
At Monday, August 17, 2009 5:42:00 PM, Blogger staghounds said...

I'm sorry, I can't get past being tickled at the idea of you planning your "good parent, bad parent" interrogation before walking into the room with the one way mirror, secret recording device, and white walls...

 

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