Health Watch: Talking to your child about sex and consent

Published: Apr. 8, 2021 at 2:51 PM MDT
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It is a hard subject manner for parents to discuss but is extremely important. Dr. Cara Hamilton is in to discuss the need to talk to your kids about sex and private parts

It is never too early to talk to your kids about their private parts and sex. As toddlers, your child can learn that the area covered by their diaper or underwear are private and that anytime anyone touches them they should be notifying you about it. Don’t ask them to decide between good touch and bad touch, but rather just coming to you with any of the times that happens and that there are no secrets being kept from mom and dad. There is also a simple game that you probably already play with your child that can help teach about consent, and that is the tickle game. Instead of tickling your child until they can’t breathe anymore, you will stop the moment they say no, or don’t or stop and you won’t go again until they say go. This will teach them that they need to give permission for someone to touch their body. Also, don’t let them play the opposite game because no and stop always mean no and stop. Your older elementary and middle school child is thinking about sex, they are thinking about the differences between boys and girls and they are talking to their friends about it. If they feel comfortable coming to you when they have questions they hopefully won’t be looking up things on the internet and we all know how dangerous it can be for kids to be playing around the internet with those search terms. If you do all of these things well in childhood hopefully your teenager will come to you when they have questions as well. It will be important that they feel comfortable coming to you with anything they need regarding sex or birth control. If you have questions about how to talk to your child about sex you can talk to your pediatrician. This is Dr. Cara Hamilton at Black Hills Pediatrics with your Healthwatch

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