How to talk about sex with newly grown kids ?

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2013
How to talk about sex with newly grown kids ?
13
Tue, 07-09-2013 - 3:31am

I am sure there are lots of parents who find it difficult to talk about sex or any sex related knowledge with their grownup kid. This can be embarrassing sometimes but it is important for them. Can anybody share any nice tip regarding the subject ?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 05-27-1998
Thu, 08-08-2013 - 9:43am

We also drink wine every night and have tried to introduce our kids to it (perfectly legal at home) just so they aren't tempted to go wild in college or to accidentally drink more than they can handle. DS hates alcohol and won't go near it; DD likes certain wines, but hates beer. We've told her that if she chooses to drink in college to never have more than 2-- I don't think that will be a problem, as she says more than half a glass makes her dizzy--and to never put her drink down.

We've been talking about this stuff, as well as sex, for years. Years ago, when she was maybe 12, she put her can of fizzy water down at a family pool party, then came up to me as I was chatting with the hostess and asked if it was still safe to drink it. Because you just never know with those 10 year old boys....

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2013
Tue, 07-23-2013 - 4:34am

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iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Thu, 07-18-2013 - 1:34pm

I have a 24 yr old DD and that wouldn't describe her or any of her female friends--I wonder where they found these young women.  Most of them have or had regular boyfriends.  It was never considered cool or appropriate to just have sex although they probably have a more casual attitude toward having sex.  But is woman having careers something new?  I was in college in the 70's and feminist ideas were certainly being discussed then and most women were going to have careers.  Even when I was in law school (50% women) there were many women who were in relationships--I knew a few women who were pregnant and taking the bar exam.

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Wed, 07-17-2013 - 1:33pm

The NY Times had an article on Sunday about college sex.  You can find it if you go to nytimes.com and click on Style on the left side.  The article is called "Sex on Campus: She Can Play That Game Too."  It's about how young, career-driven college women now often prefer to not have any romantic entanglement because it might tie them down and take them away from the single-minded pursuit of their careers. The acceptable alternative is alcohol-fueled sex with regular partners, who they don't actually have a relationship with outside of sex.

I honestly found it incredibly sad.  Yes, I went to college as part of the "Me Generation" and casual sex was part of that atmosphere.  But it was never meant to be an avoidance of actual relationships with the attitude of "I just want to focus on me, me, me" and it didn't take the attitude of "We're going to have sex as a matter of convenience."

I had my soon-to-be college freshman read it.  I think she kind of rolled her eyes at it.  That attitude is so NOT her, and so not typical of anyone she knows. . . mostly because of the callousness of the young women towards other humans.  There were a couple of examples at the end of the article that were more encouraging:  one young woman for whom a relationship would be essential for sex, and one young woman who felt her peers were taking far too much for granted, namely that they would have a large pool of interesting, interested men to choose from when they thought they were ready to think about a serious relationship.

Overall, the article reminded me that college is another world unto itself, something that I am naturally aware of since I already have a college senior, but it was also eye-opening in the utter self-centeredness of the young women it profiled.  None of my kids are like that, and none of their friends are like that, and they do go to elite colleges.  I'd like to think I raised my kids better than these supposed super-achievers in the article.

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-09-2013
Tue, 07-16-2013 - 6:26am

Thanks a lot guys for sharing such a helpful details on the subject. I found your tips quite informative. Would love to see more like this.

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-23-2003
Thu, 07-11-2013 - 6:26pm

My advice is:

1. Get over any reservations you have about having these conversations with your kids. 

2. Don't judge, don't preach.  But try to get some of your boundaries in there.  Remember that this is a time of experimentation and independence from parents and they may do things that you wouldn't do or wouldn't like.  Whether you agree with it or not, many schools will provide your kids with more info than you could ever imagine about sex, birth control, relationships, and the perils of drinking and drugs.

3.  Listen, listen, listen.   

4. Be realistic and recognize that if your kid has not had sex so far, there's a good likelihood that they will while they're away at college. 

5. Keep the lines of communication open about EVERYTHING.  And be honest about your own experiences if you think they're ready for that or if it would help them.  I found myself having conversations with 18 y.o. DD that I never thought I would have--haven't had them with her 30-something sisters yet. I found that DD is acting very responsibly, more than I did at her age.  A very pleasant surprise.

 

 

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Wed, 07-10-2013 - 1:22pm

We've definitely had the drinking conversation many times.  DH & I drink wine/beer every night, so alcohol is often a topic.  DS & DD are still close, so DS has filled in DD on what college life *can* be like - both for those who drink/smoke and those who don't.  DD says she feels well-informed.

Honestly we have never had *one* talk. . . sex, alcohol, drugs, and relationships are just a few topics among many in our house, and they've been going on for years.  DH & I need to do a better job of talking about them to 13yo DS, though.  He hasn't been part of the conversations the way the older ones have.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Wed, 07-10-2013 - 1:04pm

The one thing that I did mention to DD was to beware of drinking too much at parties--you hear all these stories about girls waking up in a guy's bed and not even knowing what happened to her.  That is scary.  Yes, with a gay son (mine) I don't have to worry about pregnancy, which is what I used to harp on him about when he was dating girls, but college will probably be like a whole new world, cause he hasn't been able to meet that many gay guys in high school.

Avatar for mahopac
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-24-1997
Wed, 07-10-2013 - 11:16am

I guess I feel like I need to have some sort of discussion with DD, who's going to college in the fall.  She's knowledgeable about many things and clueless about others, but she is extremely cautious about EVERYTHING.  She knows she lost out on a couple of guys she liked by being too cautious to show her feelings, so I think she is more likely to do nothing than to do anything rash.  I probably need to have *that* conversation with her.

I didn't have any conversation with DS.  Since he is transgender & gay and well-informed on trans issues, I had to catch up with *his* body of knowledge on sexuality.  Prior to his transition, he was only involved with girls, so I was rather lax on the subject.  Now that he's 21, I *really* don't have anything to say.  Hopefully DH & I have been good role models.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999
Tue, 07-09-2013 - 11:15am

Well my kids (boy almost 18 and girl 24 who is a nurse) are the type to just blurt out anything that's on their minds so we've beene pretty open about discussing things.  You just have to try to get over the embarrassment.  I sure hope if they are going to college they already have knowledge about sex & birth control--or maybe they know a lot more than you think they do.

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