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Talking About Sexuality - Children/Tweens

It's best to start talking with children about sexuality early

  • However, it's never too late!
  • It is essential that your child feels you are approachable and open to all kinds of questions.

Talking about sexuality with your children can feel awkward and uncomfortable. However, as a parent, you are your child’s first and most important teacher.
It is essential that your child feels you are approachable and open to all kinds of questions.
Many parents find it uncomfortable to answer their child’s questions about sexuality, especially if this was a topic that was not discussed with their own parents.

Children hear many conflicting messages about sexuality. The good news is that most children want to talk with their parents about sexuality. As a parent, it is your job to clarify these messages and teach your child the values that are important to you and your family.

Tips on talking to your children about sexuality:

  • Try to be casual and relaxed. Discuss sexuality as you would any other subject. Remember that children are curious and questions about sexuality are normal.
  • Use teachable moments to start a conversation about sexual health. For example, if a family member is pregnant or an older sibling starts going through puberty, these are great opportunities to start to talk with your child.
  • Speak to your child’s teacher and find out what is being taught in the classroom. Continue the discussion at home.
  • Tell your child you will get back to them if you're unsure about an answer to one of your child’s questions. It's OK that you may not always have an answer. You may even want to research the question together.
  • Keep the conversations going. Repeated talks will help you both feel more comfortable discussing sexuality and improve your relationship with your child.

Resources for parents:

Community organizations:

  • Halton Organization for Pride and Education (HOPE) (external link)
    Organization which provides anti-homophobia training and education resources, as well as providing services for LGBTQ persons and their family and friends.
  • POSSE Project (external link)
    A peer outreach support service run by youth for youth living in North Halton. The group aims to support and encourage safer decision making in reducing the risks associated with drug use, sex, homelessness, violence and discrimination.
  • Sexual Health Clinics
    Locations, hours of operation and contact information for Halton Region’s sexual health clinics.