The Birds and The Bees

We have parented with the philosophy that sex, like many other topics, is an ongoing conversation that continues and progresses as our kids mature. Rather than waiting for the single awkward, sweaty-handed conversation that some of us endured as teenagers, we have tried to be open in explaining things to our kids at appropriate times.

Having chickens and pet rabbits clued them in on some of the biological specifics at a fairly early age. When my girls were in kindergarten, they inadvertantly created an interesting moment during morning chapel at the school they were attending. The highschool students snickered and the principal turned beet red when they sincerely requested prayer for their rabbits who were jumping on each other.

As my girls approach 17, I felt the need to check in and make sure they are hearing what we are attempting to say to them. I didn’t want to make assumptions about what they knew or understood. It seemed like a good idea to be intentional about making sure we are communicating, so we had lunch today.

And it was good.

At one point, they started talking about the differences in how my husband and I talk with them about sex. They said, “You are like all about self-worth and values and respect and identity. And dad, he’s….”

And then they started laughing. At this point, I wondered what kind of damage control or explaining I was going to have to do.

“What did dad say?”

“He didn’t really say anything. He just brought us to Walmart.”


“And he bought us Mace!”


12 thoughts on “The Birds and The Bees

  1. LOL!!!

    Yay dad! It sounds like the girls have a great team working with/for them. Thanks for sharing this personal bit of your family life … it’s priceless.

  2. ken,
    Yes, hopefully they will survive our parenting. ;)

    Technically, I think it’s pepper spray, not officially mace, although that’s what they called it. They’re armed and dangerous.

  3. LOL, grace! Our conversations are a bit different, having three boys!

    I can see that I will also have to teach them that being a gentleman will also keep them from getting maced….

  4. I don’t think we can buy that off the shelf in Australia. My daughter has just hit puberty (she’s 11) and what she knows about sex intellectually is pretty jolly impressive.

    There is a good karate school here, though. I think I might enrol us both

  5. Funny you should post this today, I just came back from taking my daughter on her Passport to Purity Weekend (Rainey’s)
    It was great fun, and full of times to “think through ” what she would do in different situations BEFORE they happen!…Just like you, it was part of our ongoing discussions, but a great time to pull away and say…”this is important enough that we are going to spend some time on it..away, together”. A great time!

  6. As someone who works with adults who deal with sexual issues, I must say TALK, TALK, TALK to your kids about sex. And not just the negative “consequences” — although kids definitely need to know how their actions (or inactions) can affect them and others. But also talk about all aspects of sexuality, including body image, gender roles, the media’s portrayal of sex, etc.

    And don’t forget to talk about the pleasure and the mystery of sex. If kids only grow up hearing how terrible and wrong sex is, they can adopt some pretty skewed ideas of sex — thus making it harder for them to someday enjoy a healthy sexual relationship.

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