A Health Professional's and Community's Guide
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A Parent's Guide
This page is a guide for parents as well as health care providers talking with parents on how to discuss the topic of sex and STDs with children.
Talking about sex with your child is an important part of growing up. As children go through puberty and their bodies begin to change, they become naturally curious about these processes. In addition to receiving information from parents and teachers, children and teens depend more on their friends, classmates, TV, and social media for information, which may or may not be scientifically accurate. It's important for parents to know the facts about sex and STDs and to start the conversation when the time is right.
We understand that talking with your children about sex can be difficult and often uncomfortable. There are resources available to help provide parents and guardians with tips and tricks to have "the talk" with their kids.
It may not be easy and it may feel strange at first, but being ready ahead of time to discuss sex, STDs, and pregnancy will help make the talk easier. However, talking to your children about sex may not always go as planned. It's important to not only start a discussion with them, but also to actively listen to their questions and comments. Think about what questions or concerns you had at their age and be ready to discuss this.
Here are some general tips to guide parents along in the discussion about sex:
Below are some additional resources to help make discussions easier. You will find information on adolescents and STDs, along with tips for how to talk with your child.
U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
Michigan Department of Health & Human Services
Office of Adolescent Health
Futures Without Violence