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Calla Lily
09-28-2007, 05:33 PM
Here's what happened on my ride into work this morning. I drive my 16-year-old, because it's right down the street from my work. This morning we hit the doughnut shop, so we had about 15 minutes in the car as opposed to our usual 7. I mentioned a news article about a woman wanting her school district to ban a book her middle school daughter read because it talked about masturbation, suicide, and teen sex. My son pontificated that Middle School kids know most of the terms, and by HS they know the details of sex. (Oy.)

He then said that there's a pregnant girl in one of his classes, and the expectation at school is that there'll be one pregnancy after the Homecoming dance, one after the Junior Prom, and one after the Senior Prom. As I'm argh'ing at him, he said, "I know, mom, use a condom." I said, "No--keep it in your pants!" I reminded him that a pregnancy messes up your life plans, which he knows because he watched it happen to a talented acquaintance in his jazz band.

Then this conversation:

Son: "But there's a pretty safe time to have sex."

Me: "No, there isn't."

Son: "Yes, there is--someone told me."

Me: "No. People might think that the safest time to have sex is right after a woman finishes her period. But that's wrong. Italian women used to say 'Eat broccoli if you want to have a boy.' We used to think that was an old wives' tale. But what broccoli does is alter a woman's vaginal pH. You know, acid and base."

Son: "Yeah."

Me: "Okay, some women have vaginal fluid that's naturally more acid or more basic. Some women's fluids are naturally more hostile to male sperm than female sperm. So they kill off one kind of sperm and are very receptive to the other kind, letting it get through to the egg. But some women have very receptive fluids and the sperm can wait in there until ovulation, and then, even if they haven't had sex for several days, wham! Fertilization. I'm not making this up."

Son: "I know you're not, mom."

I work in AIDS research, so my sons always get squishy, body-fluid details when they ask about sex/AIDS/STDs/pregnancy.

This conversation happened at 7:15 this morning! I did NOT expect to start my day discussing vaginal pH with my teenager.

But this will maks a good scene in one of my books.

DamaNegra
09-28-2007, 05:39 PM
I did NOT expect to start my day discussing vaginal pH with my teenager.

This has to be the best line ever!

Good for you for talking to your son so openly about sex ;) That certianly is more useful than banning stuff. *sigh*

scarletpeaches
09-28-2007, 05:40 PM
You sound like a really cool mum. :)

dolores haze
09-28-2007, 05:52 PM
How did you get your son to the point where he was comfortable having this type of conversation with his mother. Share your secret. Please.

Calla Lily
09-28-2007, 06:05 PM
Um...I don't know if there is a secret. Maybe it started with swear words. When they were little, I told them that they had blanket permission to ask me if any word was a 'bad' word. Eventually, they'd ask me what f*** meant, and I'd give them a clinical definition. I never freaked out.

Remember several years ago when those adult conjoined twins opted for separation surgery and they both died? We watched that news story and my kids (then 11 and 7, I think) asked how conjoined twins happen. So I explained about sperm and eggs and such. Lots of eww's from them, LOL.

So now they ask me just about anything, and/or I use a current news article to start a discussion. They're always brief. My hope is if they don't llisten to me because in "only mom," they'll listen to their health teacher or soccer coach or some authority figure telling them to keep it in their pants or their career path will be drastically different than they plan. And remember it in a car with their GF when hormones have overridden their higher brain function.

auntybug
09-28-2007, 06:08 PM
That is awesome! I have always been able to talk to my son like that too. Its worked too well cause he's 24 and I have no grandkids in sight - now I want them:(

DamaNegra
09-28-2007, 06:10 PM
That is awesome! I have always been able to talk to my son like that too. Its worked too well cause he's 24 and I have no grandkids in sight - now I want them:(

Hahahaha it backfired!! :tongue

WendyNYC
09-28-2007, 06:13 PM
[quote=callalily61;1676897]Um...I don't know if there is a secret. Maybe it started with swear words. When they were little, I told them that they had blanket permission to ask me if any word was a 'bad' word. Eventually, they'd ask me what f*** meant, and I'd give them a clinical definition. I never freaked out.

[quote]


I do this too. My kids are much younger than yours, but no topic is off the table--even though it CAN be a challenge to explain things in an age-appropriate way. Here's hoping it works out as well for me as it seems to be for you.

My most recent "teaching moment" was when my 8 year old was when she heard about the naked pictures of Gabriella from High School Musical.

WendyNYC
09-28-2007, 06:15 PM
I can seem to speak today, but you get my meaning.

Late night last night.

dolores haze
09-28-2007, 06:30 PM
So - Lots of factual information from a very early age. No taboo subjects. Utilizing teaching moments. Age appropriate is a tough one - both knowing when a subject is appropriate for their age, and using words that they can understand.

I'm still mulling over all the points made in the "22 y.o. guy having sex with 16 y.o. girl" thread, and wondering what parents should be doing to prevent their sons turning out like the 22 y.o. in the O.P.

Thanks for the advice. Don't mean to hijack thread, but the Lily's story really got me thinking.

WendyNYC
09-28-2007, 06:37 PM
So - Lots of factual information from a very early age. No taboo subjects. Utilizing teaching moments. Age appropriate is a tough one - both knowing when a subject is appropriate for their age, and using words that they can understand.




Yes, age-appropriate wording can be tricky -- plus not telling them more than they actually need or want to hear (for the younger kids). I have a tendency to ramble, so this is where I need to watch myself.

Calla Lily
09-28-2007, 06:38 PM
So - Lots of factual information from a very early age. No taboo subjects. Utilizing teaching moments. Age appropriate is a tough one - both knowing when a subject is appropriate for their age, and using words that they can understand.


I didn't push it--I waited till they asked, unless there was a news story about yet another soccer coach/teacher/Boy Scout leader/internet pervert fondling/raping kids. Augh.

Openness can have unintended consequences. When my oldest was just 4 and I was pregnant with my second, we went to the county fair. We toured the cow building b/c the DH thought the kid would like to see the calves--baby cows, mom's having a baby etc.

Trouble is, a calf's head is HUGE to a 4-year-old. He stared with big eyes at everything until we saw a calf start to nurse. (Picture the size of a cow teat. Ready?) In a piping high little-kid voice, he announced, "Look, Daddy! That cow is sucking on the other cow's pecker!"

:Ssh:

DeleyanLee
09-28-2007, 06:40 PM
Funny, my kids got the same thing about battle wounds and autopsies. They seemed to have grown up all right. LOL!

If it's interesting being writers--how much more interesting must it be for our kids?

Sassee
09-28-2007, 08:49 PM
I love that you're so open with your kids. My parents were not open at all about any of that stuff. I found out about swears and sex through media, other students, and personal expiramentation. Let me tell you, two virgins fumbling through that first experience in a car is *not* fun. Ignorance is not bliss. And your son is right, a lot of middle schoolers already know more curses than you do and their minds are already wandering south.

Don't underestimate the power of the birth control / protection talk either, all religious and moral beliefs aside. I don't disagree that abstinance is the best course of action, but hormones often cloud teenagers' judgement (raises hand), and it's good for them to know alternatives. No one really talked to me about anything other than abstinance, in school or otherwise, until after I was already active. Guess what happened there? Miscarriage in junior year. Narrowly missed screwing up my life and having to marry, or share kid custody with, a complete asshole. I really wish I'd been more educated in that respect.

Parents who are talking to their kids - carry on! :Clap:

Calla Lily
09-28-2007, 09:17 PM
My big worry is if Mom (i.e. me) says it, it equals tacit permission to do it.

Thus, I've told him about condoms and the Pill (and that I took it after marriage till we were ready to have kids) at the same time telling him about how early sex is a big mistake, citing his friends who've found out the hard way. And that keeping it in your pants (applies to both sexes) is the smart thing to do till marriage.

Our school system has a decent sex ed. program. I only wish our tiny little Catholic school had one in the early 70s. (ha ha ha) Next year he gets to bring home the baby doll that's programmed to cry at 2 am and records if the kids shake it or even swear near it, etc.

You can only tell them so much and try to set a good example. *sigh*

Shadow_Ferret
09-28-2007, 09:39 PM
That's just creepy. If my mom had ever started talking like that, and she was an RN, I'd have gone:

"Mom! Ew! Just give me a book or something."

As far as my own son, soon to be 12, we can't even get him to admit he likes girls.

Oberon
09-28-2007, 11:50 PM
My parents didn't talk about sex, but my father was a biologist, and I watched and participated in a number of dissections, he explaining all the parts and functions. I learned how to skin and prepare specimens, helped descent a skunk. He would explain in complete detail how frogs made babies. Humans making babies? I knew the process, but no details, no advice, except the knowledge that one just did not mess with girls, even though all your friends were. I didn't even kiss a girl seriously until college, and even then there was no pill. Every guy had a circular imprint in his wallet where the unused condom nested and aged.

ink wench
09-29-2007, 12:11 AM
I did NOT expect to start my day discussing vaginal pH with my teenager.
That is hilarious. You sound like an awesome mom. :)

PeeDee
09-29-2007, 01:46 AM
I am full-grown adult male with a child and a wife.

And if ANYONE even MENTIONED Vaginal pH to me, I would STILL be out of the room so fast...

Calla Lily
09-29-2007, 02:40 AM
My kids know I'm an oddball. :D I don't think anything I say fazes them anymore.

Little Red Barn
09-29-2007, 03:11 AM
Oh, That's too cool Lil. Good mum, indeed!!!

teehee, now tell me how to explain there's no Santa to 16 yr. old Sierra ;)

Shadow_Ferret
09-29-2007, 06:22 AM
What? There's no Santa? :cry:

Shady Lane
09-29-2007, 06:26 AM
Here's what happened on my ride into work this morning. I drive my 16-year-old, because it's right down the street from my work. This morning we hit the doughnut shop, so we had about 15 minutes in the car as opposed to our usual 7. I mentioned a news article about a woman wanting her school district to ban a book her middle school daughter read because it talked about masturbation, suicide, and teen sex. My son pontificated that Middle School kids know most of the terms, and by HS they know the details of sex. (Oy.)

He then said that there's a pregnant girl in one of his classes, and the expectation at school is that there'll be one pregnancy after the Homecoming dance, one after the Junior Prom, and one after the Senior Prom. As I'm argh'ing at him, he said, "I know, mom, use a condom." I said, "No--keep it in your pants!" I reminded him that a pregnancy messes up your life plans, which he knows because he watched it happen to a talented acquaintance in his jazz band.

Then this conversation:

Son: "But there's a pretty safe time to have sex."

Me: "No, there isn't."

Son: "Yes, there is--someone told me."

Me: "No. People might think that the safest time to have sex is right after a woman finishes her period. But that's wrong. Italian women used to say 'Eat broccoli if you want to have a boy.' We used to think that was an old wives' tale. But what broccoli does is alter a woman's vaginal pH. You know, acid and base."

Son: "Yeah."

Me: "Okay, some women have vaginal fluid that's naturally more acid or more basic. Some women's fluids are naturally more hostile to male sperm than female sperm. So they kill off one kind of sperm and are very receptive to the other kind, letting it get through to the egg. But some women have very receptive fluids and the sperm can wait in there until ovulation, and then, even if they haven't had sex for several days, wham! Fertilization. I'm not making this up."

Son: "I know you're not, mom."

I work in AIDS research, so my sons always get squishy, body-fluid details when they ask about sex/AIDS/STDs/pregnancy.

This conversation happened at 7:15 this morning! I did NOT expect to start my day discussing vaginal pH with my teenager.

But this will maks a good scene in one of my books.

You remind me of my mom.

Which is a super-compliment because my mom is amazing.

zebedee
10-03-2007, 02:33 AM
I did NOT expect to start my day discussing vaginal pH with my teenager.



You have to use this as the first line. You must.

Esopha
10-03-2007, 02:48 AM
*glances down*

I had no idea.

*crosses her legs and hops off*