Who out there has discovered the beauty of the e-reader because you can shut down the screen in less then a second when said kid looks over your shoulder or sits down next to you and you’re reading a smex scene? My hand’s still up there. Me, me, me, please call on me. Even my books falls into this category.
Who has a secret shelf on the top or back of a closet where you hide those drool-worthy book covers and how to sex books from prying eyes? Still me.
And who turns off the radio your kid is listening to when a song with blatantly sexual lyrics come on–Rihanna’s S&M anyone (“Sex in the Air, I don’t care, I love the smell of it, sticks and stones may break my bones but whips and chains excite me”)? Yep, my hands starting to get sore from all the waving.
Trying to balance sex in adult culture (which I enjoy and write about) with parenting younger kids is O.M.G. And its not always so obvious. My kid loved Flo Rida “Whistle Baby,” and thank goodness it went right over her head because it took me awhile to actually hear the lyrics. If you haven’t, you can read them here Whoa, just Whoa. That really put suggestive book covers in perspective.
I talked to my kid early about sex–when she turned nine. Research I did recommended that one of the best times to start is at eight because they haven’t descended into giggly, embarrased mode yet. In truth, she had actually stumbled over it on a play date a year or so earlier. Her friend had found her parents sex books on that top shelf and shared them.
Now my kid feels pretty comfortable coming to me and asking questions which is exactly what I want–to have a safe place for her to talk about it and to influence how she interprets the info she does gather. How to answer them honestly but vaguely presents another challenge of my parenting life but for me, the openness is everything. Because I can’t control what she gets outside the house, where she spends most of her time when you add it all up . At least now I have a handle on her knowledge, an open channel of communication and an ereader that shuts down in a blink.
But man this remains sooooo hard. How do you all handle it? Any tricks for dealing with sex questions and the budding awareness of tweens and teen wannabes?