HAVING ‘THE TALK’

Last night I spoke at the Council of Parent Participation Preschools annual general meeting. One of the other speakers was Catherine Evashuk, a Certified Sexual Health Educator. As I am a parent of a nearly preschooler I was fascinated by what she told us about this age group. Although, it”s kind of “off-topic” for this blog, I’m posting about it anyway because it is really important information that every parent should know.

  • 90% of sexual assaults on children are committed by someone the child knows.
  • 50% of assaults take place in school, 30% at home.
  • If you do nothing else but teach your preschooler that is only ok for specific people to ask them to take their clothes off you will have gone a long way to protecting them.
  • The next step is to teach preschoolers that they have private parts that it is not ok for other people to touch. Don’t forget that the mouth is also a private part; teach them that it is not ok for other people to put anything in their mouths.
  •  You wouldn’t expect a child to “get” long division after having it explained only once so don’t expect to give a child “the talk” and be done with it. Expect it to come up quite often, and take the opportunity to teach your values also. Sex education in schools sticks to the mechanics, so they won”t learn your values there.
  • If your child hasn”t asked where babies come from by the age of 8, it is because they”ve joined the dots on their own. You will need to ask them how they think babies are made, because they will not guess correctly on their own.
  • It’s ok to feel embarrassed talking about sex with your kids. You have a couple of millenniums of culture subtext sitting on your shoulders making you feel that way. Acknowledge your feelings to your child as you talk it through with them.

 

I find books are a great way to broach tricky subjects. So here are a couple I have found:

Amazing you!: Getting smart about your private parts  – Gail Saltz

It’s NOT the stork! A book about girls, boys, babies, bodies, families and friends. – Robie H. Harris

I said No! A kid to kid guide to keeping your private parts private – Kimberley King

Your body belongs to you. – Cornelia Maude Spelman

 

Contact Catherine Evashuk

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