Beyond the Birds and the Bees: Talking to Your Daughter About Safe Sex

So, your little girl is growing up quickly and it’s time to talk about what your mum, once upon a time, called the ‘birds and the bees.’ In today’s world, it’s all about safe sex and if this is a conversation you fear, the alternative is even more fearsome! There are so many reasons why it’s important that your daughter hears things from you, because you are unlikely to glamourise premarital sex as a rite of passage. 

Birds and bees

Rather, you have a keen interest in what unprotected sex can do to the rest of your little girl’s life. No, she is no longer ‘little’, but she will always be your baby. That’s a fact! Now, how do you even broach the subject? Here are some pointers from other mums who dreaded this day but found ways to get important messages across.

Teen Pregnancy Is Always a Concern

Not surprisingly, most mothers begin the conversation with what becoming pregnant would do to the rest of your daughter’s life. Whether or not you have a problem with abortion and all the controversy the subject sparks, you know that either way a girl chooses to proceed will have a long-lasting affect in many ways. 

Some girls fear what their friends and classmates would think of her if she carried to term, so they opt to abort. Others have no qualms and with the support of their parents, they give birth to a baby they keep. Whether suffering from regret or a life of hardships as a single mum, there will always be something carried forward for many years to come. 

Beyond the Trials and Tribulations of Teen Pregnancy

What you are about to talk about now may have already been introduced in your daughter’s school. In primary grades all students are taught about relationships and when they get to the age your daughter is in now, they are taught relationships and sex education. However, as a parent you want to have your say in the matter.

Kids always seem to think that their parents grew out of Victorian England and have no sense of what it’s like to have desires of the flesh. However, as someone who was where your daughter is now, you know that you once felt the very same way about your mum when she tried to have ‘the talk.’ Perhaps it’s important to move beyond morality to a more pressing issue and that would be sexually transmitted infections.

Elicit Impartial Expert Support

You might want to talk about what a gynaecologist consultant deals with every day that resulted from the human papillomavirus, HPV. A gynaecologist consultant such as one who works for the UK’s leading private health provider, Circle Health Group, might even be someone she would be more open to as they explain just what certain STIs like syphilis or gonorrhoea could do to the productive organs. These private providers are specialists who work in one of the 54 hospitals in the group with over 6,500 consultants on staff, many of whom are gynaecologists. 

If consulted, they could give credence to the points you are trying to make without seeming as though they are trying overly hard to convince her to their way of thinking. It is important that she understands that just one sexually transmitted infection can lead to other, more life-threatening diseases such as cervical cancer as the result of HPV. This could all be achieved if you made an appointment with a consultant who gave her a preliminary exam while broaching the subject.

Never Too Early to Fear Disease

While teen pregnancy is still high on the list of your concerns, sexually transmitted infections are even more concerning because they can lead to other, more serious, issues later in life. There probably isn’t a teen on earth who understands just how fleeting life is and that we should do what we can to stay healthy and whole for as long as we can.

Sitting your daughter down for ‘the talk’ is probably more difficult today than ever before simply because of mass media and instant communications. Kids are no longer as innocent and vulnerable as they once were but are still often immune to the dangers that lie ahead. They have few life experiences to build on and only have YouTube, TikTok and other social media platforms they place their confidence in. It’s kids teaching kids and so you have an upward battle.

The one bit of advice is to keep it light. Don’t preach or you will lose your daughter in the first few moments of the conversation. By all means, listen to what she has to say but keep coming back to your love and concern for her. Reassure her that you will be there to talk if she feels the need but that you are placing your trust in her ability to make good choices. It is, after all, her life, so help her to understand that what she chooses to do affects all her tomorrows – and that’s the bottom line. 
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