Culture

What is the right age to start teaching Sex Education?

At a certain age, it is expected that parents/guardians introduce the topic of sex education to their child/children. Most times, it is the girl child that gets the education living the boys out of the topic. However, for some naïve reasons, some parents shy away from bringing up the topic.

It is rather unfortunate that many parents/guardians think sex topics are meant for adults alone and falling to enlighten a child on sensitive issues like this may have some critical concerns. Teaching a child all he/she should know about sex education should be taught at an early age, but some parents probably wait until the child gets to the puberty stage while in others, the child learns it by experiencing it from an outsider.

In Africa, talking about sex-related topics is somewhat weird. It is believed that when a child knows what an adult should know at an early age, it is a way of promoting evil in society. Sadly, one of the moral decadences currently spreading like wide-fire is sexual abuse (rape), and to curb the menace, a drastic approach must be introduced.

What does sex education mean?

According to Wikipedia, sex education is the instruction of issues relating to human sexuality, including emotional relations and responsibilities, human sexual anatomysexual activitysexual reproductionage of consentreproductive healthreproductive rightssafe sexbirth control, and sexual abstinence. Sex education that covers all of these aspects is known as comprehensive sex education.

Introducing sex education to kids at an early age is vital because they are defenceless and prone to sexual abuse. Unfortunately, only a few cases are reported because a large number of children know nothing about it.

The one-million-dollar question is what age is right to teach sex education?

Psychologists suggest that sex education should be introduced between the ages of six-eight years. A child between these age brackets should be able to describe the parts of the body. On a cynical view, some believe that teaching minors about sex education is exposing the child to sexual activities but with the incessant rape cases, especially those meted out on minors and forced not to say a word, then the need for all to lend a voice has become necessary.

Who needs sex education more of, The girl child or the boy child?

Sex education is a sensitive topic meant for both genders. Although, the girl child gets more of the education because the issue of rape is often carried out on them. But one then asks, why is the boy child left out in this?

Parents/guardians are advised to teach both genders everything they need to know about sex education. The mother takes the responsibility of issues that concerns the girl child while the father oversees that of the boy child.

During puberty, there are notable signs and when they start appearing, it is expedient to let a child know what is involved. For example, a girl starts seeing her monthly cycle between the age of eleven-eighteen years, letting her know the intricacies of having unprotected sex can get her pregnant or contract a sexually transmitted disease. While the boy child should be informed that at the puberty age, the possibility of getting a girl pregnant is high and also can contract an std.

Read also: Underrated natural ways on how to treat STIs caused by bacterial

Pragmatic ways on how to teach sex education.

Shying away from the topic will cause more harm. Therefore, parents/guardians are urged to do the needful. The girl child should be taught that no one should touch her private parts and should also report when anyone touches her. As for the boy child, teaching them to respect a woman’s body is crucial.

Parents should also teach the female child not to sit on the laps of a man, as the same lesson should be taught to the boy child.

Teaching sex education at teen-age

Most parents consider this age as the best time to teach sex education. It is so because, at this age, there are many juvenile delinquencies like indulging in unprotected sex that if not curtailed it can ruin one’s future.

Parents should not stop talking about this especially to the girl child. At teen-age, it is a stage of youthful exuberance that can be influenced by peer pressure. Making the girl child knowledgeable about sex activities is not to make the child to start having sexual intercourse but to abstain from it.

Conclusion

Teaching a child sex education at an early age is not an evil practice and when a child asks a question that relates to sex, the parent/ guardian must give a direct answer without beating about the bush.

There are subtle ways to teach a child about sex education. You can start by letting him/her know the functions of the sex organs before explaining the dangers of allowing anyone to touch them there.

Recently, the rise of sexual abuse has awakened the need for sex education for kids. This time, no one cares if the child is too young to hear it. The consciousness of these teachings can help reduce child sexual abuse and also help curb the incessant rape cases.

                                                                                                                         

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