My daughter is 14 now, but I remember when I knew I needed to start talking with her about (drum roll here)... sex. I think she was 5 at the time.
Oh, I knew I wasn't ready for the WHOLE talk, but I wasn't one of those moms that encouraged her to use the word vagina and penis in everyday conversation. We had our own names for those private parts. I had nightmares that she would walk up to Grandpa and say "I have a vagina and you have a penis."
But, the time was right and I wanted an easy way to introduce the topic in a age-appropriate format.
Fortunately I stumbled on a series of six books designed to help parents talk about sex with their children while incorporating Christian values at the same time.
This post is about the first book in that series - "Why Boys & Girls are Different" by Carol Greene. Click here for full details on Amazon.com
This book is for ages 3-5 and is meant to be read to your child. It starts with basic differences - that God made EVERYONE different. We have different hair, eyes etc, we like different flavors of ice cream and like to play different games.
Then it goes into the basic body differences between boys and girls. The book shows a drawn frontal view of a girl and boy standing and uses the words vagina and penis to illustrate the basic differences in the body.
The the story goes on to show that there are women and men in all areas of our lives and they all do different things - because God made each of us different we are all special.
After that the book emphasizes family. It talks about how sometimes grownups fall in love and get married (with God's blessing). Later, God answers their prayer for a baby. The book explains that the baby grows inside the mother, but at this age does not state HOW that happened. This a very gentle way to introduce the concept of babies coming AFTER marriage.
Then the baby is born (via the vagina of the mother).
The book continues to show all types of different families (including a single mom). This is mainly done in pictures. It continues on to show that not only do we have our physical family, but we also have a church family. It shows that there are different types of churches and illustrates some of the things people do together in church.
The book ends with an affirmation that God loves you (the child) and that each person is special.
Summary - This book spends one page showing differences in body parts, and uses the word vagina and penis to describe them. There is no discussion about the act of sex itself. (that is for a later age). The book spends the majority of the time showing that God made everyone different and everyone special. Families are a special part of God's plan, both our physical family and our church family.
For me, this was the perfect way to take that very first step into the topic of sex with my daughter.
Comments are welcomed and encouraged. I will be covering the other books in time.