Parents Can Influence
- Parents can have a great influence on the sexual activity of their children. Researchers found that when mothers take a firm, hard-line stance against premarital relations, avoid discussing birth control, and have a good relationship with their children, that their children are 13 times more likely to NOT have sexual relations than children without those 3 factors. (Family Planning Perspectives)
- One mother in a Wall Street Journal editorial observed:
"With the exception of some Mormons, evangelicals and Orthodox Jews,
scads of us don't know how to teach our own sons and daughters not to
give away their bodies so readily...Still, in my own circle of
girlfriends, the desire to push back is strong. I don't know one of
them who doesn't have feelings of lingering discomfort regarding her own
sexual past. And not one woman I've ever asked about the subject has
said that she wishes she'd 'experimented' more." (Jennifer Moses, "Why Do We Let Them Dress Like that?" Wall Street Journal, Mar. 19, 2011, C3)
- Talk openly to your children about sex.
Don’t avoid the sex talk, pretending it’s not on their mind. Start
when they are very young, again as adolescents, again before dating, and
again before marriage. Do NOT leave this discussion to the schools and
society to teach their values on this subject.
- Teach your children about the importance of sexual purity - of chastity before marriage and fidelity within marriage.
- Teach your children as many of your values as you can (including
sex education) by the age of 8, at which time they have determined most
of their own values. Before age 8, children will accept the teachings
of their parents more easily; however, after age 8, they will begin to
question and reject some of your counsel, rules and standards, and
subjects like sex education may seem more embarrassing.
- Teach your children about the consequences of pre-marital sex,
such as violating the laws of God, pregnancy, loss of self-respect, and
some of the 20+ epidemic-level sexually transmitted diseases. Role
play situations your teenagers may face, such as sexual advances,
inappropriate casual touches, or invitations to view pornography.
- Get to know your teenagers’ friends. Assure your children that they can call you any time, and you will pick them up immediately, no matter where they are.
- Encourage your children to date a variety of friends and to date in groups. Steady
dating at an early age will lead to sexual activity. Decide together
on a suitable age to begin dating, and require any date to spend time
with the family. Set a curfew.
- Teach your daughters to dress modestly,
from the time they are very young, because boys are very visual. Teach
them to talk and behave like women, not men. Teach them about gender
and the value, role, contribution and unique nature of women. Teach
young women that they can be kind, courageous, compassionate and strong
without living below their potential.
- Although teen idols dress in provocative clothing,
teach your children that there is no need for them to call attention to
themselves in inappropriate ways. Confirm their own value often, and
teach them they can make their own decisions.
- Teach your sons to respect and protect young women. Teach them the value of fidelity and chastity. Teach them never to steal from a young woman her virtue or purity.
- Sexual abuse is often an outgrowth of pornography. Explain good and bad touches. Teach your children that the parts of their body covered by a swim suit are private.
- Teach your children that rape is NEVER, EVER OK,
and it is NEVER the victim’s fault. It is illegal and always wrong.
In most cases, victims know their attacker. Teach them to get help
immediately if anyone makes an unwanted advance.
- Explain that sexual advances from adults or older children are AGAINST the LAW.
This will give your children the confidence to assert themselves and
speak up when they feel upset, scared, or uneasy with anyone’s
behavior. Parents must learn to listen when children talk. Teach them
to tell a parent or guardian if anything on the computer or in the
company of another person makes them feel scared, uncomfortable, or
confused, and to run to a populated area. Explain that you can only
help if they share with you—and warn that others may even threaten them
if they tell. Report abuse to law enforcement, and get professional
help. Also, if one child has been abused, it is likely others have
- All children need physical affection.
They need a hug and a kiss. Studies show that parents who give their
children a lot of affection in the home will find that those children do
not need to seek that affection out of the home. Continue physical
affection on into adolescence. In addition, talk about how beautiful
sex can be within a marriage, how sacred it should be, and that it is
not to begin before marriage.
- Pornography. Teach your
children that pornography works against everything that is beautiful and
sacred about sexuality. It will control their thoughts and lower their
feeling of self-worth and respect for others, and distort their view of
sex. What may start as innocent sexual curiosity in the form of
pornographic movies, magazines and materials, can develop into an
obsession with an ever-increasing need for more and more degrading
depictions of sexual behavior. If this addiction is carried into a
marriage, it will destroy loyalty and fidelity by introducing a “third