Many parents have difficulty talking to their teens about sex and birth control. You may be worried that if you talk about it – and especially if you talk about birth control – you're tacitly giving your teen permission to have sex. You may feel that you lack knowledge about the subject. You may just feel embarrassed or uncomfortable. But it's important to have these discussions anyway. Informed teens are less likely to get pregnant or contract a disease, and your teen will be more likely to come to you for help if you can have open discussions. Take a look at some tips that can help you talk to your teen about birth control:
Avoid "The Talk"
You may remember having "the talk" with your parents. One big, often intimidating or embarrassing, conversation that was supposed to cover everything you needed to know about sex and birth control. This is an uncomfortable memory for many people, and it's often not as informative as it should be.
You can't cover everything that your teen will need to know about sex and birth control in one conversation, and you shouldn't try to. Instead, look for teachable moments to approach different topics. Television shows, movies, song lyrics, and current events can all provide jumping off points that allow you to bring up the topic more naturally in conversation. Not only is this less intimidating for everyone, but your teen is also more likely to listen if you're discussing the topic in the normal course of conversation rather than giving them a planned lecture.
Bring In Expert Help
That doesn't mean there should be no planned conversations, however. It can absolutely help to plan a conversation between you, your teen, and your teen's pediatrician or gynecologist (or just your teen and their doctor) to help your teen get an expert take on the subject.
This is particularly important when it comes to birth control. By the time your teenager needs to know about birth control, you may no longer be using it yourself, or you may have one method that you've used for a long time and have no desire to change it. That means that you may not be familiar with some of the newest information about different methods of birth control and which ones are best for teens. A doctor can provide your teen with the most recent information that's most relevant to their health needs.
Don't Worry About Mixed Messages
Often, when parents fail to discuss birth control with their teens, it's because they believe that talking about birth control amounts to giving teens permission to have sex. However, you can tell your teen that you believe they should wait to have sex and inform them about birth control options. Doing this is not a mixed message.
Your teen is going to need information about birth control at some point in their lives. Even if they wait until adulthood or marriage to have sex, they will need to know about birth control at that point so that they can protect themselves and plan their family. And some teens may end up needing birth control for reasons other than preventing pregnancy – to control painful period symptoms, for example. Giving them the information now ensures that they'll have it when they need it, whenever that may be. You're not giving them permission to have sex; you're giving them information that they're going to need sooner or later.
If you're stuck for ideas or need more information, consider asking your own OBGYN for ideas about talking to your teen. They have plenty of experience with these conversations and may be able to suggest ideas to help you get started. Contact a company like Healthcare for Women Only for more information and assistance.Share
28 November 2017
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