ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How to Talk to Youth about Sex: Top Ten Tips for Parents and Caregivers

Updated on June 22, 2014

Talking with teens does not have to be a chore


When you’re a parent or caregiver to a teen, at times it may seem like everything you do or say is embarrassing to your son or daughter. So, imagine how he/she feels when you are attempting to talk about sex! There are many reasons why talking with teens about sex could be extremely uncomfortable for some parents and caregivers. Some reasons for having uneasy feelings include strong morals, values and beliefs systems, assumptions, cultural backgrounds, societal norms, and how one is raised. It is important to remember though that your teens may also feel extremely uncomfortable and embarrassed talking with you about sex. Some parents believe that talking with their teens about sex will contribute to their teens becoming sexually active at an early age. However, research shows that teens who have parents or caregivers who speak openly about sex are more prepared to make informed decisions. They are also more likely to postpone sex and use birth control/ STI protection when they do become sexually active.

Here are ten tips to help parents/caregivers talk with their teens about sex…

1) Be honest and open. If talking about sex is difficult or uncomfortable for you, admit it by telling your teen and try to work through it by talking openly and looking up facts.

2) Talk to your teen early and often about sex. Be specific and keep the conversation going. Be an “askable parent.”

3) Don’t make assumptions. Asking questions about sex does not mean they are having sex (or even thinking about having sex).

4) Be approachable. Youth need to know they will not be punished for being curious, honest, and open. Listen to them, answer their questions as best you can, and avoid interrupting.

5) Be very clear about your values. It is fine to share your values with youth but remember to also respect your teen’s decision to possibly not share some of your values. They may even come up with their own values and beliefs. You are able to communicate more effectively with your teens if you are clear and certain about sex, love, and relationships in your own mind.

6) Talk about facts versus myths. However, don’t overwhelm them or try to say everything all at once.

7) Provide educational resources. Find solid, informative resources from reputable sources and make these available to your teens. It is also a way to look up information if you don’t know an answer to their question.

8) Make sure it isn’t a “one way” conversation. Try your best not to preach while your teen only listens. It is easy for teens to ‘pipe down’ during ‘the embarrassing talk’ and have you lead the conversation.

9) Try not to focus solely on what you have ‘planned in your head’ to say. Allow for a free flowing conversation. Also, genuinely listen to your teens when they say something or ask questions.

10) Most importantly, don’t be too serious and keep your sense of humour!

Here is a list of suggested topics you may want to talk about…

-male and female reproductive systems

-sexual intercourse and other ways to have sex


-pregnancy and birth control

-safe sex

-sexually transmitted infections (STI)

-ways to handle peer pressure

-sexual orientation

-ways to show affection without having sex

-how to identify healthy and unhealthy relationships

-how to avoid and recognize rape, sexual assault and sexual abuse

-how alcohol and drugs sometimes affect decision making

-abstinence (postponing/not having sex)


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • profile image

      Daniel Hohener 

      4 years ago

      Very informative and open..a good article


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)