By Erin Bishop

Some parents plan ahead for the “sex talk” and maybe even rehearse it in front of the bathroom mirror a few times, and then bring it up when they think their daughter is ready to learn about such a serious topic.

But sometimes, thanks to our over sexualized media, and the placement of certain magazines next to the candy, Matchbox Cars, and Princess Band-Aids, we find ourselves dodging questions like bullets in the checkout line because our daughter wants to know exactly what Cosmo means by “Kinky Sex Moves”, “Summer’s Hottest Sex” and what the deal is with this Bruce Jenner person.

For some parents, the idea of talking to their daughter about sex may cause anxiety for various reasons. If this is the case for you, I encourage you to ask yourself why. Why it’s uncomfortable and if there are some issues from your past you could work through with a licensed counselor so that you can be available to talk to your daughter about this important topic.

Or, maybe you’re worried you won’t know what to say, or you’re afraid you’ll embarrass yourself or your daughter. Give yourself some grace. Kids are resilient and they are looking for some direction and leadership from you. We have some great resources at the end of the article to help you on your way.

Talking about sex with my daughter has always come easy to me. It kind of had to. You see, she’s 17, and my husband and I have only been married 14 years. There’s a story here, and you can read part of it, here.

7 Tips for Talking to Your Girl About Sex

  • First, pray. Ask God to give you peace, clear communication with your daughter, and for the Holy Spirit to go with you and before you to prepare her heart, and yours, for the conversation.
  • Start with the truth. Tell her what sex is, that God created it for husbands and wives, and why. Arming our daughters with a firm foundation in the truth will empower and equip them to admonish cultural lies and choose God’s best for their lives. When we do things God’s way and save sex for marriage, there is no shame, condemnation, fear of an unplanned pregnancy, or sexually transmitted diseases. Our daughters will know kids who have sex and see on the outside that things seem fine and normal-but the changes that occur on the inside of a girl who has had sex outside of marriage can be devastating-even traumatic.
  • Have a gentle, loving spirit. This will set the tone for this part of your relationship with her. This will reassure her that she can trust you and come to you with questions and for guidance.
  • Be open and honest. Her little girl body will begin to change into a woman’s body. She may experience curiosity, confusion, arousal, embarrassment or shyness about her growing body. She needs to know these changes and feelings are normal before someone or something tells her otherwise. Give her an idea of what to expect, and ask her if she has any questions or concerns.
  • Know where you stand and stay there. Flexible morals are no morals at all. Our daughters are counting on us to be leaders and hold them accountable to a higher standard.
  • Your actions should line up with your words. Some movies, television shows, books and music normalize casual and premarital sex. Adults in her life may be shacking up with someone, sending the message that sex outside of marriage is acceptable.
  • Keep talking. The “sex talk” shouldn’t be a one-time conversation. It needs to be an ongoing dialogue that continually keeps her grounded in the truth and the knowledge that she can talk to you about this and anything else, without fear, rejection, or condemnation.

Reflection Questions:

  • Do you feel prepared to talk to your daughter about sex?
  • When do you plan to talk about sex with your daughter?

God’s Truth to Stand On:

  • “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” Proverbs 22:6
  • “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10

Putting It Into Practice:

  • Pray for your daughter and her desire to lead a life of purity and sexual integrity.
  • Keep the conversation going. By demonstrating that you are a tender and loving person to confide in, she will feel free to talk to you about this and many other topics.

Suggested Resources:

Passport to Purity

“Preparing Your Daughter for Every Woman’s Battle: Creative Conversations About Sexual and Emotional Integrity” by Shannon Ethridge  

“Every Young Woman’s Battle” by Shannon Ethridge

“Every Single Woman’s Battle: Guarding Your Heart and Mind Against Sexual and Emotional Compromise” by Shannon Ethridge

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