The great thinker, Rene Descartes himself, gave us the foundation upon which to deny s-e-x: thought alone- no base act- produces existence! Granted, it takes some convincing for kids to accept this, but you have to stick to your guns. Throughout my years as an educator and a parent, I have imagined people asking me “How should children learn about sex?” My response never varies. “Please, let them learn about sex the way the rest of us did- from our friends.” If I had learned about sex from my parents, I might have never had sex or even gotten married… either time! Sorting out the inaccuracies she hears about sex on the playground will help my daughter distinguish bad from good information later on- like when she is writing an English paper at the eleventh hour and is having to sift through and judge which internet sources are reliable. Is sex really the way Lucy described it or was cooty-laden Ralph more accurate? Lucy is a friend but has been known to buy that nonsense about garden gnomes coming to life after dark. Ralph on the other hand, although unappealing, did explain with great accuracy how to burp the alphabet- a real guy-in-the-know, if you will. Which source is trustworthy and which one is not? Aha! That is where the real analysis takes place. Now she will be prepared for the future! She will already have had the benefit of confronting a tough dilemma and seeing if her educated guess turned out to be right or not. Think of it like this: just as Latin class helps with the SAT vocabulary section, sifting through erroneous information develops critical thinking skills. So, don’t feel bad about this particular set of lies. You’re actually helping your kid! It’s called problem solving and resourcefulness. It’s all the rage. Really. Look it up!
So, continue to deny any knowledge of sex. For us visual learners, here is a handy-dandy flow chart to tackle the potential, pesky ramifications for children ranging from “easy to please” to the tenacious. The chart shows how a child can escalate the situation by rejecting a perfectly good deflection. Remember: you have to stay ahead of them and be able to predict their next move. Let us not forget that children are like terriers; they are cunning and do not use their intelligence for good. They want their curious minds satisfied but they are not prepared for the awful truth. These series of parental responses are very helpful. You can fill in the blank for the child’s question- it can come in many forms. That is not important- just focus on the parent’s ability to squeeze through some pretty narrow spaces!