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Living In Sin: Parental Guidance Suggested

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Sex is something that drives us, empowers us and gets us into really stupid situations with people we have no business seeing naked. Jen Sincero is the bestselling author and sexpert with the carnal knowledge you need. Ask her your questions (all are posted anonymously). Cuz there's no such thing as being too good in bed.

Dear Jen,
A week or two ago you answered a letter from a woman who wrote: My daughter is two years old and occasionally, when I change her diaper, she touches her genital region. When she does this I talk to her about it using real words, like “vagina.”

You responded to her question on the level of form, but I’m more interested in knowing the content - what the hell is this mama is telling her two year old about touching her coochie? Is it, “don't touch your vagina when mom is wiping you?" Or "touching your vagina is okay only when little girls get older," or "go for it baby --touch that vagina like a motherfucker!" Doesn’t that seem just as important as whether she calls it a candy box, a love slit or a scabbard? As a parent, I’m always walking the line between giving my 14 year-old son plenty of real information and encouraging him to go for it.
- The Vagina Dialogues

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Dear Vagina,
I just sort of assumed she was saying something along the lines of: "that's your knee, that's your tummy, and that's your vagina," rather than cheering her on while she fiddled about. The mother in question was concerned about what to call it, not about how she should address her daughter's actions, but since I wasn't cribside, your guess is as good as mine.

You do, however, bring up the interesting and oh so delicate topic of how to talk to kids about sex. The trick is to make it sound like the natural, fabulous thing it is without having them get all excited and start humping the back of their chairs in the school cafeteria. Which can be tricky because kids are not only ruled by impulse, but are sexual beings as well. And I mean sexual beings in that they're curious and capable of garnering some amount of pleasure, not that they should actually be having sex (so don't go crawling all over me or anything please).

The real urge usually kicks in around puberty, but if you happened to stumble upon it by accident ahead of time like I did, it is on, regardless of what grade you're in. I made my profound discovery at the age of seven whilst hanging out with my friends. We were playing dolls and one of mine, Sally, started mouthing off to the other dolls, so as punishment I decided I'd rub her around in my crotch, or The Big Ween, as I liked to call it for its chilling effect. The more I subjected naughty little Sally to The Big Ween, the more I went from feeling evil and disciplinary to feeling like I couldn't believe I'd never tried that before.

From that moment on, my hand and my crotch were BFFs - they'd hook up at birthday parties, in the supermarket, on the playground, when we had company over, everywhere, all the time, until Mom pulled the plug and told me to take it somewhere else. I don't actually remember this happening, but due to the fact that I never got any nicknames like "stickyfingers" or hang-ups about masturbating constantly, alone and in private, I'm going to assume that's how it went down.

Luckily I was told it was it was still alright to do, just that my choice of locations wasn't so great, but unfortunately a lot of children are made to feel ashamed. I don't know what people are thinking - kids are still gonna do it, so how is humiliating them going to do anything more than make them future candidates for over eaters anonymous?

Thanks to the dear old internet, there are plenty of resources to help parents through this squirrely process and a ton of great books for kids of all ages. When it comes to talking to your son, the less freaked out you can be about it, the less he will be. Encourage him to be open, respectful, careful, excited, safe and smart, laugh about it with him, get him some books, let him know you're always available for questions and don't be upset if he doesn't want to talk to you about his wet dreams - being an open and awesome parent is great, needing to be there every step of the way is kind of creepy.

Photo by supernenek