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Cosmo Writer: Start Sex Ed While Kids Are In Diapers

Donnie Ray Jones, CC BY 2.0

Sex Ed Should Begin Before Potty Training – Agree Or Disagree? Comment below. 

Jan 3, 2020

OPINION | By Jennifer Gerson

Insider.com – One day, your toddler will point to a pregnant woman, cock their head, and ask, “How did that baby get into that lady’s tummy?”

You might think it’s too soon to start teaching your innocent preschooler about sex at that point, but it’s not. In fact, some experts say, it might even be on the later side.

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“Human beings are sexual beings from the time they are born,” said Dan Rice, interim executive director of Answer at Rutgers University, an organization that promotes access to comprehensive sexuality education to young people.

That’s why sex ed actually should start at a young age.

Developmentally, kids are already trying to process their worlds, and their bodies are a critical part of that.

But it’s not just teaching about how their bodies develop and how babies are made. It’s crucial to start offering up lessons about boundaries, and who can — and can’t — touch them.

What many adults fail to realize is that consent begins with hugs with relatives, high fives with teachers, and tickles from parents.

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“Children are trying to make sense of their body parts, and their feelings” Nora Gelperin, director of Sexuality Education for Advocates for Youth, a group that advocates for access to sexual health education and services, told Insider. “It all feels overwhelming.”

If you have young children at home, here are the important lessons you can start teaching them, and how to communicate them in an age-appropriate way.

In preschool, parents are starting to have conversations about what it means to be a good friend.

This helps to build a solid foundation for developing healthy relationships now, and later in life. But there’s more to the discussion than just using nice words and not pushing others. It’s important to delve into bodily autonomy, too. Read more. 

Jennifer Gerson is a journalist whose reporting on reproductive rights, women’s health, and sexual violence regularly appears in Cosmopolitan, The Guardian, and other national publications.

Begin Sex Ed Before Potty Training – Agree Or Disagree? Comment below. 

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