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Let’s Talk about Sex, Tommy


When do you start talking to your kids about S.E.X?

The answer for me had always been at the age of 12. Before/during puberty. Right around the time the school begins to have those early ‘understanding the body’ classes.

Or maybe the school would do such a great job that I won’t  have to worry about it until he is 16. When dating becomes an issue and little tramps start hanging around.

Then again, maybe I’d get lucky and he’d be such a nerd in school that I’d really having nothing to worry about until the week of his wedding…when he’s 27. We could talk about it over chinese food and a bottle of red wine. And we’d both be old enough, and mature enough, to get through it without giggles or inappropriate questions.

Or maybe I’d get REALLY lucky and he’d tell me he’s gay. Wouldn’t have to worry about it at all then cause mama don’t know nuthin’ about no gay sex.

But, alas none of these are to be because I learned the best time to talk to your kids about sex is before those dysfunctional little fuckers they hang out with begin talking about it! And apparently, that’s at the age of 7!

I overheard him say to another little boy, who is older but still little, “…yeah, well I’m gonna have sex with…” To hear him say the word sex is devastating, but to hear him planning on having sex…Jesus, help me.

When I told my husband, he was also upset, but thought solving the problem meant telling Tommy we didn’t want to hear that kind of talk from his mouth again.  I disagreed. “I say, let’s just explain to him what sex is. And make it as boring as possible. ” We talked it over a little bit, but then Grey’s Anatomy came back on and well…you know.

So the next day, I decided I would take my problem to the internet! Maybe Google something like, “How to stop your child from ever having sex ever ever ever” or “If we have the sex talk too early will he grow up to be like that perverted guy I had in Spanish class that was always grabbing his crotch?” There had to be whole websites dedicated to having The Talk.  Surely wouldn’t let me down! But the day got away, and I never got a chance to look up anything.  “I’ll do it tomorrow.” I told myself, but that plan was pointless.

Before bed, Tommy began singing “I’m sexy and I know it.” I hate that stupid song, but not as much as my husband. He barked, “Hey! I don’t want to hear you say that word. That’s not a word for children! And speaking of sex, we wanted to talk to you.”

I sat on the couch a little shocked. ‘Oh. We’re doing this now? But what about Oprah??? I didn’t get a chance to look up Oprah!’

We explained what we overheard and suddenly…quite suddenly…my son wasn’t my son. He was embarrassed! He never gets embarrassed. And how does he know that sex is something to get embarrassed about when you’re speaking with your parents? This must just be a natural reaction…like hiding when religious groups come to the door.

I asked him what he already knew about sex.

“I don’t know.”

“Well what do you think sex is?”

“I don’t know.”

“Okay. Well when you said you were going to have sex, what did you think you were going to be doing?”

“I forget.”

He went from a silly 7-year-old to a sullen teenager within 25 seconds!

So I told him what sex is. I explained, loosely, about the sperm and the egg and that sex is for having babies and then I let him ask questions. And boy did he have some good ones!!!  Those I shall keep to myself, but let’s just say, he knows a lot about cars. He did ask some personal question about our sex life and most I wouldn’t answer, but I did answer when he asked, “So you and Dad wanted me, so you had the sex. And then when you wanted Jack, you had the sex again?”


“Uh…where did you have this sex?”

“That’s personal.”

We ended with telling him this was a family conversation and not to be discussing it with kids at school. And if he did hear kids talking about it at school, to ask us if he had any questions about what he heard. He was fine with that. More than fine, really. He asked, “Mom, I like learning about bodies. Can we talk about this another time like after school or something?”

“Sure, honey. Whenever you have any questions.”

“Can we talk about it tomorrow?”

I swallowed hard. I had a difficult time getting through it the first time without cracking up. Sorry, but sex is funny!

“We’ll see what our schedule is like after school, but I’m sure I’ll have time to answer any questions you have before bed.”

“Alright. But this time can we talk about the heart instead of the penis and vagina?”

Oh thank God! Yes, yes we can!

So, Steven and I survived our first sex talk. And I didn’t even drink afterwards! Now we  should only have to do it two more times in our  life. That’s something to look forward to. I was going to say that hopefully by then, I’ll have the time to visit some advice columns, but you know what? I think we did a pretty decent job on our own. Just please don’t ask me for any advice.  After I’m finished writing this blog, I never want to think of that day ever again.

Thanks for reading!


4 thoughts on “Let’s Talk about Sex, Tommy

  1. I must be a weird parent but I am loving this part of mothering. They ask the most pointed questions. I have filed away the “talk about the heart instead of the penis and the vagina” – that is classic.

  2. I do not have kids, so I don’t feel as though I should have an opinion on when to talk to your kids about sex, but I’m going to voice my opinion anyway. I think it’s the parents choice, and decision. No one knows your child like you! My brother and Bridget hasn’t talked to Andy, and believe me there has been plenty of times where the door was open to do so. I think Bridget thinks my brother should be the one to do it, and he’s embarrassed, and it makes him uncomfortable. However, I could totally see Grace breaking out books, and charts, and explaining it to Ellie like a pro, with proper terms (vagina, penis, ovum, etc). It’s up to you the parent.

    I do find it funny that you mentioned Ophra. (did I spell that right?) my mom told me about sex while watching Oprah (now did I spell it right?). I was in the second grade, the second time lol. So I was around 8. I honestly don’t remember much of the conversation. I remember Oprah was on, and she was talking about sex and I remember my mom trying to draw the uterus, egg, and sperm. She didn’t do very good lol.

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