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INSIDE STORY May 2018

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Sex education is important for children

 

In the wake of unfortunate incidences occurring around us in the world it is important to keep reminding ourselves and keeping high alert regarding the safety of our children.
 
Powai has seen too many such incidences in the past. Therefore it is the right time during vacations to talk to our children about what's happening specially with it going on and on nonstop on TV. Talking about sex, sexuality and bodies from when your child is young can help your child understand that sex and sexuality are normal, healthy parts of life. It can also make later conversations easier. 

The main message to get across to your child from early on is that he/she can come to you at anytime for open, honest and reliable information, and that he/she shouldn’t feel apprehensive, scared or embarrassed to ask you about sex and sexuality.

Start a conversation with your children with a friendly approach. Some children never ask questions. You might need to start the conversation yourself . It’s a good idea to think about what to say beforehand, then pick a good time to bring the subject up. For example, if someone is talking about a rape or bad touch on TV you could say, ‘They were talking about  the same on the  TV earlier. It got me wondering if you know what that is?’ This whole last month we have been constantly bombarded and exposed to media messages about sexuality, some positive and mostly negative, specially exposing the face identities, pictures and cases on rape cases.

Use these opportunities to talk about sexuality or other important topics. For example, you could use a scene in a TV show as an opportunity to share your own family values about relationships.
Take some practical internet safety precautions – for example, check what your child is watching on YouTube, talk about rules for using the internet, and make sure you can see your child when he’s online if possible.

Check the age-ratings for films and games and help your child make sense of what she sees in the media. Home is the first school for a child. Therefore like every other fact, a child must learn about sex (baby steps for their own safety) at an early age. If this is not done the child will learn it later from a wrong or a corrupt source. We don’t want the coming generation to live with scars and fears; we want every child to be a princess or a prince and not a victim of assault, so let’s take the initiative to help keep them safe . No better time than summer vacations to keep the family conversation educational. 

(Elsie Gabriel is an award winning post graduate certified Green Teacher and Environmental Law expert. With twenty years of writing experience she has travelled to remote corners of the earth researching, photographing, documenting facts that bind the threads of anthropological wonder. Powai runs in her veins)