Tips for talking about sex with your son

Family Counselor Michael Gurian, MFA, shares advice for parents on the best way of going about talking about sex with their son
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Tips for talking about sex with your son

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If you have a son and you've wondered, okay how do we talk about sex and when do we talk about sex. Ultimately, you have to make that decision yourself. Some developmental things to remember is that; one, the earlier you do it, that it's appropriate for your son, the earlier you do it, the better. For a couple of developmental reasons. One is from the outside, there really is a lot of stimulation from the outside about sexuality. We really want our approach to it to be taught to our son, as much as possible. Number two is the internal reasons. Boys are testosterone driven and until they hit adolescence, they are not going to be thinking about it. They are going to be thinking about it a lot earlier than we may think. If we can get to them when they are thinking about it and get their questions answered, start the open dialog, they'll be there with us and we'll be there with them through the process and confusion. When I was growing up, my dad and I were watching Jimmy Connors and John McInroe play tennis and we sat down -- I was, maybe 15 at the time -- We sat down, and he said, "You know the facts of life, right?" And I said, "Yeah." That was it. We need to do more than that. He and I joke about that now. We need the parents to talk about it earlier, and at a certain age, it's going to need to be a guy. At a certain point, mom is not going to be able to say much more without the kid being embarrassed. At that point, it needs to be a guy. We don't want to have a 10, 11, 12 year old, not knowing about it, but we want to teach these guys about it as soon as possible.

Family Counselor Michael Gurian, MFA, shares advice for parents on the best way of going about talking about sex with their son

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Michael Gurian, MFA, CMHC

Family Counselor & Author

Michael Gurian is the New York Times bestselling author of 25 books published in 21 languages. He provides counseling services at the Marycliff Center, in Spokane, Washington. The Gurian Institute, which he co-founded, conducts research internationally, launches pilot programs and trains professionals. Michael has been called "the people's philosopher" for his ability to bring together people's ordinary lives and scientific ideas.

 He has pioneered efforts to bring neuro-biology and brain research into homes, schools, corporations, and public policy. A number of his books have sparked national debate, including The Wonder of Girls, The Wonder of Boys, and Boys and Girls Learn Differently!, and The Minds of Boys.



Michael has served as a consultant to families, corporations, therapists, physicians, school districts, community agencies, churches, criminal justice personnel and other professionals, traveling to approximately 20 cities per year to keynote at conferences. His training videos (also available as DVDs) for parents and volunteers are used by Big Brother and Big Sister agencies in the U.S. and Canada.

 As an educator, Michael previously taught at Gonzaga University, Eastern Washington University, and Ankara University.  His speaking engagements include Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University, Stanford University, Macalester College, University of Colorado, University of Missouri-Kansas City, and UCLA. His philosophy reflects the diverse cultures (European, Asian, Middle Eastern and American) in which he has lived, worked and studied.

Michael's work has been featured in various media, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, USA Today, Newsweek, Time, People Magazine, Reader's Digest, the Wall Street Journal, Forbes Magazine, Parenting, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, and on the Today Show, Good Morning America, CNN, PBS and National Public Radio.

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