Talking about sex with your parents can be awkward and nerve-wracking. But we’ll let you in on a secret. They want to talk to you about it, but they’re probably just as nervous as you are. Your parents are a great resource to help you make your decisions about having sex—or waiting—and birth control.
Start the conversation
Use TV, movies, and music
"I can't believe my favorite character got pregnant this season. It got me thinking, and I have some questions for you."
"Things are getting pretty serious with _____. Do you have any advice for me?"
"I'm thinking about having sex, and I wanted to know what you thought."
"I'm thinking about having sex, and I want to talk to you about birth control."
Ask their opinion
"What do you think about teenagers having sex?"
"I know we talked about condoms before, but I was wondering if you could tell me more about other ways to protect myself."
Learn from their experience
"Did you ever feel pressured to have sex when you were my age?"
- Listen to what they have to say and don’t get defensive.
- Be respectful of them even if you disagree.
- Let them know that you want to make informed choices, and you are coming to them because you trust them and value their opinion.
- Understand that it might be an awkward conversation for them, too. But getting through it is important.
- Pick a good time to talk. If you're both busy, try asking to set a time to sit down with them. That way you'll both have time to think about what you want to say.
- Don't wait. Believe it or not, these conversations will get easier the more often you have them. Opening up the line of communication before you start dating or having sex is a good way to take some pressure off the situation.
- You can show them the parent section of our site where they can get some tips on how to support you.
Don't give up!
And remember, if your parents can’t or won’t talk to you about sex, you may need to look for guidance from other trusted adults, such as family members or health clinic staff.