Monday, May 5, 2008

Book Review: Let's Talk About Sex, Baby

I always pictured the whole Birds and Bees talk with my daughter to arise organically, with my being presented with those “teachable moments” we are all supposed to be so attuned to. So I waited. And waited. And waited for her to ask me something. Anything. Ask me! I’m not one of those uptight moms of yore. I’ll answer.

Alas, it would not be. Anything that even remotely resembled a teachable moment was asked at the most inopportune times imaginable, like on a crowded crosstown bus or at Thanksgiving dinner, and then later it was “Forget it,” when no one else was around.

I knew she knew something. Lots of kids in her class knew how babies were made, and I’d rather she hear it from me. So I picked up Dr. Gail Saltz’ book Changing You and left it sitting out. She took the bait.

“Ew. What’s this?” she asked.

The book is for kids, I’d guess ages 8 – 12ish, and explains everything one needs to know about puberty and reproduction, presented in a conversational, straightforward way. I read it with her. (I remember my own mom giving me a book to read on my own. I felt like I was sent off to read porn.) It also includes a “Note to Parents” for those, like me, who need a little guidance on where to start exactly. It’s comprehensive, though, and not for people who choose to stick with the cutesy names. The illustrations by Lynne Avril Cravath are perfect – very current and accessible with just enough detail to make it realistic without being clinical.

But if you are anything like me, just make sure you can say “mons pubis” without giggling. I practiced.


Janna Leadbetter said...

I'm so gonna write this title down. It'll come in handy in a few years. Thanks for the heads up!

Melanie Hooyenga said...

Ugh, my parents gave me a book when I was around 10 years old. It was nice to have the information (although I already knew a lot from my older step-siblings) but they never talked about it with me afterwards.

It's great you were there for her, even if it was tough to get through!

Kelly Curtis said...

Thanks so much for this review! My kids are 9 and 11. I've already started the conversation with the 11 year old, but I think I'll find this book and share it with them too - especially the 11-year old. We also read the American Girl book. It's pretty good - not really about sex, though, just growing up.

colbymarshall said...

Way to be a progressive parent and willing to talk to her about it! I got a pamphlet...haha!