So You Found Condoms in Your Teen's Room...
It’s hard to picture your child needing contraception, especially when it probably feels like you were just dropping them off at kindergarten for the first time yesterday.
But despite our nostalgia for the wholesome past, the statistics don’t lie-- our kids are actually getting safer about sex. Teenage pregnancy is down, and perhaps surprisingly, so is teenage abortion and birth. This doesn’t mean teenagers have stopped having sex though.
Apart from locking your child in a tower throughout their teenage years, there's no way to assure that they don't have sex-- and look how that turned out for Rapunzel! The only thing that you can assure is that they're educated about all aspects of the consequences of sex-- from unplanned pregnancy to STDs to emotional and relationship consequences.
While your first reaction may be to go in with guns a-blazing, instead, take some time to pull back and think about how you’d like to approach this. If you don’t think you can go into the situation calmly, it is not time for you to address it. Sex is a sensitive topic for anyone, but especially teenagers. Reacting negatively only assures that they will be unlikely to talk to you further about it in the future, and may even engage in riskier behavior without the proper information to keep them safe.
Remember, just because your kid has condoms doesn’t mean that they’re using them. Many schools have started to hand out free condoms, as well as music festivals, concerts, and other events that draw younger crowds. Their friends may have even given them the condoms as a joke. You don’t know the situation and you won’t know until you ask, if you even decide to.
And here's the thing: you don’t have to. Asking specifically about the condoms you've found can run a risk-- depending on where it was, they may lie. While that’s certainly not behavior you want your child to engage in, it also prevents a proper dialogue from being opened between you.
The second method you can try is to ignore the condoms completely. Dive right into it. “Hey, I know sex may not be on your horizon any time soon, but I wanted to make sure you knew how to be safe.”
Remember that being safe doesn’t just mean contraception and preventing STDs/STIs. When kids are younger, it’s easier to explain to them just the biological facets of sex. But older teens will soon be learning about the emotional aspects as well. Teach them about the virginity myth, about laws of consent and age in your area, and about the potential implications of sex on relationships.
Talking about sex with your kid is going to be a series of conversations, not just an all-in-one. And that's great, because there are constantly new discoveries and changes in the world of sexual studies. Reacting neutrally, logically, and educationally to a discovery like condoms in your teen's room will assure that you keep the conversation open-- and keep their best interests at heart.
- Top 10 Alternative Uses for Lube
- Using Bathroom Items For Masturbation: Good Ideas, Bad Ideas
- 10 Telltale Signs of Sexual Frustration
- Is It Time for a Pregnancy Test?
- Book Review: Not Your Mother's Meatloaf
- Q: Am I allergic to condoms/lube?
- Regular Condom Use Prevents Genital Warts
- Staying Hard While Wearing a Condom
- Romantic Ways To Ask Your Partner To Use a Condom
- Alleviating The Fear Of Getting Tested for STDs
- Condom Size vs. Penis Size
- The Secret to Female Ejaculation or 'Squirting'
- So You Found Condoms in Your Teen's Room...
- What's The Word On Male Contraception?
- Q: What and where is the G-Spot?
Ask A Condom Expert
Still need help? Let one of our condom and safer sex experts help you out! We have been the "friend in the business" for nearly 20 years to hundreds of thousands of customers.