Let’s talk about Dating Violence Awareness & Prevention Month

February is the official month for National Teen Dating Violence Awareness & Prevention Month. It's a relevant time to talk with our offspring about what constitutes healthy and unhealthy relationships and remind ourselves that we can do this year-round. Raise your hand if you sometimes get hung up on "what do I tell my kids about sex."  Keep your hand up if you would rather ignore the topic until your babies go off to college. Before I had kids of my...

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Yes, Your Kids Want To Learn About Sex From You (Not The Internet)

Originally published "Yes, Your Kids Want Sex Education From You | Yourtango." YourTango.com. Web. 06 Feb. 2018  What real-life teenagers wish their parents had told them. A: Where did you get your info about sex? B: What sources did you wish you had? These were two questions I asked college-aged students enrolled in my two basic Human Sexuality courses. It’s early in the semester, and I conducted this as a brainstorming activity. Students called out their answers, and I wrote them on the board. They were...

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Ready to Kick Butt: Using Martial Arts for Self Defense in a #metoo World

Here’s a #metoo story from me that I've never disclosed publicly: Two men tried to lure a friend and me into a Ford Pinto when I was in 2nd grade as we were walking home from school. I remember the scraggly, ugly Leif Garrett lookalike and his dirty bell bottom pants as he opened the passenger side door and stepped one leg out of the car. We ran home. After that, my dad immediately signed me up for Tae...

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Do’s & Don’ts Of Consent For Kids: Part 4

(Continuing from Parts one, two, and three) In summary of the points in the previous parts, I have some suggestions for how to proceed. Check it out. DO Think about what comes up for you when consider this topic. Will YOU be embarrassed? Do YOU think it’s rude? Why? Were YOU forced to do this when you were little? How you feel is likely different than how your child feels because you are different people with different experiences. Recognize this isn’t...

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Even Santa Needs to Get Consent: Part 3

(Continued from Part 2) I get it. This is “new.” No one raised these issues when we were kids. But, just because it wasn't brought up as a problem back then, does that mean it wasn't a problem? I will take a controversial stance and say one should never force their child to sit on Santa’s lap neither. Why? Think about the lessons we give to our kids about "Stranger Danger"? How is it suddenly okay to talk to and sit...

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What Does Allowing Kids To Refuse Hugs Have To Do With Consent? Part 2

(Continued from Part 1) For years now, I have gotten push back on my position that children should not be forced to hug relatives. The response once came to me: Shouldn't children be encouraged to move beyond their "comfort zone?” I think if a parent says go ahead and hug Aunt Carol, that's teaching a child to be forthcoming and affectionate, and to appreciate those close to them. It's part of good manners, in a way. If I am seeing this...

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The Girls Scouts Are Right: It’s Never Too Early To Reenforce Good Consent Practice (part 1)

I started to write in support of an article written by the Girl Scouts, but as I talked about it with others, I realized some people were confused about why you should let kids choose to hug grandma or other relatives. Why is it important to allow children a choice about showing affection with family over the holidays? How does this affect future relationships? Trying to answer these questions takes time and is more than I can cover in...

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Adolescent Body Hair Police?

Where we live in California has great weather. But this Spring, a new concern surfaced for my 7th grader. My youngest daughter isn't a big fan of shorts; she has a lot of hair on her legs. Cindy told me she was feeling a little nervous because she doesn't want to start shaving her legs but she was concerned about what to do or say if she wore shorts and the Adolescent Body Hair Police did comment on the...

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Why do we have a Masturbation Month?

If you have been following my Instagram this month, then you have probably noticed an increase in posts relating to masturbation. Why do I do this? Because during the month of May every year Sexual Health Educators celebrate Masturbation Month. I've written about masturbation a few times in the past, here and here, and recently here. So, why do we do this? Quite simply, to educate. Masturbation can be talked about, and people should learn that it is a common and natural behavior,...

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The Sexual Education Gospel According to Me

I spend a lot of time thinking, talking, and working with people about sex and sexuality. There are other people who do this work as well and the internet has many different voices. Lately, I feel a need to share more about my approach or philosophy so people can decide for themselves - Why should you listen to me? I've written my Sexual Education Manifesto. So, why should you listen to me? Because I started out like a lot of you. I only got...

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