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Talking to your parents about sex

A mother and daughter.

It can be really helpful to talk to your parents or guardians about sex and healthy relationships. It can be tough being a teen, and your parents and caregivers can be a great source of love and support.

Before getting started, think about what you want from the conversation. Do you want basic info, advice, or help getting birth control? Knowing what you want can make it easier to get it. You might even take some notes or write down some questions.

Not sure how to get the conversation started? Consider these tips for talking to your parents about sex:

  • Use a TV show or movie as a way into the topic.
  • Start out with less awkward questions, like "What age did you start dating?" Then work your way up to the complicated ones, such as "When did you and your friends first start talking about sex?"
  • Use as a starting point to talk to your parents. You might show them what you’ve read or send them a link.
  • Think about what you might say before starting to talk, so you don’t get tongue-tied. Find a time when you’re both not busy and distracted.
  • Cut the stress by saying honestly that you feel a little uncomfortable.
  • If it’s easier, get started with a text, email, or IM.

Do you think your parents or guardians don’t want to talk about sex? You may just find out they’re happy to have the chance to support you and help you figure out what’s best for you.


Content last reviewed April 15, 2014
Page last updated May 19, 2014