My Husband and I recently saw that our 10 year old boy was looking up things on the internet relating to sex and girls parts. I was devastated to see that he was curious about that already. When we sat and talked to him he said it was because that is all the kids talk about on his school bus on the way home. He said he felt weird because he had no clue what they were talking about so he was curious and that is why he went online to see what they were talking about.
I have already made an appointment with his school tomorrow to talk about this and to stop what is going on on the bus.
Has anyone went through a similar situation? I believe that 10 is way too young to be thinking about this. I already revoked his computer privileges so he cannot go online anymore. I just do not know what to say to him. Is it better not to say anything at all? I cannot believe I am going through this already. I cannot believe 10 year old kids are talking about this already! I did buy him an IPod so he can listen to that on the bus, but he says it is so loud on his bus that he can still hear over top of his IPod. He says there is so much swearing also, which he knows that he is not permitted to say. I told him that I cannot control all the time what he is going to hear from other people, but he knows that he is not allowed to swear. I can't say it's the swearing that I am that worried about, but it's the talking of sex and girls on the bus.
I already take him to school in the morning. The only reason I do not pick him up is because his school gets out at the same time that his 2 yr old sister is taking a nap. I try to get her to take her nap earlier, but she is just not ready. I have tried to switch her nap time, so I can pick him up, but that does not work and she is not very pleasant if she does not get her hap at her scheduled time :)
I would appreciate any help that anyone can give me. Thank You!!
OK I need to clear something up before I receive anymore responses. I have been taking a lot of slack for not being a mom that my son can talk to. I did not even know about this sexual curiosity until I looked at the history on his computer. I DID talk to him about this after we found the websites he was going to. I DID NOT punish him because he was curious. I took the computer privileges away, for now, because he lied to me about what he was going on the computer for. I made it quite clear that he was NOT being punished because of his curiosity. I have a very open and close relationship with my son. I have made it very clear that he can talk to me about anything.
I went to a private school with great teachers and all it's benefits, and was still talked to about sex by one of my classmates when I was 8 years old. I agree that it's always better to hear it from you, as embarrassing as that may be. I do remember taking my questions to my mom, afterward. We went for a car ride alone after an event, and she sat up front and I sat in the back, and that allowed for us not to have to look each other in the eye--I think I was embarassing for both of us. But I still really appreciate that she took the time to answer my questions. I hope it goes well for you.
Just to put things into perspective about kids & sex: I have a friend with a 15 year old son who recently had a paternity SCARE! And she has been talking to him openly and honestly about sex, love, right and wrong for years. And she has always encouraged his questions and told him he could tell her anything. What a shocker!
I think your son needs concrete, age appropriate information about anatomy and sex. Go to your library or bookstore and find an age-appropriate book with which to open this dialog. (Ask for help and recommendations.) He's crying out for information. You need to see to it that he gets factual information.
It's tough when our kids are exposed to so much so early, but it seems to me that 10 is not that shocking of an age for him to be curious about bodies, anatomy and sex. He's already expressing curiosity so I think you need to get him some answers now. We can't keep them sheltered forever. Better he gets the information from you than to have his only source of information be kids on the bus or possibly graphic websites that are not age-appropriate. Good luck!
Denise is right on! Sounds like your son is in 4th grade. As a fourth grade teacher you would be surprised by how many questions I get - especially in the spring. It seems as though kids are developing, especially the girls, faster. Be sure that he not only has the facts, but has your expectations and morals that go with them. We need to be talking to our kids about not only sex, but drugs, smoking, and other choices long before they are expected to make those choices without us being there. Believe it or not they will hear your voice in their heads if those conversations have taken place in a quiet, respectful and caring manner.
Don't forget to enlist the assistance of your school's guidance counselor - that person can help you get started.
unfortunetly kids grow up much quicker then they used to. I used to work in daycare and the things the children in after school used to talk about shocked me (ages 5-12) they call each other "hot" and talk about sexual stuff very early now. think about it, we let 4 years old watch hannah montana when they should be watching cinderella and some 9 year olds watch family guy or even mtv. society in general lets kids grow up too fast. and there unfortunetly isnt much you can do other than talking to your son and making sure he has the information you want him to have. explian your expectations, that you feel he is wayy too young to know theses types of things and that it isnt something that is appropriate for him or the other kids on his bus to talk about. If you keep him informed he wont feel the need to get bad information from other kids. just explain the parts you feel comfortable letting him know. Best of luck
Unfortunately, you can't control what kids talk abut on the bus. The bus driver can only enforce the language he/she hears, which doesn't extend to the back seat; also, he/she is driving a bus full of kids and has to attend to traffic, rather than monitoring behavior.
Kids in public school develop the interest in sex earlier than kids who are homeschooled and/or kids who aren't in contact with much pop media such as TV or pop radio--or who aren't around kids who watch/listen to these media. It sounds like you've done a good job with your son regarding "language" (my daughter knew all the words, too, and that she shouldn't use them, which helped her when we were on the college campus where I teach, where students seem to have a vocabulary limited to a single word that is used as a noun, verb, and adjective). Now be pro-active to educate him about sex--he's going to be hearing about it regardless, so he's better off getting your perspective, viewpoint and morals than that of the kids on the bus. Best of luck.
I agree with those who say this is not too early. If his peers are talking about it, it is best to arm him with the real info rather than have him confused by what a bunch of possibly misinformed kids are saying.
I would sit down with him and explain that wanting to understand what people are talking about is perfectly normal, but that he can't trust all websites or his friends to give him accurate information. You may want to have a very basic conversation about private parts or relationships, but in general I would let him lead the way. Let him ask what he wants to know, and be prepared to answer him honestly (with appropriate value/moral guidelines as well). Often times kids don't really want to know quite as much as we think and if some of the basics are covered they may be satisfied - for a while. I think it's very important that your son know he can trust you to answer his questions honestly and that he can come to you at any time with questions. This is not a topic that should really be a one-time discussion, but more of an ongoing discussion as his questions and concerns change.
Definitely ask the librarian for some age appropriate books as well (many will be morally-conscious as) and have them available for him to look at if he wants to.
Definitely monitor the internet more, and again emphasize to your son that you are there to give him the right answers while some of the things online are inaccurate and not in keeping with your beliefs.
Ok, Melissa W. just totally wrote my post! I, too, listen to the Dr. Laura Berman show on XM during my ride home. She has really good advice. (Non "PG" hour show is also very, very good for adults only!)
You can also go on www.oprah.com and download Dr. Berman's handbook for talking to different age children on this topic. Its free!
From what she has explained on the show, kids this age are mostly curious about "how things work" and the "mechanics"... they're NOT thinking about it like adults think about it. So don't freak out! Try to be objective, matter-of-fact and explain only what he asks about. If he asked you about any other body part or function ("What does my heart do?) you'd just explain it.
Please... don't ignore it! He might feel ashamed and be confused, and goodness knows you don't want the kids on the bus imparting their probably limited knowledge on the subject to him. Take this as a great opportunity to start educating him about his body, your family values, etc. You want him to feel comfortable coming to you and your husband with his questions.
Good luck! (All this is easy for me to say... I only have a 2 year old!) :)
I am strict mother myself however, I don't want to insult you but I think you have too tight of a grip on him. Trust me, if you shield him too much from learning about life, he will only rebel later as I did. These days unfortunately kids do learn a lot younger but that doesn't mean they want to experience it. My 8 year old knows too much as well just from school however, we do not let him surf the internet without parental restrictions on it which you may want to try. Your son needs to feel accepted on the bus and around his friends, if you now want to remove him from a bus just because of what other kids are saying, that could cause bigger problems for him with friends and/or bullies teasing him. You just have to be the parent who is strict with him so he knows his limits but also be that parent he can turn to if he has a question about life - no matter his age.
Honestly, by going to the school they are going to tell you this is normal for kids to talk in private about these things and it doesn't matter what rules are in place on the playground or bus, kids will find a way to talk about it. Puberty happens a lot sooner these days then when we were kids, my friend's 10 year old daughter is already going thru hormonal changes and feelings. If your son has questions and feels he has no one to ask and has to turn to the internet, you may want to re-think your actions as I'm sure you don't want the computer to be the one teaching him a lesson in life. Good luck.
Talking about sex NEEDS to start at a young age. Girls are getting their periods as early as 9 these days! I listen to an amazing radio show on Oprah's XM station: Dr. Laura Berman. On Tuesdays she has a "PG hour" when parents and kids can call in together with questions about sex. Often she'll have her own middle school aged son on the air to answer questions. If kids don't learn from you, they'll get the information from another source, ie: the internet, magazines, mis-informed friends...
It is completely normal for the curiosity to start at that age. You just have to stay calm and keep the communication open with your son. If he knows that he can come to you with any questions regardless of type of questions you will be better off. The reality is that if he can't get his questions answered by you he will find the answers somewhere and you can't always trust outside sources.
I was heartbroken when my 5 yr. old kindergardener son came home 4 years ago and explained that sex was when another boy suc"!!d on a nother boys privates!!! He learned this from 3rd gr. boys on the bus. After making a huge deal out of it w/ principal and crying for a couple days, taking him to doc to ensure nothing happened on bus....I realized the bus is much different then when I wasa kid. Now he is 8 yrs. old and is asking what sex is because the boys on the playgroound talk (incorrectly I might add)
I even found out that some boys were being VERY curious w/ each other. Luckily my son told what they were doing (NOT HIM THANK GOD!) and I had the wonderful task of advising parents of what was going on.
I will tell you that if your child is asking for info there IS a reason and do you want them to learn incorrectly what it is? Some kids are afraid to talk to thier parents that said...
Thank God this 1 little boy who was being bothered to experiment with other boys felt comfortable enough to come to me. Shame on his mother but I told her and I pray she does the right thing in keeping him away from these extremely curious kids. My son is completely open with me and I tell him I will be honest but for his ears only. He knows that he is not to explain sex to anyone and act like he doesnt know bec ause not every child is ready to know at this age. The worst part was when he figured it all out and ask...eww you and dad had to do that? And he asked if it hurt and it took every ounce of me not to yell YES IT HURTS LIKE HECK NEVER DO IT YOu'll GO BLIND. but I didnt. I said everyones experience is different and its for when your married.
I do think its awful that these kids are asking these questions so young. It breaks my heart.
I was going to write a long post, that would probably have started a war, but I will keep it real short...
You NEED to talk to your son! There is no such thing as TOO YOUNG when they have questions! He needs you to be there for him and answer his questions honestly, not try to pull him away from his friends, the bus etc. just so that he doesn't "hear something he shouldn't hear".
Ok,, I have read most of the other posts and see that most moms agree that this is a normal age for him to be interested in learning about sex. Personally, I'm on the same page with you and think it is a little too young. However, you do have to sit down with your husband and talk to your son and go over information that you think is appropriate for him. You don't want him looking up things like this on the internet. I do think that no matter what you do to protect him and keep him from hearing foul language and the nasty things the kids say on the bus, unfortunately, he will hear it somewhere....even out at recess, if not on the bus. Just go over with him what you expect from him. I do agree that the bus is a bad situation, there are no bus attendents on our buses and I do not see how the driver can be expected to drive safely and police the kids at the same time. We have some horrible kids on our bus and nothing ever gets done about their foul behavior. You should go in to school and have a chat, list your complaints and how you feel about what your son is being exposed to. Personally, when my kids were younger I did drive them, even though I had a baby at home, I let him nap in the car....would drive around for a while before I'd go up and park at school....read a book in the car, anything to get that nap in....but I felt better that I was driving them and they were not being exposed to these horrible kids on the bus. They didn't start riding the bus again until they were much older. Good luck!
I agree that this is your new reality. You can't shield him from it-- you could take him off the bus, but you can't keep him from talking to his friends at lunch, in the halls, etc. You could homeschool him (which might work for a year or two) but at what cost to your family and his social development? ("My mom pulled me out of school because I was interested in sex.") Kids at this age talk about sex and drugs because they are such mysteries and their bodies are changing so fast. Demystify it as much as possible. Make it normal and open and it will become a little boring. Maybe set up a "questions and answers" mailbox where he can "mail" you questions he has so he doesn't have to ask you to your face and you can "mail" him answers when you've had time to think about them. He's going to lie about this stuff a little bit because it is embarrassing to him.
I hate to admit this, but my 8 year old daughter came home the other day w/ some really strange questions. I sought the advice of my Pastor on this issue. I was told to answer the questions her dad & I thought were appropriate, and then to respond with "we'll talk about that a little later" to the ones we feel she's too young for. Surprisingly--she hasn't mentioned anything else on the issue since.
I wish 10 was too young. And i think the steps you are taking to deal with this are good ones, My biggest concern from your post though, was that he thought he could get the info he needed from the computer and not from you/dad. This tells me i need to be starting soon to talk to my five year old about the basic basic basics of the birds and the bees, and that i also, want to make sure my kiddos are supervised all thet times on the computer, I might be thinking they are playing nickjr and find out there are doing something else.
Thanks for sharing, this was a wake up for me, It sounds like you are well on your way to staightening it out.
Unfortuntely, in our society as it is, 10 is about the age when some kids get curious about their bodies. It's just happening earlier and earlier. I agree with those who have said that you need to be his source of info. However, I don't agree that punishing him because he's curious is the best move. It only makes his curiousity stronger! Answer his questions in an straight forward way. My Mom was an OB nurse, and I had this book that was very anatomically correct when I was like 5 or 6. It answered basic questions about the birds & the bees, so I never had to find out info from the bus. Our family has a very strong Christian faith, so this info was always coupled with treating your body as a temple of God & repecting yourself. You might approach things this way as well, based on what you believe about sex.
Also - be careful when you speak to his school. You don't want to make his life worse for him on his bus ride home, if kids get punished and they know it came from him. They are all just curious, and although the talk may be inappropriate, episodes like this are part of growing up and finding your way. Give him a strong sense of what he & you believe is right and wrong, be there for him, and let him find his way.
I went through this with my son when he was 8 (last year). I didn't find out until we were at our pastor's house and he did something in front the pastor's younger daughters. I did have a talk with him about sex (just on his level) and explained that it is what married couple that are in love do. I feel you do need to have a talk with your son on his level about it otherwise all he will hear is what the kids at school are saying. There is no way to totally stop it from happening. Luckily, I work at my son's school and know all the teachers and staff so I could help my son come up with ways of not hearing it. He heard it mainly during lunch time, so I talked to the Aide that was doing lunch duty and came up with the plan that he would raise his hand for a napkin, so she would know it was going on and could keep a closer eye and ear on things.
I remember when my son was that age he also said he heard alot of talk in the school about sex , so I asked him if there is anything he does not understand to please ask either me or his dad. Of course he was mortified to ask us but he did say he went online and that he understands. (How much at that time we never knew he just didnt want to talk to us about too much)
Many of the Boys have older brothers and they hear it thru them and then think they are cool to spread info that no one else knows.
It had no affects on my son and I think eventually they stop until they go thru puberty.
I think girls will ask more questions to their mothers ..I think if you involve the school then your son will think it is a bad thing.Maybe you can get him to talk about it a little to his father so he is not confused..
But it definitly starts at this time.
Well, you certainly have received varying opinions!
I agree that it is not abnormal for your son to be interested at this age, as sad as it may be for us as parents to see them entering this next stage of life.
My son is 10 and his body started changing about a year ago. He is very much in the midst of puberty. We have not spoken with him to much yet about girls' bodies (and he has an older sister), but we have about his own body. About 18 months ago he started asking some questions about babies and choices (or whether there is a choice) re family sizes. I hated having to go into this area, but better he hear about all this from Mom and Dad than from kids on the bus. I also gave him a pamphlet from the doctors' office about puberty, and I saw him reading it on the way home that day.
My daughter came home from day camp one day, when she was just 8, and said that one of her bunk mates had started her period. My daughter wasn't completely sure what this meant, and so I was thrown into this without warning. I spoke with her about it that night, after her brother was asleep, and then bought a book the next day, which we read together in the evenings.
Hi J. - I have a 10 year old boy who started talking about stuff like this at age 7, I was completely shocked. But again kids talk, maybe they have older brothers and sisters or even the parents of other kids do not share your same views on what is appropriate for children. Around this time, I went to the book store and bought quite a few books from every age level so I could figure out what he would understand and not think was too babyish or adult. I ended up reading pieces of each book to him, we didn't do this just one time but repeatedly, I was surprised that he would actually ask good questions. Either you or your husband need to talk to your son and not let him get information online or from his friends because this is not only a conversation about information but what values/morals that your family has and want him to have as he grows up. We talk to our son about sex, drugs, cursing, stealing, lying, online predators and almost anything we can to prepare him. Sometimes we do it in a joking manner so conversations are not always heavy but other times we are very serious. Sometimes it is through current events in the news or just because he makes a comment, you have to find what works for you but don't ignore it. And I don't know that the school will really be able to do anything about what kids say on the bus. You have to prepare your son the best you can.
I was a HS teacher before becoming a SAHM. Girls are getting PREGNANT by age 12! Talk to your son about sex. Be matter of fact. Be factual & be open to questions. If you don't answer them someone else will. Also, I don't think you should punish him for being curious. He was doing the smart thing & doing research to get facts. Not just trusting his peers. Yes, he should have asked you, but since you hadn't discussed sex with him yet he couldn't know that he wasn't supposed to research it own his own. Explain to him that the internet doesn't always tell the truth & he has to be careful of the sites he visits, which is why you want him to talk to you first.
"Birds of a feather flock together." You son is letting you know what type of "flock" he is being exposed to. Know that this is what is going on all over and parents, if they choose to help their child grow with morals will have a difficult time and this is just the beginning. The sex-ed programs start in 6th grade.
I recommend that you ask for the principal to show you the syllabus for health for next year. If he is with some older 5th graders on the bus, they are setting the pace for your child. I have horror stories about things that go on in the school busses. Your best best is to drive him....with all sincerity. Get him away from the "flock". This will happen in high school, but not now.
A friend of mine had a farm and all her children learned about sex as very natural and young when they would watch the cows. You can take it from a religious view as the consummation of the greatest gift that God can give two people and the fruit of that Spirit.
And then there is a commitment to life together, giving and taking for the safety and sanctity of the family. Let him see the big picture!
Computer restrictions - call the internet people, tell them you want parental controls, they will show you where to look.
Get your son in church, in clubs that make gentlemen out of teens. Don't lose him! Get him in sports....give him direction....look out for the "flock" of buzzards!