The Puberty Talk

Updated on June 13, 2014
J.C. asks from El Cajon, CA
11 answers

My son will be 9 yrs old soon and we haven't talked about puberty yet. He hasn't asked anything about it so Im not sure how to go about it. Any advice please?

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answers from Dallas on

In addition to basic body function (library should have some useful info), the conversations about respecting his body, other people's bodies, no meaning no, and yes meaning yes, privacy, etc., also need to come into it. The "talk" shouldn't just be one time. It's an ongoing conversation about relationships - his relationship with his own body, and his relationships with others as he developes, etc.

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answers from Dallas on

In my opinion the communication starts early and is ongoing. It is not a one time chat.

Believe me, by 9 he knows a lot more than you think he does. I've been in the classroom 13 years and I've overheard conversations and picked up the illustrations they have made on paper.....that the students have about sex, developing, etc. The fact that he hasn't asked you means nothing.... maybe he feels like he can't ask you. Be aware though, at 9 and younger, the children know a LOT more than you think they do.

Our school nurse comes in to talk with boys and girls separately in the 4th grade and it is shocking that some parents have never spoken to their children and this is the only info that is factual that the children receive.

I'd much prefer to answer my child's questions and have an ongoing line of communication so that I can either give her the facts or find the facts vs her believing what is said around school and peers.

If you are uncomfortable, get in the car and go on a drive so you do not have to look at each other but please.... communicate.

If you don't know where to start, go to the library for book references, ask your pedi, but by all means, get the communication started.

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answers from Anchorage on

We have been talking on and off for a few years now with our boys (10 and 8) and I just recently ordered a book about sexuality, safe sex, and our changing bodies for my oldest son. We try to keep the puberty and sex talks going from a young age, just adding info as they age, so it feels like a normal part of conversation in the hopes it will keep the boys from feeling awkward coming to us when they have real and serious questions later.

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answers from Austin on

8 and 9 are perfect times to start talking about puberty.

Go to a book store or library and get some books, that you can show him and then he can read on his own.

Then keep these conversations going.
And mom, never underestimate what your son can handle. The truth is not something to shy away from and you do not want him to get wrong information from somewhere else.

Our bodies are not anything to be embarrassed to talk about. We kept it very straight forward and honest.

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answers from Los Angeles on

You might want to get him a book. Read it together.
I think there's O. called the Boys Body Book. ?
I got it for my son. It talks about physical and emotional changes, etc.
IMO, probably the most important thing to get across is that you're available to answer any questions he might have.

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answers from Amarillo on

There was a book I bought called "What's happening to Me?" It talks about both sexes and the changes of the body. See if you can find that one and go over it with him. At least read it before you let him look at it.

Both of my kids (boy and girl) read it.

This is a good time to begin the talks of life and changes. Please do keep the door open to communication. If you don't know the answer be honest and tell them that and that you will look it up and give them the answer.

I felt it was best that both sexes be included in the book because they went to school with both sexes. It helped explain what they both were feeling and dealing with at the same time.

Welcome to the wonderful world of parenthood.

the other S.

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answers from Cleveland on

ive just started with your body will be changing soon when you become a teenager. list of the physical changes, and the go into the emotional you'll start to be interested in girls, want to be w your friends more, etc. all of this is so that when you are an adult you'll be able to have a family of your own.

I guess add the mechanics and safty meaures ifyou think he is ready if not come back in a few days after he ahs thought abou t it. and then add it.

as always it shouldn't be a one time talk but something that gets worked in tot eh conversation every once in a while.

I have one that would never ask questions either. books help[ed

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answers from Norfolk on

Generally this starts when the gym teachers start requesting that everyone start using deodorant.
Increased body odor is a first sign that puberty has begun.
Our son began using it in the 4th grade.
There are lots of books about it out there.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Oklahoma City on

Go to your public library. Ask the reference librarian or Children's librarian where the section of books are that specifically address this.

You read the books before you check them out. So you can know for sure this is "the" right book for you.

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answers from Los Angeles on

Find out what will be covered at school, and when, then build off of that. Our school has a "5th Grade Guy Stuff" day where they talk about this. The kids go with their dads and have (I think) a bbq or ice cream sundaes or something. The girls have a separate tea with their moms on a different day, but it's basically the same thing. They probably also get info about it in their health classes.



answers from Springfield on

My son will be 8 soon, so I'm not far behind you. I've tried really hard to answer his questions honestly, but without going into more detail than he needs. He's asked a fair number of questions about how babies are born. I had c-sections for both boys, so that honestly made it much easier for me to be very open with him when he was younger. He realizes that not all babies were born that way (and we recently saw an episode of 19 kids and counting, where Anna almost had Markus in a minivan), so recently I had to explain a bit more to him.

My husband and I have always tried to answer his questions honestly, but we've also tried not to give him more details than he was ready for. It's been really good so far, but there's definitely information out there that we haven't given him.

I'm so glad you asked this question, because it's really good for me to get a reality check and make sure I'm not forgetting information that he really should have at this age. As others said, I'd rather he get the basics from us.

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