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How can I handle my son's curiosity about sex?

Q: My son is 8 years old. Off late, his activities have started disturbing me. On a few occasions, he has tried to place his hands on my breasts. I have politely told him not to do that. One day, he told me that his friends brought pictures of nude models to the school. I have discussed this with his teacher also. What is the right age to talk about sex education with children? How can I divert his attention from all this?

A:Starting sex education now seems to be the right thing to do. If he has been looking at nude pictures along with his classmates, the school should begin to tell the children about their own bodies. If not, the home should provide a forum for discussion of these issues. The next time your son shows some interest in your breasts, tell him that was his milk bottle for the first few months. Only very young babies should be touching you. Instead of diverting his attention, focus his attention on the questions he wants to ask you. Answer them in a fairly straightforward way, but make it clear that as he grows to be an adult, it will be the right time for him. There are dozens of books as well as material on the net on all the questions you wish to raise. There is nothing amoral in his curiosity. He needs a clear lesson on the male and female human bodies and some instructions on acceptable social behaviour in the family and outside. Recently, Orient Longmans Publishing House in Chennai has brought out a series of books on Values, with stories to illustrate them. They are intended for children of Primary School age.


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