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How can I tell my son about the birds and the bees?

Q: My son is 8 years old. He sleeps with us, as we are not interested to make him sleep separately because he is a single child. Although, we are not engaged in sexual activities while he is awake, it seems that he is slowly developing curiosity about private parts. I would like to explain to him about the dos and don'ts, have no idea how to start the conversation. What is the right age to tell him about the private parts and intercourse?

A:The best strategy for sex education of children is to answer their questions honestly and simply, as they arise, using words and concepts that they can understand. This is the right age for you to introduce him to the male/female differences and to do so without undue embarrassment on your part. Although you have not asked my view in this matter, I would like to advise you to have separate sleeping arrangements for your son. His being an only child is not a reason why he should be constrained to share his parents room. Make it part of a birthday or New Year present to him and let him savour the thrill of independence in his own bedroom, if you have the space. It is not that you are sending him out of your bedroom, rather that you are recognising that he is growing up and would enjoy his own space.


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