Young people need to know how to protect themselves from sexually transmitted infections (STI) as well as pregnancy.
Many who have had sex after taking drugs or drinking wish it hadn't happened.It is important to be open with your teenagers about sex and relationships.Be reassuring, start the conversation at a time when you are both relaxed and getting on okay, not during an argument or when either of you are feeling annoyed about something. If they refuse to talk, don’t start nagging or laying down the law.You’ve broken the ice, next time you say something it may be much easier. You need to adapt how you talk and listen, especially when talking about risky behaviour including sex.They may know or think that they are bisexual, lesbian or gay.
Young people often talk about being pressured into early sex and they need help in delaying until they feel it is right for them.
Teenagers who talk to their parents about these issues are more likely to be responsible in their relationships and to wait longer to have sex for the first time. Teenagers learn about sex and relationships in many ways – from their friends, television or the internet.
The different messages they hear can be confusing and that is why it’s important for parents to give their teenagers the chance to talk about what they know, or don’t know and what choices they have, whatever their own views are.
Some teenagers prefer reading information whilst others find it easier to talk things through. Being open and available when needed is extremely important. Your teenager may be confused about their sexuality and feelings.
They may worry that no-one will be interested in them, or that they don’t seem to be interested in sex.
Those who do are much more likely to regret it and not use contraception.