Subject: "The Birds and The Bees"
“What Bible verses and books/curriculum did you use for talking about the birds and the bees education?”
Seriously, though, when I was in Bible college I read an old book, How to Tell Your Children About Sex, by Dr. Clyde Narramore, that strongly influenced my approach to this subject. Although, like any resource, there are parts that I don’t believe line up with how I understand God’s Word, such as his take on modesty in the home, he did make some excellent points from Scripture that stuck with me. I think an inexpensive Kindle version is available on Amazon. One of the ideas in the book that took seed in my mind was that we as parents teach our children all sorts of things a bit here and there as they ask. This approach is both a Biblical and natural way to learn most anything. Basically, the way Ron and I have handled this subject boils down to three principles:
- Age-appropriate: “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little:” (Isaiah 28:10) Teaching little pieces of information here and there about anything, whether math or reproduction and marital intimacy, and then building them line upon line, is the way to “teach knowledge.” (vs9) For example, at around the time we potty-trained each child we handled the idea that private parts (the parts of your body that clothes cover) are to be discussed discreetly and only with your parents. At the same time, we let them know that we welcomed those types of questions whenever they had them.
- Bible-attached: “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children,” (Deuteronomy 6:6-7) God’s Word covers all subjects necessary to make a throughly-furnished Christian. It is our job to diligently teach our children what His Word says on every matter, including this one. For example, the first time we were asked by one of our little people where babies come from, we told them God says in Psalm 127:3 that they are a gift from Him per Psalm 127:3. That was age-appropriate and from God’s Word.
- As it comes up: “And thou shalt… talk of them when thou sittest…, and when thou walkest…, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” (Deuteronomy 6:7) Our children know to ask questions privately and that they are free to do so whenever questions come up, so we’ve answered their questions on this matter in the living room, at a quiet park, in the van, and at bedtime. We’ve also initiated topics that we felt to be age-appropriate when we didn’t believe they would come up on their own. For example, when we felt they were old enough we explained to them that absolutely no one had a right to touch their private parts unless they were being given medical care or it was an extreme emergency. We had previously laid some Biblical groundwork for the principles of each of those two situations, so we reminded them of those. At the same time, we told them that if anyone, whether friend, relative, or stranger, was to ever try something like that, that it was NOT their fault, that we wanted to know, and that if that happened what they were to do was yell and tell. We had them practice yelling “Hey!” and “No!” a bit to take away the awkwardness. The subject of child molestation is not one we figured they would come up with on their own, but we knew it was an important one to give them safeguards for, so we brought it up when we felt appropriate.
So we’ve never had one big “The Talk.” We’ve answered questions on their age level from the Bible as they came up and covered little pieces of information that hadn’t come up yet as we felt necessary. In the next three articles, I’ll illustrate how each of these three principles have played out.