If a teen is already pregnant, it's too late to have "THE" talk. Be prepared and ready to keep children from having children with proper sex education.
- Step 1: Be realistic when talking to teens about sex. It is in their best interests to discuss birth control options, including abstinence.
- Step 2: Be involved in your kids' lives -- parents are particularly vital to a teenager's sexual attitude. The more involved parents are in their child's life, the smaller the risk of unwanted pregnancy.
- Step 3: Keep an open dialogue about sex. Be approachable: the more you talk, the better your chances of getting your message through to your teen. Teen sex and pregnancy can be scary, but they should not be ignored.
- FACT: After steadily dropping for more than 30 years, the teen pregnancy rate rose 3 percent in 2006 from the previous year. Nationally, the rate for girls aged 15 to 19 was 71 per 1000.
- TIP: A lot of teens believe the myths they hear about pregnancy, such as "You can't get pregnant your first time."
- Step 4: Discuss the range of possible consequences that come with sexual activity. Include information on how pregnancy and sexually-transmitted disease occur.
- Step 5: Be willing to answer questions no matter how embarrassed you may be. If you don't have the answer, don't make one up -- research it and answer the question when you have the answer.
- TIP: Planned Parenthood or trusted physicians are great resources for information or for answering the tough questions you aren't sure how to answer appropriately.
- Step 6: Talk about appropriate responses and reactions to situations that may put a teen at risk. Discuss ways to say "no" that will help them to feel empowered.
- Step 7: Start discussions with children early. Use their developmental age as a factor when deciding what to discuss. Kindergartners can talk about their body parts, 10-year-olds can discuss puberty, and 13-year-olds can start talking about relationships and sexual conduct.