Why do we care about parent-child communication about sexuality?
Because the research supports it.
Studies find that young people whose parents talk with them about sex are much more likely to postpone shared sexual behaviors. Studies also show that when parents are connected to and communicate with their children, their kids have fewer sexual partners, are much less likely to have an unplanned pregnancy or to contract a sexually transmitted infection (STI), and are much more likely to use contraceptives consistently and correctly when they do become sexually active.
Because parents support it.
In fact, when asked directly, eight of 10 parents agreed “the community needs to play a significant role in helping teens to become emotionally and physically healthy adults.” Children are shaped by their communities, and community service organizations like Planned Parenthood can help to raise healthy children.
Because we are the leaders in promoting it.
Planned Parenthood has a long history of encouraging family communication through our programs and publications. We know that parents want their children to have accurate information, acquire strong values, and receive emotional support in learning how to understand sexuality and relationships. We also know that many parents struggle with how to talk about these important issues.
Please note: Recognizing the diversity in family structures, we use the term parent to refer to any adult caregiver or significant adult in a child’s family life, including but not restricted to:
- Biological, adoptive, or step-parent
- Aunt or uncle
- Older sibling or cousin
- Foster parent or residential care staff
Programs for parents differ by region; click below to learn more about offerings in: