Ages and stages
First sexual experiences
In this section
What do you hope for your child’s first experience of sex?
Research shows that educating kids about sex actually delays their first sexual experience and helps them make safer choices when they do decide to have sex.28
In Western Australia, 52% of high school students have had sexual intercourse by year 12..10 Sexual behaviours reported by Year 10s include:
Start to think about talking about sex, not in a 'when you grow up and get married and make babies' kind of way, but about your child's first experience of sexual pleasure with a partner.
Think in terms of how you want their first sexual experience to be, rather than closing your eyes and just hoping they won’t do it.
This way your conversations are more likely to give them what they need – guidance about values, feelings and safety.
Many parents hope that their children will be older, sober, in love and in a respectful relationship.
They hope that it will be their choice rather than feeling forced into it and that they will use contraception. The list goes on!
Ask your kids to think about what they want their first experience to be like.
This can help them mentally and emotionally prepare to have a positive experience.
If they can talk about their hopes with you, they will be more likely to be able to voice them to a sexual partner.
(See Preparing young people for healthy sexually active lives .)
I am going to be really open and honest with my kids. I want them to be able to come to me and talk about anything. Sex is not a bad thing, it’s a good thing. I want them to know it is meant to be pleasurable.
Parent of girl 4 and boy 6
Contraception is something you do or use to prevent a pregnancy. If people want to have penis-in-vagina sex and they don't want to have a baby, there are things they can do to stop the sperm and egg joining up (which means there is no pregnancy).
Contraception can be many different things:
- a tablet that is taken every day
- an injection every few months
- an implant that goes into the arm
- a small device that goes inside the vagina or uterus
- tablets that are taken in the first few days after sex
- a condom (a special cover that is rolled over the penis).