Talking with Toddlers About Sexual Curiosity
What to say and do as your child discovers how his body works—and feels
Check out these professional sites for more info on normal childhood sexual development:
- What to expect, infancy through adolescence from the Douglas C.A.R.E.S.
- The normal stages by the Provider-Parent Partnerships group
- A simple childhood sexuality overview by the North Carolina Division of Social Services and the Family and Children’s Resource Program
Though there are few children’s books that introduce very young toddlers to their body parts (My First Body Board Book is a great one), there are quite a few that begin to explain baby-making, which will be a topic you touch upon in your later discussions about bodies.
Here are some books on sex and reproduction to consider having on hand:
- How You Were Born
- Where Did I Come From?
- Why Boys and Girls Are Different: For Ages 3 to 5 and Parents
And for discussing body safety with young children, check out It’s My Body.
This information is intended to be a conversation starting point and not to replace consultation with a mental health professional. Knowing your child the way you do, adjust or edit this script and these recommendations to meet his or her needs and comprehension. If you have concerns about your toddler, contact your pediatrician and request a referral for a mental health professional who specializes in work with young children. Click here to find help for working with your child through this and other touchy topics.
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