|Mother and Daughter image from Shutterstock|
I know some people cringe at the thought of the conversations they need to have with their children as they grow up but I've actually found that having a very honest and open relationship with my children is the making of it. Unlike the 68% of parents (1) who find it hard to broach the subject of puberty I just dove right in and had a really successful chat with my near 10 year old twin girls a few months back.
I don't recall many conversations with my own Mum about growing up; how my body would change, getting periods, having the ability to do anything I put my mind to, choosing to say no, about becoming sexually active, about being responsible with money and all those sorts of things. This seems strange when I think back as I have a really great relationship with my Mum but thinking about it now I don't think she had anyone to do it with her and she wasn't the sort to read parenting manuals etc.
On the other hand, I love to read and to find out information and thankfully I like to talk as well, so I thought it would be useful to share six of my top tips for having those 'can-be' awkward #teentalks.
1. Talk to your child shoulder to shoulder rather than face to face
I learnt this trick with JJ when he was younger, he would always open up when we were driving in the car. So I used this to my advantage and had some of the more tricky conversations whilst we were driving along.
The first one I can recall was picking him up from Scouts about three years ago (so he'd have been around 11) and there was a bumper sticker on a car that said something about pornography and he was laughing at it. I then asked him if he knew what it was and he mumbled 'not really', so I told him, in language that was appropriate to his age and he was really shocked but this then led on to a conversation about how his body will change and his mind and that one day he will start to find girls attractive. It was all going well and about 15 minutes in he said 'Mum, can we talk about something else now?' and that leads me into my second point