In the first two posts in this series, we talked about things not to say to your daughter when talking to her about sex and how your sexual perspective changes the way you talk to her about sexuality. In this final post in the series, we’re dealing with something many moms run into: discussing sex with a daughter who thinks it’s gross.
If you think about it, hearing sex described for the first time IS a little gross – biologically speaking, anyway. When you’ve never thought about sexual organs in that context, learning what they were designed to do can be almost alarming. To deal with the discomfort and surprise brought on by this new information, many young girls react by labeling sex “gross” and refusing to talk about it when mom brings it up.
Naturally, many moms love the idea of never bringing up the subject again!
Unfortunately, this is the opposite of what needs to happen.
Even if your daughter recoils at the topic, and especially if she sees sex as gross, the conversation about her sexuality must continue in order for her to view it through God’s perspective. It will be uncomfortable – probably for both mom and daughter! – but it is necessary.
How your daughter views sex has an enormous impact on her future. How she understands it dictates her view of self, sexuality, and eventually sex in marriage.
Following are four things to do if your daughter thinks sex is gross.
Communicate God’s Original Design for Femininity
The design for the female body existed pre-Fall. The way our bodies work to make and produce life is not only incredible, it points to the creativity and love of God!
Our monthly cycles enable our bodies to one day house life in the womb, so when we begin the discussion of sexuality with an introduction to puberty, it’s vital to communicate the beauty of God’s design for femininity – including things like periods and changing bodies.
God’s original design gave women the ability to support life with their bodies. Post-Fall, that design still exists – though it is now affected by sin. When we talk about periods, sex, pregnancy, labor, and birth in a negative manner, we’re teaching our daughters to view their bodies as cursed, not lovingly designed. But even in a fallen world, God’s design is visible and worth celebrating!
Communicate God’s beautiful, incredible, awe-inspiring design for femininity. Help your daughter see that monthly cycles and other aspects of her sexuality are a reflection of a loving God, not a curse on her womanhood.
Celebrate God’s Design for Her Sexuality
Secondly, teach your daughter to celebrate this Divine design for her sexuality.
We don’t often hear the term “celebrate” connected to the topic of sex – but this is fundamental to biblical sexuality! In Scripture, God does not separate the sacred from celebration. Things that are intimate and precious shouldn’t be shrouded in shame. To the contrary, we should help our daughters view their bodies as temples of God’s Holy Spirit, using their developing bodies as a way to worship God.
What does this look like practically? It means rather than complaining about the changes of puberty, you use those conversations to point back to the positives of her sexual design. Help her see that her body will one day be able to enjoy God’s design for sex in marriage. Teach her what each part of her body does and how it blesses her in marriage (age appropriately, of course). At every opportunity, connect her understanding of sex and her view of her body with the love of God.
Speak About Sex in a Positive Way
We covered this in last week’s post, but it’s worth bringing up again: only discuss sex in a positive way. How you talk about sex colors your daughter’s view of it! If sex is described as a duty wives fulfill, a drudgery to be tolerated, or a scary, taboo topic only married people can discuss, your daughter will come to marriage with an unbiblical, twisted view of sex. You may need to reframe your own view of sexuality in order to communicate these truths the way they were intended (if so, read last week’s post!).
You are your daughter’s primary example of a woman who doesn’t think sex is gross. As you consistently communicate this narrative, your daughter will begin to see this depiction of sex as normal.
Continue the Conversation
Finally, let the sex talk continue throughout your daughter’s formative years into her adulthood! It’s not a one-time discussion, but a continual talk about a subject so vital to your daughter’s worldview and growth.
Sexual discipleship is a topic we’ve just begun to broach in the church. But as mothers take up the mantle of responsibility, teaching their daughters a biblical view of sex, they can accomplish far more in the next few years than the church ever could.
I truly believe this kind of discipleship will help the next generation walk free from some of the sexual burdens that have plagued the last. God’s design for sexuality is worth celebrating!
Let’s start that celebration in our homes.
*This is Part 3 of a 3-Part Series on discussing sexuality from a biblical perspective. You can read Part 1 “5 Things NOT to Do When Discussing Sex With Your Daughter” HERE.
Phylicia Masonheimer is an author, speaker, and founder of Driven Women. She teaches strong-hearted women how to follow Christ’s call in work, home, and the world. She writes about the Bible, productivity, and sexuality on her website, and her book on biblical sex can be found here: Christian Cosmo: The Sex Talk You Never Had. She lives with her husband and daughters in northern Michigan.