Teaching your kids about their bodies doesn't have to be awkward. This TikTok mom is showing caregivers how to have open conversations with their kids.

By Beth Ann Mayer
April 12, 2021
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An image of colorful scientific equipment on a table.
Credit: Getty Images.

Forget the birds and the bees, and definitely nix the stork stories. One TikTok mom is talking about sex with her kids, and she's keeping it real.

The mom, who posts as @lackofimpulsecontrol on TikTok, uses science-based language to teach her children about their bodies and sex in age-appropriate ways.

In one video, which already has nearly 40K views in three days, she covers the often-dreaded question, "Where do humans come from?" without breaking a sweat. Clearly, she and her child, Turkey, have already covered the topic before, so it's more of a review. You can hear little Turkey, who is 6-years-old, in the background telling her mom that first, you need a sperm and an egg and that each has half the instructions for the growing human. "They zip together and make a whole piece of instruction…like a Lego set," Turkey says. They go on to talk about how these instructions determine things like eye, skin, and hair color.

In another video with more than 540K views, the mom discusses the four pillars of safe sex: confirmation, communication (including discussion about the use of protection), lubrication (both natural and added), and enthusiastic participation by both parties.

Commenters appreciate how this mom's real-talk is a departure from the hush-hush awkward conversations they had with adults as kids. "I love how informed and comfortable your kids are. Everything was on a 'don't-talk-about-it' level in my house," one person commented. "I'll be using these examples in the future," another said. "I absolutely love this. Parents need to do more of this, and I'm learning through you," another TikToker wrote.

Though these types of conversations can feel awkward for parents, experts share that using science-based language and real terms to describe everything from reproduction to anatomy empowers kids, teaches them respect, and lays the foundation for healthy sexual relationships later in life.

And teaching your child about consent, regardless of their gender, can help reduce the misinformation and miseducation that leads to rape culture. Even small children can learn about consent. For example, parents can teach them to ask before hugging someone and that it's okay if that person says no. Likewise, it's okay if they want to say no to a hug.

Keep the conversations inclusive and remind your child that families may look different, including how people have babies. Experts suggest including topics like surrogacy and adoption in your conversations about "where do babies come from?" Being open and inclusive can help parents raise children who are allies.

In other words, though it may seem a bit uncomfortable at first, having honest discussions with your kids about bodies and reproductive health can actually help them feel more confident, comfortable, and empathetic in the future.