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Girls/ Children

I have a first grader who is very bright, sensitive, and in most ways, ahead of other girls her age. Her teacher notified us that she has been overly affectionate toward the young boys in her class. How can I encourage her toward a healthy respect for the opposite sex, yet leave open her other options? Should I defer the matter to the timelines established by the schools for discussing sexual matters (sex ed classes, or whatever they are called now), or should I appeal to foundations of health and even morality?...

We're looking forward to whatever advice you can provide. We realize these are formative years, and we don't want to let them slip by without doing the best thing. - Dr. "Mike"

Unfortunately, I don't have an answer for you. I always think that instinct is the best response, but sometimes that gets blurred.

Based on my own experiences and those of many people that I know - sex-education in the schools in its current form - is not a solution. Sometimes it's more of a hindrance, since it is usually taught by someone old enough to be your grandparent and with a language that is no longer applicable or understandable, and also because learning it in a co-ed environment with your peers makes you more uncomfortable than comfortable. However, sex-education in a 'new/hip' version, should be investigated and practiced, because it is clear that we all desperately need to know about sex and the potential consequences - so we can protect ourselves; and also so we can understand it and enjoy it. Also, shared experiences and light conversations are better than being preached at, so maybe it is something to talk about it a less rigid environment.

In some instances when girls/women are that forward, it is the result of sexual advances that they themselves have experienced. There are many books about - most notably those by Judith Herman. This is something you may wish to ask her about. Sorry that I couldn't help and I wish you and your daughter luck.



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