Talking to your high schooler about sex

Written by The pureHOPE Team
Published on May 13, 2022

Purity is not an accomplishment. It is primarily a relationship with the one who is Pure: Jesus. The pursuit of purity is marked by prayer, understanding, resolve, and engagement, P-U-R-E. 

Instead of a vicious cycle of sin and shame, this is a virtuous one, spurring us on to closer intimacy, increased discernment, stronger commitment, and deepening our love for God and others.

This is part 4 of a 4-part mini-series that will be a field manual and reference through every season of your parenting as you open up conversations about sex. 

In each of our 4 parts, we discuss age-appropriate ways to engage children as they grow in understanding God’s better story about sex. Each part is broken down into three sections: protect, equip, and model

This is how we want you as parents to think about your role in teaching and guiding your child in these conversations that are both planned and organic. 

Here are some ideas to address with your high school age child as they grow in understanding God’s story of sex.

High Schoolers

Protect 

Get to know your teens’ friends and their parents.

Talk with other parents about their “house rules” for digital access.

Establish courting/dating boundaries—help your child create a vision and learn the purpose of relationships.

Help them set healthy sexual boundaries based on God’s story of sex.

Continue giving guidance and boundaries on speech, dress, and behavior.

Equip 

Reinforce your teen’s identity as a son or daughter of God living in the context of God’s story.

Discuss sex, tech, and porn calmly, biblically, and frequently.

Help them understand the prevalence of sexual abuse, rape, sexting, and exploitation.

Guide them in making quality friendships, putting value on character and choices.

Let your teen know they can come to you with any question about sex at any time.

Prepare them to respond wisely and courageously in situations they may face.

Encourage your child’s input and ownership of their own sexual stewardship and their own digital stewardship.

Remind them that whether they remain single or marry someday, God has purpose for their life and is telling a profound story through them

Model

Model the pursuit of purity, repentance, and forgiveness in your own life.

Be willing to talk about your own struggles and mistakes (past and present).

Be your teen’s parent first, their friend second.

Invite other positive role models into the conversation.

Pray over these opportunities and this ongoing conversation. Pray for what your children will hear about sex from the world, from their peers, from the church. 

Pray especially for what they will hear from you. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you every step of the way. 

Check out the full Pocket-Guide to Talking About Sex for Parents for more resources in this area.


Consider a few extra resources:

 

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The pureHOPE Team

pureHOPE exists to proclaim God’s Truth about gender, purity, and sex. Like many people, you may have grown up thinking the Christian worldview of sex was more of a check list or a rulebook. But actually, God is a creative and profound Author, telling a compelling story through His design and purpose for sexuality. Learn more at purehope.net or follow us on social media @findpurehope.

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