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How to Talk Openly With Your Kids About Sex

American sex ed has a long way to go. I like the way this topic is approached in the Netherlands, where children are taught about feelings, friendship, love, and respect starting at a very early age. Their questions are answered simply and honestly, in a developmentally appropriate way. Seems so much healthier than the clinical, fear-based approach widely used in the U.S. "The United States has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the developed world while the Dutch have among the lowest—eight times lower than their American counterparts. Research also indicates that, on average, teens in the Netherlands do not have sex at an earlier age than those in the US. This is the case even though Dutch society and parents are more relaxed, even allowing romantic sleepovers in their own homes. If you treat teenagers as if they are mature and responsible enough to make decisions, they might actually live up to those expectations."

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