Imagine your stereotypical conversation between a parent and teen about sex. Several things come to mind, don't they? You may be conjuring up images of parents saying their teens should wait until marriage to have sex, or at least use condoms, or if the parent is particularly contemporary, they may offer to come along to their daughter's OBGYN appointment and have in-depth conversations about consent with their teens. Keep on thinking, and you can certainly also imagine talks about making sure the teen closes the door when they have (self-)sex.
What do all these things have in common? Right — it's that the parent and teen are discussing the teen's sex life. This is awkward enough, to be sure. A Planned Parenthood survey reveals that half of all teens and close to 20 percent of parents feel really quite uncomfortable having these sorts of talks.
What if you're a teen who's knowledge of your parent's, or parents', sex life goes far beyond "hey, I'm around so they must have done it?", though? What if your parents, or one of them, are so loud during their very normal and healthy sex life that you can hear it all? What if you walked in on your parents having sex? Or even — what if your parents are really casual about nudity and you are feeling uncomfortable?
Let's go back to the previous scenarios. If your mom or dad heard you have sex, or walked in on you having sex, or even just had the vaguest suspicion that you may be having sex, it would be awkward, but they'd probably talk to you about it. Right? As natural, normal, and mind-blowing as sex is, modern societies have also evolved to see it as private. Your parents have all sorts of ideas about the sex you should or should not be having, but whatever moral or religious bent they have, they'll not want to see it up close.
As a teen, you should have the same right to avoid seeing your parents' sex life up close. If they leave the door open when they think you're asleep, or walked into some kitchen action when they thought you wouldn't be home for another few hours, or your home has unusually thin walls, or your parents are just really loud — approach them. "Hey, I don't want to see or hear that again, please tone it down!", might work. A letter may work. Turning your music up really loud when you can hear them may work. It all depends on your family culture, but in any case, you can certainly try communicating your discomfort!
Now For The Taboo Topic
Some SteadyHealth readers reported that they became aroused upon hearing their parents have sex. As a teen, it's quite possible that any and all encounters with sex are interesting to you, and that you will have some physical and mental responses to that. You are almost certainly aroused by the thought of having sex yourself, rather than the thought of your folks getting it on. There is nothing wrong with you, but you should probably still ask them to tone it down some — and find different outlets for your budding sexuality.
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