There's a new show on TV this season called No Ordinary Family. It's about a family that acquires superpowers. I normally would have completely ignored the show, but the TV critic from my local newspaper gave it pretty good review and suggested that it was a show that the whole family would enjoy watching together. So, we Tivoed it up and hunkered down one evening to watch the pilot.
Yes, my daughter Daisy enjoyed it very much, but what struck me were the interactions between the teenage daughter and her peers. Apparently the daughter's boyfriend had been cheating on her because she wouldn't sleep with him. And the word "whore" was used at one point.
I cornered Hank later that evening.
Me: Oh man! I was not expecting the issue of teenager sex to come up during that show.
Hank: I know!
Me: So, I think we ought to discuss this with Daisy. I mean, I know she knows how babies are made, but we've never really discussed the idea of recreational sex with her.
Hank: Yeah, you're right.
Me: You know that when I say "we ought to discuss", what I mean is "you ought to discuss".
Hank: Nice try.
Daisy is 11, but she's a young 11. I mean, she's more poised and responsible than you'd expect from an 11 year old, but her classmates seem much more like developing teenagers than she does. And, yes, I am happy about that.
So, like any responsible parent, I downed a martini before dinner the next night and launched into it.
Me: Did you enjoy No Ordinary Family last night, Daisy?
Me: Me too. Did you catch the part about how daughter was having difficulties with her boyfriend?
Daisy: Uh, yeah...
And, off I went. I covered the idea of recreational sex and what the downsides of it are. I touched upon the notion that people can feel pressured to have sex, and again listed the possible repercussions. Daisy seemed to be hearing what I was saying, but I was glad to wrap up the discussion soon thereafter.
I talked to Hank afterwards.
Me: So, I think the sex talk with Daisy went pretty well. What did you think?
Hank: Yeah, yeah, it went ok.
Me: Anything I missed?
Hank: Well, I think everything you said was correct, but I noticed you did a lot of the talking.
Me: That's because I was the one conducting the lecture!
Hank: Well, ideally this would be more of a discussion. You know, get her thoughts and questions?
Dammit. I do a lot better on the math homework issues.