Top 10 Ways to Talk to Your Teenagers About Sex and Contraception

Without making your teens feel awkward and embarrassed.

Judith Uusi-Hakimo


Teenage couple sitting on the ground in skate park with their skateboards.
Photo by Luis Zambrano:

It scares me every time my teenager comes home from school and tells me all sorts of stories about her schoolmates and the stuff they are engaging in at their young ages.

It’s never easy talking to your kids about sex; however, the stakes are high when it comes to contraception.

In Australia alone, nearly half of all sexually active teens don’t use any form of contraception. The scariest thing is that, as parents, we know so well that unprotected sex can lead to unplanned pregnancies and STDs.

If you’re unsure how to talk to your teenagers about contraception, don’t worry — here are the top 10 ways to talk to them about contraception.

1. Start the conversation early and often. Talk casually. Don’t wait until teenagers are sexually active to discuss contraception — start discussing it as soon as they show an interest in relationships and sex. Although schools have sessions about teaching teenagers about sex and contraception, it is also good that you reinforce more education at home.

2. Be open and honest about your own experiences with contraception. Share any mistakes you may have made and how using contraception can prevent those same mistakes. Remind them that contraception does not prevent all risks, such as emotional impact or unplanned pregnancy.

3. Ensure they understand the different types of contraception available and their effectiveness rates. Discuss the importance of using contraception consistently and correctly every time they have sex.

4. Talk about the various methods of contraception available, including condoms, hormonal birth control, and emergency contraception. Discuss any potential side effects or health risks associated with different forms of contraception.

5. Talk about the potential physical and emotional consequences of not using contraception, such as unplanned pregnancy or STDs. Support and encourage them to talk to their healthcare provider about contraception options and how to use them properly.



Judith Uusi-Hakimo

A Nurse by profession. A mother of three and a wife of one. A storyteller and an aspiring writer.