There seem to be two reasonable schools of thought for how to inform your child about the basics of sexual intercourse:
1. Choose a time to give them a basic rundown and then give them "the talk." This can be spread out over several "talks" as a child matures
2. Wait until they ask questions, then give them honest, straightforward answers that tell them enough, but not more than they really want to know at the time. In this way mete out the information as they are naturally curious.
(I have ruled out the option of just setting my child in front of a lot of R rated movies until she figures it out. Of course, R rated movies wouldn't necessarily teach her about reproduction.... just idealized sex)
My husband and I seem to be going with option 2. I mean, if we don't actually sit down and have the talk, then I guess we're waiting for her to ask questions. And of course we hope she asks us, and not her friends on the playground.
I think my parents went with #1. I don't remember any conversations, but clearly remember the book Where Did I Come From?, and even picked up a copy at a library book sale years ago thinking I might use it when the time is right. And maybe I will. But when I looked at it a year or so ago it seemed like a LONG way to go about it.
Last night we were reading Nuts at bedtime, and there was a bit about squirrel mating. At the end of the chapter I asked The May Queen if she knew what mating was. She didn't.
"Mating is how animals make babies."
She seemed uninterested in knowing more, so I left it there.
How about you? Have you chosen an option? Tell me your stories!