Nine year old grandson asking what a condom is

I am stumped as to how to answer my nine year-old grandson on what a condom is. He actually asked his mother, and she told him to repeat the question to me. I told him that I was not sure how to give him an answer that he would understand for his age. I told him that I would get back to him soon with a reply. He asked because he saw them at Rite-Aid pharmacy.

Not to be disrespectful, but this did make me laugh a bit. I saw a commercial when I was around his age and saw them at a CVS and asked my mom (kind of loudly) what they were. She didn’t answer me, told me to hush up. I thought they were a gum for adults. :shrug:

Blow it up and tell him it’s a balloon for adults. :slight_smile:

LOL!! Chewing gum! :wink:

Well…Let’s see…My Dad just came right out when I was about ten and told me exactly what they were, and what they were for. He brought it up in a discussion, probably because we had Health class in school and reproduction was being discussed.

They are something that adult men buy.
Not for young boys.
He probably already has heard about them at school anyway.
then change the subject.

I’d also get a good book for your daughter if she can’t discuss this in a reasonable fashion with him. Theology of the Body for Middle school aged kids.
SHE needs to read it.

I tend to agree with your post, Clare.

I can remember discussing this subject with my school friends at this age, back then, since it was already being discussed as part of our education, anyway.

My Dad was the one in our family who had this discussion with my sister and me, not our Mom.

He was the one who was more comfortable talking openly about it in a way that was natural and not embarrassing, and in a way that we could understand as young children.

Tell him the truth. I would tell him that is an adult device used to prevent pregnancy. I would add that using a condom is immoral.

I’m lucky I discovered in a public school from my peers… :o

I bolded the most shocking part of this whole story. Your daughter can NOT pass on her maternal responsibilities to you. If your daughter is not comfortable having these discussions, for her sons sake I strongly recommend she learns how. Or, tells her son to ask his father.

It makes me sad that a young boy would be told ask grandma. Ouch (not to mention creepy)

Yes. It was really awkward for me. My daughter told him to repeat to me what he asked her. I did not know what to say. My daughter asked in front of him, how to answer his question. I said that I did not know how to answer as to how he would understand it. I basically put the reply on hold. I will have her give him an explanation. I wanted to get some advice to give to her. I like the suggestion of the Theology of the body for Middle school children.

It does depend on how the OP explained these things to *her *daughter. (Did she?)

“It’s interesting that your mom asked you to ask me. This is usually something your parents explain when they decide they have a good time to do it. It isn’t anything you need to concern yourself with right now.”

Absolutely NOT:eek:…He’s 9 years old. His mind is incapable of digesting the topic.

Truth is sometimes best revealed little by little.

I’d still tell him. Maybe not give all the details considering the fact he doesn’t entirely understand sex, but I’d say something like “It’s something adults use to prevent pregnancy.”

The trouble with this is, it’s implying that pregnancy is a bad thing.
There’s already too much of that opinion going around. (Obama: “I wouldn’t want my daughters punished with a baby. . .”)


I agree. You might want to say something like “I will tell your when you’re older if you promise not to tell your friends at school, it breaks God’s heart when people buy those.”

When your daughter told him to ask you, she made this question even more important in his mind.
She could have easily deflected, and spoke with her husband about this without making it so important.

When a child starts asking about things like this, it’s best answered by the parent in children’s terms. Next will be viagra, other abc things and so on…

Obviously your daughter needs to research how to proceed with telling the truth without undermining innocence of youth and morality, and how not to put others in the middle of things.

Oh man. Talk about putting things in a child’s mind. I know you mean well, but a child isn’t likely to understand “breaking God’s heart”, any more than he is able to understand how they prevent pregnancy. Also, the bit about promising not to tell kids at school is bad. Now it become a conspiracy. :rolleyes: AND more fascinating. That would make it worse.

It breaks God’s heart? Sorry, I think that is a dreadful exaggeration (and possibly theologically incorrect).

Breaking God’s heart? As much as little children being raped. pregnant women being shot, prisoners being burnt alive? .How would you describe God’s reaction if the child asked about events like those, then?

You can tell him they are devices that our soldiers who invaded Normandy put over the end of their rifles to keep the water out. But getting serious here, just tell him the truth. If the child already thinking about such things, the truth is best.

Yes. Keep it simple, keep it short and matter-of-fact, but truthful. Why make the kid think condoms are this Mysterious Forbidden Adult Thing? I can’t think of a better way to pique his interest than by making a big deal out of it. Also, the child’s mom should be wanting to keep lines of communication open on sensitive subjects, so it’s important to be accurate and approachable. (Which does NOT mean you need go into gory detail.)

And you really don’t know what the child does or doesn’t know, or what level of interest he actually has in sex. (My guess: Not much.)

When I was five, one of my brothers jokingly called me “sexy.” Later, I asked him what “sex” was. He got really, really red and said that’s how babies are made. I thought, yuck; what kind of a compliment is “sexy”? And why he is he so embarrassed, since he’s the one who brought up the topic? And that was the end of that particular “facts of life” discussion.

Point being: Telling something to a child is not necessarily leading him down the path to wild licentiousness.

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