Maddie has a boyfriend. He’s very handsome and very gentlemanly. They go to movies, share popcorn and have been seen holding hands. But now that she lives on her own, people ask if I’m worried about sex.

Years ago, a speaker from Planned Parenthood challenged a parent group at Maddie’s school to think about how we’d support our children to explore intimate relationships. She pointed out that we, and our more able children, had plenty of chances to try things out in basements or in the backs of cars. But Maddie and her people are highly supervised and most don’t drive! No one had any suggestions about what we would or could do.

Fast forward to living independently—and the handsome gentleman. Like any young woman, Maddie has no interest in talking to her mother about kissing or more. She’s lucky that her mentors and roommates are more than willing to chat about such things.

In addition, she joined a great program run by Dream Weavers Collective. Let’s Talk about Sex and Relationships is a 12-week course, led by Mira and Amanda, two creative Occupational Therapists. In a supportive group setting, Maddie has explored all sorts of ideas about friendship, dating, love and sex. Perhaps it’s not quite the “opportunity” the Planned Parenthood speaker recommended, but I’m deeply grateful!



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