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SEX EDUCATION AND MUSLIM PARENTS




By
Umm Sumayyah Mai

I do not think anyone will disapprove the fact that Islaam is a complete religion that touches every aspect of life. In the Islamic religion, we are taught to follow the practice of our noble Messenger, Muhammad lbn AbdiLlaah.

Islaam has truly opened our hearts toward goodness, it gives us the ability to think and reason well as Muslims. In the Islamic religion, we are advised to separate boys from girls at approximately age of 10. Even though adolescent age is said to be between 12-20 years of age. It is however obvious that many children begin this stage very early.

This is the time signs of puberty begin to appear biologically. The physical development in girls is to start growing breast, pubic hair, ancillary hair and the peak of it is commencement of the menstruation. In boys, sexual maturity occurs with the testicular enlargement, growth of pubic hair, facial hair, penile enlargement, and the change in vocal expressions.

The question is when do we introduce sex education to our children, especially our girls? Must we actually talk about it? If yes, then, at what age do we start talking about it?

It is a glaring fact that this contemporary time has made things very worse. I am convinced that if you, parents don't speak about it, the children might be exposed to it through the back door, and consequences may be very devastating. May Allaah protect us and our kids.

I remember while growing up, my Mum used to tell me and my elder sister to be mindful of men, she used to say, don't ever allow any man to touch you. She used to say: if a man touches you, it is a very big problem. That was her own way of preventing us from going through haram relationship. She used to tell us things that could assist to guard our chastity.

Sex education doesn't have to be all about "intercourse". It is essential to lecture our kids at their early stage in life on what is appropriate to be covered and what can be left uncovered, especially when they hear a knock at their door, and when they are going out of the house.

A female child shouldn't be allowed to go out without her appropriate hijab. They need to be taught on the manners and etiquette of using the bathroom. Such as, knocking the door to know if someone is present or not, they should be taught not to bath together with another person in the same bathroom. This will prevent them from looking at each other's private area, which could prompt some haram thoughts in their minds.

Sex education by my understanding includes telling the kids the kind of clothes that are appropriate for girls and boys. Then, they should be fully aware of the fact that shaking hands with opposite sex is haram.

As they continue to grow, it is crucial for us to be cautious of our choice of words. We should teach them the kind of sex education that is appropriate for their age respectively. I am of the opinion that sex education should be taught based on their developmental age.

An adolescent whose nikah is close should be taught that even when a man has been introduced to your parent, he has no right whatsoever to have any intimacy with you. They should be taught that there is nothing like boyfriend/girlfriend relationship in Islaam. They should be taught the dangers of being in seclusion with strange men who are lawful to them in marriage, even among their peers.

As a parent, it is important to know your child's companion and close friends. You wouldn't allow them to freely mingle with any child of no good conduct or morals. It is important to talk about sex based on their level of understanding, and wisdom must always be applied at all time.

This is also a wake up call to those parents who are themselves, careless in discharging their perental responsibilities. They are those who watch movies full of nudity with their daughters and sons. They do not see anything wrong in it. By so doing, they are freely consenting to haram relationship for their daughters and sons.

Parent should be able to control what their children are exposed to in the television, magazines and the social media. Once they are raised well upon Kitab and Sunnah, the next is to be more prayerful for Allaah's protection over them. Again, remember, you are a shepherd, you shall be answerable for the evils committed by those under your supervision.

May Allaah please protect our wards and make this piece beneficial to all, including myself. Ya Rabbal 'Aalameen.

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