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Review of The Talk by Sharon Maxwell

About.com Rating 4.5 Star Rating


Review of The Talk by Sharon Maxwell

The Talk is a great resource for parents who need a little guidance on raising kids in a sexual culture.

Book cover courtesy of the Penguin Group

The Bottom Line

Maxwell challenges parents to think long-term when it comes to children and sex education and behavior. The goal, writes Maxwell, is to raise an adult who practices moral behavior that's in-step with your family values.

That's a tall order in this day in age, but not impossible if you begin now and remain committed to years of ongoing education and discussion. The solution presented in The Talk is to develop a strategy that wages defensive maneuvers against the pressures of our culture, the biology of puberty and the natural inclination children have to push back against their parents.

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  • Incrediby informative
  • Straight talk, addresses issues head on
  • Goes way beyond the obvious


  • Details can be shocking, prepare yourself


  • Maxwell ties ethics, family values, cultural pressures, and biology into a readable, informative guidebook.
  • This book is appropriate for parents of children from preschool to college.
  • Maxwell provides an accurate (but scary) analysis of our oversexualized culture.
  • The author makes it clear that parents will not always agree.

Guide Review - Review of The Talk by Sharon Maxwell

It's time for a little sex education, and it's not just for your children, but also for you.

Sharon Maxwell's book, The Talk: What Your Kids Need to Hear from YOU About Sex is your text book, and your preparation for guiding your children, long term, through a culture that's pushing sex on them even as early as the preschool years.

If you've been putting off the sex talk, Maxwell urges quick reaction. As you wait for your children to hit puberty, the culture at large is already pushing sex on them, and helping them form opinions. Opinions that are likely to clash with yours.

Using anecdotes and real-life situations, Maxwell presents common challenges families face today regarding sex and children. Helpful discussion points, contracts, and questions help parents structure their own thoughts on sexual expectations and behavior, so that they can clearly present them to their children. If you don't know what you want your children to hear from you about sex before reading this book, you will know afterwards.

Maxwell, a practicing clinical psychologist, does a wonderful job of making this book helpful to parents from a variety of backgrounds and beliefs. In addition, she confronts head on what parents are up against culturally, yet makes it clear that in the end kids still look to their parents for guidance, structure, and a belief system that works.

The bottom line, says Maxwell, is really communication, and lots of it. "Talk, and talk, and talk, and talk, despite the eye rolling and the huffing and puffing and all the rest. We know our words are very important to them, even as they walk away and slam the door."

If you're worried that you won't present yourself well while talking to your kids about sex, Maxwell offers a lot of optimism. Even if you bungle it beyond belief, she says, it's still better than what they'd learn on MTV.

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