A sex-positive mum has encouraged parents to buy their teens a vibrator "if they ask for one" – and says sex toys may be appropriate from the age of 13. Emily Roach, 28, hopes to educate parents "to speak openly and honestly about sex to their children".
She suggests lots of children start accessing porn at the age of 11 – and says parents should start teaching their children about "realistic sex" so their views "aren't solely based on porn". The sex positivity coach says a mum asked her what she should do after her 13-year-old daughter asked for a vibrator – and advised parents to explore suitable options with their teen and discuss how to use toys safely and hygienically.
Mum-of-three Emily said: “We should approach sex in a more positive way, self-pleasure is extremely normal and healthy. If my 13-year-old daughter came to me and asked me to buy her vibrator I would be happy they trusted me enough to ask the question.
“We should have open conversations about such taboo subjects. If we don't talk to our children about sex, they will just find answers elsewhere.
“I want to help parents unlearn sex negativity- a feeling of shame and stigma related to having pleasurable sex."
Emily says she also wants to help "bridge the gender pleasure gap" and help women enjoy sex and not feel shame. She added: “If my children ask me a question, I don’t lie about it.
“If they asked me what sex was, I would respond 'it is something grown-ups do together when they are trying to feel good or make babies.'”
Emily thinks too many children have unprotected access to the internet far too early. She said: “If children access porn, it’s important to make them aware it is not an accurate representation of sex.
“I would lead them towards more ethical resources such as artsy adult films or audio resources and explain which providers are unethical and have featured victims of trafficking.”
Emily added there is a lot to unlearn for women who have grown up in environments where sex was a taboo subject. "The biggest thing I had to unlearn was wanting to experience pleasure during sex- it wasn’t superficial or silly," Emily said.
“Until I met my husband, Rodney, when I was 19, I used to fake it – he questioned why I was doing it which allowed me to openly explore my pleasure. It helps to be intimate with a partner when you know yourself.
“We need to remove shame and stigma and normalise pleasure-based sex.”
Emily provides resources to parents on her TikTok @therealemilyroach.