If you watched the Superbowl this year, or any TV since then, you've seen the Kia ad where the small child in the backseat asks his parents where babies come from. If you have not seen the commercial, click HERE.
When the child asks a follow up question to his parents' ridiculous tale, he is cut off, drowned out, and his attention redirected to a children's sing-along-song.
I hear you thinking, "So what's the big deal, Autumn? It's adorable. And who wants to talk to their kid about where babies come from anyhow? That's uncomfortable!"
Here's the big deal: Children who feel their parents are unwilling to discuss things related to their body and sexuality are less likely to discuss their body and sexuality with their parents. That makes sense, right?
Let's take it a step further: Children who are sexually abused or molested and desire to tell a trusted adult will not tell an adult who the child believes is uncomfortable discussing their body or sexuality. This child is more likely to be victimized over and over again by the same or multiple persons. This is why I'm writing a book on how to keep your child from being a victim of trauma; look for more on that this summer.
The parents in this commercial dropped the ball on this issue and Kia has done an incredible disservice to their commercial's viewers. The parents had a natural opportunity to correct their child's possible misinformation without having to sit down and make a production out of having "the talk" and could have simply taken it in stride, answering his question in an age-appropriate fashion. Or, the child may have already been abused and was trying to tell his parents, only to be drowned out by music as if what he had to say was unimportant. What would happen to that child? He's be sent back to his friend's house and the same thing would occur, but he would know his parents didn't want to hear it.
Oh, I know, it's just a commercial. But I believe that social change is slow and we have to begin at some point. Please take no parenting advice from Kia. Talk to your kids in an age-appropriate way every time the situation naturally occurs and in between. Your discomfort will lessen over time. No one guaranteed you parenting was easy, but you chose this. Keep the door open and allow your child to come to you with anything, no matter how uncomfortable it may be for him or you. This can only help your relationship over time and reduce the chances of trauma or re-traumatization.
Autumn Hahn is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor and Certified Clinical Hypnotherapist specializing in clearing trauma at Clear Mind Group in Weston and Whole Health Psychological Center West Palm Beach. Please call for a free consultation: 954-612-9553.