This is, of course, a harder subject than "What's that?" and "Here's how." But it's worth the effort and even the eye-rolling. There have always been, and always will be, young women who give a man a blow job while thinking, "I wish I was dead." There are young women who find themselves pregnant because they couldn't face what was actually happening or couldn't bring themselves to "interrupt the moment" when facing a reluctant or annoyed partner. There are, as we all know, young women who like a boy well enough and are prompted to have sex because of his constant complaints and threats to go elsewhere. Young women who are just this side of rape by virtue of their reluctant, exhausted "okay." Young women who think that the boy's status (athlete, BMOC, wunderkind) will become hers, through the transfer of sex. Please, talk to your daughters about self-deception, about recognizing their feelings and acting on them. Teach them to take a moment (even in the bathroom at a bar) and ask themselves: "If I was my best self right now, what would I choose?" Teach them that despite our other girl-messages of putting other people's feelings first and being nice, when it comes to sex they come first, in every way.
Some of this is hard to do with conviction. Like mothers who try to conceal their fat phobias and make an effort to eat normally so as to spare their daughters an eating disorder, some of us have to fake it till we make it when it comes to talking about sex. It's always best to lead by example, but it's not always possible. Not all of us are lucky enough to like our bodies, like sex, and know that what we do in bed is a good and healthy choice. Even if that's not the case for you—for your daughter's sake, talk as if it is. And if it's not the case for you, you might give yourself a good talking to.
Get more direction on having The Talk from sex therapist Laura Berman