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What Are Ya’ll DOING????

It’s Thursday night.  The kids are finally down.  You and your spouse catch each other’s eyes.  You lock the front door, take each other’s hands, and go back to your bedroom, or settle on the couch, for some much-needed romance.  Shortly after things really get going you hear one of your children go:

“MOMMY…DADDY!!! What are ya’ll DOING??????”

You’ve just been BUSTED by one or more of the kids!!!

Now what???

There are two responses that parents can make in this situation:

  • The Typical Response
  • The Wise Response

Which response you take is very important and can affect your child’s understanding and attitudes towards sex and intimacy.

The TYPICAL RESPONSE of many, if not most, parents is to react in a way that says you are flustered, angry, and/or embarrassed.  Your child, meanwhile, (depending on their age) may be:

  • Amused (Ya’ll look funny!  Ya’ll are NAKED!))
  • Frightened (sex can seem violent to children)
  • Curious (what ARE Mommy and Daddy doing?)
  • And more….

This can be an important event in the development of your children and their understanding of God’s design for physical intimacy.  It can shape future attitudes and trust levels.

The WISE RESPONSE to getting busted by your kids will, instead, foster and influence the development of a Biblical understanding about sex and intimacy while being 100% honest with them.  It may not, and should not, be a case of “full disclosure”, but honesty is paramount!

Therefore, since we will not be at our best when it happens, we need to think about how we will react BEFORE we have to.  If we just “shoot from the hip” we will probably get it wrong.  Above all, we must be truthful with our children as any lies will either immediately backfire of come back to haunt us!

So, how DO we handle this?

First off:


If you do you will create and nurture a negative, and possibly frightening, view of the incident.  The child may become emotionally upset, and fearful that they did something terribly wrong.  Instead, as calmly and evenly as you can, you should instruct the child to leave the room & close the door (older children will do this automatically).  Then one or both of you can get properly dressed and go talk to the child.

Second, we have to look at what our objectives should be in dealing with this situation, especially since the Enemy will exploit it for harm:

  • Continue to instill a healthy, Biblical view of sexuality.
  • Prevent the fostering of a “sex is bad/dirty/etc.” attitude.
  • Create and cultivate an understanding of marriage as the only safe zone for sex.
  • Lay foundations for future discussions and development.

Because of this we need to phrase everything in terms of the parents’ activities being part of a healthy marriage, but which are to be private.  Older kids will get this a lot easier than younger kids.  But, how do you help younger children understand, especially in a way that will lay a foundation for them respecting God’s boundaries for physical intimacy?  Here are some talking points that you can use, depending on your child’s age and where you are in your at-home sex education:

  • Mommy and Daddy were doing something that God designed to be just for adults who are married to each other. God intends it to be VERY private.
  • Sex is a wonderful gift that God designed that keeps married couples healthy and in love with each other.
  • Sex/Making Love is to be a private thing, just between a couple.  Answer questions about sex, in general, but any specifics about Mommy’s and Daddy’s relationship are to be private…period.
  • To a child, seeing their parents making love may seem to be violent depending on if it is “energetic” and on what the parents may be vocalizing.  If a child was upset because of the perceived violence of an intimate act then parents must explain that what Mommy and Daddy were doing was a lot like many sports that are energetic and very physical, but still a form of play.  Mommy and Daddy were NOT hurting each other.  Football, soccer, or rugby might be good examples, or wrestling.  Again, this is an opportunity, if you take the right approach, to explain Marriage as God’s Safe Zone for such “play”.
  • You can apologize for not making sure that Mommy’s and Daddy’s privacy was secure. (Forgot to lock the door, did we?).  Emphasize that children should knock and wait to be invited into a room where the door is closed (even if it is not a bedroom).
  • Explain that, sometimes, parents do things kids do not understand, but that Mommy and Daddy love each other.  You will explain more when they are older and ready to understand more.
  • With older kids you may have less damage control to do, but the event must be addressed, at least in terms of any privacy violations and in the hopes of further shaping Biblical understandings.

Note: When talking to children, it is perfectly acceptable to use the term “making love”.  Studies in the last decade or so have shown that God designed humans to become emotionally bonded through physical intimacy.  This is due to chemical reactions in the body that take place during sex.  “Making love” is, apparently, not just a figure of speech!


Having kids should never keep a couple from having an active love life, but kids do complicate things.  Indeed, the Apostle Paul said that even prayer and fasting should not long prevent a man and wife from enjoying physical intimacy (1 Cor 7:1-7).  Parenthood is definitely further down the list of things that must not adversely impact your love life.  Couples, therefore, have a Biblical obligation to each other to SAFELY and PRIVATELY maintain an active love life.

Here are some tips:

  • Buy and install a good lock on your bedroom door, and use it! Do the same for the door of any other room in which you may get “frisky” (den, craft room, study, home theater, etc.).
  • Have a TV or music player in the bedroom to mask sounds.
  • Teach kids to knock and ask permission to come into their parents’ room, even if the door is open.  Cultivate the master bedroom/suite as a sanctuary for Mommy and Daddy.
  • If your kids have phones, ask them to give you a call when they are on the way home from a friend’s house, movie, game, or some other away-from-home activity.  This is especially important if you are planning a romantic interlude by the fireplace while they are gone!
  • Have a signal to indicate when NOT to bother Mommy and Daddy during “naps” and so forth.  A friend of mine, who is also a pastor, related that he and his wife used a little sign that said “MOMMY’S AND DADDY’S SPECIAL TIME“.  My wife and I have a door hanger with D N D on it.  (Do Not Disturb)  You can get supplies for making door hangers at craft stores.  Keep in mind that these signs are not always used just so you can have sex, but often when you just need some time together to talk, plan, relax, or even to sleep!
  • If you are being adventurous and fooling around outside the bedroom (thinking you have the house to yourselves) then lock the front and back doors so that kids can’t barge in.   If you are fooling around out by the pool, LOCK THE FENCE GATE! (I’m assuming you are safe from the eyes of the neighbors, too!)
  • Talk with your spouse AHEAD of time on how to handle your responses if/when you get busted by the kids.  Make sure you discuss:  What to say in response to questions (brainstorm a list, etc.; How to get the child to leave without being frightened or traumatized; how to address the various activities you may have been engaged in; and so forth.)

Having your kids walk in on you and your spouse during intimate moments does not necessarily have to traumatize your child (or you) but your reaction to the situation could be harmful if you don’t prepare for it.  Make sure that you take some time to discuss this potential situation with your spouse and plan your responses….beforehand. (And take precautions to ensure privacy!!!)


Don’t forget to remind your child that this event (them busting you) is to remain PRIVATE and should not be shared with: friends… relatives… teachers… pastors…etc.

For more discussion and preparation on this topic you might want to check these secular articles which may be found on other web sites:

WebMD:  What to Do if the Kids Catch You in the Act

Today’s Parent:  When your kid catches you having sex

Intimacy in Marriage: Walked In On During Sex? Here’s What You Do.

If you have tips or other thoughts that could help parents
with these issues, leave a COMMENT, below! 

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