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Sexual Development

Human development is a lifelong process of physical, behavioral, cognitive, and emotional growth and change. In the early stages of life from babyhood to childhood, childhood to adolescence, and adolescence to adulthood enormous changes take place. Throughout the process, each person develops attitudes and values that guide choices, relationships, and understanding.

Sexuality is also a lifelong process. Infants, children, teens, and adults are sexual beings. Just as it is important to enhance a child's physical, emotional, and cognitive growth, it is also important to lay foundations for a child's sexual growth. Adults have a responsibility to help children understand and accept their evolving sexuality.

Sexual Development Ages 0-3

Sexual Development Ages 4-5

Sexual Development Ages 6-8

Sexual Development Ages 9-12

Sexual Development Ages 13-17

Sexual Development Ages 18 and over

Date of creation: August 20, 2014
Last modified on: September 18, 2014


1Reproduced with permission from Advocates for Youth Website © 2001, Advocates for Youth Retrieved from
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