I was talking with a couple of ladies the other day, discussing parenting and the challenges children face in the world today, etc. In regards to sex, one of the women said, “We don’t discuss sex in our home because I think it plants a seed in their minds and increases the chance that the kids will want to engage in premarital sex; and that’s wrong.”
I didn’t join the debate at the time, but it got me thinking…
I’m an idealist but I’m also a realist. I believe in miracles and I also believe in statistical probability. When it comes to premarital sex, I take a very realistic approach. Teenagers have raging hormones and they’re entering a stage of life where they often find first love. When you put those two things together, it usually results in sex.
There are rare cases, like Tim Tebow, where people have chosen to wait until they are married. I think this choice is commendable and I support it; however, it isn’t the statistical norm.
When it comes to parenting and sex, I’m preparing my kids for everything. The first lesson conveys the hope that they would abstain from having premarital sex. The second lesson is to teach them that sex is not a tool or a weapon to be thrown around casually; that it is an expression of the love two people share. The third lesson is to protect themselves through the use of contraceptives.
In an ideal world, I’d tell them that sex can only be had after marriage…but we don’t live in an ideal world. By the time they reach sixth grade they already know how it all works. There is no stork. Mommy and Daddy have body parts that fit together and make a baby. Teenagers get pregnant. Hell, there’s a reality television show about teen moms, none of which are married. And politicians argue over something called ‘abortion.’ Whether or not we, as parents, discuss it in the home, the seed has already been planted and their minds are filled with questions…questions others will answer if we don’t.
Regardless of the topic, as parents we have two choices: either stick our heads in the sand and ignore the real world or teach our children everything we know and pray like hell we’ve taught them enough to empower them to make wise choices. Smoking causes lung cancer. Drugs can kill you. Never drink and drive because you could kill yourself or accidentally murder someone else. If you’re going to have sex, only do it with someone you truly love and always, always use protection. These aren’t fun topics, but I think it is our responsibility to engage in these conversations with our kids.
Even then, just as we did and our parents before us and their parents before them, our children will make mistakes. I guess my hope is that those mistakes are made out of momentary foolishness and not out of genuine ignorance. Until the ideal becomes the real, I don't think we have the liberty of sticking our heads in the sand. ~