Have We Gone Too Far?

Is it right to charge teens who take nude pictures of themselves and send them to someone else (Sexting) with a felony pornography charge???   See the NBC News Video report.

Can we legislate morality?  Can we enforce it?  Do we want to live in a world that attempts to do so?

In one lifetime we have gone from where sex was only to be had in the sanctity of a heterosexual marriage for the purpose of procreation, to where we “made love,” to where we “slept together,” to where we “hooked up,” to where sex is simply recreation.  It no longer requires that we have any relationship to go along with it.  Our teens do not have the same framework of our grandparents.   They don’t have social norms to restrict them.  Their social norms tell them that it is a free for all out there and that all of it is desirable and fun.   Where we once worried about have the right clothes, they worry about being able to do a blow job properly.  We are not in Kansas anymore.

Can we expect our kids to apply the same understanding when that understanding is foreign?  Asking them to care about showing their naked pictures when everything around them says that naked is good, their body is their own, and sex is pleasure …. may be a big stretch.  Our grandparents had their lives ruined if they ended up pregnant and unmarried.  Today young girls actively seek to have babies with little consequence.

Despite the best efforts of organizations like Planned Parenthood, funded by Government, and having access to our education system, we are far worse off than we ever were when they began.  More kids have sex, attitudes towards sex are even more relaxed and casual, and as a consequence we have even more STD’s and more teen pregnancies.  At what point are we going to say, this isn’t working … anyone have a plan B?

The problem is that sex is not casual and the consequences of repeated meaningless encounters void of any real connection has not yet fully come to light.  Sexual intimacy is not just a physical act.  It is the most meaningful connection two human beings share and contains a  spiritual component  that is vital.  While there is no doubt sex should be pleasurable and acceptable, the way our kids are approaching it may scar them for life.

A child does not have the ability to cope with all the pressure that is put on them by the world for these incredibly important issues.  When parents are not there, when there is no real connection between child and parent that allows the child to come to the adult to talk about these things, the child has no other choice that to wing it.  And when a child wings it, it means they will go along with what their peers are doing.  These things are difficult to talk about with your child, you may feel shocked and overwhelmed but YOU, the Parent, are the best person to address this.  WHY?  Because no-one else has the vested interest in your child that you do.  No-one loves him or knows him like you do and therefore when it comes to teaching them and guiding them through moral issues … it has to be YOU that does the work.

Parenting is a verb not a noun.  It is a life time role.  And if you think you just want to get them grown and out the door and off your plate …. let me assure you that grown-up children with problems are even more terrifying than teens with problems.  The time is now.  Go into your teens room and ask him if he/she or any of their  friends are sexting.  Ask them what they think about it.  Support them, explore their feelings, their thoughts.  You do not have to walk out of there hammering a message that if you ever catch them doing it there will be hell to pay … instead, you can leave them with questions to think about  .. and pick the conversation up again in a couple of days.  If the teen arrives at the conclusion, they are more likely to accept it than if you give it to them.

Remember that  your teen does not want to be different from everyone else and yet they are trying to figure out who they are.  The thought process is important to develop and understand.  If they think it is no big deal, ask them about it.  And listen to what they say.  This has to be a discussion.  If you go crazy because they tell you they have done it, then you are closing the door on future conversations.  To be honest, I would probably ask if I could see the photo.  When they refused or acted like I was a weirdo for asking I would ask them why they would be embarrassed to show it to me?  Are there other people they would not want to see it?  How about their teacher?  Their grandmother?  You get the idea.  Then I would ask them how they know that the picture has not already been shown to other people they did not intend it to go to?  And we would have a discussion about, unless you are prepared to have everyone see what you post, then perhaps you need to rethink it.

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~ by blisswindlow on June 26, 2011.

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