If you can't make it better you can laugh at it. ~Erma Bombeck


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Damama's Use it or Lose it Advice on: Sex Ed


Today the local talk radio people were all going on about the fact that apparently Texas is winning the race to have the most pregnant teens in the country. I didn't hear the whole story on whatever it was that sparked all the chatter, but I was quite amused and extremely appalled at some of the comments made by the parents who called in. The one that bothered me the most was a man who said his daughter knew that if she ever showed up pregnant he'd disown her. Literally. No joke. Makes me wonder what other all or nothing conditions he puts on his love. What a way for his children to live.

I was most greatly amused by the people who truly believe that simply having their kids' butts in the church pew every time the doors are open will keep them from engaging in premarital relations. Oh don't we all wish it was that easy!?! This reminded me of my very precocious devout days as a youth member of one particular local Baptist church...

Betsy*, Tom*, Bill*, and I met when we were all chosen to be members of one of the first Christian youth rock bands in Texas. You have to remember that in the 70s the idea of having drums and guitars in church was a pretty radical concept -- especially so in our small-town, staunch Southern Baptist church! Our progressive Youth Leader, however, was a visionary and talked Reverend NutJob into allowing him to give it a try in an effort to get more kids interested in coming to church. We were actually pretty good and soon began receiving invitations to perform at other churches in the area. We were even invited to perform at a church in Dallas which meant an overnight trip. And that was the beginning of the end of our musical careers.

As you can imagine, since we spent so much time together we inevitably formed very close bonds and eventually paired off: Betsy and Tom; Bill and me. (The rest of the band members were all really weird guys, several of whom actually went on to professional music careers!) The only problem was that Betsy was Rev NJ's only daughter. Rev NJ was very protective of his flock. He was OBSESSIVELY protective of Betsy who was forbidden to date until she was at least 18. Her 15-year-old hormones had other plans, though, so we spent a good deal of time figuing out ways to get around the no-dating rule. We would have been in good shape if it hadn't been for that dang Dallas trip. The trip on which Miss Betsy lost her virginity. And her freaking mind!

Before the Dallas trip Betsy and Tom had been able to keep their relationship under wraps. They sat together during services, but always with a respectable distance between them; only holding pinkies with their hands down on the hardwood pew safely out of Daddy's sight. Afterward, they were like two lovesick octopuses: all arms and suckers. You couldn't slide a piece of paper between them with a battering ram! Their new postures did not go unnoticed by the Rev. (or anybody else with half an eyeball in their head!)

Always willing to give his baby girl the benefit of the doubt, he accepted her assurances that they were only friends. He did, however, warn her that fornication is a sin that would cause her to burn in hell with evilist of evil-doers. The warnings fell on deaf ears, because poor Betsy, though she tried as hard as she could, any time Tom was within reach she couldn't help but latch on and melt all over him. As the strong spritual leader he was, her father began to find clever ways of working morality messages into every sermon.

... "And the Lord gave us the trees and the flowers. He gave us the beasts of the field, the birds of the skies, and the bees of the garden. And it was all beautiful until we ruined it with


Didn't matter what the topic was, that man could figure out how to segway into FORRRNIIIICATION. After a while we realized that his segways always coincided with Tom touching Betsy and a whole new game was born: How many times can we get Rev NJ to scream FORRRNIIIICATION during the sermon. If memory serves me right, the record was 8.

Within 3 months of the Dallas trip our little group was disbanded (ha! punny!). Betsy was sent to a "private boarding school" where it was rumored that her healthy baby boy was adopted by a wealthy family from somewhere up in North Texas. The whole experience turned me totally off of church. It would be years before I would agree to try it again.

From all of that I learned that first and foremost, as a parent you cannot stick your head in the sand about what your kids can and will do if they decide they want to. You cannot make arbitrary, unbendable rules and expect your child to just follow them without question. You have to be open to hearing things you might not want to know; doing things you might not want to do. But above all, you have to keep your sense of humor. We all survived our teenage years. Our kids will, too.

I ran across this Sex Education film strip. Too bad Reverend Nut Job's not still around. Think of all the great sermon fodder he'd have to use to warn us all about the evils of FORRRRRNIIIICATION!"


  1. Oh my...the video is funny...it took me half a minute to decide whether or not it truly was old!!

    You're right about folks, particularly those who are SO judgemental on any number of issues. The whole thing with the preachers kid could probably been avoided if he hadn't been so severe. I'm an educator and our kids come to school so confused about the world particularly in a lot of cases when the home life is not optimal for whatever reason. I'm not for promoting sex...don't get me wrong...that is not what I'm saying; however abstinence only is not doing the job.

  2. I agree there are certain ways to approach things and in the past we weren't as smart as we are today about this. However, I SO TOTALLY WANT MY KIDS TO UNDERSTAND THE REPURCUSSIONS OF GIVING THEIR BODIES OVER TO SOMEONE WITH WHOM THEY DO NOT HAVE A COMMITTMENT. I did this time and time again as a teenager and in my early 20's and I truly believe the effect it had on my self-esteem and confidence were detrimental. How do you stress abstinence without seeming condescending and judgemental?


  3. Great filmstrip. You're right that conscious ignorance has never brought enlightenment to an issue, particularly an issue that requires communication.

  4. Hi! Thanks for stopping by! I do like Curves...it is open at weird times tho! Hilarious video....seriously.

  5. It is sad that there are parents that are so shallow that they would disown a child over having sex. Or to think that just because they go to church they will not be curious about it. All the threat will not stop them from doing anything, but because they think a parent doe not love them, they turn to the person that they think does love them, and sometimes they make decisions that they later regret.

  6. Belle - Judgemental people are part of what's going so wrong with this nation right now. Everyone feels they have the right to judge everyone else's actions based on their own moral compass instead of recognizing that not every word or action that is different from theirs is a personal attack.

    It hurts my heart and makes me fearful for where this country is headed. But that's a soapbox for another day, isn't it. LOL!

    Thanks for visiting. I need to get over to your corner of the blogverse and see how a true Southern Belle does it with style and grace. ;o)
    Angie - You are absolutely right that it is important for them to understand the pain that results from being promiscuous. Threats, ultimatims and edicts don't work, though. I'm going to address what has worked for many people I know in my next post. Stay tuned. ;o)
    Papa Bear - 'conscious ignorance' I like that term. It goes well with 'convenient Christianity' which is what Hubby and I call what most people practice. Rev NJ was a prime example of both. Thanks for popping over.
    Chitown - WELCOME! And thanks for the follow. Isn't that video a riot. If they made the real ones that fun maybe kids would actually pay attention! LOL!
    Gracie - Oh baby. I know you know what you are talking about. The most basic need in childhood is to be loved and valued. Kids will flock to anybody who can provide that, won't they. hugs!

  7. I couldn't agree with you more. I've always felt that the more you make something forbidden the more you want it. Many of the girls in my school who ended up pregant were from very strict families.

    There was an article on this on Root & Sprout a couple months ago that you might like.
    When Talking about Sex isn't Enough

  8. WOW! The story was great but the video was freakin hilarious! I had to look away a couple times cause the twinkie fantasy was more than I could stomach!

    Loved it!

  9. Look at what I done went and did. :) I'm thinking Gremmie M's Corner is coming up soon. What do you think?

  10. Darling, it's been ages since I was over here. So far I think 2009 sucks! Suppose that means it can only get better.

    I meant to tell you I posted an award for you last Sunday - find it here.

  11. Hey there - what are you doing...an impression of ME and not blogging? Hee, hee, hee. Hope you are OK. I hope to be back this week. I've had a heck of week with that sinus thing. Oh and the -40 wind chills. This is insane!

  12. Things just backfire sometimes
    and teenagers know exactly how to make their parents nutty

  13. The video is great! As for the judgemental people - ugh, I have so much to say about that, but my mother said to me once if I have nothing nice to say, well dont say anything at all.

    I missed you while I was gone, and while I am here for the next 3.5 months, I will be keeping up with ya.

    I have something for you over on my blog...



  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

  15. Let me try that again.

    I agree with Lucille (Hi Lucille!). I hope everything's alright!

    Jon and I watched the video together, aghh. Thanks for the child warning.

  16. I grew up in that church, too. I went on to have a shot career as a bar slut/home wrecker, before discovering my self-respect and God's forgiveness.

  17. That was hilarious.

    For minute there, it looked like a real 50's film... then I saw the
    diversity in it and knew it wasn't.

    Great job.

    I have boys... and just keeping them away from the mirror and girls is a tough one

  18. I have no time for judgmental people. Very interesting post. Lots of food for thought.

    Stop by Rubbish, I've left you an award.

  19. Bonjour Damama,
    Forbid something to a teemager, he/she finds a way to do it behind your back. He/she searchs his/her own experiences, he/she lacks the long time background to accept all parents'words as true. I can tell you I'm a living example. And I survived !
    Dialogue is the key, according me, and acceptance.

    Video : The French teacher is so stereotyped ! Happy to see our reputation works, still : )


WELL HOWDY!! Thanks so much for popping in to leave a note. PLEASE be sure to check the box by "E-mail follow-up comments to..." so that you'll get my response to your comment. I almost always respond personally And sorry for making you do the Word jumble mambo. I wish there weren't A***ole spammers running rampant in the blogverse!


Related Posts with Thumbnails