Wednesday, April 02, 2008

"I don't want them punished with a baby"

Oh boy, I heard that speech yesterday by Obama and a chill went up my spine. A baby as punishment for the crime of what? Being stupid? One little old mistake and then...... a lifetime in kid hell, HELL, I tell you.

Ann Althouse blogged about it, of course and here's what she says:

Obama is obviously talking about contraception education, but there is an implicit — albeit deniable — signal about abortion rights. Note that he says "I'm going to teach [my daughters] first of all about values and morals, but if they make a mistake, I don't want them punished with a baby." If they make a mistake, doesn't that mean they failed to use contraception? It suggests that to a lot of people, but I think he took the position that it would be a mistake to have sex at all, and therefore he wants them to know to use contraception — that is, to make a mistake with less consequence.
I don't think the "implicit signal" is deniable. He meant what he said--a baby is a punishment for a "mistake". The mistake being having sex without contraception. Having unmarried sex is not a mistake. It's reality. At least that's how I took it. His expectation is that his teenage daughters will be sexually active. I mean, he's a "realist" and that if they screw up with contraception, he doesn't want them burdened with a baby. His view is entirely accurate for the way many parents feel--especially ones who believe in abortion. I mean, that's the point of abortion, right? Abortion is to avoid the "punishment" a child reeks on the life of a young mother. Right?

This is not my view, by the way. I'm one of those simpletons who believes every child is a gift from God, even the child of a rapist. Adoption is always an option. A child conceived deserves a chance. That's my philosophy.

But what about teens and sex? Church kids have sex. They know their parents think it's wrong. They want sex. Or they want the boyfriend or girlfriend. They have scars. They are hurt. But they're doing it anyway. Who doesn't want sex?

So, is the answer for parents to hold the ideal and allow their kids to sneak to Planned Parenthood, like Rachel Lucas says:

Think about it: if they’re going to Planned Parenthood secretly, they obviously have parents who don’t want them to have sex. Which clearly isn’t stopping them from having sex, so what good would it do to force them to have parental permission to get the pill? The only outcome from that would be that instead of having sex with contraception, they’ll have sex without it.

Who wins then? Not the parents; they may feel great about having control over their daughter’s use or lack thereof of protection even while they can never control whether or not she has sex, but they won’t feel so great the day she comes home to tell them she’s pregnant.

What should parents do?


Anonymous said...

We are VERY open with our young teenage boys about the topic of sex. In school, we chose to have our son go through the SMART program (abstinence only teaching). He came home a couple of weeks ago with a card he wants laminated , saying that he will not have sex until he's married. I told him how proud I was of him, and at this point, that's all I can do. Encourage abstinence and hope that he stays true to these feelings. I was a teen once, and understand the pressures. But, unlike my teenage years, we have very open dialog in our family. They can truly tell me anything, and for that I am grateful.

Melissa Clouthier said...

So the key is to hold the ideal as long as possible?

Anonymous said...

Sure, why not?! If you have open communication with your kids and let them know the pros and cons of premarital sex, you have done your job. Besides, there are worse things that can happen with sex than a baby. You are pregnant for 9 months and you have your child with you for approx. 18 years. An STD is with you for life. The choice is ultimately up to them if they choose to have sex, as much as I hate letting them make their own decisions!

Anonymous said...

This topic is always very interesting and I can only be as honest as possible about it and hopefully not be criticized too harshly.

I did not have sex until I was married. I felt strongly about it because of my own spiritual convictions. However, I have now been married nearly 20 years and over the course of those years, I have had a few conversations with other women about sex. One girl friend admitted to me that she has had at least 3-4 boyfriends with whom she had wonderful sex with. Another friend told me that I was weird for never having had sex with anyone before I would commit to a marriage relationship. Another friend told me she tried it at least with one other man, as well as experimented with a woman before getting married.

In the almost 20 years of my marriage, I have never experienced an orgasm...EVER! I am able to have one because, thank goodness, I have a vibrator called Mr. Goldfinger, and he is amazing. I can't but wonder sometimes if I would have allowed myself to have sex before marriage and found out that it is not working between us, if I would have gotten married.

Of course, I don't want my children to have sex either before marriage because of a lot of reasons. But it makes you wonder that those who have had sex before marriage seem to still experience decent sex. I am not sure that I am in a category all by my myself. This is just taking an honest look and I would be very hypocritical if I did not find myself asking those questions.

Anonymous said...

I had plenty of sex before marriage, and it left me with more scars than anything. And, I never had an orgasm. In my view, our culture has so over-emphasized sex, and under-emphasized the really important things (committment, for instance), that I doubt anybody, no matter what their stance, is totally healthy where sex is concerned. I'm going for open and honest communication with my kids and explaining that God created us as sexual beings. Sex is good and normal, but in the wrong context can have long-lasting negative impacts.

Anonymous said...

This may sound weird to some, but without any input from my parents or church, I knew that sex before marriage was inherently wrong. I never was preached to about it, never had "the talk," (I was given a book to read, biological stuff) but in my heart I held that conviction.

Many years later, I still hold to the same belief. Through watching the disasters around me, and saving myself for marriage, nobody can convince me that sex before marriage (or outside it) is a good, productive thing.

Now, I understand that many will disagree with me for various reasons, and I don't want you to think I am judging you. If I say that sex outside of marriage is sin, I also must admit my own selfishness, pride, bitterness, laziness, and unforgiveness displease God just as much and maybe more. But my being a hypocrite doesn't change the standard.

This world is filled way too full on sexuality, yet falls way too short on happiness. Nobody won the "Sexual Revolution," not even people like Hugh Hefner, who grew up in a home with no love and has sought that missing piece his whole life.

as a parent, I will model for my son how to treat women by how I treat them, especially his mother. I will instruct him on the principles of the Bible, letting the wisdom found there be a light for him. I will help him to think critically about the choices he will face in life, showing him how to weigh his options based on principles rather than hormones.

And if he screws up (like I have in so many ways), I would like to think I will be there for him to help him get back up again. He will know that life is aout choices, and that waiting until marriage for sex is the best choice that will lead to the most potential happiness for him and the woman God chooses to bless him with.

Finally, for those who have been unable to have an orgasm: Please seek help if you haven't already. There is a wealth of materials out there, as well as fine therapists who can help you find out what might be standing in your way.

Anonymous said...

Dear John F and Kerry, I just read your comments and they are certainly very well taken. I can appreciate your values as mine are much the same.

You say to seek help. Well, that is another "big" subject that Melissa has written about and could continue to write volumes on. You see, I have given a few therapist a change...and each time they prove to know so little. So much of therapy is "opinion" based...depending what type of theories they have studied. So much of it is (pardon me please)crap!!! That profession needs to be studies further because many of them do and have done the patients more harm then good. They can bring an incredible amount of anxiety and confusion into a person life. I know of which I speak because I was one of those patients. Thank goodness, I had the sense to get out before too much more damage and confusion was wrought. My personal philosophy has always been to try to be as honest with yourself as possible. It is amazing how much your own heart can tell you about yourself. Unfortunately, however, in my sex it has been complicated and I see my life passing before me without ever really knowing what it is like to connect in that very beautiful and intimate way with my spouse. It makes me sad for both of us.

Please don't feel that I am dismissing your thoughtful comment. I am not. More is needed though.

Anonymous said...

I wish you well, my friend.

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