Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Sex ed for parents and chastity for grown ups

I was visiting a Catholic forum today and saw a man (presumably Catholic) asking whether he and his wife could now contracept as they had decided to have no more children. It was explained to him that using contraception is a mortal sin-and when he got annoyed that anyone would suggest such a thing, the appropriate Church docs and history were supplied. The man got even more annoyed and stomped off (virtually).

I see this a lot when it comes to the Church's teaching on the sanctity of marriage, it's holiness as a Sacrament and the fact that marriage should be open to life. While the Govt is trying to force their brand of sex ed onto our children-here is a father, who is quite willing to ditch Church teaching when it doesn't suit his 'sexual freedom'. What will his children do?

It's the parents that are the problem here. The parents do not want to be chaste, they want to do whatever they like and they can hardly then say, 'one rule for me, another one for you'.

This is a photo of my youngest being held by her 16yr old brother who is wearing his chastity ring. My 14 yr old daughter wears one too. I haven't forced this on the children; they requested it. Both these children have been exposed to some stuff I really would have preferred them not to have been exposed to-and I am more than grateful I was there, particularly for my daughter, to mitigate the damage.

Parents do a whole lot of teaching sex ed by how WE behave. If we don't care what our children discuss with their friends; do with their friends or look at with their friends, then they are hardly going to be worried are they?

If we allow them to use computers in a separate room or their bedroom; go on MSM without supervision, have mobile phones with numbers on we have no knowledge of-then that shows we aren't paying attention.

If parents allow their daughter's to either dress like they are available or on the other extreme dress like they are ashamed of their femininity (and I've seen that too) then we are not helping them be chaste. Only by teaching them they have no inherent dignity and can be proud of their emerging womanhood can we help them to ensure they demand that respect and dignity from others.

Too many parents make their children grow up too quickly when it comes to sex ed when they are not emotionally ready for it-and another group of parents are so controlling they try to stop their children growing up at all.

I think a lot of what our children will learn about what is good and holy chaste behaviour, they will learn from how we are in our marriages. Mum and Dad need to show kindness, respect and affection to one another. Dad needs to be involved in his children's life and discipline. An old fashioned dad with a bit of 'shot and shovel' to him will make a girl feel safe. A great deal has been written about the role of dad's in the well being of girls and I am sure it goes for boys too as dad needs to be a role model.

My 14yr old daughter is fortunate to have two older brothers who are also of the 'shot gun and shovel' variety. (HEHEHE)

I could write a lot about what I have seen as a psychi nurse working in CAMHS and my dh still works in CAMHS. I could even write some horror stories just from what we've had to protect our own children from, but I'll end with this; Marilyn Manson once said that if parents don't bring their children up, he would.

If we don't teach our children about love, sex and marriage then Ed Balls (oh the temptation to comment on that name) and Gordan Mediocrity Brown will.


gemoftheocean said...

Wonderful post. Re: the man and his wife and artificial birth control, I think who really "Nails it" in terms of explanation is Scott Hahn in his (and his wife's) conversion story, the book is Rome Sweet home. the FIRST thing, that put a chink in their protestant ways of thinking was the Catholic teaching on ABC. Scott's wife was won over first, then he was. He was big into "the covenant." He came to understand that marriage wasn't just a contract, but more. It's a covenant. and a Covenant is an exchange of persons. Every covenant has acts of renewal. For instance the Eucharist is God giving Himself to us .. we wouldn't take the Host and spit it out. A husband and his wife are in an act of renewal when they have sex. Therefore..... it's holding back to use ABC. It is inherently not open to life by its very nature. It's a little more involved in the way he stated it, but that was the gist.


Anonymous said...

We're doing quite well at the Oratory to put parents back in the picture...like your teens..& my older children early 20s live chaste lives..they look at their father kneeling praying his rosary & kneeling before the Sacred Heart & loving Our Lady..it is the best example..

swissmiss said...

Well said!
It's cute that your sons are protective of their sisters. I've heard Dr. Ray talk about this quite a bit. My son is only four and my daughter is two, but I tell him that he's her big brother and needs to look out for her. It is good for him to think about the welfare of others and to develop some of the virtues that are lacking today.

My father was a very strong and protective father, not in an overbearing way. He was involved in my life and light years ahead of the curve on knowing what dangers were lurking out in the world when it came to his children. In retrospect, I'm sometimes amazed at his insight. He also put the fear of God Almighty into any of my boyfriends and was not one to be trifled with! Plus, he set an incredible example with his fidelity to Our Lady. I hope my husband and I do half as good a job with our kids :)

+JMJ+ said...


WhiteStoneNameSeeker said...

Karen- the Hahn's story and the clear arguments put forth by Dr Janet Smith were massively instrumental in bringing me out of the cafeteria and back to the Church. I think it is fair to say the Church's teaching on the sanctity of marriage and her strong and consistant antipathy to contraception helped bring my husband into the Church too.

Jackie- a good dad as a role model; strong in prayer, strong in discipline, loyal to mum- it has a massive impact. It is so much harder for a single mum or a mum whose husband is poor in either prayer, discipline or loyalty.

SwissMiss- you are blessed to have had such a father.
I am reading 'Back to the Family' at the moment.I reccommend it; a Dr Ray book from the 1990's. I think as a fello Dr Ray fan you would love it.

+JMJ+ - thank you

God bless

KitBrookside said...

Wow! Great post, and you hit on so many points that I'm working on with my Miss 13-going-on-35. She wears her uniform to school, is one of the few who adhere to the "knee" rule (which is not enforced at all despite being in the school's code) and is teased. In her "off school" time, she is torn between the popular (a.k.a., slatternly) approach to dress and her own more conservative leanings. (<-- thank heavens!)

Standing firm even in something as trivial (in the grand scheme of things) as the length of your uniform skirt is a building block for demonstrating your character and how you want to be perceived by others, I say to her. And, as she matures and progresses to dating relationships and on to the sacrament and covenant,as Karen so rightly puts it, of marriage, and the vocation of motherhood, I pray that she will understand that these little things mattered, and that remaining steadfast has sent her in directions where others who are like-minded are (I fervently pray) waiting for her. How you dress, chastity, purity, monogamy, being open to life in marriage, it all builds from the self respect you develop in adolescence...or lack thereof. It is a daunting task ahead, I know, to try and help her negotiate the shark-infested waters of growing up in this culture.

Wow. Going a bit deep. Time to go make my Porage Oats!

:) Kit

PS: Her new favorite Mommy quote (which I surely purloined from someone else, but can't recall): "If you aren't for sale, why advertise?"