Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Teaching my kids what they are worth

     How does a mom put a value on what we consider priceless? A tough question... but if left unanswered is maybe the most dangerous thing in the world. My job as a mother first and foremost is to teach my children that they have worth. That they are worthy and that they are therefore empowered and should feel confident. These things have been rolling around in my head. This job, raising kids, is so multi-faceted and so enormous. I feel like as of late, every time I turn on my tele or my radio I hear of a woman or a child being abused, killed, kidnapped, raped or tortured. I am tired. Tired of this.. of hearing this. If we all taught our kids their worth would this happen? If we taught even our boys this lesson would this happen?
     A friend posted this article about Elizabeth Smart. It opened my eyes. We are teaching our girls and our boys that a woman's worth lies in her -vagina -in her purity- in her looks ? None of these things are correct! And it sickens me to think of this. To hear that children of any religion or in any sex "education" (purposefully put in quotation marks) are being given examples of a doughnut or a cupcake being passed around the room and then asking them if now they want to eat it as everyone as touched it. Disgusting analogies and I'd like to point out that they are intentionally AIMED at women! My nine year old daughter will never be taught that when she chooses to have sex at the appropriate age for her that it will be to gain love and or respect. I have explained in great detail to my then 17 now 19 year old step daughter that when she does have sex that it should be because SHE chooses to. She should not do it with the hopes it will gain her anything. I did not lie and say it was magical or wonderful or powerful. I told the TRUTH. I said at 17 you will feel pain, embarrassment, uncomfortable almost shame. It will not feel "good" AT ALL the first time. Not for a girl. It is messy and at 17 you can not understand all the emotions you will feel or sort through them or cope with them so I asked her to promise me these things. That she would do it because SHE wanted to. Not because she was "talked into it" by a boy who WOULD feel good and who would get a release from it, who would not be uncomfortable or embarrassed most likely. I asked her to use precautions. I asked her to come to me and talk openly if she wanted to. I told her she would not be judged. I also explained that until she was comfortable in her own body and understood how it worked that she would most likely not have sex in a pleasurable way. I told her for me that was not until I was like 25! ha ha.. But I told the TRUTH.
     I will do that for my sons when the time comes. Tell them the truth. I will tell them that when a girls says NO it means fucking NO! ( by this mans rationale I could postulate that he deserves the electric chair) It's not a game. I will tell them that when they have sex it should be because THEY want to. Not their friends, not a girl. That their choices will effect them FOREVER. I will tell them that sperm once it enters a woman's uterus can create life. DUH! and that unless they are prepared to care for, support, and own up to the responsibility that that life brings they need to take precautions.
     I WILL NOT TEACH THEM ABSTINENCE!! I am not so old that I do not remember CLEARLY the feelings I had as a teen and the urges. To try to talk them out of what FEELS natural to them would be just plain stupid and fruitless. But I will arm them with facts and  more importantly I will teach them that I love them. That they are worthy of my love. They should be confident that I will love them NO MATTER WHAT. They will be taught that the value they place on THEMSELVES is the most important value of all. That this body is merely a shell and that silly terms and body parts like penises and vaginas are of no value but that what is inside of us- our beings, our souls- has no price tag and can not be replaced. Giving away that soul, allowing someone to hurt or damage it, allowing someones actions or words to alter it is the only sin here.
     I will teach them their own self worth and I BELIEVE with all of my soul that that lesson alone will be the one that shapes all of their decisions and not just the ones about sex. It will teach them to live the most joyous, successful and fulfilled  life that is possible. ( or at least I will die trying...)