I hate to brag, but I’m probably the stupidest person I know. Want an example of my dumbery? Take women for instance. To me, women are like cellos. I don’t know anything about them either. How did I learn so much about opposite sex? I can trace my knowledge to when my father and I had “the talk.”
We were driving for a family fishing trip, for some reason he and I were alone, which was unusual because I have six siblings. We had recently driven out of the range of the radio, when he asked me, “So, what do you want to talk about?” I replied, “Whatever you want.” He asked, “Do you want to talk about sex?” Being a teenage boy the idea my dad even knew what that was kind of grossed me out. I remember replying, “Father, as engrossing and intriguing as that subject may be, being as how I am a teenage boy and have a natural inclination, and curiosity toward said subject, I fear this is something I would rather not broach with you on this occasion. However, given time to mentally prepare, you could pontificate with me at a later date.” That’s how I remember answering. The truth is closer to, (rolling down the window) “Dad, slow down. I see more cows. MOOOOOOO!!!!”
I have since regretted not having the talk. He did say if I had any questions he would be happy to answer them. I’m in my forties, and have four kids, might be a little awkward to go to him now.
Recently Planned Parenthood (PP) in Denver, Colorado has launched an “ICYC” (In Case You’re Curious) texting program. Taking “Sexting” to a new level. Anytime your child has a question about sex, they can text PP and someone on the other end of the phone will text back an answer. Yes, now parents can sleep soundly at night knowing their son or daughter can have a one-on-one chat session with a Planned Parenthood operative, completely unchecked, or supervised, on a phone, probably paid for by them. According to an article by Rita Diller, “Planned Parenthood stands to do more one-on-one damage to adolescents through its sex message texting service than through any form of communication it has yet bridged.”
(Quick question: If you get sexted by someone you don’t like. Does that mean you just got molexted, or violexted?)
What could go possibly go wrong with this program? To put things in perspective, imagine if I invited a 14 year old girl over to my house to have a private chat about sex. Not only would I be super creepy, I would also be worried about having my teeth (justifiably) kicked in by the girl’s father. I don’t want to confuse you with technical jargon, but this is icky.
As a parent, or a teen, you don’t know who is at the other end of the phone. Conversations can evolve, and you can’t know a person motives. As painful as it is, parents, you need to have an open dialog about sex with your teenagers. It’s embarrassing, it’s uncomfortable – they may know more about sex then you do, but you have make sure it isn’t a taboo subject. They are going to find out, wouldn’t you rather it be from you?
The New York Times, had a article describing this and similar programs. It said of one such program, “Now, through the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health, Mr. Chavez texts and blogs, with a focus on gay teenagers, about such subjects as what to do if a condom breaks, which clinics are gay-friendly and where to find low-cost lubricants — “things people need to know on the fly,” he said.”
The only thing I know about flies is they spread disease – it’s probably a good idea to keep yours zipped up.