OK, so it like this...
I'm participating in this bible study, dealing with "5 Conversations You Must Have With Your Daughter" by Vicki Courtney. Great study. I am enjoying the fellowship with other moms as well as the questions the study makes me ask myself.
IT IS HARD, too!!!
It is like having the "birds and bees" talk over and over....sometimes it is just that uncomfortable. However, in order to protect, love and shelter my little princess, this mom is trying her hardest. As a student minister's wife, it really is easier talking to other girls about the subject... I just have this fear in the back of my head, that if I admit some of my shortcomings in my youth to my own daughter, that it sort of "gives her permission." Yet, I know without any knowledge, without communication, without unfailing support and love, my daughter and others like her will not survive their teenage years in tact and whole.
We have discussed issues in the study like God's plan for marriage, the problems that premarital sex leads to, self esteem issues, modesty, growing up too fast, etc.. etc.. etc... it has all been good.
Last week however was rough. The media builds up the attractiveness of premarital sex, never showing how tough one split minute decision can lead to in life. They attempted to show a young girl dealing with teen pregnancy this past year on TV. But even then, it was glamorized. After all, the one thing television and the media can not do, and that is live your life. They have no way of knowing how guilt, low self esteem, hurt and fear look on the individual girl. Unfortunately, without the saving grace of the Lord Almighty, there is never a "happily ever after," or a "perfect prince."
That being said, last weeks discussion in Bible study was about whether you would hand out birth control if you found out your child was having sex. (Taking a deep breathe right now.) I don't know how you feel, but I am going to be honest, I wouldn't. So many people are worried about the "baby" issue. Frankly, I wouldn't want to be the grandmother raising her grandchild either, but I would do what I needed to do to help my little girl. Truth is, it is so much more than about whether a baby is born. It is about self esteem, love and total forgiveness. My child has been taught right and wrong...if she messes up, we will deal with it in a loving and supportive manner. Kids need to be taught that there are consequences to every action. When you choose to act like an adult than you will need to be prepared to make some very adult decisions. But they also need to know that their parents are there at every turn, ready to help, even if it is uncomfortable.
I think because we get so caught up in putting a mental "band aide" on the problem, by handing out birth control, agreeing to let teenagers have an abortion, being ignorant of what our children are doing, we just add more problems, never really dealing with the real issue at hand. We need to talk to our kids, support our kids, shower them with the word, and if they still fall short, then we shower them with grace...just like the Heavenly Father bathes us in everyday.
Believe it or not kids crave rules. They need guidance. They want to know you care enough to put up boundaries to protect them. They need a little independence, but they need to know that you are never far away either. What has happened to the family unit?
Now that I have got on my soapbox a little, I am going to come down a little. For it is very easy to "TALK," yet very, very hard to sometimes practice what you preach. Last Sunday night after church, my daughter started asking me some very hard questions. Taking a deep breathe, I answered...honestly. It is always hard for a parent to share their weaknesses with their children, to admit things they feel great guilt over, to try to be the example and role model they need you to be, only for them to find out that you fall short. Yet, what an awesome way to teach the love of the Father.
I survived. Training for many more conversations to come, I know.
Then Monday came. I was told about a "good" girl and boy in our community. They both go to church, come from Christian, church going families... they went all the way, so to speak, in their relationship. BE STILL MY HEART! 8Th graders. About the same age as my daughter. My heart broke just a little, when told by this mom how they regret the decision, live in fear that the kids will find out, suffering from guilt. Not so glamorous now, huh?
Then Wednesday night my daughter, who knows nothing about the above situation, proclaims that she thinks that "Bob" is cute. Who is Bob? None other than the boy from the situation above...
Get on your knees everyone. We are living in a scary world....our children need us and our Heavenly Father like never before.