I always feel like when I teach I should do a "If You Really Knew Me" segment. The story about the adoption and Olivia is only the end of my whole experience. I think a part of me while growing up, was wanting to BE a grown up. I feel like I'm 28 and should have children. But I'm 20. I know I still have a whole life to experience with my husband. I still know that even though what I've experienced doesn't define me. It changed me. It helped me grow spiritually, mentally and helped me become a better person for myself.
Doing a high school presentation just emotionally drains you. I didn't cry. But I see these kids and I really hope what I do helps them or helps someone change their lives. Help at least one person to realize that bringing a baby home with their significant other is what needs to happen.
This is what my rant will sort of be about. I went to the LDS Family Services Christmas Party. Which was a blasty-blast. I sat at a table and we got on the topic of teen pregnancy. It was a mixed table of birthmoms and adoptive moms. Which was pretty cool. One lady, just cracked me up. But what she said made me really think and get me angry.
This may only be happening in Utah County (at some stores) or it could be happening in other county's (counties? counteeeeees??) and states. She went to the pharmacy in the store and saw that the condoms were locked up. It may be because kids are stealing them.
Or it may be that parents believe if condoms are out in the aisle that kids are going to want to have sex with their boyfriend or girlfriend. Since when does condoms have this magical power to make any teenage boy or girl want to have sex? Really? The last time I checked, it was because of HORMONES. We all got them. Teens are always going to be curious about sex because it's all they hear in the halls.
I know that parents would like to believe that their kids are good and would never do anything like that. Um, I'll say it. *raising my hand hereeeee* I never thought I was going to get pregnant out of wedlock. "It would never happen to me." Right? I'd like to give myself every reason to believe that my children wouldn't do it.
I'm a nerd at heart. This CRACKED me up.Would you rather have your kids be protected from STD's and an unplanned pregnant? Or would you rather have your kid tell you that they need to be tested? Or need to tell you that you're going to be a grandparent? I know that abstinence is taught. That should be the emphasis. But if you're refusing to teach your children the importance of being safe, that's on you. That's on you for not educating your children. I know I will teach my kids that abstinence is the way to go. I was telling Tayler the other night, I know it may not be a good thing because I don't know how my kids will react growing up about it. But letting them know that they do have a biological half sister that I placed for adoption. Maybe that will partially be motivation that they will want all of their kids to have their brothers and sisters with them. It wasn't what I planned. But I'm not trying to punish myself or my future children for what was unplanned. I was giving their sister a better life then I could've then. And I waited for them to give them everything, too. But my children will always know about ways to protect themselves if it does happen. I can't stop it. As much as I wish they wouldn't do it. I'd rather keep them safe.
I know that's probably how most parents feel. They just want to keep them "innocent." High school has already tainted them. Get over it. They're going to grow up. Sounds harsh. But it's the truth. Listen, you'd rather be embarrassed that somebody in your church saw your son or daughter walk around with a box of condoms in their hand or rather be embarrassed that EVERYONE sees your daughter walking around pregnant or your son pushing a baby in a stroller? I literally high five every teenager I see walking around with condoms. I at least know they're being safe.
This is the ridiculous part of it. Teens WILL be embarrassed about it. They know it's not something they should be doing. So to walk up to the pharmacist, who could possibly be their neighbor or church member, and ask them for a box of condoms? No teenager would risk doing that just so they could call their mom and let them know what their kid bought today at the store. So instead, they'll go mess around with their boyfriend/girlfriend without it. Now, your child will be coming to you in about a month letting you know they're with child. Congrats, grandma.
Another thing, no one wants to go to the cashier with a box of condoms. So they want to go through the self check out and by the way if you do that. The door will BEEP when you leave. The guy has to check your bag and your ID. You can't buy condoms if you're under 18 if you go through the self check out. Just to let you know. But that's the WHOLE point of doing it right?? To make sure know one else but you knows?
I did what Joniece did when she spoke at a middle school. I just wanted to see the effect that it had. I had them raise their hands and I asked them if any of them were in a relationship. I told the girls to just think about this because I didn't want them to be judged if they have done it or not. If they have participated in any sexual activity or sexting because a boy said I love you. Or "We should do it because I love you." And then I had the boys raise their hands if they were or are currently in a relationship if they were 100% the girl that they were with right now is the girl they want to marry and spend the rest of their lives with. both classes, NONE of the boys raised their hands. I asked, "Are you sure? Really? None of you? So... if you know you can't marry your girlfriend or girls, if you know the boys aren't 100% sure they want to stay with you. What makes you think you're ready for a baby right now? Sex isn't going to make him love you and a baby isn't going to make him stay."
More than once I was told that I should do something because they love me. Being a giddy high school girl who wants nothing more to be loved, I believed it. I fell for it more than once. You'd think that I'd learn the first time but I'm hopeful. I'm optimistic about love. What high school girl isn't? What girl doesn't want to hear that they're perfect? That someone understands them in this crazy messed up life?
Parents, it has nothing to do with your teaching methods if your children "mess up." I remember reading somewhere that you can teach them and the teachings of Jesus Christ and what He wants you to do. You are accountable for your children but ultimately it's THEIR decisions. If you taught all you could and they turned out that way. It's not your fault. You can only be a parent and teach them the right things and let them learn themselves. Even though as much as it would hurt you. You just need to support them even if you don't agree with it, no matter how badly it hurts you. It will all catch up to them. Just pray. I was one of those teens. I didn't listen. I did what I wanted. My life changed. It may not have been easy. I don't want anyone else to have to endure it. But I know it doesn't stop with me. I just hope being a voice will hopefully reduce it. You can't do everything on your own. It will catch up to them like it did for me. They might not have to endure the exact same thing but they will eventually have a change of heart. Don't lose hope.
T Swifty, "Wasn't it beautiful runnin' wild 'til you fell asleep? Before the monsters caught up to you?"