vendredi, avril 26, 2013

quotable

"I beg young people to travel. If you don’t have a passport, get one. Take a summer, get a backpack go to Delhi, go to Saigon, go to Bangkok, go to Kenya. Have your mind blown, eat interesting food, dig some interesting people, have an adventure, be careful. Come back and you’re going to see your country differently, you’re going to see your president differently, no matter who it is.

Music, culture, food, water. Your showers will become shorter. You’re going to get a sense of what globalization looks like. It’s not what Tom Friedman writes about, I’m sorry. You’re going to see that global climate change is very real. And that for some people, their day consists of walking 12 miles for four buckets of water. And so there are lessons that you can’t get out of a book that are waiting for you at the other end of that flight. A lot of people - Americans and Europeans - come back and go, ‘Ohhhhh.’ And the lightbulb goes on." - Henry Rollins

samedi, avril 20, 2013

lundi, avril 08, 2013

let's talk about sex...

So, yeah.  The Mister and I have added new lines to our resumes -- we're now also professional bloggers. (I say 'also' because we haven't quit our day jobs.  We're just also writing about parenting and other things, too.) 

Here is a piece I wrote that was originally published at Kidville's Voices From the Ville.

Let’s Talk About Sex

Like most parents, I spend plenty of time thinking about my children and how much faster they are growing up than I did.  I’m sure my parents and grandparents had the same thoughts as they stared at their babies, but when I think about the seismic shifts in culture and technology that have happened in my lifetime, I’m positive my kids face significantly more complex situations than I did at their age.
poster-sexy-baby
Yes — sex, drugs, and rock and roll have been in the picture for eons.  But we’re in a brave new world when it comes to sex. Porn has sexualized our culture and upped the ante.  Sexual attitudes, self-image, and what’s normal/expected for men – and women – are very different today than they were in the 1970s.  And today’s technology is magnifying our sexualized culture – especially for tweens and teens.

I recently came across a trailer for “Sexy Baby,” a documentary that follows a 12-year old girl, a porn star hoping to become a mom, and a kindergarten teacher as each attempts to find her way in a world where all of us are told who to be, how to act, and what to look like.  The filmmakers have this to say:
… we had intimate and candid conversations with kids in middle school classrooms, suburban shopping malls, nightclubs, college dorms, and even conducted an informal roundtable during a high school house party. While chronicling trends among small town and big city kids, we discovered this: Having pubic hair is considered unattractive and gross. Most youngsters know someone who has emailed or texted a naked photo of themselves. Many kids have accidentally or intentionally had their first introduction to sex be via hardcore online porn.
While it makes my head hurt, I have to wrap my brain around how I can help my kids navigate a sexual landscape that didn’t exist when I was a kid. Unfortunately, I can’t look to my own upbringing on this topic because  my own parent’s silence was deafening.

Girl in chair

A friend recently reminded me that “we still have control and responsibility at home. No worries… you will have way more positive and negative influence than anything else.”  While that’s a bit daunting, it’s also encouraging. 

My take-away is this: my husband and I will need to work even harder to instill strong self-esteem, help create a positive body image, and get comfortable speaking candidly (and frequently) to our kids about sex.  I hope that as our children grow, we’ll be able to have a relationship with them such that questions are asked and answered, information is shared, and emotions are discussed. But I also want to share with them the timeless truths about sex: it’s a very big deal with major consequences attached to a physical act (emotional ones just as much as STDs).  It is also a wonderful thing. Over time, they’ll probably get much better at understanding and communicating about sex.

And then it will be their turn to worry about their kids growing up too quickly.

Images Source//  Main Image // Body Images

vendredi, avril 05, 2013

quotable

"In the sheltered simplicity of the first days after a baby is born, one sees again the magical closed circle, the miraculous sense of two people existing only for each other, the tranquil sky reflected on the face of the mother nursing her child." -- Anne Morrow Lindbergh, Gift from the Sea, Chapter IV: Double-Sunrise