Sex and Violence: Like Peanut Butter and Jelly?


"Equating sex to sin is in my opinion the LOWEST POINT of the church and the LOWEST POINT of American culture," I wrote in the comments section of my last post which created not only a wave of opinion and insight, but made me realize that perhaps the problem is much more than I originally thought. And by problem, I mean: our puritanical views and need to control the world we have decided to bring our children in to.

The brilliant and inspiring, ECR posted the following comment and I think she hit it right on the nose:

"I especially agree with your points regarding repressed sexuality. I feel that we, as women, would do better to embrace sex first, and then work to address the iniquities in a sex culture dominated by men. Women do not need to refer to their own sisters as "sluts." Whose cause does that kind of language further? Also, I don't buy the argument that porn is an evil that one must equate with guns and drugs. I think a lot of the excesses and addictions that exist today around sex are a result of a culture that denigrates the act."


Somehow we seem to have forgotten that young people have sexual instincts just as we do. I started masturbating at age five, not because of Britney Spears' influence (I wasn't even aware of what sex was at that age. All I had seen on television was Sesame Street) but because sexuality is as natural an instinct as there is.

Should I feel abnormal for having done so? Of course not. Then who is to blame? Little girls who masturbate are dirty. Come on, people! Why? Why is what comes naturally so frowned upon? So unspoken of. Taboo?

Young women and young boys are aware that they have a body, even a sexual one. The media doesn't teach us this. It's inherent. We reproduce. We have instincts. We have sex with or without Jenna Jameson showing us how.

"Too much sex and violence on TV."

"Why the sex and violence?"

"Parent Advisory: Sex and violence."

"Sex and violence lead to the sexually violent."

Sex and violence? Together forever?

STOP SEX AND VIOLENCE!!!

Is watching two naked bodies, doing what two naked bodies often do, just as "bad" as watching some dude with a hatchet cutting people's legs off? Some (Okay, MANY) would argue it's worse.

One of the reasons I have always been reluctant to call myself a feminist is because I think women are held down by women for the most part and not by men.

Like ECR said, women refer to their own sisters as sluts. Women trash each other like it's just another day. Women beat each other down with jealousy and anger and resentment. Ask most women who they feel threatened by and they will say "other women," myself included. This is to me an issue that calling oneself "feminist" does not change. This makes many, including me feel like an outsider to the club/the movement/the community.

In my days of sexual freedom, never once in the company of a man did I feel "slutty." It was always in the company of women. It was the eyes that came from the chick at the end of the bar. It was the comments from mutual friends. The hypocrisy from Sex and the City-obsessed bar-hoppers who loved to talk about how awesome "SEXUALLY LIBERATED SAMANTHA" was and then bash every Real-Life-Samantha, women who were "having sex like men," including me. The hypocrisy was almost comedic.

I have no problem with sex. Writing about it. Talking about it. Being uninhibited when I have it and why the hell should I be?


Women are to keep their legs closed like a lady. Children are to understand that sex is inappropriate, reserved for adults. That their bodies are sacred and holy while women in cleavage-dipping shirts on cover of magazines are sluts. Sex should not sell, in fact sex selling is something we must stop. A sexual female can and will be disrespected, unless of course she's married or very much in love. How is that feminist? How is that pro-woman?

Raise your hand if you have sex. Raise your hand if you like sex. Raise your hand if you think sex is something reserved for sluts and HBO after hours. Raise your hand if you hate talking about sex. Raise your hand if you're American. Raise your hand if your life is rated PG-13. And your children get a nice healthy G slapped on their foreheads.

My apologies if you have been in on the debate and have read my comments but one of the first things I was shocked with when I first traveled abroad at 18 were the naked beaches. How was it possible that men and boys weren't freaking out at the sight of beautiful Italian women chasing each other around, topless? No one cared. The concept was so alien to me and even after living overseas and spending quite a bit of time on the beaches of France and Greece and the Spanish islands, I still wondered how it would be possible for teenage boys to be so underwhelmed by tanned, naked women everywhere.

Of course in America, the boys would be out of control excited. It would be a HUGE deal and perhaps most telling, It would be against the law.

Many of you who commented were European or from elsewhere across the pond, like Helena who responded with this:

"When I read this post it didn't occur to me that this would generate such a debate with such "strange views". I call it "strange views" because, as an European, sometimes I find your American views and your American beliefs so strange it's almost surreal. I do not want to offend anyone, but the image Americans project is the bush image... Americans try to paint a world of black and white but you always forget the greys. Please tell your children about greys, let them play with barbies, let the magazines be in the shelves, make them aware of what surrounds them...that's the only (way to) kick away the bush that lies beneath..."


The bush that lies beneath is more than just the president. I'm talking the other bush. The bush we do not discuss, the most important bush of all... The bush that is as dangerous as a weapon, as rated R as a serial killer. The bush that lies beneath... our torsos. Vagina. Pussy. Cunt. Whatever you want to call her. SHE IS ALLOWED. And believe it or not, sometimes she has nothing to do with the media. Or peers. Or porn. Or violence. Sometimes she just exists.

Seems to me, the only way sex and violence relate to one another is in the context that sexual repression creates violent and angry people. If we were all having great sex and if we weren't so damn afraid of it, I'm pretty sure we would have a lot fewer issues and lead much more fulfilled lives.

GGC

EDITED: Somehow several paragraphs were missing from this post several hours after I posted. Apologies for those of you who read and found that it made no sense. I tried to fill in the mysteriously missing gaps as best I could... For those of you who subscribe to this blog and have the original, please let me know. Thanks!

33 comments:

Emily of Redwhineandboo | 1:24 PM

Raising my hand, and applauding your honesty. Thank you for your thought provoking posts this week.

Kristen | 1:53 PM

We're an uptight nation - guided by the Religious Right.

The bible still rules, whether we want to admit it or not.

I have no issues with boobs and vaginas. Particularly nice ones.

Jessica | 2:18 PM

Girl, could we PUH-LESE elect you to office!

toyfoto | 2:19 PM

I have been railing against this for years, too.

SEX = VIOLENCE? Uh. Nope. Not even close.

Sex drive is biological. It starts early. Just say no? Yeah. Might as well damn up a river with driveway stones. Girls were already seen as automatic victims and now boys are becoming vics too (so long as the seductresses are white and relatively attractive) You know, TV loves them a good scandal.

Porn? We can't even define it. So how can we legislate it? XXX videos or Bratz dolls? Eye of the beholder, right?

Even R. Foley is taking time out from votes on the funding of the war in Iraq to beat his meat.

This all just tells me we're talking our of both sides of our face in this country, which ultimately means we're lying to ourselves.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 2:43 PM

YES! YES! YES!

ECR | 3:25 PM

It just so happens that the Censored Hollywood book pictured here was a textbook used in one of the only college classes in which I ever got an A+. Film and Censorship, it was called. The main thrust was that sex is censored even more than violence in Hollywood today. Obviously, such curbing of sexual expression transcends the screen. I think of that class all the time. It was without a doubt the course that had the most impact on me, though I didn't realize it then. I did know that I was trying so hard to grasp the issues surrounding my newfound college freedom and the overpowering rush of sexuality. I remember reading other textbooks like "Defending Pornography: Free Speech, Sex and the Fight For Women's Rights" by Nadine Strossen. I needed those academic books to help make sense of my world because practical experience just wasn't doing it for me. Somehow I didn't find the college culture (mine was an all-women's school) of slut-calling or getting talked about behind one's back all that constructive.

Anyway, thanks for bringing this up. I look forward to reading the responses.

Also, you forgot "twat" :)

Kvetch | 4:29 PM

Growing up publicly completely repressed until age 38, your post helped me realize some things. First of all, it's difficult to come out of ones shell when it's not only personal, but political. I am doing a "bang-up" job with my daughter so far, and with my son, but have a long way to go. As for myself, it's a constant struggle to be held hostage in the suburbs by two kids and three dogs and not be able to figure out the other side of things. I know that I pretend to be completely asexual and uninterested depending whom I'm around. No offense to the married lot, but married women don't talk alot about sex. I have two single friends and our conversations are quite truthful, but sometimes I feel like I live a double-life. Lots to think about. Thanks GGC.

Christina | 5:44 PM

Yes! I've been saying for years that sex and violence aren't equal. Yet our society sometimes even thinks violence is more OK than sex. Sex is a normal part of being a human - violence doesn't have to be.

Like Kristen, I generally have no problems with breasts and vaginas. What I don't appreciate is marketing that tries to push girls to grow up before their natural development (like those padded bras for 6 year olds), and since we're such a repressed society, I dislike the constant attempt by the media to sell products by making boys and men jump out of their pants by the site of a nearly naked woman.

Thank you for this post.

MrsFortune | 7:00 PM

"Seems to me, the only way sex and violence relate to one another is in the context that sexual repression creates violent and angry people. If we were all having great sex and if we weren't so damn afraid of it, I'm pretty sure we would have a lot fewer issues and lead much more fulfilled lives."

Once again, you've captured something that's alluded me, but I totally second (third? fifth? eighteenth?) that emotion.

And I wish you would call yourself a feminist. (my word verification is blsrpzoo, by the way, which I find amusing in some way here).

Eleanor Velasco | 2:02 AM

As a 'Eurpoean' I can wholeheartedly agree with the naturist beaches comment. Having grown up spending most holidays on them I can attest that no one cares. No one at all.
Except - the American College Boys who you see staring, & staring, & staring. Staring until people want to leave the beaches. Making comments that they think Italinas or French or Germans cannot understand - even though we learn two languages from age 4 or 5.
It makes me feel sorry for their future wives....
I hate that the true glory of one's sexual being, one's sexual freedom, has been hijacked by the far right/NRA brigade.
I don't know why i dragged the NRA into it just now, but you know what I mean.
I wish we as human beings - not just women - could take back our bodies from the censors, from the college boys & from the scared, scared men who lead us.

Norwegian chick | 3:40 AM

Thanks for another great post!! I`m a European, as many of your readers, and I must say that I find the American way of thinking about THE BODY a bit strange. I`ve seen my mother, my father, all three of my brothers, my grand mothers etc. etc. naked! Heck, I even showered with my father as a child! This is something I LOVE telling Americans! Just to see their reaction and how shocked they get....

Woman on the Verge | 4:25 AM

What great posts...both of them. You speak so honestly about these issues. sadly, this American society will never change and we can only expect to become more repressed and ignorant is these matters. I have vowed to teach my children the truth. To never hide from them the facts of life, whatever they might be. Amen sista...I only wish more people had these same views. It's a shame that our daughters will be raised believing sex is bad no matter what we teach them.

Cam | 6:46 AM

I am going to chime in as a "christian", which I put in quotations because extremist sects glorified by the media conjure up the image of hate spewing, Bible thumping Puritans holding signs with pictures of aborted fetuses. Let me also say upfront that I am not trying to convert anyone to my beliefs, I simply want to share my view. In my home, we guide our children (two daughters) with love, not hate, with tolerance and understanding, honesty and openness. When I was growing up nothing was censored in my life and it led to some very confused, conflicting feelings about who I was as a sexual being. I want my daughters to be exposed to their sexual selves naturally, not because of something they saw on tv or on a shelf in a grocery store or because some man exposed himself to them at the park. And at no point will I ever make my daughters (and sons if I ever have any) ashamed of their bodies and the pleasures they are meant for. Nowhere in the Bible does it say that sex is bad or unnatural or a sin, that is something people have twisted and perverted for their own uses. (There is actually an entire book devoted to beautiful sexual love, Song of Solomon.) My goal for my daughters is that they grow up confident, strong and with the knowledge that their bodies are their own. I will equip them to deal with the world around them, to love the people around them and to go after whatever they desire. I will answer their questions as they get older with complete honesty. But I don't want the media culture around them to push them in a direction they are not ready to handle, emotionally or physically and so I will be very careful about what they are exposed to and whether or not it will strip them of their beautiful innocence too soon.

Hippie Mama | 7:37 AM

I love these posts of late. Great discussion going on here. This is the kind of thing people need to bring out into the open.

I too have never understood why the sex and violence warnings go hand in hand. I would rather my child see sex in a movie than violence any day. What I don't like is the image of sex portrayed by the media. It is extremely narrow and allows little room for women of different ethnicities and body types. It presents women as sex objects, as there for men's pleasure only. We shouldn't be censoring our kids from it because sex is bad, but because what is shown is often such a misrepresentation of reality.

"A sexual female can and will be disrespected, unless of course she's married or very much in love. How is that feminist? How is that pro-woman?"

It isn't feminist and it isn't pro-woman. It's the kind of stereotype feminists work to eliminate.

Eleanor Velasco | 8:01 AM

Argh, I'm having a bad spelling week! I meant 'European' - not 'Eurpoean'. Good grief...

Julie Pippert | 9:35 AM

Okay...

Uhhh...

I'm going to quibble a bit.

First, I think the gravest societal misservice the Church has done is to pit people against people by building such strict buckets of "belief" and "nonbelief" instead a more dynamic, gnostic approach to spiritual knowledge. That's where you get the violence. Converting by force, or killing all resisters to groupthink had a major societal impact that I think extends into secular life as well.

Second, I think (and this is a long complicated theory that I'll try to summarize) some men are allowed a "boys will be boys" life that abdicates them from sexual responsibility. Unlike women (historically), they are expected to have "animal urges" (sexual urges). Of course, this is from the whole "Eve led Adam into sin" idea which does a grave disservice to both men and women (poor men with such an inability to think for themselves---or take responsibility for their actions and decisions). At any rate, there is a Thing out there that seems to teach some men that Some Women are Open for Business, if you know what I mean. I think they are just pressured, in a variety of ways, and need some women to be available.

So all that to say (and I'm trying to be succinct and hope I do not lose my point and justification for said point in that) men can be just as guilty of "slut trashing" a woman as women can.

I think women are taught a real fear of being sexualized and objectified in a *harmful* way, and as such try very hard to Be Good so that victimization won't happen to them. When it does happen to someone, as it will, and it will be an act of violence when it against the will, it is important for people to maintain their feeling of safety by distinguishing themselves.

It's not ideal.

But I don't think it is as clear cut as vindictiveness or holding one another down.

It's a fear factor, and a need to feel like it can't happen to me. And here's why it can't happen to me. Here's how I am different.

And I think this is oen reason that if it does happen...we are so filled with shame and a sense fo "what did I do wrong?"

If, like you said, we had a healthier approach, perhaps this would all be lesser. Once can hope!

I admit to sex. In fact, I just blogged about how my sexual urges change as I age

I don't have the straight up answers. I don't even have the curvy answers. It's a strange twist, as always, on not wanting to be restricted from a healthy way of being and accepting the very real society we live in.

Now...sometime we need to discuss the difference I've noticed in mothers raising boys versus girls.

And in the meantime, you have rad Sarah Blaffer Hrdy, right?

Julie Pippert | 9:44 AM

Oh yeah...I knew I missed a big point.

I agree completely about the need to divorce sex from violence.

There is a physiological reason for sex and sexual pleasure, and we all find it (I think) fairly young.

Did you hear the small movement about how five-point harnesses were "sexualizing" children younger and younger and causing an increase in masturbation? So some wanted to change the belts? I'm not making this up. I am not this creative.

I'd rather talk about sex with my kids than violence.

tallgirl | 9:49 AM

Cam beet me to the point that the bible isn't what says sex is bad, it is right wing fanatics who claim it is bad. Jesus never talked about sex.

I have only had intercourse with one person because I wanted it to be special. I know sex isn't that big of a deal, but I also feel like so much is "not that big of a deal" these days. My parents never forced one school or thought or another on me. They always answered my questions honestly. I have known what sex was since I was 3 years old because that is when my brother was born.

I guess I am on the other side of the coin being chastised for not joining in. People thought I was a little weird in college. That is fine.

I do like some porn now and again, and I think that is fine too.

It boils down to it isn't really anyones business what I do with my body or what goes on in my house.

Kell | 10:06 AM

So right when you say it has only ever been women, fellow sisters that have made me feel like a slut or called me a slag. The looks, the sneers.
I used to wear nighties out in the 90's (LOL), fish nets under red pvc fetish skirts, how my mother let me out of the house I'll never know. I was experimenting with fashion but I can see I looked a bit 'out there' Not sure i could bring myself to be so free with my girls as I know what guys were whispering to me when I was 18 and what women were saying to their friends about me behind my back. I dont want my girls to be bullied by other women, to be brought down by them like I was. BUT, I didnt back down, I didnt change the way I dressed. I got some stick for it and I DO hope that my daughters have the guts to be themselves.
My dress sense issues have since resolved themselves but I still have that worry in me..'What will she think of that?'and yet I couldnt care less what men think I look like. Why?????

As for porn, the only time I have ever felt guilty for looking at it was when it was my Mothers secret stash that I found somewhere I shouldnt have been looking! ;)

JanaMom | 11:00 AM

Right on, Tallgirl! It isn't anyone's freaking business!

I was told all about sex at age 4. Then, at age 12, my parents moved us to a nudist community. I was given informational books and frank, open conversations. As a result, I have always loved and respected my body, and I understood sex for what it was and should be, and never endangered myself. Knowledge is power!

On the thought string of lumping sex in with violence....TOTALLY ABHORRENT! What more can I say? Here is one for you: My husband and I recently acquired a LeapFrog "Alphabet Pal" for our 16-month-old. It is a caterpillar that says the alphabet, letters, and letter sounds. It is sensored so that you cannot make it say dirty words. Fuck, sex, ass, cunt, pussy, dick, cock, tit, etc. All are sensored, as well as some racial slurs. What is not sensored? Kill, hit, stab, slap, etc. Every violent word we could think of worked! Even Leapfrog believes sex is worse than violence.

Shameful.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 11:13 AM

Wow. Unbelievable. It makes me so sad to hear that. It is the same in the chatroom I work in with my kids. They can say kill, murder, stab, etc... but they cannot say vagina.

Unbelievable.

And knowledge is power! We can only understand what our eyes are opened to.

(Closed-mindedness on these issues confuses me.)

And Julie, you rock for being so involved in the last couple of posts.

Julie Pippert | 11:31 AM

Kell, your point is so key, and is one to not miss. You said, "...it has only ever been women, fellow sisters that have made me feel like a slut..."

Is it more important what those of our fellow gender think of us, because we are part of a sisterhood, or think we ought to be?

If the men are whispering "slut" and making moves...why is that less hurtful than when our fellow women whisper "whore?" Or less of a factor in defining our self-image?

And does our sexual orientation impact this?

What is our orientation, our focus?

I wonder...

And I wonder as one who is hetero, and who preferred boys as friends in my youth...

(GCC glad to participate in such an intersting discussion...and glad oyu don't mind me doing so. :) )

cinnamon gurl | 2:10 PM

Thank you! Thank you for separating sex and violence. I have been struggling with this, wondering why sex is as horrible for children as violence. And yet. I still feel uncomfortable with some of the sex out there. Maybe when it seems less about expression and more about trying to please or shock the audience?

And your comments about not calling yourself a feminist has got me reconsidering. I think I still come back to needing to reclaim the word and not let it become the dirty word that so many women feel it is.

And amen re: the word slut. The only person who called me a slut to my face was my mother. When I told her I was still a virgin at the time, she revised, "Well maybe you should look the word up in the dictionary because you might still qualify. It's about the appearance of sex too."

my word verification is ffvkk, which also makes me giggle and seems highly appropriate.

Alisyn | 2:48 PM

There are so many points made in this post that I agree with, that I could take up a lot of time commenting here, or I could just say "job well done, GGC" and be done with it. So that's what I'll do.

Excellent, thoughtful, sad and all too true post.

Anonymous | 10:10 AM

This makes me feel so relieved to hear your entry today. I have felt the same way my whole life but couldn't articulate it. It should be a column/article in a major women's magazine! seriously!

I don't think our hang-ups and paranoia about sex all come from "The Church" (which I am not sure which one or all you are referring to). I think there are some people who are raised in an uptight environment, some because of religion, some because of other reasons. They basically repress or deny themselves all kinds of pleasures, including sexual ones and justify it as "the right thing to do". A sacrifice, per say. When others don't do the same thing, those sacrificers feel shocked and jealous (hey - they Can't do that!) and then they have no choice but to resent and look down on those that acted freely. Thus, the name calling (sluts) and resentment. A group of these people marry (a repressed woman and a man who was taught as a boy that you can fuck a girl but don't marry her type) and they produce more uptight kids. I have TONS of friends (married) who never undress in front of their toddlers because they think their boys will remember it! And they aren't Christians or religious in any way! It is just being uncomfortable with their bodies and the feelings it gives them and others.

I am naked in my house (and outside) whenever I damn well feel like it. Almost always in front of my kids. Not in front of the neighbors (I don't care to be oogled at). But my 4 year old son doesn't even know it is odd or rare to see his mom's boobs. I wonder if some day I will have to stop??? Will he tell me? should I listen?

Anyway, my point is that I don't think we should flat out blame a certain politician or church for our sexual insanity in this country. I think that is a huge cop-out. Yes, religion can fuck you up. But all religions have hypocritical beliefs and even "open minded" politicians can still do some pretty screwed up stuff. I think there are some crazy people in this world who need direction (like from a religion, telling them to take things in moderation, limiting sexual partners, not drinking, etc) because they can't control their impulses and can be a danger to others and/or themselves. For the rest of us, we can handle it without all these restrictions. But I think we do it to ourselves. Especially women.

Now, all you married women, start talking to your uptight neighbors about sex. I do this all the time (I am a PhD in sexual behavior so I kind of force it). They might appear uncomfortable at first but eventually they all start talking to me about stuff. They just want to talk. I feel I am changing lots of women around me just by opening up conversations. Saying the word pussy every once and a while for shock value and letting them know I watch porn. I swear, it really works.

kittenpie | 9:03 PM

I'm going to say I agree with what you are saying here about how sex should not be equated with violence, nor should it be seen as equal in the esteem we place upon it. I also will be the first to say that yes, americans have some odd views.

But I have to say that the comingling of sex and violence goes way back and is not inherently American. Rape has been used as a means of asserting dominance by invading forces for milennia. Some of the earliest mass killers, including Elizabeth Bathory, expressed feelings of sexual pleasure, in her case when bathing in the blood of her victims. Jack the Ripper, the first serial killer in the modern mode that is known, had all the hallmarks of a sexual slayer and preyed upon prostitutes. Prostitution is and always has been a dangerous profession, one rife with the risk of being beaten or killed. Sex with the slain bodies of enemies on battlefields has gone on for ages. Even rats, in confined quarters, begin to rape, which we all know is about power and violence, but is a sexual expression of them.
Weapons are always described as phallic symbols and are often of that shape. Women are more likely to be abused by a sexual partner than anyone else.

There has been, always, a strange power dynamic around sex and violence, and it occasionally crosses and comingles in horrible ways.

I'm in no way saying this is all fine, in case I even need to say it. Just that if we want to talk about something, maybe even really address it, we need to be honest about how deep it runs in the human psyche, not just put it on the obvious things like American culture or religion distorting things, or else any solution will be a bandaid, or perhaps an aspirin to mask the pain of what is really a brain tumour.

slackermommy | 7:25 AM

Great post! I'm also very open about sex and have been that way since a kid. My parents tried to hide anything sexual from me and talked about sex and nakedness as if it were bad or dirty. Their approach had the opposite effect on me. I became more curious and nearly sent them to their grave when I became a promiscuous teen. I'm raising my own kids differently. We call body parts by their anatomical name, they've seen me naked, I don't make them feel bad about touching themselves, and I plan to teach them that sex is wonderful with someone you love. I also agree with anonymous that the church and politicians shouldn't take all the blame for our hang-ups. I personally think once you are an adult you are responsible for formulating your own views. The sexual uptightness of America is multifaceted. I'm active in my church but I also cuss like a sailor, have nasty sex with my husband, watch porn, and love to talk about sex and maturbation. I also take a striptease fitness class with two 60 year old women from my church and have had some really fantastic conversations about sex with them. My point is that blaming church and politics isn't the fix. Like anon said we need to start talking more to help disinigrate the taboos of sex. And violence? Just bad!

What an interesting word verification for my comment: iequmtv

Anonymous | 11:47 AM

Slackermommy, when you said: I'm active in my church but I also cuss like a sailor, have nasty sex with my husband, watch porn, and love to talk about sex and maturbation: I could have typed the same thing, it is like you totally described me. makes me want to hang out with you! wish you lived in the Florida Keys! I am not trying to be anonymous just haven't registered yet.

GGC: this is a great discussion you have started. Also, your wedding pics are great.

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 11:51 AM

Great points a la the church and you're right, it goes a LOT deeper than that. Plenty of churchgoers own sex swings, I imagine and GOOD FOR THEM. Great comments, everyone and thank YOU for participating in this discussion, everyone.

Little Thinker | 12:04 AM

I am late in joining in but I want to leave my thoughts too.

I am a married woman with an 8 year old boy and 6 year old girl. I agree with mostly everyone on this discussion. I just wonder how do we teach our children that intercourse is a beautiful thing to be shared with a person we love and not just anyone? Teenagers tend to not know the difference. Do you mothers tell your kids that sex in nice and great but be aware of STD's? My children are young still and these questions always bother me. I worry. To me, having sex is fun but I want my kids to be careful. Kids these days have sex with friends at parties and think nothing of it. I hold the view that it should be done with discretion.

I was raised Catholic. Sex was for married people and only vaginal sex. I was never taught it was dirty just reserved for that "elite' group of people that chose to be married. I am not a prude when it comes to sex. Yes, I've watched porn and done nasty things, it's fun! I think I still hold some of those values but I just twist them a little to conform to today's culture.

I want to reference Norwegian Chick with the nudity in her family. I grew up with my parents hiding their naked bodies from me. I feel different, if my kids see me naked I don't care. BUT my husband freaks out and has made it a rule that they cannot see us naked anymore. I have honored his wishes out of respect for him and just tell the kids I want privacy when I shower, basically in the same way as when I sit on the toilet. So the kids just think I don't want to be watched.

I love to read that moms are just being honest with their children' s questions because it all comes down to being a natural, biological animal first then a thinking human next.
(I always offend people when I call humans animals, and I love it!)

I can go on for hours....
Thanks....
Now I will go get some cookie dough.

slackermommy | 8:31 AM

Allie, I think honesty and openness is the key. My parents not talking about sex with me made sex more enticing. I wish I could have talked to my mom because I would had made better choices. I want my daughters to talk to me so I've started the dialogue now. Often I use t.v. and movies as teaching aids. Right now they think it's gross when they see people kiss so I respond with, "One day you won't think it's gross. I can't wait to hear about your first kiss." My oldest was really into Britney Spears for awhile. Whenever we saw a seductive photo of her I would say,"Oh doesn't she look silly. Too bad her mommy didn't teach her to dress better." I watched Sisterhood Of The Travelling Pants with my oldest which has a storyline with a teen that behaves very seductively. I explained to her that I felt sad for the girl because her mom had died so she wasn't taught seductive behavior won't get a boy to like her for the right reasons.

Just some examples of my plan. I realize my girls may make mistakes in regards to this issue. My hope is that they will feel comfortable to talk to me about them.

GGC, sorry to hijack your comments. Great topic you opened up. Obviously I have a lot to say about it!

Anon, we can at least hang out at each other's blogs!

GIRL'S GONE CHILD | 9:59 AM

Hijack away! You make great points!!!

michele | 5:11 PM

I am, again late to the party. But, um. I have sex. I like sex more than my husband does. I'm kinkier than he is willing to be. We got the playboy channel - for me, not him. I like sex.

But - what's very strange is... If we have a particularly spectacular "session" - I get totally and completely embarrassed afterwards, and actually start blushing. After 8 years of marriage. Almost as if my natural instincts kick in for a while, and then my "ladylike" brain kicks in.