An anonymous, sad, and true comment about what is too often missed in preparing children for the real world of sexuality.
As a young woman, I was better prepared for pregnancy and STD prevention than I was the years of low-grade sexual abuse I encountered.
Looking back, the stories seem endless: when a 7th grade boy cornered me in a stairwell at school, I pushed him away and pretended it didn’t happen.
In my 20s a man pinched my breast while crossing Fifth Avenue; I shouted at him but kept on walking.
In my 30s, a guy pulled over and masturbated as I raked leaves in my backyard. He drove away laughing; I didn’t even have the sense to get his license plate number.
Women rarely discuss these experiences, and they don’t teach their daughters to defend themselves from it. To date, the only cure is to turn 50 and “age out” of these creepy desires.
I think I have finally aged out, although just the other day I got a creep desire post from an anonymous young man. Can add my own stories beginning at eight, and I never told my parents about the man with no pants. Kids keep lots from parents.
I do remember getting help from one friend after hearing her tale about dealing with a flasher.
She reported looking at his private parts, and saying “I’d keep that hidden if I were you, it isn’t very impressive.”
I think she learned that at a woman’s self-defense group.
Both boys and girls need to know about “creepy desires.” As I write this I realize I didn’t discuss that in my “When Good Kids Have Sex.” Shame on me. Will have to talk to my publisher about adding a section on that. One of the things I love about ePubishing: you can correct your mistakes.
Creepy desires conversations are important. Here are some quick tips.
Tip one: Link to staying safe and respectful rules. This can start as young as seeing your toddler does not want Uncle Joe’s hugs and kisses. That is not to say Uncle Joe is creepy, but your toddler needs to be protected from unwanted hugs. Be kind to Uncle Joe, but kinder to your toddler. I always ask if I can have a hug or a kiss. I also always accept a child’s “No.”
Tip two: When starting to teach privacy manners, add that grownups don’t always respect a child’s privacy but that does not mean the grown ups are behaving themselves. Give some little examples – walking into bedrooms without knocking, leaving the bathroom door open.
Tip Three: Have a more serious and formal talk about creepy behaviors when you child heads off to first grade. The most thoughtful approach is to define creepy as pushing your desires on someone who doesn’t want them. Advise your child to say “No, leave me alone” loudly. Practice with them.
Tip Four: The older your child, the more directly you can talk about this. I hope you have family meetings; creepy sexual behaviors are a great topic. Mom and Dad can share when someone creeped them out.
If you do not hold family meetings start. They are a useful tool for discussing some issues. What if it is just you and one child in your family? You still can hold family meetings and should. The trick is to use hold formal meetings to take care of family business. One can also label other talks as a family business meeting. You would do this when requests arise for rule changes or disciplinary issues that cannot be postponed for a regularly scheduled formal meeting.
And yes, here comes a commercial: My How to Hold a Successful Family Meeting is available as an eBook or a hold in your hand book. It is being offered at my usual “Less-than-a-latte” price.
Finally, I noticed no one has posted a review. Moreover, it is a book I think all will find helpful; family meetings are a great way to reduce stress, build bonding, and take care of business. So if you buy it, please review it. At least comment on one of my posts about it and if you found it helpful.
End of commercial.
Parents Are People Too News
One: My eBook When Good Kids Have Sex will be free until . See the sidebar.
Two: The Parents Are People Newsletter first edition will be published next week. Sign up here or on the sidebar.
Three: I am learning to use Google Hangouts. Why? I miss the contact with people that came from teaching, running workshops, and being involved with parents. Soooo, once I have mastered how to hangout, I will issue some invitations to join me. Let me know if you are interested in participating.
I hope to also master making some short You tube videos from the hangouts. You do not have to be on the video nor show your picture, so if you don’t want to be on identified on the tape TV, you can control that. Old ladies can learn new tricks.
A laugh fot the other grandmothers out there. At least it made me hoot. And at least he was asking for it.
A JOKE AT LEAST I hooted at this one. Hope I am not violating a copy right, but know most of the grandmothers reading this will laugh.
As always share and care, take care of you so you can care take care of others, make plans to have me-time and quiet time. Finally, thank you for all you do to support my efforts.
The first: Although built upon evidenced based practices, there is no guarantee my advice is the right advice for you and your family. Experiment, try my tips; if they are not useful to you try another parent adviser. You are the expert on you and your child; the rest of us experts on many different things.
The second: I have dysgraphia, a learning disability that peppers my writing with mis-spelling and punctuation errors. All my books are professionally edited. Not so my blog posts. Although I use all the grammar and spelling checks, mistakes slip by. If they bother you, seek another source of support for life’s less savory moments. Life is too short to let problems you can avoid annoy or stress you.