Collateral Damage

So, a week or so ago I was watching the new TV show, The Mentalist (If you’re not watching this, you’re so missing out. And not just because Simon Baker is teh hotness. It’s really good). Anyway, in this show a teen girl was murdered. They were questioning her friends, three guys and one other girl. One of the detectives asked if they were lovers. All the teens looked thoroughly confused until he rephrased his question to ask if they were ‘hooking up.’ The girl acknowledged that they were, but they weren’t ‘lovers’ because that would be ‘weird.’ 

Now obviously, this is out of the mind of some script writer in Hollywood, but I do think it really reflects the reality of many of our young people. Being someone’s ‘lover’ is weird, but hooking up, essentially just scratching an itch is okay. The question is, why do they feel this way? I suspect that for many of these young people, who are the product of their parent’s relationship woes, love is a very scary concept. A concept that in many cases left them with only one parent in their home. It’s much easier and far less frightening to just go with the hook-up. 

But, here’s the thing ‘hooking up’ has left us with an epidemic of teens with STDs. We’ve got kids who aren’t old enough to vote who have a history of disease that would make a bordello worker blush. They’re too young to truly understand the emotional damage that can come from casual sex. We don’t talk about that enough, especially to our young men. They’re pressured at a very early age to be ‘studs,’ even when they’d much rather be reading their comic books and playing Nintendo. 

A while back there was a viral video showing two pre-adolescents ‘freak-dancing.’ To my mind the most interesting aspect of the video is one that didn’t generate much comment. The boy clearly was not interested in participating, but felt compelled to do so by peer pressure. I’ve had young men tell me that they didn’t want to have sex, but felt they had to because otherwise they wanted to ‘be a man.’ Clearly we’ve got to re-define manhood in our culture. We’ve talked endlessly about the impact of early sexualization on our young women, but we must talk about it in regard to our young men as well. 

We have not set good examples for our children. They are oftentimes nothing more than collateral damage after our relationships crash and burn. The impact on them is telling, and it’s crucial that we really focus on the impact our choices will have on their lives. We have to keep in mind that every time we hook up with someone there is a potential to produce another human being. Every time we lay up with someone we know damned well we wouldn’t want in our gene pool we risk damaging a child’s life. It’s time, no, it’s past time that we start thinking with something other than our genitalia. It’s an unfortunate biological truth that sex produces children. Yes, we have the wonders of birth control, but they aren’t fool proof, and let’s face it, in the heat of the moment lots of folk don’t use it. So then you’ve got a child with a person you don’t want to be with, or who isn’t fit to be with. Bottom line folks, if they’re not good enough to marry, they’re not good enough to pull cover with. Yeah, I know this is a inflammatory statement, but how many generations of damaged children do we have to leave in our wake before we buy a freaking clue?

2 thoughts on “Collateral Damage

  1. “Bottom line folks, if they’re not good enough to marry, they’re not good enough to pull cover with.”

    A thousand “thank yous”!

    It’s just the truth but people don’t want to hear it.

  2. I know so many males who started having sex at 10, 11, 12, 13 years old. It is sad when sex at 14 is an improvement. I wish the innocence of boys was protected. I’m sick of all these stories about oral in middle school and teacher’s having sex with 13 year olds. Why do these news reports not call it what it really is STATUTORY RAPE.

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