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Monday, February 27, 2012

Peer Relationships: Opposite Gender, Social Reflections for Today

     I realize that the days of June and Ward Cleaver are not likely to find their way back to the American television Prime Time scene in the near future, but I really wish they would show the reruns during the “after school” viewing times! Boys and girls the ages of Ronny and Sojourner** need to know it is okay to just be kids. They can kick that old rock down the sidewalk and lope along on and off the curb going home from school without feeling like they were nerds or something.  Let’s be serious here; Did you ever in a million years think that Beaver Cleaver and Eddie Haskell were exchanging tales of their weekend sexual exploits with the ten- and eleven-year-old girls in their class as they made their way to school on a Monday morning? Yet, because of the overt sexual content of films and television programming, the media would have your kids think that they are being left out if they are not experimenting with sex.

     I know that I never once looked at Ronny with anything sexual in mind! None of my friends were thinking those thoughts; we were just hoping that a boy would glance our way with a smile and that was that!

     In fact, when those colorful little brochures were presented to us… was it in Girl Scouts?... so that we could learn all about having periods, none of us were speaking openly about such things. There were the normal little girl giggles as the brave presenter tried to make her way through the material, but most of us  never said a word. Then, later, when we learned where babies came from and that it was connected to the monthly period stuff we had learned, we just could not imagine our own parents ever did anything like that! Believe me, none of us were interested in experimenting with a boy along these lines! Since they still believe that girls mature earlier than boys, one can be fairly safe in assuming that the boys were also not ready to go there with us little girls! Could children have changed so much today?

     Children in the Tween group, from ten to twelve years of age, are being robbed of the innocence of their tween years by the media and advertising. Instead of being allowed to learn about themselves and explore who they are, they are being pressed into a mold that is way too big for them, making them feel inadequate on so many levels. It is truly heartbreaking to hear the sad tales of the lies kids are telling one another about sexual activity, just to try to fit in. They are not doing it and feel that they must lie because “everyone” is doing it. They don’t want to do it because of immaturity, as much as because of religious convictions, but they feel guilty as a result of just being their normal age of immaturity! How can we help them to let go of Hollywood and embrace youth as it was meant to be? If we can find a way to re-direct the focus for this age group, we will be saving a lot of them from that ever-rising rate of tween and teen suicides. The Bible says that the truth will set them free, so let’s give them the truth!

                                                                 **Story for Feb 20-22 found in archives.

****Peer Relationships: Opposite Gender, Medical Reflections for Today… Coming Tomorrow

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