This topic has been something that has been heavy on my heart for so long, and I wanted to write a post about it because it needs to be said. I want to start off by saying that I love my mother dearly, growing up it was just her and I and I know she did the best she could. When we’re younger we think of growing up as something that happens when we are a certain age, and one day we have it all figured out. We think that once we are adults being a parent is something that will come naturally. The truth is, your adult self is just a physically aged version of who you are as a child. If you were an ass whole kid more than likely you are now a fully-grown ass whole that pays bills and has the right to vote. The only thing that separates and makes us different from our younger selves internally is our life experiences, this is why it is so important to take the time to heal our childhood wounds and confront generational curses. If we choose to ignore the things that hurt our spirits we will pass them on to our children. We can’t be afraid to question the values and rituals we were taught, because at one point the were implemented by someone who knew just about as much as you and I but had less access to resources. When I think about being a mother to my daughter sometimes, I become overwhelmed thinking of all the possible things that could go wrong. I think about young women like Kenneka Jenkins and I think to myself “how can I ever let her out of my site” Human trafficking, school shootings, rape, police brutality, fights, how can I protect her from all of this. I want to keep her an innocent as I can for as long as possible. I guess this is how my mother felt when I was growing up. I want to say head of time I am not speaking for everyone, and my thoughts on the below topics are based off of my personal experiences.
When I was growing up I was told not to do things but I wasn’t given enough explanations as to why. For life lessons sometimes “because I said so” doesn’t cut it. Our girls need to hear your unfiltered experiences to make better educated decisions. They need to know about that time you were by yourself with that boy your mom told you not to be alone with and what happened, and how you felt uncomfortable and what everyone said the next day at school even though nothing happened. They need to know about that day you skipped school and ended up getting into a fight because you were at the wrong place at the wrong time. They need to know about your friend who got a bad batch of weed and hasn’t been the same ever since. Like it or not these experiences are happening earlier and earlier. It’s ok for our girls to know that we’re not perfect now and we damn sure we not perfect at their age.
Trying to create the illusion that you never made the wrong choice when you were young makes them less likely to confide in you because they fear disappointment and don’t think they will be understood. I don’ t fully support the “I’m not your friend I’m your parent” logic because when you were in trouble as a kid who did you call first for advice? The majority of us called friends that knew just as much if not less than us. The blind leading the blind, didn’t even know which hole we peed out of until 9th grade. I do agree with “I’m the only friend you got” logic and I stress this to my daughter every chance I get. Girls have always been shady, and while I don’t discourage new friendships I do reiterate the fact that out of all the friends I thought I had when I was here age, I only have two right now that I can honestly say have my back through anything. When opportunities present themselves, I’m quick to share stories of how my so-called friends switched on me.
I could go on and on about this topic because there’s so much to say, but I’ll try to condense it…….
We are so quick to tell our girls not to bring any boys home we stunt their social development. We don’t allow our daughters to properly socialize with the opposite sex. We tell them they can’t date until they’re out of the house and we miss key opportunities to be present while they interact with the opposite sex not being able to offer personalized advice on what is and isn’t acceptable. I’m not really talking about sexual interactions. We need to be able to point out the characteristics that are desirable in a man as well as the warning signs. How he speaks, how he carries himself, the way he addresses you in front of his friends, the way he addresses other women in front of you, how he speaks to his mother, his hygiene.
At a certain age the majority of our girls will want to date and they will either be honest and up front with us or do it behind our backs. We need to teach them how they should be treated so that they don’t go into adulthood completely clueless. I don’t want my daughter feeling like she has to escape myself and my house hold before she can have any interaction with the opposite sex. Making boys seem like some big mysterious prize you only get to experience when your older is dangerous in my opinion. I want my daughter to know that she’s the prize and that her time and attention is precious and is only to be given to those that deserve it.
This actually ties in with the two previous topics.
We have to STOP being so scared to discuss sex in every aspect with our children. Our girls are being talked to about sex almost every day at school. There are a million ways to get realistic and unrealistic information about sex online, and all the parental controls in the world cannot shield them this information, let them hear the correct information from you. When I was forced into telling my mother I was sexually active, she looked at me and told me that she didn’t approve and that I was not allowed to get on birth control, a year later I was pregnant with my daughter Jael. That was clearly the wrong way to handle that. Even After I pushed out a whole human being my mother and I never had one conversation about sex. I learned everything I know now about sex from, movies, tv, porn my friends, and my partners. I will not make this same mistake with my daughter.
For those who don’t know my Jael is 10. Last year someone at her after school center showed her and about six of her friends several porn videos. That night I went up to her room and had the most honest conversation about sex I could have with her. She asked a lot of questions and I answered them to the best of my ability, I didn’t sugar coat any of it, because I know these kids don’t sugar coat it when they discuss it between themselves. I can guarantee two things about kids her age… 1: they talk about sex and 2: they curse when we’re not around. As much as it upset me to realize that my baby was being exposed to this at such an early age, I had to remind myself that I was exposed to the same thing. No one had a phone to show us porn on in HD, but we had that fuzzy channel where we could see titties if you looked hard enough, and when I was in high school you could fall asleep watching You Got Served on HBO and wake up in the middle of the night to Pornacopia or Cat house.
Currently the conversations that I have had with Jael have been just informational, But As she gets older I will continue to be open and honest with her. We need to stress the importance of safe sex to our girls over and over again because telling them not to do it will not work. We need to discuss proper sexual hygiene and how to maintain a healthy PH (not letting these dudes with Swisher Sweet guts and lemon pepper seasoning under their nails put their hands anywhere near our magical areas. We need to let our girls know its ok to ask for medical paper work up front and on a regular basis and anyone who can’t comply can exit stage left. We need to stress the importance of communication. If you can’t have a conversation with him about what you are and aren’t comfortable with in bed than he doesn’t have any business in your yams. We need to tell our girls that if you can’t call him for assistance during and emergency (not just financial) then he shouldn’t know what your vagina looks like. We need to discuss self-pleasure and exploring your and being in tune with your own body. We need to discuss how sex is a spiritual exchange and sleeping with the wrong person could be an energy hazard. Of course, in an ideal world our girls would wait to have sex until they are married, and there is nothing wrong with telling them that that is what you prefer that they do, but ultimately the choice will be up to them. We cannot continue to make the mistake of not discussing this topic and hoping for a positive outcome.
I’m realizing now as I continue to write this post that this will have to be part one of two-part post because there is so much more I want to cover. For now, I’m going to leave you with this. To be continued………