Monday, July 18, 2011

Date Rape ~ The Mockingbirds

The Mockingbirds

The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney


Not a review…

This YA novel is an issue book. Date rape. Whitney writes in this book, the view that the lack of a ‘yes’ means ‘no’. No means no. Silence means no. And if someone is sleeping – that means no. The only yes which would lead to consensual sexual contact (not only intercourse) is a verbal ‘yes’. ‘The lack of a yes is a no.’ I totally agree with this point of view.

This novel has very conflicting reviews, after reading it, I can understand why. But the reason I’m writing about the novel and not reviewing it, is of a parenting nature. Sex changes who you are. Sexual purity is worth working towards in a world that tells us otherwise.

If you have been a victim of date rape, I’m so very sorry that you had to go through the pain of such an act.

The issue of date rape reminded me that as a parent I am responsible (alongside my husband) to educate my boy that the only yes is a verbal yes when the girl is of sound mind. I hope to teach my son how to respect girls and regard them as people, not sexual objects. I will help him guard his eyes and mind from computer games, magazines and TV etc, that portray the complete opposite.

I will prepare my girls by discussing the effects of alcohol on young small bodies and the possibility of black outs. (I can speak from experience) The danger they could put themselves in, if they are not of sound and sober mind. I will talk to them about the safety of group dates, double dates and chaperoned dates. I will teach them that not everyone has the same values that we have and that not all boys can be trusted.

We will discuss with our children why abstaining from sexual contact until marriage is a viable option.

I love teenagers. I love their energy. I wish I loved being a teenager but I missed out on loving being a teenager. (that’s a whole other story). I want my children to enjoy their adolescence. I hope they will, within safe boundaries.

We are still in the preteen years… Do you have any advise on how to protect your children?
(all ideas other than locking them away would be appreciated. xx)

9 comments:

  1. Love this post, Michelle. And I totally agree. Our aim is to raise our 3 sons to be honourable young men who respect women and treat them with dignity in all circumstances. We're also promoting the benefits of abstinence as an alternative to the sex-saturated culture in which we live. As for our daughter, I hope she grows to be a confident young woman with a high level of self-respect and a low tolerance for losers :P The teenage years are a long way away for us but the thought of them still fills me with dread. I didn't exactly enjoy that time of my life either...

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  2. Open communication is the best way to protect our children. Communication about the games they play, shows they watch, books they read. Not censorship. Communication.
    Great post.

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  3. I like that you mentioned educating your boy as well as your girls. You hear so many people say "I'm so glad I don't have to worry. I have a boy". It's so not true, and I think responsible parents will have these same conversations with their sons as well as daughters. Well done you.

    As the mother of a teenager, I can say the very best thing I've found is being a part of your child's life. Talk to them about things that are difficult, know their friends, and don't be afraid to give those warnings each and every time they leave your house.

    Excellent post.

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  4. My son is about to turn 13 and my daughter is about to turn 9. I talk about sex here and there, but nothing too detailed because we haven't gotten to dating yet. But these are conversations I plan to have with both of them.

    I think my son respects women. He's very considerate. Having a younger sister helps, I think. I'll have to make sure to reinforce these ideas the older he gets.

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  5. This is a beautiful post, Michelle. Vey well considered and said. Thank you.

    I remember as a teen hearing that every time you sleep with someone you leave a part of yourself with them - a part of your heart and soul. It is not just a physical act.

    I agree with Lynda and Laurita. Talk. Talk talk talk. Communication is key in so many aspects of parenting. Communication and connection. I'm trusting it will get us through these years with our beautiful boys. I'm also trusting that they will always treat women with respect and appreciation.

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  6. I'm not a parent, I am a 21 year old though, and I go to a college where date rape is a common occurrence, especially at parties. In fact, the President of my University just extended the amount of time you can report a rape from 30 days to 90 days--a great extension, I believe. My friend is a victim of date rape, she blames herself for what happened because of the situation she was in, meaning, she says she could have easily prevented it.

    That's always frightened me. I feel no matter how much you talk, you may have a well-mannered teen who is confident, but it's hard to keep them from the situation. Idk though.

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  7. Wow. How difficult is that to write about? Thanks for tackling such a difficult issue.

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  8. I agree, and thanks for this post. What a brave book. Open communication and parents teaching their children are two great ways to counteract some of this. It's about being responsible! And aware of the problem in the first place; we can't afford to be naive.

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  9. My daughter is four so I have a while before I have to tackle this topic, but it's a tough one. If it were up to my husband, my daughter wouldn't date until she's thirty. I'm more realistic than that, but I do worry about her. We'll definitely be having a long talk before she starts dating.

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