We Need to Talk

Gone are the days of traditional lesson plans about the birds and the bees. Those are old hat, having been largely eclipsed by more progressive curriculum about rainbows and gender unicorns.

Where 5-year-olds once went to school to learn their ABCs and their primary colors, increasingly they’re returning home with robust knowledge of their LGBTs and their gender spectrums. This isn’t conspiracy theory; it’s actually state policy, as in 2016, the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) issued statewide guidelines recommending the commencement of gender identity education starting in kindergarten.

From a young age, today’s youth are flooded with a relentless onslaught of sexually charged messages paired with a bewildering amount of confusion. We consider it an honor at Care Net to send our Smart Programs out into the public schools to counter some of this confusion and speak life, truth, and common sense into the void.

But there’s another kind of sexual confusion we encounter quite frequently in schools and in our centers, and it’s one that few people seem to discuss openly. While the secular world bombards our kids with too many hyper-sexualized messages, in Christian circles, our collective knee-jerk response to this messaging is often to over correct and shut down discussions with our kids about sex entirely.

A client recently came to us and began her appointment by making it crystal clear that she had only had “Christian sex.” What exactly she meant by “Christian sex” became obvious when she tested positive for an STD in her mouth. This young woman was operating with a deficient understanding of the realities of sex and its associated risks. She believed oral sex wasn’t “really” sex and it was a safe way to practice abstinence.

An example of a stereotypical “sex talk” from a Christian parent might go something along the lines of, “Sex before marriage is a sin that can ruin your life. Here’s a purity ring. The end.” While this may technically be considered an efficient and biblical approach, too many of the young women who visit our centers have interpreted it as a sign that the conversation is over and that even asking questions about boundaries is shameful or wrong. So they figure it out on their own, and the truth is too often learned the hard way.

STDs aren’t the only consequence of an environment that feels unsafe to talk about sex. A recent study commissioned by Care Net National revealed a devastating trend: More than 70% of post abortive women claim a Christian religious preference, and of these, 43% report monthly church attendance at the time of the abortion. Only 7% report ever speaking about their abortions to anyone in their churches.

It might be time to talk about removing some planks from our own eyes. If 43% of the women who have abortions attend church regularly, then we needn’t bother pointing the finger at Hollywood; we’ve got some of our own work to do.

When we talk to our kids about sex, are we shying away from awkward conversations because they make us uncomfortable, or are we actively creating open dialogue where all aspects of sex are clearly understood, where boundary lines are discussed, tools to say “no” are learned, and where questions about it are welcomed?

Care Net is here to help you facilitate these discussions. While we are actively engaging public schools in our Smart Love and Smart Freedom programs, our programs can also equip churches and youth groups, parent co-ops and homeschool organizations. Our Smart Home program helps parents and leaders talk to children about sex. It helps ease the stress and empowers parents to impart accurate and complete information on God-designed sexuality.

Education starts in the home. The Bible says that a lack of knowledge leads to destruction and that the ear of the wise seeks knowledge. It is a great sign when our kids come to us seeking knowledge and understanding about sex. If we are wise, we will equip ourselves with resources to answer them confidently. We would love to come alongside you in this meaningful work.

Learn more about Smart Programs or book a presentation here.

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