Tuesday, February 06, 2018

It's a Completely Different Culture Now

As Dr. Laura gets more and more experience dealing with callers who have been raised in a culture in which there is no discouragement of casual fornication (or shacking up), including teenaged fornication, she gets more likely to make a point of commenting on it when the caller or someone the caller is dealing with is involved in such behavior. (She seems to be somewhat wearied by the negative cultural shifts, which is certainly understandable as she deals with call after call with the ugly fallout of this societal breakdown.)

In the second hour of the show on Monday, August 10, 2015 [note that this entry has been bumped up] she had a call from a mother whose teen daughter had been staying with a friend, but slipped out and walked to a nearby home in which a boy was residing and had intercourse with him. It was presented as her first experience. Dr. Laura expressed disgust that the boy's parents were likely home and sleeping at the time; presumably the disgust was at the brazen flouting of morality and parental respect (which assumed the boy's parents would object, though it is entirely possible they wouldn't), because she expresses no disgust at the thought of grown, married people having sex while visiting and staying at a parental home. But I digress.

Dr. Laura urged the caller to ask her daughter how she felt about the experience. "Did she think it was love? Was it curiosity?"

That's where I want to scream at my listening device "How about IT FEELS GOOD!"?

She also threw in the "He's bragged to all of his friends" thing.

Dr. Laura often approaches this as though every teen girl is expecting that sex will always mean love, that no teen girl enjoys sex or ever puts her physical pleasure ahead of other considerations, and that teens still talk about sex the same way or that a teen girl is going to mind if other people know she had sex. There are other times Dr. Laura indicates that women enjoy sex but the way she talks about fornication, if it is all anyone heard from her on sexual matters, would give someone the impression that she doesn't think females enjoy sex. Females do enjoy fornication. Most don't enjoy it as much as marital lovemaking or might feel some negativity about it after it is over, especially if there is a breakup or a relationship doesn't actually form in the first place, but they do enjoy it if the guy is at all competent in what he's doing.

Yes, up into part of the 1960s, most girls didn't want people to know they'd fornicated, because most people lived their lives in the same rural community or urban neighborhood and there was a general cultural shame against fornication (sure, plenty of people were doing it, but they tried to keep it private) and if word got around, then the young men in the area would either not want her or the parents of the young man would strongly pressure him not to date her, but especially not to marry her. The school she attended and the religious congregation she attended might have taken action. It might even have been a criminal matter.

None of that is true anymore, at least in most places in the USA. As such, few girls who fornicate are going to mind if word spreads. Often, it isn't even talked about. It is just assumed that it is going on. There are teen girls who walk around school wearing condoms on their clothing to get attention (under the guise of trying to raise awareness in her peers); would such a girl give a rip if someone found out she was having sex?

But the way Dr. Laura often handles these calls, it is like she still thinks things are like they were when she was growing up. This time, she did go on to acknowledge that teen fornication is now seen as the norm and expected. During part of the call, though, I wanted to somehow break in and say something like, "Excuse me... she's a heterosexual girl who is turned on by males, this one in particular, and sex can feel good, even when it is fornication. It is like asking her why she stole the ice cream out of the freezer and if it tasted good while she ate it. Maybe she felt nervous, maybe a little guilty, or maybe she's worried about it going to her hips, but she liked the taste."

The frame of reference is way too different now. Saying something like "He doesn't love you! You're not going to have a lasting relationship with him! All of his friends know!" isn't going to have any dissuading effect on most teens these days. Rather, a better tactic, if religion isn't going to be invoked (and it's not a religious show, after all) is to convince teens that the risks (getting bonded to someone wrong for you, diminishing your ability to enjoy future intimate relationships, STDs, pregnancy) aren't worth the pleasure. Admit that it can feel good, but so can many other things that have a better time and place.

Anyway, I previously went over some of these issues in much depth here, and this is another entry that is relevant.

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