the shackles of innocence and restraint

I apologize for no categorizations, I am writing from my email.

It seems like most people have a desire to rid children and those with strict morals of the shackles of innocence so that they can taste all of the bitter sweet delicies that the “real word” has to offer. I am not sure “why” this is, but let me give you two separate situations to illustrate my point.
**Situation #1:
I am on a listserv for blind parents. We were discussing the virtues of Stephen King novels and *if* they were appropriate for 9-12 year old audiences. To my surprise, many parents agreed that they definitely “would allow their child to read a Stephen king Novel.”… … after all, “at least they are reading!” Now, I am no prude… Wait, maybe people think I am, but these books are not depicting real life. there are vivid gritty sex scenes, candid descriptions of violence and inappropriate vulgar language amd actions that I would not want my child to be exposed to at the ages of 9-12. Most people extol the virtues of “exposing the child to the real world,” and argue, “they are going to do it anyway, so, we might as well know about it.” I have always found this argument problematic. If we permit such behavior, aren’t we silently (or at least tacidly) condoning it? I think it says more about people’s parenting style and maybe their willingness to be confrontational. Have we taken freedom too far? should we not be surprised when a 12-year-old girl sues her father because he punished her for visiting porn sites on the internet? (Yes, this really happened last year). Again, I am lamenting that I am not more tech savvy, so that I might post the exact link. Call me a “lazy poster,” but don’t accuse me of being a “lazy parent.” (smile) I had a more elloquent response in my subsequent emails, but I won’t bore you with all of the details. I do understand that others might have a different view; after all, most thought that “lolita,” by Nabokov was a masterpiece and I thought it to be a piece of crap. (and I rarely use that word, but could not find any other word without using profanity which adequately describes the book).
**Situation #2:
Last Saturday, I attended a Beepball banquet with DH. We were pretty disappointed that he only played 4 innings out of 96. The other older team mates weren’t that good, they just wanted to selfishly play. Strangely enough, the coach is actually a fulltime player and regardless of his stats, he plays constantly. I am not sure how he can coach from that advantage, but I don’t want to discuss the team, right now. I would digress too far from my point.
So, I wanted to support DH and go to the banquet with him. After all, he was fasting. He gave me his ticket. In a strange turn of events, the food did not come until 8:20, so I ate half and saved half of the meal for fast breaking time: about 30mins later.
the “world Series,” which is the largest tournament for the
beepballers (much like the world Series in Baseball), was held in our city. DH had the option to stay in a hotel room with two other guys. He would be installed on the pull out sofa; compliments of his low seniority. The guys were real partyers. Each night, they could not wait to end play so that they could drink large amounts of alcohol and smoke a bit of weed. DH stayed home. Honestly, that was a “no brainer.” I did not have to twist his arm. But, in at least one conversation between DH and a team mate, they commented “your wife has you on lock down.” Similarly, while we were at the banquet, a different team mate remarked that next year, DH would have to stay in a hotel with them because the “world series” was in a different city. So, they would initiate him into the ways of real partying. the team mate understood me wanting DH to stay at home this time — with the baby and all. But, (and especially since DH has never touched alcohol before), next year, DH would be able to experience the good life. It bothered me that DH did not object — neither to the stereotype that had been thrust upon me, nor to the much anticipated initiation. UGGG! Some might take that as a sign that he felt (at least a twinge of) agreement. But, DH has had ample opone team member realized or cared that this special time was even upon them. portunity to do these things. And,
If he wanted to stay at the hotel, I would have supported him. DH does not want to drink and he does not want to smoke weed — especially not during the time of Ramadan. Not and, he has seen him team mates get drunk and frankly, they don’t make alcohol look appealing. I know that there are some differences, but there are some parallels to these two stories. why do people think that “exposure,” is always a good thing? why do people feel that innocence or restraint is always a bad thing? Must everyone “want” to be corrupted? Why is it that people always want to champion for the “freedom “to *do something” but rarely support others in their decision to exercise their freedom “*not to *do it?”
And, to the Muslim women in France and Belgium, I feel you on the burqa ban.


2 Responses to “the shackles of innocence and restraint”

  1. Julia Says:

    As someone who believes in freedom to do what you want (to yourself) I think there needs to be some responsibility to one’s selves. I am fine with allowing a 9-12 yr old to read an adult book just so long as I am responsible enough to discuss it with them and to be honest. The same is true with alcohol or substance use, your husband should have been responsible enough to just let them know that he doesn’t drink, its not that unheard of.

    • jamily5 Says:

      hi Julia, thanks for responding. i guess we will agree to disagree on the book issue.

      DH let them know several times that he has not and does not drink alcohol or engage in other substances. he feels like a broken record

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