I do apologize for the lack of posting. My husband and I celebrated our 20th wedding anniversary by taking our kids on a road trip to California. Against our better judgement, we overnighted in Las Vegas but landed in the happiest place on earth…Disneyland. Three days in Disney and a day in Universal Studios had our adrenaline rushing and walking over 35 miles! Throw in a hiking day at Zion National Park on the way home and we logged in over 45 miles of walking. We made some serious memories!
I haven’t been to Las Vegas in over 15 years so call me ignorant, naive, or just plain stupid, but we chose to walk our kids from our hotel, which was off the strip, down to the New York, New York casino so the kids could ride their roller coaster. We prepped them ahead of time for the inebriated people we may encounter as well as homeless people on the sidewalk. We even warned them about the strangers flicking cards of women skantily dressed that we would be ignoring. What I did not anticipate were the women wearing only stickers! (Yes you read that correctly.) Thankfully, there was not very many of them, but when did clothing become optional?? While the replica of the Eiffel Tower was pretty cool and the Bellagio fountains, were entertaining, I nearly had throw up in my mouth when we passed the women wearing only 3 or 4 stickers placed strategically. Quickly, we dashed into a mall with our kids to get off the strip. I had a mixture of emotions. Anger, that my kids were exposed. Shame, that I had taken them there. Sadness, for the women in that lifestyle. BUT, there was some silver lining. My son, while in the mall, turned to me and said, “Mom, I don’t think this is a good place for a little boy. There is a lot of pornography here.” I stopped, stooped down so that I could be eye to eye and said, “You are exactly right. This is not the place for a little boy. I am sorry that you had to see what you saw. We will do our best to prevent it. But you always listen to that still small voice inside of your heart that told you this was not the place for you. That was the Holy Spirit speaking.” For probably the first time in his life, he was confronted hard core with right and wrong. Clearly, his heart knew the difference. I was thankful that he recognized what he saw and named it outloud. I was greatful that I was with him and relieved when he walked closely with his Dad after that and avoided exposure. You can’t protect your kids all the time, but you can train them what to do should they encounter pornography. For starters, get comfortable saying the word yourself so that you can have a conversation with your kids about it. Am I proud that we took our kids on the strip…No. Not my best parenting moment. It wasn’t the best choice….but I chose to turn it into a teachable moment. No shame parenting here. You can do the same. Turn a failed parenting moment into a valuable lesson.
TIP- Don’t take your kids to the Vegas strip at night! But if you do have a lack of judgement in your parenting, turn it into a lesson. For everyone.
Posted by Amy in Sex Education, Pornography