When I was a teenager there was hardly any talk at all about sex at home. Even though my mum had taught me the basics this meant that sex was something you only had after you got married. I remember friends telling me their parents reasons why (as girls) we should wait until we got married to "do" it. Here are some of my favourite:
1. because that's what the bible said
2. you could get pregnant and decent girls didn't get pregnant without getting married
3. boys would lose interest in you if you slept around, you'd be nothing but a used ragdoll for them to play with and you'd never find a guy who'd want to marry you
4. it would be shameful to your family
5. you could get ill.
Now number 5 was not the most publicized one, let me tell you. It seemed all the adults had set their minds on us not having sex, which was a dirty, awfull thing women had to subject themselves to. Sounds familiar?
I'm not going to talk about my particular experience with sex or how I felt/feel about the ideas described above - sorry to disapoint you. What I'm interested in is in telling you about what sex and drugs mean to your children, our teenagers today.
You see. I remember reading Wir Kinder vom Bahnhof Zoo (Os Filhos da Droga) and thinking how was it possible that this girl did all those things? I was 13 at the time and like some people my age I soon found out drugs and sex weren't as out of this world as parents/adults had led us to believe. I think we'll all agree that there were different groups of teenagers and that some groups were more open-minded and willing to experiment than others. I met people and had great friends who acted like characters taken out of books such as the one I have just mentioned. When I was 16 and started a new school I felt like Dorothy, way, way away from Kansas...
So like most people my age reading this, I thought I knew it all. No kid of mine was going to be smarter than me. I'd been to clubs too. I'd partied too. Maybe experimented with drugs... Guess what? "You know nothing John Snow." is what best describes what I, and most probably you, know about what it's like being a teenager these days. The drugs are different and easier to find. Sex is everywhere from films, to cartoons, to TV adds and let us not forget about our blessed internet with all the chatrooms and chat roulette and blogs and social nets like Facebook. If you're still wondering what chat roulette is, oh boy, you really need to learn a lot...
All this talk for what? To tell you you need to watch out for your kid? But you know that already, don't you? And I bet you're not one of those parents who believes all they do in their bedroom with their friends is study. Right? And that when they go online it's to watch music videos on youtube. Seriously? Have you taken a look at those videos? Listened to the lyrics? No, I mean, seriously listened and paid attention? I really do miss the time when music was supposed to convey something, when lyrics made sense and women were not displayed as meat at the butcher's... But that's another topic for another day.
Welcome to the dark side... This is what I felt watching a book presentation by a couple of students some weeks ago. The girls had chosen to talk about two books by the same author. I confess I'd never heard about him - Francisco Salgueiro- but the topic caught my attention and soon the girls were leading me into world of teens that I didn't know much about. These two books are about 2 teenagers and their secret lives. They're both good kids from good families. They go to good schools and have the right friends. Their parents trust them because their grades are good and they've never been in trouble and they think their kids can't fool them because there's nothing they'll do their parents haven't done. Well, that's where they're dead wrong....
Here are the book trailers.
O Fim da Inocência
O Fim da Inocência II