Chronicling 40: Day 87 of 365

quit

My daughter quit her job, is unemployed, and we’re not even one bit upset about it. 

My eldest daughter is 18.  Around 13/14 she began working as a mother’s helper during weekends and summers.  By 15, she was baby sitting on her own and even on retainer during the summer by a particular family.  By 17, she was working at the mall and at 18 she began working as a waitress. 

We never asked her to get a job, and honestly we’d have been happier if she hadn’t.  But, we also understood that teenage need for money.  We had hoped that by making an agreement with her to cover her expenses (car insurance, gas, etc.) that she would forgo working during college.  We agreed that we felt her primary responsibility should be her education.  We have the means to cover those costs and her educational expenses, at this time, and wanted to lift that burden of having to balance work, school, and social life.   In the end, we followed her lead.

Yesterday, she quit her job.  And we are not even a little bit upset about it, and happy to afford her an opportunity that many kids are not given.  We know how incredibly lucky we are to be doing this for her, and trust me we are not rolling in the dough financially.  We have made sacrifices to ensure this is possible (thanks Dave Ramsey).

Adulthood isn’t easy, and for some reason we as a society are really pushing our kids there faster and faster.  My daughter has shared how many of her friends were basically told to get a job and move out at 18 years old.  Now, they are coming out of high school and having to look for apartments, find roommates, and pay bills that most 18 year olds can not afford even if they have a full time job.  If you have had a teenager looking for a job recently, you’ll know what I mean.  The picking are slim, and the money isn’t great.  I know several girls who are carrying multiple jobs and trying to focus on college, at 18.

I understand that not everyone is in the same financial space we are, that can offer their college age students the same deal we did.  But goodness, can they not just keep their bedroom a few more years?  Do they need to understand the weight of carrying two jobs to make ends meet when they are barely out of high school? 

Lest you think me judgemental, let me establish my own history.  My mother was a single mom, my dad barely paid child support and there was no alimony ever.  In fact, he didn’t start paying his arrears until I was married (I’m the youngest of 3).  My mother worked multiple jobs, during many of these years.  I busted my butt for scholarships, and family members had paid into a college fund for me.  My mom never required me to work, or to move out.  So, I understand that even when circumstances seem tight, we still have an option to support our kids the best we can and give them the best hope at a good start.

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#Write31Days – Post 3 – Tackling the Taboo

25questions5For too long we have avoided really talking about sex in the church.  And, I’m not talking about the youth group.  I am talking about a Sunday morning sermon (or series) that really dives into the topic.  It’s taboo. 

Some churches may find it to be inappropriate to talk about.  Or, that the people in their church do not need to address the subject.  They may even feel like it isn’t that big of a problem in the first place to spend time on the question.

Then we wonder why we have more people (not just teens) having sex without marriage.  We stand firm and address the topic of abortion, without ever addressing the subject that brings a person to the abortion clinic in the first place.  Sex.

In a time when we have children growing up in single parent homes…

In a time when films and television have stopped implying and now show sex scenes…

When songs on the radio have explicit lyrics and music videos are graphic…

When you can’t even pass through the check out line at the grocery store without knowing about other people’s sex lives…

In a time when we have immediate access to any type of pornography, at the click of a button…

IS IT NO WONDER THAT OUR COMMUNITY IS CONFUSED!

As a child of divorce, my mother has been single the majority of my life.  My grand parents were separated.  I literally had no example of what a solid Christian Marriage looked like.  I had no concept of what a healthy sex life looked like in the confines of that marriage.  It’s something that has had a direct impact on my own marriage.  I am navigating unfamiliar waters.  What I learned about marriage, was what I saw on TV from the old generation shows like Leave it to Beaver and The Cosby Show.  Ask yourself, for kids today… what do the TV shows and movies they watch tell them about the reality of a healthy sex life in the confines of marriage?   Because, I can assure you if they are not seeing it modeled in their home… movies and TV become their reference material.

In addition we spend so much time telling teens not to, shaming sex before marriage… that when they enter into marriage they have no clue what is permissible within their marriage.  We have presented a polarization of sex to our kids and young adults that is hard to navigate.  There is so much sexual dysfunction in our world, and in the church, that we don’t know where to even begin.  If our Pastors are not answering the questions, we turn to ….  ?

Authentic Intimacy  is a ministry that has answered the call.  With their previous publication they have stepped right into the ring with the subject others are trying avoid.  This week their newest book, 25 Questions You’re Afraid to Ask, releases and I’ve had the opportunity to get a sneak peak.

To book covers questions like:

Can I Be Single and Sexual?

Is It Wrong to Like Sex?

Why do Guys Care So Much About Sex?

How Do I Get Past My Shame?

It also addresses porn, masturbation, homosexuality, trust after betrayal, and so much more.  These are the questions that Dr. Juli Slattery gets asked the most often by women all over the world.  They are questions we all have or have had.

For those of us who are parents, this gives an insight into the questions that are rolling around the minds of our teens and young adults.  Questions they may be afraid to ask us, or we may be afaid to bring up.

With so much sexual dysfunction in the world, we can’t ignore the topic anymore.  We need to break down the walls, stop avoiding the subject, and really dig into what healthy sexuality is from a biblical perspective.

Today, author Dr. Juli’s podcast Java with Juli  has a great introduction to the what and why behind the book, and some other incentives you will not want to miss out on, just click the link below:

25 Questions Book with Dr. Juli Slattery

Authentic Intimacy will also be in Port Saint Lucie Florida, January 30th for a special one day conference!   Just click on the photo for more information!!!

aiconferencepsl