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Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Purple Box

I'm going to sidetrack from discipline for a moment to discuss something else that is just as important.

**Note to the Grandma** --- You might not want to read this one!!! Consider yourself fairly warned.

Most of you know that I have a 14 year old son. We talk often about the realities of growing up and the responsibilities that come with age. This weekend was my chosen time to approach a sensitive topic that I knew we needed to discuss.

Now, when I talk to my son about issues that I know we will both find to be embarrassing or difficult to cover, I generally talk while I'm driving. I don't have to look at him. He doesn't have to look at me. And yet we can talk and talk and talk - or he can listen and listen and listen.

When I picked him up on Friday I told him that I had something to say and he didn't have to respond, just listen. His response, of course, was "one of those" things, huh Mom?

YEP! One of THOSE things.

So I told him that I was taking into consideration his age and the knowledge that I have of the kinds of things that teenagers often do. I then told him that while I don't want him to be having sex, I know there will come a time when he will be interested in such activities. I also realize that buying condoms can be incredibly embarrassing for young adults. Heck - I'm 35 and still feel a bit uncomfortable with the thought of waltzing into a store to buy condoms.

Now I know there are those of you who will say, "If you can't talk about it or buy the supplies, then you ought not be doing it." It isn't that I disagree with that statement, but I'm also very realistic in my thinking.

So here is my solution to this problem. I don't recall where I read this, but it was in a book or magazine somewhere. I will be buying a box in the near future and filling it with condoms. There will be enough condoms that I could not easily tell if he has taken any out of the box. I told him that he was free to take them for himself or any friends that may need them, and that I would not be keeping tabs on how many were there or how many were gone.

My son - being accustomed to conversations such as this - played along. He insisted that the box must be purple and not see through. It should be placed with all the other household supplies, but not in an obvious location so that he would have to look at said box or move it whenever he wanted to get a bar of soap or toothpaste.

The household supplies, by the way, reside in the closet in my son's bedroom because the closet there is very large and he folds his clothes so he does not need that space.

After we settled on the style of the container, he decided it was time to change the subject to anything other than condoms. But I felt like the discussion had been a success and walked away with the knowledge that he was still comfortable talking to me about such matters as this.

Now I have to go shopping... but not today. Maybe next week. He assures me there is no rush.


Petula said...

Hmmm... that's interesting! :) I like the fact that you had the safe sex conversation. I had a similar conversation with my oldest, but my emphasis is on abstinence. We did discuss protection other than just for birth control. We continue to talk a lot about urges and whatnot and I am trusting of what she says right now. Now you have me wondering whether I should provide a box for college. I don't know about that, but you did give me something to think about.

SIGH... I still have three more children to have this conversation with.

The Mother said...

I had the sex talk with each boy.
Two rules: Don't get anyone pregnant, and Don't catch anything we can't cure.

I buy condoms, stick them in the kids' drawers where I know they will find them, and check occasionally to add more if necessary.

Nothing says I love you like keeping your kids safe.

BK said...

Interesting way to touch on the topic. I'll find it pretty awkward to talk about it if I'm facing the person. But in this case, the talk can go on without much embarrassment.