I am a parent of a teenager, which inherently means I don’t know anything at all. Just ask my kid. He’s 18 now and thinks he’s completely independent, although I don’t know how he figures that as he is unemployed, walking everywhere because his vehicle doesn’t run and I’m done dumping money in to it, and is staying with friends who’s parents take pity on him because **GASP** we don’t have satellite or cable TV at our house, the blu ray player quit working so he can’t even stream internet on the TV, and I expect him to clean up after himself. Clearly, he can’t stay there under such primeval conditions, so he comes home every once in a while to wash clothes, eat everything in the house and dirty every single dish I own.
He called me yesterday because his cell phone is out of minutes and needed refilled. Of course I did it. I mean, it’s $30, and the only way I have of knowing he is still alive. It’s a small price to pay, for me anyway. For him, calling to ask for more minutes for his phone means hearing “Don’t be boning anyone unless you use protection.” He knows it’s going to be said, because any time he’s gone out with friends, or he’s been on his own for a day or 2 while I’ve been out of town, it’s the last thing I tell him. “Don’t be boning anyone without protection.” It’s always met with a “Ugh…MOM! Literally nobody else’s mom talks to them like that,” (well they should), or “MOM! **eye roll** I don’t do that!” (liar)
Yesterday though…yesterday when faced with the standard “Don’t be boning anyone unless you use protection,” he countered with “My girlfriend is on birth control.” Yeah…not good enough dude. Imagine my surprise when he actually listened without the eye roll when I laid it out for him like this: My girlfriend is on birth control is not a good enough answer dude, and here’s why.
- Girls sometimes lie about being on birth control
- Birth control does not protect you against STDs. Do you really want to tell me that you need to go to the doctor because it burns when you pee? Because you’re still on my insurance, and I’m going to be the one paying the co-pay for you, or getting the EOB from my insurance company after you go to the doctor without telling me about it.
- You’re not emotionally ready to be told to do the dishes, so you’re really not emotionally ready for sex, but that’s beside the point.
- Birth control does not protect you against mothers and fathers of pretty girls.
- Birth control is not solely your girlfriend’s responsibility, so use condoms and take some damn responsibility yourself.
- Finally, if the birth control fails, you can not financially take care of yourself, let alone a child. Yes, I know I did it, but frankly, I did a shit job at it, and whether or not you agree, I’m a whole hell of a lot stronger than you are. Actually, I take that back. I WAS a whole hell of a lot stronger than you are. I can’t do it again. I won’t do it again. I can’t be responsible for another small human without that small human coming with a grown ass man that I get to sleep next to every night. So for the love of all things holy, and for the sake of your own future do not rely solely on “My girlfriend is on birth control” while you are doing things that I still don’t think you’re ready for.
At the end of all of that, he said “So are you going to add minutes to my phone or not?”
“Of course,” I responded.
“Thanks Mom. I love you.”
And that was all there was said. No “Whatever Mom” or any other form of “you don’t know anything” disgust, just “Thanks Mom. I love you.” Did anything sink in? I have no idea. But what I do know is “Save sex until you’re married” isn’t going to cut it. Putting my head in the sand and ignoring it is just going to create problems, so no matter how “inappropriate” the way I address the situation may be, it’s the only way he was going to listen, and he had to hear it, because even though he’s an “adult” (and I use that term loosely), I am the parent, and he’s not ready to be one.