Do you hide your SEX books from your kids? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 07:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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My kids are little, 3 and almost 2. I could put books that were personal matter on my night stand by my bed and now my kids are really into pulling books off and looking at them. There are some really graphic pictures and when they can read, some really descriptive details. Do I hide these or let them be out and around? Or should I put them on the large bookshelf in the dining room where all the other books are? And if you would put sex books on a public shelf, would you be embarrassed if your friends or mother came over and saw them?
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#2 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:04 AM
 
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I did put them away when my kids got old enough to take an intrest..mainly becuase i did not want them pulling them out and showing them to thier friends on playdates. although we have always been open about sex some parents are not and its not my place to let thier kids see stuff they dont approve of. Also i did not want them seeing/reading the more graphic things when they were young. Now they are teenagers they would be mortifed if they thought thier parents were having anything to with sex...lol

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#3 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:14 AM
 
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I hid mine away when my dd was little.  I am fine with her knowing about sex and plan to take her to the sex education classes through Planned Parenthood, but I don't think she needs to go deeply in detail with the positions and such until she is much older so I put them away. 

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#4 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:45 AM
 
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I'm all for my kid knowing what sex is, but I personally don't find it appropriate for our family to introduce her to different positions and anything of a more pornographic nature than an educational nature.  I personally keep anything of that kind of adult nature hidden away.  If she is anything like I was as a kid, eventually she'll go snooping and find them ANYWAY, but until that age where she thinks about snooping through my things I don't feel she needs to know graphic details of the pleasure of sex other than the vague idea that sex happens to be quite pleasurable which is why adults do it for fun and not just with the goal of making babies.  I can't tell if what you mean by sex book is basically lit porn or if you are talking about things similar to the kama sutra idea (instructional) but both are more pornographic in nature to me than just teaching the biology of sex which is all I care to introduce to kiddo for a few years.

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#5 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 10:52 AM
 
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I've always been very frank with my kids, but I would keep the kind of books you are describing away from children. Age appropriate books about sex are fine, but those just aren't age appropriate. And no, I wouldn't put store books on such a personal nature in a public area of the house either.

 

Knowing the facts of life are one thing, learning how to keep a long term relationship spicy is completely different.


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#6 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 11:00 AM
 
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The romance novels are in my room on a bookshelf. My kids coudl care less.

 

I was reading those same novels from grade one and on. I took them to school and my teachers ended up calling my mum. My mum said that as long as I could actually read them she saw no harm in them.

 

Would I let my kids read them..nope. But do I hide them like they are shameful, nope.

 

ETA: Are we talking Kama sutra stuff? THAT is completely different and i would place that on a high shelf.

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#7 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 11:31 AM
 
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I agree with everyone else. I want my kids to have the basic information but they do not need to know all the different possible positions! Keep up high and out of sight!

E, wife to D, mommy to G (born March 2010). joy.gif

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#8 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 11:46 AM
 
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I think I agree with PPs. We don't have romance novels or pornography (my nook locks mischievous.gif) but we do have a karma sutra, and I think one a sister gave me about sex and.... astrology? I keep those in my office, no one goes there. Not because it's off limits, it's just boring. I'm not sure if I would hide books on sex or not. I probably would. I remember I gave my middle sister nude playing cards for her 18th bday, and my then 12yo sister (or her friend, we don't know)  took them to school. I would just want to avoid situations like that.


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#9 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 01:08 PM
 
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are you talking about the big red book called sexstrology?  I had that, it wasn't really that much about sex.  I bought it in high school and it was more about which sign you are most compatible with and stuff.  If we are thinking of the same thing (because I can totally see a book that talks about the best positions to try for each sign haha) then that wouldn't bother me being out for kids to see.  No worse than the love/crush story lines seen in about every single show and tv.. even in many kids books.  a bit more adult but I don't recall anything that would make me uncomfortable.
 

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I think I agree with PPs. We don't have romance novels or pornography (my nook locks mischievous.gif) but we do have a karma sutra, and I think one a sister gave me about sex and.... astrology? I keep those in my office, no one goes there. Not because it's off limits, it's just boring. I'm not sure if I would hide books on sex or not. I probably would. I remember I gave my middle sister nude playing cards for her 18th bday, and my then 12yo sister (or her friend, we don't know)  took them to school. I would just want to avoid situations like that.



 

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#10 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 01:18 PM
 
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When I was 7 or 8, I stumbled across my parents' hidden collection of naughty reading material and read it avidly - they never found out.  It had a negative and unhealthy effect on my developing sexuality, and I really wish I'd never seen the stuff.  

 

When my oldest started to read, I purged our house of *everything* I would not want to read with her or discuss with her at some point. I got rid of some antique stuff that was racist and sexist as well as some material that I thought was overly sexual.  I'm not a prude - I still have literature with naughty bits, including the odd romance novel.  But the value of it as literature had to be there.

 

 

 

 

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#11 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 01:52 PM
 
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It would depend on the book I think. Though I can't say I'd ever really "hide" a book, I might put some subject matter that was really in depth or that might be visually confusing/overwhelming away a bit from a wee one. :)


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#12 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 02:21 PM
 
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Romance novels and the like are on the normal book shelf in the office now. 

Sex type books are in our bedroom drawer and just always there. Not sure if we will move them or not. But I don't keep them out in the open just because I don't like the clutter on my night stand and its not like they get read all the time type thing.

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#13 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:16 PM
 
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This is an interesting discussion...and it reminded me that when DS was a baby/toddler, one of the little ones in his "playgroup" (which was mamas bringing babies together so we didn't go totally insane in a cold winter) pulled a graphic kama sutra-type book off of our bookshelf.  I didn't know the other moms all that well, so it was a funny and awkward moment.  ROTFLMAO.gif

 

I agree with the idea of putting such books aside, at least until later on.

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#14 of 35 Old 03-13-2011, 08:32 PM
 
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If I had any, I would hide them, probably in my night stand.  


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#15 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 06:20 AM
 
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Originally Posted by weliveintheforest View Post

If I had any, I would hide them, probably in my night stand.  



It sounds like the  OPer's children are going through her night stand. I would put them on a high shelf in a closet.


but everything has pros and cons  shrug.gif

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#16 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 07:19 AM
 
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What books we have that are all about sex and would be graphic and inappropriate for dd to see are in a box on the high shelf in my closet. Nothing we have is negative but more detailed than I want to share with my child yet.

If the book is a normal fiction book with a sex scene in it then it goes on the bookshelf.

 

I'm more concerned about people/kids seeing dh's book titled The History of Torture and Execution than a book about sex.


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#17 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 08:12 AM
 
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I don't have sex books...I did not know they really existed, unless you mean, like...magazines like Playboy, but it does not sound like you mean that.

 

Maybe I need to look around more when I am at the book store.

 

I never hid my pregnancy books which had a lot in them. Those books were all over my son's reading list in 1st grade where they made us write down what our children read and send it in. Apparently, the school passed around my son's lists because it was that interesting. LOL 

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#18 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 08:25 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post

When I was 7 or 8, I stumbled across my parents' hidden collection of naughty reading material and read it avidly - they never found out.  It had a negative and unhealthy effect on my developing sexuality, and I really wish I'd never seen the stuff.  

 

When my oldest started to read, I purged our house of *everything* I would not want to read with her or discuss with her at some point. I got rid of some antique stuff that was racist and sexist as well as some material that I thought was overly sexual.  I'm not a prude - I still have literature with naughty bits, including the odd romance novel.  But the value of it as literature had to be there.

 

 

 

 


Would you mind going more into this? If you are not comfortable it is ok.
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#19 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 08:39 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone for the responses. I normally would not even be asking this as I was struggling with my own sexuality as I was not allowed to even say the word sex growing up and was taught it was evil. I am only now changing my ways and have purchased sex books as a way to finally overcome my issues. I realized that the way I was raised thinking that sex was evil and the only sex book my parents had I found and read and it was thrown out right when they found out. I don't want my kids to grow up thinking that sex is evil and now I don't even know what to teach. I don't have playboy magazines but more like books called Aphrodites Daughters - a book about womens empowerment spiritually through sexuality. It has no pictures but it does have some pretty descriptive stories through the whole book. Or another book about womens anatomy of arousal and it mainly has pictures of a womans vagina not a totally sexy picture book. Should a kid even see this? I don't want my kids to grow up like I did and want my dd especially to be proud of her womanhood someday. I don't want to pull the books out one day when the kids are 16 and say "surprise!" A whole other world you don't know about.
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#20 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 08:43 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I don't have sex books...I did not know they really existed, unless you mean, like...magazines like Playboy, but it does not sound like you mean that.

 

Maybe I need to look around more when I am at the book store.

 

I never hid my pregnancy books which had a lot in them. Those books were all over my son's reading list in 1st grade where they made us write down what our children read and send it in. Apparently, the school passed around my son's lists because it was that interesting. LOL 


Interesting. I don't hide my pregnancy books or breastfeeding books and they do have lots of pictures. Why wouldn't we hide those? Wouldn't it be nice if labor could be sexy and feel good- oh then we would for sure hide those books too. lol!
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#21 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 09:22 AM
 
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Thanks everyone for the responses. I normally would not even be asking this as I was struggling with my own sexuality as I was not allowed to even say the word sex growing up and was taught it was evil. I am only now changing my ways and have purchased sex books as a way to finally overcome my issues. I realized that the way I was raised thinking that sex was evil and the only sex book my parents had I found and read and it was thrown out right when they found out. I don't want my kids to grow up thinking that sex is evil and now I don't even know what to teach. I don't have playboy magazines but more like books called Aphrodites Daughters - a book about womens empowerment spiritually through sexuality. It has no pictures but it does have some pretty descriptive stories through the whole book. Or another book about womens anatomy of arousal and it mainly has pictures of a womans vagina not a totally sexy picture book. Should a kid even see this? I don't want my kids to grow up like I did and want my dd especially to be proud of her womanhood someday. I don't want to pull the books out one day when the kids are 16 and say "surprise!" A whole other world you don't know about.


 

ITA.

I grew up in a religion that stifled women (imo) and alllllll sexuality. The only things I read about sex as a teen were church pamphlets about how horrible 'unpure' thoughts were, and how masturbation would send you right to hell.

,

Now that we are grown and getting married, I hear about friends going to the Dr to be "stretched" for their husbands ( :0 <- face of horror) and how some are incapable of intercourse because they tighten up and make sex impossible and at the best painful. THEN people think there must be something wrong or going on because they have been married X ammt of time and they don't have children.

 

It's a hot mess. I DON'T want my children to be like this. But I remember an experience from my childhood that kinda... stuck with me in a very big way. I think being unable process the experience (a friend 'humping' a stuffed animal, so not abuse ;)) coupled with the view my religion put on sexuality gave me a big stumbling block in figuring out my own sexuality.

 

But I don't know what to do :) I don't know if it's better to have books out, or what books to leave out. I wish there was a good rule!


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#22 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 09:28 AM
 
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I have lots of books about sex and sexuality. I hide the ones that are overtly non-vanilla instruction manuals, but I had never considered hiding novels or theory books that contain sex, even Anais Nin or Story of O. I don't even hide Patrick Califia or Susie Bright, much less a position book. I don't even think I own a positions book or a Kama Sutra book, but if I did it wouldn't occur to me to hide it. Nor do I hide my art books which may or may not be considered too graphic. We are really straight forward with our son about pretty controversial topics.


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#23 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 09:44 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluebirdmama1 View Post



Quote:
Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post

When I was 7 or 8, I stumbled across my parents' hidden collection of naughty reading material and read it avidly - they never found out.  It had a negative and unhealthy effect on my developing sexuality, and I really wish I'd never seen the stuff.  

 

When my oldest started to read, I purged our house of *everything* I would not want to read with her or discuss with her at some point. I got rid of some antique stuff that was racist and sexist as well as some material that I thought was overly sexual.  I'm not a prude - I still have literature with naughty bits, including the odd romance novel.  But the value of it as literature had to be there.

 

 

 

 




Would you mind going more into this? If you are not comfortable it is ok.


I'm ok with it, but I'm not sure what you want to know.....

 

re: stuff I found when I was a kid - not the kama sutra (that might have been ok, actually)   Cosmopolitan/ Penthouse type stuff and 70s porn novels.  To give an extremely mild example, really, I could have lived my entire life  more happily without ever seeing that nude centerfold of Burt Reynolds.... :P  

 

To make a long story short, these gave me ideas about what sex was all about and the roles of men and women in sexual relationships that caused me problems when I started dating and that I needed to unlearn later.  I'd far rather have found the kama sutra or something that promoted sex as a more beautiful, even spiritual experience, yk?  I found some materials in a storage place under a carpet while playing, and once I knew it was in the house, I went through closets and drawers to find what other stuff my parents were hiding from me....I found a box of condoms and ripped them apart to play with..I think I was trying to get my parents to talk to me about all these mysterious secrets, but no one ever talked to me about that one. There was also not a lot of modeling of or discussion of what makes a healthy relationship or what normal/healthy sexuality is all about in my family, beyond a copy of a decent "where babies come from" book given to me for a birthday.

 

We do tell our kids that our closet shelves up high are off limits and private - it is where we store things like Christmas presents, as well as personal items.  As they get older, they have more privacy themselves, too....we tell them that if they have questions, we'll answer them but that mom and dad keep things private for good reasons and they just don't need or want to know what is up there.  So far, that has worked.

 

re:  purging bookshelves -  my guiding principle was that I did not want any books around the house that I would be ashamed of owning or reading in any context or that I might regret my children finding or showing to their friends.  I needed to declutter anyway!  Dh and I did some thinking about what our values are and got rid of anything that seemed of poor quality, anything that we did not love, anything we did not respect ourselves for owning.  It certainly wasn't all about sexually explicit materials - we got rid of stuff that depicted disturbing violence with no redeeming reason, and magazine subscriptions that promoted values we didn't respect.  We also got rid of a lot of adult and children's books that were just of such poor quality it seemed like it would be a waste of time to read them anymore.

 

 

I hope this makes sense - I do not want to advocate a particular way of dealing with this issue or particular standards that I think anyone else should follow.   I just want to model healthy choices and self-respect for my kids on every level I can.  If my children do stumble across anything that dh and I would rather keep private, well, it happens, we'll deal with it.  I just want them to look back as adults and respect us for the way we handled our relationship and our sexuality, y'know?

 

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#24 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 10:34 AM
 
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I don't know. I guess it depends on the book.

 

DD7 has seen all of my pregnancy/birth/breastfeeding books and we are pretty naked family (meaning that it's no big deal to see each other naked or in the bathroom, but please wear underpants when doing splits and summersalts in the livingroom.

 

Some of my books have graphic illistrations of anatomy and one has drawings of different positions that work for heavily pregnant couples. I have no problem with her seeing this stuff. I think it is healthy for her to ask me questions about it and for me to give her honest answers. I see nothing wrong with DD seeing these kinds of education pictures, pictures that do better to explain what sex is and how it happens than just my words.

 

Now, porn and playboy? No way.

 

DH and I do have a set of fantastic sex books that are writen for the adult that probobly never had frank, truthful information about sex and the opposite sex. (I did grow up with a very enlightened mom that talked to me about this stuff, but there was still some info lacking.) The books do go into how the sex organs work and it gives some very prctical information on how to give pleasure to your partner (think along the lines of this is a clitoris and these are the scrotum, NOT this is how you deep throat type stuff.) There is nothing porny about it. Illustrations are all drawings, no photos. I would have no problem with my kids reading these books when they are a little older. I think we would all be a little bit happier and healthier if we all knew the basics about not only making babies, but what actually feels good (as in lubrication is important, NOT how to be a porn star.)

 

Grrrr, I can't get spell check to work. Please forgive my terrible spelling.


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#25 of 35 Old 03-14-2011, 01:11 PM
 
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I agree - it does depend on the book. I'm ok with my DDs taking a book about empowering sexuality and reading through it. Why not? Where else is she going to get her education about health sexuality (other than from what I can provide, of course!) I mean, look at the media around her...the billboards, the shows, the movies, the songs. This is another form of education. TBH I might pepper a few things around *on purpose* to be serendipitously found.

 

ETA: D'oh! Forgot the second half of my response! When I was about 6 or 7, our nanny (who was really young, like 17 or 18) found some magazines that my parents had, and I found her flipping through them. Parents were cleaning the closet and they were just lying around. She was giggling, so I came over and took a look as well. It wasn't hardcor p0rno or anything, more like those cheesy 'gentleman's magazines from the 70s that were had more articles, dirty cartoons, and the odd pic with exposed breasts. I did learn a few things at that age - I still laugh to think about it. It was enlightening ;)

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#26 of 35 Old 03-15-2011, 08:59 AM
 
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Originally Posted by bluebirdmama1 View Post
books called Aphrodites Daughters - a book about womens empowerment spiritually through sexuality. It has no pictures but it does have some pretty descriptive stories through the whole book.
If you have a reader then NO. mainly coz the concept would be hard to understand for a 8 or 9 year old. but i would leave it out (not blatantly) at maybe 12/13.
Or another book about womens anatomy of arousal and it mainly has pictures of a womans vagina not a totally sexy picture book. Should a kid even see this? I don't want my kids to grow up like I did and want my dd especially to be proud of her womanhood someday. I don't want to pull the books out one day when the kids are 16 and say "surprise!" A whole other world you don't know about.

ABSOLUTELY yes. any book that has pictures that would be 'allowed' in a text book is really good. dd by 3 had seen pictures of vaginas and penises and by 5 had learnt all about the whole baby story thru a medical dictionary, from the act of sex to how babies started.

 

make sure though those books are not 'scary'. some of the pictures can be scary looking and i always watched  out for that. at 3 dd was sensitive about certain things.
 

 


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#27 of 35 Old 03-15-2011, 09:09 AM
 
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see with dd she wouldnt have batted an eyelid if she saw that. she is 8 1/2 and her dad doesnt let her see him naked anymore. dd is ok with that but she doesnt understand what the big deal about being naked is. she is still not in the ewww stage yet. however she learnt all the details before she turned 5 and has not shown any interest
 

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To give an extremely mild example, really, I could have lived my entire life  more happily without ever seeing that nude centerfold of Burt Reynolds.... :P  

 


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#28 of 35 Old 03-15-2011, 10:27 AM
 
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Originally Posted by meemee View Post

see with dd she wouldnt have batted an eyelid if she saw that. she is 8 1/2 and her dad doesnt let her see him naked anymore. dd is ok with that but she doesnt understand what the big deal about being naked is. she is still not in the ewww stage yet. however she learnt all the details before she turned 5 and has not shown any interest
 

 

I'm not really sure what to do with this comment.  I guess I shouldn't have batted an eyelid when I found my parents' stash at a young age?

 

 Some images from that spread *are* widely available online if anyone wants to google them and print them off and leave them about for their young children to find.... if the idea isn't appealing, why do you imagine that might be?  (If the idea *is* appealing to anyone, *please* don't share that thought :-P  .)

 

As a child, I thought nude Burt was pretty gross, was my point -- I still do -- and it had nothing to do with whether or not I knew what a naked male looked like and everything to do with the context.  Heck the sexism of the *ads* in those magazines was pretty creepy in itself. I suspect that most of the stuff that our generation finds sexy is going to be totally cringeworthy for our children's generation when it comes of age.  That's the way it usually goes. I know that my kids don't need  (nor would they want) to see or read *anything* that I, their mom,  would classify as hawt for that reason alone.

 

However in a larger sense, it was not individual pictures, but the narratives and attitudes of written porn that were most damaging to me, and I'm definitely not going into more detail about that.  I'm not talking about art images or  classic literature or academic writings,  some of which do have a place in my home -- on the very top shelves of my bookcases - - if I love them enough to give them permanent space on my shelves.

 

 

 


 

 

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#29 of 35 Old 03-15-2011, 10:45 AM
 
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I agree! I found my parent's sex books when I was 6 or 7, and I never thought of sex or my parents the same way. The whole incident was really disturbing, and I felt like I was introduced to sex in an odd and inappropriate way. 

 

 

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Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post

When I was 7 or 8, I stumbled across my parents' hidden collection of naughty reading material and read it avidly - they never found out.  It had a negative and unhealthy effect on my developing sexuality, and I really wish I'd never seen the stuff.  

 

When my oldest started to read, I purged our house of *everything* I would not want to read with her or discuss with her at some point. I got rid of some antique stuff that was racist and sexist as well as some material that I thought was overly sexual.  I'm not a prude - I still have literature with naughty bits, including the odd romance novel.  But the value of it as literature had to be there.

 

 

 

 



 

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#30 of 35 Old 03-15-2011, 03:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Aubergine68 View Post

 

I'm not really sure what to do with this comment.  I guess I shouldn't have batted an eyelid when I found my parents' stash at a young age?

LOL i was talking about the center spread of Burt reynolds. if dd ever runs into pictures of naked people she doesnt really bat an eyelid. to her (having grown up around naked people till pretty old, so conciously remembering what daddy and mommy looked like naked) there is no difference between naked and clothed people.

but if you are talking about sexism one doesnt need to look at a centerfold or those kind of magazines. its pretty gross in regular ads and commercials.

 

i will say though i find playboy (at least 20 years ago) images a work of art.

 


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