I recently learned that the three boys who comprise The Jonas Brothers, a pop-rock, media-created teeniebopper band, all wear "Purity Rings." Basically, these are rings that a lot of teenagers are wearing nowadays, including some of the prominent entertainers in the teenybopper crowd. The idea behind them is that they're publicly advertise that they're not going to put their wee-wees in a girl's hoo-ha until marriage. Of course, they can't just have that be a personal decision, they have to let everybody know, as they have to set a good example for all their fans. I somehow doubt that it was their idea, and I even have my doubts as to whether any of them are virgins.
The thing is, if I had a son who was in a popular rock band, and he told me that he wanted to abstain from sex until he got married, my response would be, "That's fantastic. Here's a carton of condoms. I want you to have three of them in every pocket, five in your wallet, one in every drawer of your room, ten in each suitcase, one in each shoe, and one connected by a belly-button piercing."
If he responded with, "But dad, I want to remain a virgin until I'm married!" I would counter with, "Do you like girls?" If he said yes, then I would repeat my previous response.
Can we please stop pretending that we're not driven by a biological urge to reproduce? Not only that, but it's an urge that can override all of our reasonable decision-making thought processes. Not only that, but come on, I work with teenagers. It's a proven fact that their frontal-lobes, the parts of their brains that drive decision making, are not fully developed until their mid-twenties. I mean, it's one thing if you were an awkward teenager like I was whom the girls just weren't interested in (at least, not the kinds who wanted to have sex - dammit!!!!) It's another thing if you're a flippin' rock star who girls are no doubt throwing themselves at! Does anybody really think that all the teenage female fans out there are going to respect their "promise rings"? Here's a crazy newsflash - girls like sex too! Can we stop acting like they're all a bunch of sexless robots for once and start getting real?
Don't get me wrong, everybody needs to make their own choices in life, and if somebody's choice is to wait until marriage, then great. However, can we stop pretending like there's something "moral" about this decision? I read that some of these rings say things like, "True love waits." I'm sorry, but what a fuckin' self-righteous, totally assholesque thing to say. Oh, since my wife and I didn't wait, our love is less true?
The thing is, I had some sophomores several years ago, while doing an oral presentation about themselves, who told the class that they had made the "abstinence pledge." I just smiled and moved on, even though I was thinking, "BULLSHIT!" From what I understand, these pledges do tend to make teens wait longer to have sex - if not necessarily until their wedding night. However, I've also read that it makes them more likely to engage in oral and anal sex. I'm sure that's the desired result, right? Maybe the promise rings can have a new logo that says something like, "True love waits up the butt". (Sorry about that if you're reading this, Mom.)
Also, I'd hate to stereotype or make judgments, but I think it's pretty safe to say that at least one of them was not a virgin by the next year. One of them would wear very skimpy clothing the following year, and her friends informed me that she was into some hard drugs. That doesn't necessarily mean that she was having sex, but come on, let's be real. Even if she did keep that promise, I don't know about you, but I'd rather that my teenage daughter was having safe sex than doing hard drugs.
Anyway, even with the kids I know, it's still different because they're not rock stars, for Pete's sakes.
Mr. and Mrs. Jonas, my recommendation to you - get those boys of yours some rubbers.