Road Trips and Birth Control


When They Were A Few Years Younger

My 18-year-old left on a road trip yesterday to go hiking in the mountains with some buddies.  Spring break from college.  Gone for several days.  I believe he’ll be just fine.  His mother and I have helped him develop independence, good judgement, dignity, etc.  But man it was a major step watching him leave, not without a certain sadness.  I sense that all will go well though.  So does my wife.  But that doesn’t explain why she didn’t sleep well last night.

Despite how swamped I am with the new gallery, I made sure my 16-year-old and I had lunch together yesterday, and that he ran some errands with me.  This gave me time to have a no-bullshit talk about birth control (again), how Playboy and Maxim don’t know sh-t about sex or relationships, and how there are no winners with an unwanted pregnancy too young.  He listened well, and asked many questions.  As he did, for a moment I was 16 again, facing the same daunting yet fascinating choices.  I hope I’ve made them well.  I believe he will too. 

I do dig being a dad.

10 thoughts on “Road Trips and Birth Control

  1. Yikes…And here I was expecting art talk…But this hit a nerve..I scrolled down trying not to think about my 15 year old, but scrolled right back up to face the blog…. You guys seem smart and up on today’s kids. Goodness I know it can’t be easy being young again, but we too are very aware of our daughter. She is a great kid. We could NOT have been more blessed. But the way they think today is amazing. Of all the shows in the world we sat down together yesterday evening and turned on America’s Top Model…and one of the “wanna be’s” who has been dating a guy for four years..SLEPT with someone during the filming, apparently because she indulged a bit too much. I freaked……my daughter, trying to deal with my reaction, smiled, said…almost to nonchalant..”well, they had been drinking”. Ok, so me thinking because she is not yet dating, looking, but not dating, etc…maybe birthcontrol and all that jazz can wait. But goodness one wrong night out, with that thinking and whoosh…I am a grandmom…Not ready, smile…..Sorry about the long response..but I completely understand about your wife and not sleeping…. Good kids do make wrong choices. Gotta love em…

  2. You know the place, deep in the Boston Mountains, otherwise known as Northwest Arkansas. Hiking is finally over now. Last night they stayed at a swank hotel in Eureka Springs after getting rained on for a couple of days. I paid for the room. Figured they earned it.

  3. It never ends, that worrying stuff. Sounds like you are at least heading into these years with your eyes open. What I like is how you talk to your BOYS. I grew up in a family of six girls (no boys) and have two daughters.

    Seemed like everyone was so concerned about how we talked about our girls learning values, but people with boys didn’t seemed so concerned about that. I guess it’s the “boys will be boys” thing. Good to see you don’t buy into that nonsense. I’m sure they’ll grow up to be fine men.

  4. Tonya: I do love kids of all ages. That’s why I coached baseball for society’s “losers” for 8 years. Yeah, sounds like you’re ready to talk with her. I mean Cosmo, the popular media and Hollywood have them all convinced that they gotta get laid by the time they’re 14, or they aren’t cool. I don’t appreciate those idiots trying to usurp my place as parent, just so they can make another buck. So I outsmart them. For me, that comes in the form of tight relationships and honest talk–along with a lot of jokes.

    Jayne: Sure, boys need those talks often. Most people realize this, but seem unsure of how to go about it. The only reason it’s easy for me is I’m a 49-year-old teenager, and speak the language. But at the same time I’m the old man, and not to be fooled with. They understand both roles. Besides, kids respect someone who draws the line–and doles out the punishment when that line is crossed. Better to learn those lessons from me than an indifferent world.

  5. Congratulations on several levels–not freaking out about your kid growing up and testing himself! And for having a necessary heart to heart about important stuff with your other son. You sound like a great dad!

  6. hahahahaha…You do have a way with words. I am definitely the parent all the kids want to be with…and the first one they come to with all sorts of problems, challenges, ideas and just to talk! It is so important for us not to let the fashion media hype distort our kids. Love them and lead them. Thanks for the conversation.

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