Sex and Candy – The 8 Rules of Engagement

I am as guilty of loving Disney princess movies as any pre-adolescent girl in my neighborhood. And I love sweet movies about unconventional romance, like Pretty Woman and Bend it Like Beckham. Boy meets girl, girl is feisty and cute and somehow doesn’t realize how beautiful she really is. Boy and girl fall in love, despite social differences (race, socio-economic status, religion). Those differences result in some kind of conflict which are ultimately saved by one overwhelming thing.

Love.

And when you go through life, you realize that love is complicated shit. It doesn’t work out as clearly as in the movies and there is no musical crescendo to notify you when you are kissing someone that this is the one. No laugh track when you accidentally bump heads reaching for a pen you dropped. No fairy godmother to dress you up in an outfit that’s just the right amount of pretty, classy and slutty to let him know what a goddess you are.

There are a few things I want my kids to know about love, and with it, sex. Some of it’s straightforward. Some of it’s not. But I want them to know the good, the bad and the ugly.

1. Love is a powerful thing

Yes, it makes you want to run through fields of flowers and change your Facebook status for the whole world to see. But when you love someone and they love you, there is a power that you both wield which could be used for both good and evil. When someone gives you his love, don’t throw it on the floor and stomp on it and break his heart. Similarly, know that when you allow yourself to love someone, that you are becoming vulnerable in a way that you might never understand till it happens.

So give yours wisely. Accept it from others gracefully.

2. It’s going to make you want to do the sexy time

Sometimes you think you’re in love. Or maybe you know you’re not in love but you know that you’re in something and you don’t know what to do with it. Before you go giving it up like free Dum Dums at the doctor’s office, ask yourself:

“Is this how I want to remember it?”

“Is this the person I want to remember it with?”

“Will I ever be able to tell my kids about my first time without lying?”

And I know these things are going to be hard to objectively answer, but humor me and try it before running out to Walgreen’s for a value pack of Durex.

3. Love in the time of Chlamydia

Giving a shout out to one of my favorite authors Gabriel Garcia Marquez on this one (HOLLA!). I am going to teach you about STD’s and you are going to listen. If you’re going to engage, do it wisely and know what’s out there. And if what I tell you scares the shit out of you and makes you want to wait, well, good.

I don’t care how “good it feels.” If someone asks you to do it without a condom because it feels good, you better get your ass out of there fast. Because this is not the first time she/he has uttered those words and you don’t want to catch that shit. It itches, leaves you all raw and makes everything hurt really bad down there.

What? How do I know that? Books. Here’s one about Cholera. Now, scoot.

4. You are too young to be a parent

I thought I was wise enough. Old enough. At 31, I thought I knew everything I needed to know. And I’m not saying there is a right age and there is a wrong age…

But I am saying that I prefer you wait until you are settled. Until after you have been in relationships with a few people. Until you have a means to support yourself, your child a family. I had all of that at 31 and still ended up in a state of shock for the next six years of my life. Sometimes I think I still am. I think it’s a permanent condition after you pop kids out of your vagina.

I will say that I prefer you to be married too. I do. I think that while marriage doesn’t ensure against separation, it does offer some stability that a child needs.

And let’s just say that for some reason (say, if you’re gay) marriage is not “legal” for you, just know that I will be fighting tooth and nail alongside you for that right. I hope by the time you are old enough, the Supreme Court has already made a historical decision that won’t allow that basic freedom be denied to anyone.

5. I don’t care who you love

Ok. Maybe I do a little bit. But let me be clear. When I was growing up, there were a lot of “no-nos” when it came to relationships. I don’t really have many. As I said above, I don’t care if you are gay. I don’t care if you fall in love with someone who is a different race, religion, or is rich/poor as sin. As long as I can serve dinner in paper plates when I want to and not have anybody judging me, then I’m ok.

Yes, avoid sociopaths. Murderers. Rapists. Racists.

I want you to fall in love with a person who respects you and your love and wants to hold a boombox over his head like John Cusack in Say Anything. When you find a love like that, don’t ever let it go. Which brings me to my next point.

6. When you love somebody, don’t set them free

Ok, that’s the dumbest shit I ever heard. And I know Maya Angelou says it and Sting sings it.  And as far as the whole caged bird thing, I don’t like birds as housepets, so I don’t really have a point of view on that.

When you love somebody, tie that person down. Don’t set them free so some other bitch can get her hands all over him.

Seriously, kid. Have I taught you nothing?

7. Don’t make decisions about love when drunk

Now, I am not saying I have done this. I prefer you just sip alcohol on very rare social occasions once you are older than 21. But let’s just say that hypothetically, you and your friends don’t eat that much one day and you decide to do shots of Shmirnoff and chase it down with Diet Pepsi (tastes great! less filling!) and you go to a party and you meet a really good looking person that night who holds your hair out of your face when all that cheap vodka comes back up and walks you home.

You do not love him/her. You appreciate him/her. And you can email when you are sober and offer to buy dinner to say thanks, but you don’t have to say I love you or offer any hoo-ha up. Why?

a) Because you are wasted

b) You smell like puke

c) You just need to get the fuck back in bed – RIGHT NOW

d) Didn’t I raise you better than that?

e) All of the above. Oh and drink some water before you go to bed. That’s better, dear.

8. I can tell you all of this but you will make your own mistakes

We all do. It’s part of growing up. It’s part of learning. Your father and I will always be here for you no matter what that mistake is. No matter how hard it might be.

I have hardly touched on anything when it comes to love in this post. All I ask is that you go forward with your eyes open, your mind somewhat clear and with the end goal of loving a wonderful, decent human being who will love you – the perfect parts and the not so perfect parts. Trust me, people who expect perfection are exhausting (another post, another day)!

Love,

Mom

36 Responses to Sex and Candy – The 8 Rules of Engagement

  • MomWithaDot says:

    Saving this for my daughter. BTW, is it really engegenent ……? Made me look it up ! :p
    MomWithaDot recently posted…Candid ConversationMy Profile

    • masalachica says:

      i was falling asleep last night when I hit publish – i must have already been asleep!

      • MomWithaDot says:

        “Whaa…!! That’s it? I was hoping you’d appoint me proof reader for every book you’ll ever write” LOL!!

        You write aMMAyzing stuff sleepy or otherwise. So you keep doing that while I’ll look around for a silly typo here or a bad link there….. Have a great weekend :)
        MomWithaDot recently posted…Candid ConversationMy Profile

    • I’m with you on all of this except Point 6. Monogamy is unprecedented in all mammals and most other species, but especially primates, which we is. Illusion is, as Buddha pointed out long ago, the cause of all human suffering, Possessiveness is a waste of energy and just sets you up for misery. You can wish and hope for an exclusive relationship, but it won’t make it so. Many people have a primary partner, as I do, but most would and do take advantage of fortuitous opportunities to mate…

  • Alison
    Twitter:
    says:

    Can I just copy this and give it to my boys?
    Thank you.
    Alison recently posted…Putting Thought, Paying Mind, Present For, And ProudMy Profile

  • Jennifer says:

    “Before you go giving it up like free Dum Dums at the doctor’s office…”

    Exactly. I’m so worried about Cady. She’s the child that is eager to please and wants to make everyone happy. I’m doing everything I can to change that about her. Not that I want to change HER exactly, just her need to please.
    Jennifer recently posted…6 Things I Love About DavidMy Profile

    • masalachica says:

      You know, I wonder the same thing. It wasn’t so much about sex, but Shaila is a people pleaser. There is a kid who constantly makes fun of her and taunts her and Shaila has rose colored glasses on. “Isn’t so and so so nice?” I’m like, really kid? But in a way, I am glad she loves people.

      I just hope that this doesn’t translate to how she engages with men. Accept meanness and think its kindness. That will be scary.

  • Manisha says:

    Great list of advise! Is anyone every ready to have a baby? I had one at the age of 38 and sometimes I feel it was too soon.
    Manisha recently posted…14 – 19 years!My Profile

    • masalachica says:

      I think we are all ready and then when the baby comes it hits us all the things we are never going to be able to do again. That doesn’t mean I am not thrilled to be a parent – I think it was just a shock, you know? And I have friends who have done it younger, some in less stable situations and they rose to the task. I still think it was harder for them though.
      xo.

      • Manisha says:

        You are right, of course. I look at my friends who had kids at a young age and am in awe. Now their children are grown and such wonderful young adults. The parents are back to a marriage that seems like young love. Dave and i will be 60 when Niobe is in college, hopefully we can keep the spark lit until then!
        Manisha recently posted…14 – 19 years!My Profile

  • Greta says:

    Everything about this. Oh, lord. I’m going to have two teenage daughters. Hold me.
    Greta recently posted…Good, Clean Fun. #iPPPMy Profile

  • Arnebya
    Twitter:
    says:

    I am at the cusp of Talking About All Of The Things with my 12 yr old (who asked to get ONE Valentine’s Day card. I’M NOT STUPID, LIL GIRL. One card = one boy = shiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiid. Let’s talk NOW.)

    All of this is so so true. All of my talks will inclue “Ain’t no cure for Herpes, dummy.”
    Arnebya recently posted…SometimesMy Profile

    • masalachica says:

      Oooh, Arnebya. Yeah, you are right there. I still have a ways to go. But before I know it, it’s going to be the same time – 12, 13.

      How true and how wise. “ain’t no cure for herpes, dummy.” You gave me goosebumps ;-).

  • Omigosh! You get funnier and funnier. Meanwhile, while I’m hoping to get some this weekend, I’ll be thinking about herpes and STD’s and hoo-has. And cholera. ;)

    And for real, even after my husband got snipped, I was still terrified that I’d get pregnant or catch and STD. Seriously, it’s not like he was cheating (or would ever cheat). It’s just I’d come to rely on condoms for soooo long, well…not using them was weird. TMI?
    Renée Schuls-Jacobson recently posted…How The Death of My Treadmill Reminded Me Love Is In The HouseMy Profile

  • Galit Breen
    Twitter:
    says:

    Oh my, IMPORTANT.

    (Scary, but still.)

    IMPORTANT.

    xo
    Galit Breen recently posted…The Nicest Thing I’ve Ever DoneMy Profile

  • Leigh Ann
    Twitter:
    says:

    Perfect. When we have kids, it’s so hard to see beyond the baby days, that it’s easy to forget that someday we’ll have to talk to them about this stuff. The John Cusack line reminds me of what my MIL said to my husband’s youngest sister regarding love. She said, “You need to find someone who loves you as much as your brother loves Leigh Ann.” Wise words and best compliment ever.
    Leigh Ann recently posted…“Come hither to my playroom” and other Valentine’s Day goodnessMy Profile

  • Kristin says:

    I’m taking notes for the day, many, many, many, many years from now, when I have to talk to my daughter about all of this because I want to do it exactly like you. Same points, same lighthearted yet serious tone, and hopefully instilling the same sense of importance (and possibly fear of God) in her. Brava.
    Kristin recently posted…Love Me, Love My CatMy Profile

  • Brittany
    Twitter:
    says:

    I lovedevery part of this except it reminded me that I am scared as shit for the day I have to really get into this. Lighthearted yet dead serious is the perfect way to approach this and I might just print this out or make an evernote folder now of things I want to tell my kids later. Thank you!
    Brittany recently posted…40 Tasks for 40 Days – #40DayProjectMy Profile

  • Tonya says:

    Perfect words of advice and oh so true! I especially love #7. Sigh….

    Happy Valentine’s Day!
    Tonya recently posted…Barbie WorldMy Profile

  • ilene
    Twitter:
    says:

    Man oh man – I have 2 girls and a boy and I worry about them in such different ways…And what you say about love – it’s so simple – right? except it’s not.
    ilene recently posted…Love RevisitedMy Profile

  • Elaine A.
    Twitter:
    says:

    I’m going to print this one off for when I need it again someday. Some day FAAAAR away but yes, someday. This is so great! Happy V-day! ;-)
    Elaine A. recently posted…GWLMy Profile

  • HEMANT says:

    Its love
    when a little girl puts her energy to give dad a head massage.

    Its love
    when a husband pours coffee for wife and take a sip before handing the cup to her or vice-versa

    Its love
    when a mother gives her child the best piece of cake.

    Its love
    when your friend holds your hand tightly on a slippery road.

    Its love
    when your brother/sis/friends message you and asks did you reach home on time, or have you reached your destination safely.

    Love is not just a guy and a girl going around the city, partying or sleeping-with each other.

    Love is actually a name of “CARE!”

    • masalachica says:

      I honestly think you may have misunderstood this post and the intent of it. All of those things are things you do for love, of course. But this post is about how I am going to talk to my kids when they are teenagers and start asking me about love and sex. I live in America and I do care, and I don’t have blinders on my eyes. If all you read in this post is the last line, and you think that I think love is a guy and a girl going around a city, partying or sleeping with each other, you missed the part where I say that THAT is NOT love at all. Sorry, Hemant, but you missed the point of this post by a longshot.

  • John says:

    Loved this! Great post, Kiran!

  • dixya
    Twitter:
    says:

    I am going to direct my kids if I ever have one day :) esp now the media is exposing kids to things they are not ready for it but its better to give them information and awareness rather than regretting why didnt i later. And, we all have to go through the whole journey ourselves to understand what its like to have a heart break, be dumped, be in love, and all that stuff but at least as an parent you can tell them whats ahead of them! All you can do is love your kids, raise them with right values and rest will all be good :) Happy Friday!!!
    dixya recently posted…Seared Lamb Chops with Rosemary Red Wine Reduction {Valentines Day}My Profile

  • Robin
    Twitter:
    says:

    This is so good. And I really don’t want to have to deal with thus. :/
    Robin recently posted…Explore: Life in Pictures, Vol. 2My Profile

  • Alma says:

    These are all great lessons. Open, honest and with a sense of humor.
    Love all the references to some of my favorite movies ;)
    Just happen to have “the talk” again with my 11 year old boy again… came home telling me that boys were teasing him that he would be a virgin till he was sixty. (steam blew out my ears and cracked some knuckles) he gets teased a lot he is one of those badass intellectuals kids just cant handle. He walked away feeling better but I have a feeling we will be having the talk again. Mean kids suck.
    Alma recently posted…Nourishing the SpiritMy Profile

    • Alma, your story really resonated with me.

      I was, and still am, a badass intellectual (it has in fact played a MAJOR role in my career & entrepreneurship), and I’d like to say that from my own experience it is that same badass intellectualism that outcast me as a kid, which has allowed me to command off-the-charts devotion, magnetism, and affection (mainly from ultra-beautiful, ultra-feminine women – but it works with many on many levels) in my adult life.

      General themes/guidelines that people seem drawn to:
      -Intellectual clarity
      -Badassness, (especially combined with integrity/nobility)
      -Quick wit, humor, (especially when aimed at lightening moods and uplifting others.)

      What I’m getting at is, I feel I’ve been in similar situations to your son, and sometimes its good to hear from someone who’s been there.

      I feel it’s great you encourage your son to be who he is, and I’d like to note that many things that people seemed to dislike or dismiss early in life, are things that ABSOLUTELY ROCK as time passes.

      One day your son will be confident & ready enough to stand up for himself boldly… something like this:

      Mean Kids: “You’re gonna be a virgin til your 60.”
      Son: Hah, face it. I’m insanely smart, insanely funny, insanely creative and I’m basically rich-and-powerful waiting to happen. I’ll have any chick I want. Period. All you guys have is haterade, good luck gettin’ laid :)”

      Or maybe he’ll phrase it a different way, but the point his, I have a feeling that he’ll be very, very sure of himself :)

      Keep ryzin’!

      P.S. I agree, as a massively adoring fan of creation, and pop culture especially, I love the movie references too :)
      Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca recently posted…6 Examples Of Hater-Handling (To Boost Your Confidence)My Profile

  • Anna See says:

    So funny and so true and scary all at the same time!
    Anna See recently posted…Hair Today…My Profile

  • Lady Jennie says:

    This is a lot of wisdom in a whole lot of funny. (esp #6)
    Lady Jennie recently posted…Cupcakes in ParisMy Profile

  • Hahahah…I found this cool, insightful, & hilarious. I’d love to see more parents expressing similar ideas :)

    I have a slightly different view on #4 and #6, and my favorite is #8 :)

    keep ryzin’!
    Jason “J-Ryze” Fonceca recently posted…6 Examples Of Hater-Handling (To Boost Your Confidence)My Profile

  • Angela says:

    What a wonderful, thoughtful and amazing post. I love all your points and will be showing it to my 15 year old daughter. I especially agree with #5, as a 1.5 generation Korean Canadian, I was told I should marry someone Korean, but my parents changed their mind when they met the man I would marry, and they knew all that mattered was that he was an amazing man and that he would love me and be my rock, through tough times and amazing times.

  • P says:

    I love that these phrases go one after the other:
    “So give your (love) wisely. Accept it from others gracefully.” (Awww…)
    “It’s going to make you want to do the sexy time.” (So don’t be a dumbass!)
    Great post, Kiran!

  • Nicely put. Thanks!

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MEET KIRAN
I'm Kiran, I'm a dreamer. A writer. A singer. A mother. An ugly crier. An Indian-American. Who loves Gandhi. My stories are full of truth that is sometimes hard for me to say out loud. This blog is where I overcome my fears and live (and love) out loud. Read More....
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