In the New York Times this morning the following article appeared: 'The New Birds and Bees: Teaching Kids About Boundaries and Consent', 'What we can learn from the Dutch'. As if this is a brave new world of discovery!
Long before the Kavanaugh debacle, I was offering free presentations to schools, community organizations, local businesses and religious organizations. I was happy to come and talk to their clients (whether that was customers, students, parents or their members of staff) on a whole range of issues designed to empower people. These issues included healthy relationships, the meaning of consent, the importance of boundaries, the different types of abuse, etc etc etc. I also offered a presentation on men's health, in an attempt to challenge traditional gender assumptions (hoping that this would empower boys and men to open up about their feelings, rather than using other, less constructive means to resolve issues). And yes, again, I was offering it free. I also offered free articles or handouts they could use, if they did not have time to organize a presentation.
Some responded in a polite manner, but for the most part there was a stony silence. In some cases, there was an outright "No!", without further explanation. This was particularly surprising when it came to schools. From what I understand, the working week is so full of sporting activities that there is just no time left for learning about empowering our youngsters.
Troubling, and it makes me wonder how this has become the status quo.
Chris Warren-Dickins LPC
+1 (201) 862-7776