3.5 Time Outs: Teen Boy Chastity Bleg, Part 2

Thanks once again to our host Larry D. at Acts of the Apostasy, this bringing old meaning to Man, you’re sick.

Dozens of takes, 3.5 at a time.


The reason I’m asking internet strangers, instead of my dearly beloved, for advice on teen boy chastity, is this:  The SuperHusband has ample experience with “Teen Boy”, but neither he nor I had much exposure to the whole “Chastity” thing until well after our teen years.  So while we can tell you all about the Marriage-NFP Experience, if we were to draw on our own high school experiences for guidance on how to parent our boy, well, that would not be the most successful method.

And since this is the AoA 3.5 Takes, the Man Event to exceed all Man Events, I’m going to keep on asking.


Here’s the round-up of answers so far:

Darwin wrote from his own experience: Avoid Porn, Develop Aesthetics.  That was very encouraging — we have both the porn-free household and the collection of art books (really just two or three, but it’s a start).  And I never would have considered the topic this way.  I’m really glad I asked!

Christian LeBlanc (this one) writes:

I’d tell my boys that all the trash you see on the net or movies or mags has nothing to do with real men, real woman, and real sex. It’s just a way to get money out of morons. In fact it’s the opposite of those real things, and only idiots waste time on it and screw up any chance of meeting and loving a real woman like my wife, who as my children know is The Most Glorious and Beautiful Woman God Ever Created.

August from Contra Niche say:

If you teach young men to value their first born, they will get in the habit of thinking about whether or not they’d want whoever it is they are looking at (and attracted to) to be their kids mom. It is very effective, especially if you imagine a smart little five year old berating you for your lack of foresight.

Valuable reminders, and it is so helpful to hear this from a man’s perspective.  Larry D.  assures me he has a post in the works (give him time, he’s got the plague), and I’m looking forward to that.


So here’s a two-part question I still need you guys to answer for me:

  • How should a boy deal with the, shall we say, overwhelming physical urges, that are known to afflict young men?
  • And how does a mother, or father, provide these bits of practical advice without making the boy die from embarrassment?

The going advice in popular culture is not so helpful, since it tends to run exactly counter to CCC 2352 and 2396.

So guys, you know how ladies fill magazines with practical tips on cutting calories and avoiding over-eating at holiday parties?  We need the pocket guide to keeping it in the pocket.  I’m going to temporarily open this blog up to anonymous comments, and as long as they are Catholic* and on-topic, I’ll let them through the moderation queue.   What works?

Please tell.


 . . . Anna knew right away: Slugs.  If you ever need a cheap date, invite a slug.

Well that’s all for today.  Tuesday is Link Day for all topics, not just chastity and garden pests.  Help yourself if you are so inclined.   Post as many as you want, but only one per comment or the spam dragon will eat you up and I’ll never even know**.

*By “Catholic” I mean “all that is true and good”.  Your own faith or lack thereof is not the question.  A commitment to purity suffices.

** If your perfectly good comment gets stuck in spam, please TELL ME.  My e-mail in the sidebar works.  I get too much spam to check the spam folder post by post, but I will happily go fish out your misfiled comment if you let me know it’s in there.


QUICK UPDATE: I’ve turned off the anonymous comment feature (6/7/2012).  Amazing how much spam this one post generated — apparently hit all the right keywords.  I don’t *think* any honest humans were caught in spam (yes, I read it all), but you are always welcome to e-mail me if your comment gets eaten by the spam dragon, and I’ll rescue you.  Thank you to everyone who answered, here or elsewhere.  I’ll do a round-up post soon.

26 thoughts on “3.5 Time Outs: Teen Boy Chastity Bleg, Part 2

  1. [okay, given the topic, I figured one probably has to speak frankly, so with all due apologies… feel free to just read this and not publish it if you prefer.]

    I’ve always been kind of frustrated by the line of thinking that goes: “There are two kinds of teenage boys, those who admit they masturbate and those who lie about it.” Teenage boys are not, to put it mildly, inclined to purity. But it is certainly possible not to get into the most extreme habits. I recall running into a study a while back (one which I am NOT inclined to do a google search for using a work computer) in which some anthropologists conducted interviews with teenage boys in various cultures and found that (to their surprise) the prevalence of masturbation varies a fair amount by culture. In a some non-Western cultures they found that although boys expressed lots of interest in sex, they found the idea of do-it-yourself odd or repulsive. So it is possible. Which pretty much aligns with my experience. So, that said, a few thoughts:

    It’s probably appropriate to do a short but fairly frank version of Catholic sex ed at a fairly early age (12-13). My wife already had a brief but fairly non-detailed version of “the talk” with out 10 year old, but this would be the more detailed version. We haven’t hunted around for an appropriate book yet, so I don’t have a specific recommendation (and I don’t remember what it was that we had when I was a young teen) but in 1×1 discussion with the appropriate parent I think it’s probably appropriate to go over or provide information about and then answer questions on:
    – Details of what body parts the other sex has
    – How things fit together (yes, even a brief description of what oral and anal intercourse are)
    – How conception works
    – What homosexuality is (and basically how “it” works)
    – Why contraception, masturbation, pornography, etc. are wrong

    My folks had got a two-part book that covered these topics, which we used in 8th grade homeschool (it might have been from Ignatius Press, but I’m honestly not sure). There was a “student book” which had the basic info, and a “parent book” which went into more depth and the idea was the parent would read this over and discuss it with the teen. I may as well admit that I really didn’t want to discuss it with my parents, so I quietly stole the parents book and read it privately, then returned it to where they’d had it. I’m not sure that speaks well for me, but having the more detailed explanation did help me, and I seem to recall that it made strongly the point that masturbation and pornography were “lonely sins” that served as a cheap replacement for “real sex” with a spouse and impaired one’s ability to fully enjoy that once one got married.

    As a teen, I was always open to morality mixed with a bit of snobery or arrogance, so the slightly dressed up implication that “masturbation is only for lonely losers” message worked fairly well with me.

    Also, in discussing or picking a book on sexual morality for a teenage boy, I think it’s probably helpful to be clear on bright lines. Yes, lingering on lustful thoughts is wrong, and its important to be clear that he should not be sitting around fantasizing all day, but as your question basically points out a teenage boy is going to think about sex. A lot. And he’s going to find himself feeling physically very aroused often — sometimes even over fairly minor things. I think it’s important to steer clear of any kind of moralizing that is so heavy on the depravity of all impurity that when he has that experience he thinks, “Oh well, I’ve already sinned so badly, I might as well finish up.” If instead the clear line is: – hands off
    – think of something else
    – don’t bring yourself (If you’ve got a fairly scrupulous boy, someone will have to explain the difference between doing this intentionally and a wet dream)

    1. Darwin – thank you. Exactly on point. Very helpful. This was about where I was thinking of going, but didn’t know how well it would be received. Very encouraging to be able to say to a boy that temptation isn’t destiny, and there’s research to prove it.

      (My parents, btw, kept their sex ed book in a drawer in the formal living room no one ever used.So it was easily sneaked away and discretely replaced. Not the best book ever written, but the method works.)

    1. Katja, you are right, and it slipped right through my mental filter. Thank you for pointing it out.

      Christian, if you want to give me a replacement word, I’ll happily edit you. Just believe us when we say the r-word is offensive, don’t argue. :-). It is.

    1. I think so. Why don’t we go with that, and if someone protests, we’ll try again. But no one’s ever complained to me about “idiot”, as long as I limit to whom I apply the term.

  2. Sandra, oh my goodness. Initial cookies. Except the small problem of “too beautiful to eat” taken to it’s logical extreme. That’s wins the link award. Awesome.

    Um, and enjoy the popcorn, eh?

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