Promises

There’s alot of talk in the celebrity world these days about Promise rings, specifically the Jonas Brothers and Miley Cyrus, two acts that my dearest Samara can’t get enough of and that my boy, Matthew, can’t stand.

The promise rings that they are wearing are to remind themselves of a promise that they’ve made to themselves… the promise to save themselves for marriage.

It’s a concept that most of us are unfamiliar with. What? Not have sex with anything that breathes because you’re in the mood? Saving yourself for the person that you marry and not someone that you simply love or think, at the time, that you love?

Many of us don’t grasp that. Yet, we scoff at those unwed teenagers that we see out and about, questioning not the actions of the teen, but of the parent that’s back at home, supposedly a good role model. We look at those that have an STD as if they are gross. And lose respect for many when we learn of their count, most often attaching labels.

We complain about the rise of sexually transmitted diseases, the rise in the amount of abortions performed each year, and the divorce rate. However, do you know that most of these things would decrease if we just kept our legs closed until we got married?

So when the question was asked if we would give our children, at the appropriate age, a promise ring, I had to weigh in.

I’m a thirty-one year old, single woman, and I’ve worn a promise ring for just over a year now. I made a committment to myself that I would save myself for marriage and if you’re anything like most of the people I know, let me answer your question right now.

Yes, I know what I’m giving up.

I made this choice for a few reasons. (A) I’ve done the whole child out of wedlock thing and it sucks. The stares, the comments, the judgements… yeah, I’d prefer not to go that route again. (B) I don’t really feel like worrying if I’m pregnant or worrying about birth control. Guess what? Unless I’ve been chosen to carry the next Messiah, I don’t have to ever worry about it if I’m not engaging in the activity. (C) If you’re like me, and grounded in your faith, you know that sex was created as an act for a husband and wife, and it goes again my Biblical beliefs… but I could make this same argument and leave the Bible completely out of it.

But the biggest reason that I made this choice? That would be (D) I want to set an example for the lives that I am influencing. I can’t very well tell this kids in my youth group, or my own kids, not to have sex until they are married and getting it on myself. Ya know? Can we say hypocrite?

Now, regarding the whole promise ring and my children…. will I just give them each one and let them know what it stands for?

No.

Slapping a ring on their finger isn’t going to do them any good. They have to WANT to put that ring on. They have to WANT to make that promise to themselves and then WANT to explain to anyone who asks about their ring what it stands for.

They have to have buy in.

And that’s why I’m honest about the ring that currently resides on the ring finger on my right hand. (It would be where a wedding band would normally be but my the ring on that finger doesn’t fit on my right hand and I’ve not been to have it resized yet.)

I explain to my children and those in my youth group and anyone else that asks what it stands for — my purity…my promise that I will save myself for my husband.

Does it turn guys away? Yes. Does it make people say, “well, I understand why you’re still single?” Absolutely.

But what it also does is remind me that I’m special and that I’m worth the wait. And any man who has a problem with that is NOT the man for me.

I’m glad that some of these celebrities are taking a stand for abstinence amidst the current Hollywood “role models” who are anything but and I pray that they are serious about their promises to themselves. I’m sure Miley Cyrus could get through to my daughter better than anyone else could when it comes to saying that purity is cool. But I’m prepared to have the conversation about it if they do, in fact, break their promises and it will go much like the talk that I had with my children when they learned of Jamie Lynn’s pregnancy.

Hearing, “Zoey from Zoey 101 is going to be a mom… isn’t she lucky?” our of my then eight-year-old was a shock and I never had plans to explain to her at that time why “Zoey” was anything BUT lucky.

So you can call me a freak, a born-again virgin, what ever it is that you want.

I’m calling myself smart.

I’m calling myself special.

I’m calling myself worth it.

And I hope one day that my children wish to call themselves the same.

Until next time…

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Comments

  1. Here is my 2 cents on the whole Promise Ring thing…

    Instead of a ring I think open and honest conversations are the best route. I let my kids know I want them to wait until they are older. I don’t advocate waiting til marriage because I think it is important to try on the merchandise before you buy it. But I also don’t advocate being sexually active in high school. My kids know I want them to wait until at least college. However, I am very open about sex and have made sure to do my best to make sure they realize the potential consequences. I especially like telling the horror stories of my friends in high school (STDs, teen pregnancies, abortions, date rapes, etc)in detail. I tell the stories and I tell the truth so they know bad stuff really can happen around sex. But I also tell them the good stuff and want them to know that sex is not a bad thing, that it can be a beautiful wonderful way to connect with another human when it is with someone you love who truly cares about you.

    More than just waiting for marriage I talk about the importance of finding someone who respects, honors, loves and adores you. To me it is not about having sex or not, it’s about finding the person who you truly connect with who truly honors your existence.

    By the way, around here before the celebrity thing Promise Rings stood for a promise to be committed, to be monogamous.

    One more thing, if one of my kids decides they want to wear a promise ring and make that commitment that is fine with me too.

  2. What a wonderful example you are setting for your kids as well as the kids in the youth group. I pray that your kids “listen” to your example and make the decision that you have made, to follow the example of the Bible and the one Jesus has set out for us.

    Ann Gs last blog post..New Update on Dad

  3. Thanks for this open, honest post. Good for you for sticking with your guns.

    I’m gonna link back to this. Thanks!

  4. “So you can call me a freak, a born-again virgin, what ever it is that you want.”

    I’d call you brave to take on such a commitment, especially being an adult who obviously knows (first hand) the consequences that can come from sex.

    I’d call you honest for making a commitment to yourself for reasons YOU hold true and dear.

    I’d call you RIGHT because, hey, it’s your body and your decision and who am I (or anyone else?) to judge you for your choice.

    K2

    Krissi from Krississippis last blog post..2008/09/13 Twitter Tweets

  5. Hmmm. Lots of food for thought here. Do you really get questioned about waiting? I suppose around the youth group you do. I can’t even imagine dating in today’s day and age. I was watching a sitcom last night and the girl was mocked for not having sex after the 3rd date. Having to DEFEND herself for her abstinence thus far. It is a crazy world! Something THAT intimate should simply be saved until the RIGHT time. And now, we can’t even be sure with a marriage certificate if it is RIGHT – in other words if that person is going to be true to their vows to love and cherish and stay faithful… But I suppose it is as close as we can get to RIGHT.

    Being married for more than 13 years I haven’t had to think about this issue. Well sort of. Although my children were made and produced in wedlock, I wonder if my sex life would be hounded by images of my past if I had stayed faithful to myself and waited til marriage? I believe that it is more than just our bodies united in love making. It is something deeper. It is only a matter of time before we start to admit this.

    Okay, this is turning into a post of its own… I’m off to rant and rave on my own blog! :) thanks for the great topic.

  6. I think that’s great. My nieces/nephews all have those and I will probably talk with my own boys about it. I know it’s not all about the ring, the ring is just a symbol of their commitment.

    Annabelle@Christian Mommas last blog post..My dad

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