Many of us clicked on this article in search of truth on the topic of sex. Some of us are excited, others desperate, some just plain curious. We’re ready to absorb facts, find freedom, and walk away, forever changed… or so we think.
Why then, do we search, sometimes for years, hearing truth and walking away unchanged? We have the best intentions, but unfortunately, our presumptions and preconceived notions have shaped our ability (or inability) to dialogue about sex in a healthy way.
You see, I can share with you new ideas, theology, and scientific statistics until you’re blue in the face, but if you’re already indoctrinated, you’ve already made up your mind on the matter. Chances are that you won’t be able to fully hear what I have to say because you’re hearing it through the filter of what you know or what you’ve experienced.
There’s no shame in that; we’ve all been there. But if we’re going to move forward and find freedom, we must first realize that it is impossible for us to learn about sex without knowing where we have already learned about it.
At Moral Revolution we’ve come to find that there are three main environments in which we learn about sex. We call them the silent environment, the saturated environment, and the conflicted environment. In this blog we’re going to tackle the first environment: the silent environment.
Imagine a bedroom door. The door is locked; it has been locked for most of your life, and someone threw away the key. All of the other rooms in your life — kitchen, living room, bathroom — are accessible to you. The bedroom door, however, is shut. It’s almost like it doesn’t even exist. What’s behind that door? A big, whirling black hole of mystery. Your parents never mentioned anything to you. Your church has no idea what you’re talking about. “Door? What door?”
This is the silent environment.
Here we learn that sex is neither good nor bad; it’s just never talked about. You begin to wonder what the big deal is. The people in your life never told you anything about it, and you were left to figure it out on your own. For most of us, that meant watching movies, staying up to watch late night TV, browsing the Internet, or asking friends. Maybe you were surprised one day to find that there was a whole world out there no one told you about. Perhaps it was overwhelming. Maybe you happened to be in a situation, even physically, where you didn’t know what was going on. It just happened, and you suddenly realized that there was more to it than meets the eye.
In the Silent Environment we learn that sex is a part of life, but it’s too private to talk about or it’s not overly important. After all, if it were really that important, someone would have said something. If it were really vital to know what it’s meant to be, how it’s meant to be used, and the power of it, then the most important people in our lives would have talked to us about it. Right?
Maybe our parents thought they were protecting us. Maybe our church leaders thought it was too private. Perhaps they really didn’t think it was important, either. Whatever the case was, that silence said something to us about its value, importance and power.
Contrary to popular belief, the silent environment is not the most pure environment.
Keeping something hidden doesn’t make it pure.
Sex must be talked about; if we don’t, the silence we believe will protect us actually opens a different door. As a result, we often see shame, guilt, confusion and fear fill in the gaps of the unsaid. This is particularly true in the lives of children and youth. If time is not given to explain the value of something, we’re left to discover and learn about it on our own.
If we go through this process alone, we decide to go with whatever suits us or sounds good in the moment. The danger is this: when we’re not informed by people we trust, we let other voices influence our perspective. We begin to learn about sex, sexuality, and beauty from pop culture. Society begins to dictate what we should do with our bodies or what should happen in our relationships. These ideas become our beliefs. These beliefs become our actions. These actions begin to define our character.
If this was your environment, take a deep breath. You can start to renew your mind and get yourself back to a healthy baseline when it comes to sex and sexuality. Ask yourself the following questions. Maybe grab your journal and take some time to reflect on what you believe in your core about sex. Take your time. This is a personal journey.
1. What was I told about sex?
2. What did I learn from my environment?
3. If I had to describe sex or sexuality in one to three words, what words would I use?
4. Do I feel free to talk about sex with trusted people, or do I feel the need to refrain?
5. How do I feel about sex and sexuality: dirty, fearful, curious, excited, etc.?
It’s time to break the silence!
COMING SOON – Part 2: Overthinking A Simple Encounter