Don’t Just ‘Reframe’ Purity Culture—Rethink the Whole Concept
These are my recollections of growing up in white Christian purity culture. But, despite numerous popular critiques of this culture in recent years, increasingly from Christians themselves, I rarely find my experience as a queer Black woman reflected.
I find, instead, frustratingly predictable laser focus on women who are white, cisgender, straight, middle-class, able-bodied—and an unwillingness to truly question assumptions shaped by these experiences, and often even assumptions of the very purity culture critics are trying to change.
Stoking Fire: American Life League Escalates Anti-Planned Parenthood Campaign
It’s the anti-Planned Parenthood equivalent of Reefer Madness, covering the themes of birth control and comprehensive sex education. Hitchborn begins, “Just as the goal of a drug dealer is to make drug addicts, the goal of Planned Parenthood is the make sex addicts”—a population of consumers ready to purchase pills, condoms, sex toys, abortions, and whatever other “unnatural” tools are available. He then blasts the illustrated textbook It’s Perfectly Normal: Changing Bodies, Growing Up, and Sexual Health, by Robie H. Harris and Michel Emberley,which is used as a Planned Parenthood training manual that—gasp—offers the message that it is not wrong for us to touch our genitals. “Planned Parenthood’s gateway drug is masturbation,” Hitchborn says.“If a dirty old man showed these pictures to kids in a park, he’d be arrested.” Looking directly at his audience, Hitchborn confides that by showing kids depictions of sex organs, Planned Parenthood is trying to “dispel embarrassment.” Ah, the horror of matter-of-factly presenting oral sex, anal and vaginal penetration, and mutual masturbation as options for healthy sexual expression.
An even more egregious affront to decency, he adds, is the fact that Planned Parenthood treats lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender kids as no more psychologically defective or predatory than heterosexuals. By introducing straight youth to the LGBTQ community, Hitchborn believes Planned Parenthood is intentionally exposing them “to sexual deviancy.” Even more bizarre, he adds that the unmistakable goal of such educational efforts is the “restructuring of the family.” He then concludes that Planned Parenthood’s agenda is little more than “a sick form of population control.”
In the world according to ALL, Planned Parenthood is attempting to turn U.S. youth into sex addicts so it can sell them contraception and abortion while simultaneously working to reduce the number of people in the United States.
Study: New Parents Experience Change in Sexual Desire
I’m not sure anyone with small children needed a peer-reviewed research study to tell them that in the first few months after the baby comes their sex lives and desire change dramatically, but now there is one. Researchers from the University of Michigan interviewed 114 partners of women who had given birth within the past seven years (most of the partners were men, but some were women) and asked about their sex lives when they had a newborn at home.
Previous studies had found that the mothers’ sexual desire dips after childbirth and suggested physical reasons such as hormones and “messy vaginas.” The partners’ dip, however, shows that social and relationship factors are involved as well. The most common reasons partners gave for their low sexual desire after the baby came home were fatigue, stress, too little time, and the baby’s sleeping habits. Factors such as vaginal bleeding and breastfeeding were lower on the list.
I’m guessing that any of you with new babies at home are saying something like “duh” at this point. Of course, that could also be because you’re so sleep deprived you can only utter one syllable at a time.