THE BLOG

Open Letter: It's Not the Sex I Worry About

03/27/2013 03:58 pm 15:58:42 | Updated May 27, 2013

It's not the sex I worry about. Well I do, but not for the reasons you think. It is the heart I worry about and the brain. You learn alot about love and relationships in your first teen experiences. You learn things that stick with you for the rest of your life, both good and bad. I won't bore you with my own war stories from high school romance, but ask anyone -- they all have them.

The problem with learning about love and relationships when you are young is that there are some things that young people's brains just aren't that good at yet. Like understanding consequences. And I am not talking about pregnancy and STDs, though I could -- they too are biggies. I'm talking about the consequences of dating a friend and then breaking up. I'm talking about the consequence of not having anyone to sit with in the lunchroom. Or being too embarrassed in front of someone you may have hurt to get on the school bus in the morning or go to your locker at certain time. Or embarrassed by some rumor, or even some truth, that gets spread around the school. I could talk to you until I was blue in the face about not caring what other people think, but we all know caring about what other people think is part of the human condition, as is being hard on yourself for your own mistakes.

There are other factors at play in young relationships that make them tricky too. You are in a fickle place; there are things you love one day and hate the next. Your body changes daily, your hormones riding the Coney Island cyclone with an all day pass. Couple this with limited communication skills (probably another factor of your growing brain) and a desire to fit in or be cool or just be liked, and you have the double whammy of not really being able to say what you think or feel. Trust me -- not being able to really express your heart and mind makes any relationship difficult. And unfortunately both biology and experience work against you in that arena.

So, dear one, the only thing I can do is I remind you of this and hope you listen. I can try to tell you to always speak your heart and think about the consequences of any action that involve the heart of someone else. I can tell you I am here to listen. I can tell you that I love watching the person you are becoming and hope this time goes easy on you. I can tell you I love you. And always will.