Raising Respectful Boys in a Sexy World

It’s game day! I am not a big sports fan, but I am a big Superbowl Commercial fan. I love to watch them, and some of them can be so moving with such a positive message. But then there are those other ads.

It’s important to me to raise respectful young men. But let me get this straight. I’m supposed to raise my two young boys to tenderly love and respect a woman. To know that brains are important and the beauty on the inside is what really matters.

To seek out and treat a woman with the utmost respect, and make her feel like she’s the only woman in the world. Ok, no problem.

So we’ll likely turn on the tv and watch a few minutes of a football game, and find scantily clad women gyrating and dripping burger juice and licking it off of themselves during commercials breaks.

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Photo by: Carl’s Jr. or whoever shot this ad

I’m fully aware that these kind of ads aren’t targeting children (just like companies know that kids will be watching the game.) I know they’re for an adult male audience. What man wouldn’t want to watch a nearly naked chick making out with a cheeseburger?

And if I have a problem with it, I can just turn off the tv for the day, right? I am in control of what they watch for now.

But I’m also not naïve’ enough to believe that I can shelter them from everything forever at every second. It isn’t just today. It’s literally everywhere. At all times.

Daytime television, prime time television, magazines, billboards, the internet. I know a lot of people just shrug it off, oh it’s just the way the world is going now, more and more vulgar as we go, what a crazy place the world is these days.

Have you seen Halloween costumes for young girls lately? One word. Hooker.

I don’t just accept it. And I’m also not going to go scorched earth with all media all the time and assume that the boys will never get curious or ever see it and just hope that it’ll be ok.

It isn’t ok.

And if you’re puffing up your chest right now, dismissing me as a jealous old lady in mom jeans because there’s nothing in the world wrong with all of the T and A, you might want to think a little harder about that if you’ve got a daughter at home. She’s watching it too. What does it tell her?

I’m not saying that men can’t appreciate the female form. And I’m not saying that the women that work hard for the bodies they have can’t show them off a little. There are so many beautiful women out there and it’s natural to want to be appreciated. Just know that the way you display yourself matters to little eyes of both genders. And don’t tell me that you wear a bikini and heels around the house “for you.” There’s no way that’s comfortable.

The silver lining in all of this is that at the end of the day, my influence wins for now. I can beat out a 30 second commercial.

But if it comes up, what should I say to my boys? I decided I will tell them what I always tell them when they see any commercial.

Commercials are created to try and get you to do something. To buy something or watch something. They need your attention, and they are trying to get you to spend money. And to do that, they often create illusions to get you to think a certain way about a show or product. And illusions are exactly that. They aren’t real.

You don’t see mommy gyrating all over a cheesy, bacony cheeseburger at home, and scantily clad supermodels don’t do it out there either. Health and beauty is achieved by taking good care of yourself. Walking around in your underwear and heels all day isn’t practical. It’s okay to love your burger, as long as you don’t love your burger. And if you eat that crappy food, you sure aren’t going to be taking home a girl like that.

End scene.

  1. I find these ads actually emotionally abusive to me as a male. They put a beautiful woman up there acting as if she is interested in me – very interested in me, when in reality, if I actually met that woman, she wouldn’t give me the time of day! In fact she would probably snub me, if I may use such an old-fashioned word. And yet my emotions are aroused – I feel a desire for her that will never be satisfied – and that desire is created intentionally by people (and the woman who is being paid – she would never do that for me in real life) just to get me to do something that I wouldn’t do otherwise. And those feelings are aroused without my consent – the visual goes straight to the hormones, they do not go through my decision-making center so that I am left to deal with the desire alone, or take it out on some other poor female. Sorry, but that’s abuse.

    • I hadn’t thought of it as a form of abuse towards men before, but the unrealistic expectations are certainly unfair. Not a good position to be in. Thanks for commenting Jon 🙂