9 responses

  1. Bose in St Peter MN
    May 22, 2012

    Fascinating, Jim… plenty to chew on there.

    Does the book indicate what kinds of resources he drew from? I’m curious about how much of this might have been developed independently vs. in collaboration or consultation with experts in child development or sexuality.

    [This comment is in response to the earlier draft which was mistakenly published. In answer to your question, the book does not reference any other study or expert, and there is no hint of collaboration or consultation with anyone -- Jim Burroway]

  2. Timothy Kincaid
    May 22, 2012

    Gradualism serves as a second line of defense against the often homosexual reaction to inadequate or substandard heterosexual expression on the part of the parent.

    Well there ya have it. I never saw, or even heard, my parents having sex. Mystery solved.

  3. Neil
    May 22, 2012

    What if Cameron’s right? God damn! Apparently I’m a natural at homosexuality. It didn’t take any practice at all. Far from being introduced to it or encountering approval of or association with it, homosexuality was always portrayed as the very worst thing possible and utterly reviled by anyone I knew whenever it was mentioned. And yet I excel at it.

    If only that were true of tennis. I might’ve won Wimbledon. Instead, I wasted time and money on practice and lessons. There was some improvement over time but it was clear to me after a while it was going to take a hell of an effort even to win a junior tournament.

    If only there was a contest in homosexuality. I could’ve been a contender. Perhaps if Tennis was entirely condemned, I might have discovered a natural talent.

  4. StraightGrandmother
    May 23, 2012

    Timothy YOU crack me up, “Well there ya have it. I never saw, or even heard, my parents having sex. Mystery solved.”

    And Neil, I am rolling on the floor laughing my guts out, “What if Cameron’s right? God damn! Apparently I’m a natural at homosexuality. It didn’t take any practice at all.”

    I’ll write more later but man this shit is c-r-a-z-y. It’s really perverted. Can you imagine this,

    “Mom I think I am ready to give my first blow job, but I am nervous, I don’t want to make a mistake.”

    “Not yet Suzy you are not ready yet. Let’s talk again after Bob leaves tonight. I ran out of time, no cookies tonight but I bought a pound cake”

    Cameron is batshit crazy.

  5. Priya Lynn
    May 23, 2012

    I actually think Cameron was on to something with this sexual gradualism idea. I don’t agree with all of the specifics he put forward, but I think the idea in general is a good one.

  6. Blake
    May 23, 2012

    Well done guys! Too often we as a community (especially in the blogosphere) dismiss these fools as crazy without trying to truly understand their motivations. If we’re going to counter their messages we have to understand why their message resonates in the first place.

    I would posit that Cameron’s worldview is not that far off from the worldview of many of the religious right or anti-gays out there. Not that bit about gradualism but the bit about all sexuality being about physical performance.

    Not that they’re all victims of sexual abuse just that Cameron’s been tremendously influential. My own mother insisted I tell her the name of the man who molested me as I was coming out of the closet(there was none, just the assumption that I had to have “learned” how to be gay; after I insisted that there was no man they blamed the soft-core I’d found on the internet; again insisting that there is a cause or a teacher).

    Plus such a worldview fits so neatly with the “love the sinner” attitude or the “there are no gay people just gay acts” position of many in the evangelical community.

    It sort of makes a perverse sense from the perspective of a closeted society. Didn’t the gurl who ruined Stella’s Groove say he didn’t know he was gay? In the 70′s from the outside looking in (and especially as a victim of homoerotic child abuse) it would appear that gays are made rather than a natural variant of human sexuality.

    But in a post-closet society it doesn’t make sense at all.

    Too many of us young gay men have come out of the closet not because we discovered our sexuality through positive experiences with men but rather through negative experiences with women. I kissed a girl and I didn’t like it. In fact it made me feel guilty. And without the shackles of the closet we are all sharing our stories.

    The world has changed and Cameron and his ilk refuse to see it or don’t know it.

  7. StraightGrandmother
    May 23, 2012

    Priya Lynn, no. No. This is crazy shit. Parents do NOT “Help” their children step by step through their sexual journey by providing a clean bathroom and cookies and wanting to know the blow by blow details and giving feedback.
    That is voyeurism Priya Lynn.

    That is sexualizing your children.

    Children should NOT know the details of their parents sex life and Parents should NOT know the details of their children’s sex life. Children are taught the basics of, what is the right word (?), Biology, and your values are imprinted on them, and then that is it.

    Talk about and give birth control, yes if you think it is right for your child. But to go step by step and set boundaries about when you as a parent judge your child mature enough to move from fondling to nude showers, NO, hell NO. They do NOT need you to teach them, they will learn all of this on their own. You are not in fact teaching them or setting boundaries you are practicing voyeurism, a peeping tom.

    This is why you send them *away* to college so that you are shielded from knowing what they are doing as they fumble through this growing up process. This is why you absolutely NEVER surprise visit your child at college, because in fact, you don’t *need* to know, and it is better if you do NOT know, about this journey/transition your child goes through.

    At this point it is THEIR life and not yours to butt into. If you did your job when all is said and done they will turn out okay, even if there are some bumps in the road.

    Priya Lynn, our sexual maturation is our own personal journey, to have a parent insert themselves under the guise of “teaching or boundary setting” is wrong, it is just plain wrong. It IS voyeurism. Please re-think. Please.

  8. Priya Lynn
    May 23, 2012

    Straightgrandmother, I don’t think people’s sex lives are a taboo topic or that there is anything necessarily wrong with parents giving their children advice about their sex lives in the same way they give their children advice about a wide array of topics.

    As I said, I don’t agree with all the specifics Cameron laid out, for example, such discussions wouldn’t be appropriate for every teenager and the teenager would ultimately have to have the say as to whether or not such parental involvement was welcome. As well, for many teenagers there would be no need of this “sexual gradualism” as they wouldn’t want, or be in a position to have a sexual relationship.

    It would probably take me 15 to 20 hours to work out what I think is wrong with the specifics Cameron laid out and what I think would be acceptable but I have no interest in investing that much time in this topic but I do think that in general this could be a helpful idea.
    There are many potential emotional and physical pitfalls in entering into a sexual relationship and I think the idea of providing some instruction and support in the subject is a good one.

  9. StraightMom
    May 23, 2012

    Straight Grandmother, I’m on your side. Not only did I not know the details of my kids’ sex lives, I did not and still do not want to know them, any more than they want to know what their father and I do in bed.

    This does not mean we never discussed sex. But we kept all talks focused away from the individuals in the room. Watching TV and movies was a great way to give opinions about the characters on the screen, presenting values without insulting or prying into the life of any real person. Every few years, I’d buy a book appropriate to where I thought a child was developmentally and leave it sitting in the recipient’s bedroom. They never acknowledged receipt of these but they kept them and I could see they were read. (This was obvious from the fact that they sat on the bookshelves, spine inward. I never pointed out that tactic only called particular attention to those volumes.)

    They are now adults, and I’m content with seeing they are reasonably happy and perfectly healthy, and occasionally being introduced to an individual who I’m allowed to infer is a current sex partner.

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