I was doing yet another load of endless summer laundry. It would seem that there was a FIFA soccer team living here not just three people if you looked at the pile of clothing in the laundry room, stacked up into a four foot pyramid smelling of sweat, pool chlorine and sun tan lotion. I grumbled under my breath as I stepped over the dog to shove the neatly folded clothes into my teenage son’s armoire. I swung open the door and sighed as I was staring at several empty soda cans and a dish growing something furry and penicillin-like.
I put the laundry down to grab the trash and onto the floor flopped Tara Reid. Well not her exactly, but the issue of Playboy where she was the cover bunny. I jumped back and screamed like it was a rabid bat and poked it with my foot. I was freaked out completely as no mom ever wants to think of her little boy “reading” Playboy. Maybe it was just for the articles like his dad used to tell me? Uh, yeah right.
After I stopped hyperventilating, I counseled some other moms of teenage boys. My friend Amber had the best advice (which I took). “Throw it out!! I promise he will never ask his mom if she has seen his Playboy!” she laughed. I smiled weakly and congratulated her on her brilliance. I get that it’s a normal curiosity, but I would hate that my boy/man would start to think that Playboy represented real women. As my friend Kathie’s husband Rob told their boys, “This isn’t real so don’t expect your wife to walk around the house wearing only stilettos and pearls. It’s not going to happen.”
This was one of those moments that it sucks to be a single mom, kind of like when I had to take my son to buy a cup at Sports Authority-something gets lost in translation. I want to address the whole porn issue with him, and I will, but he needs to hear it from men he respects too. I want him to have a healthy point of view of women, not some fantastical sexualized version of Bunny Barbie that he carries into adulthood. His wife can thank me later.
How have you handled situations like this?
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