Generally my truth in fiction posts highlight all of the wonderful quotes I find in the books I read. Today's posts is a bit different. Today's post will highlight some commonly held "truths" that when repeated to others, particularly young people can cause harm. As many of us know, words can and do hurt.
I am so glad I read this book. I am even more glad that I will be able to hear the author, along with other favorites, at the Public Library Association's We Need Diverse Books Author Luncheon this Spring.
"Pain is weakness leaving the body." page 3
Pain is pain and should not be ignored. The roots of both physical and emotional pain need to be addressed.
"...as Aunt Carla always said, low expectations were the key to a happy life." page 14 emphasis mine
If a person spends their life setting their expectations as to not be disappointed, they may never know the exhilaration of true happiness, the feeling of success after much hard work, or the lessons learned from not reaching a goal.
"It's like you were the keeper of the only diamond in the world, and when you gave it to someone, it disintegrated. You can never get it back...And after that, you can never look at the world in the same way again." page 21
I agree that physical intimacy is sacred, precious and valuable. I believe that we can teach young people to respect and honor their bodies, to make informed decisions about sexual activity, that physical intimacy changes relationships... without making them feel like they have made the worst of all possible mistakes if they have sex under less than ideal circumstances.
The idea that a young woman choosing to have sex while in high school, before marriage, or at any other time that certain members of society deem too early or inappropriate will alter the way she looks at the world for the rest of her life is just a bit much.