You’re still so young that so many things you can’t comprehend yet.
That’s such a blessing.
I hope we’ve made you feel loved, secure, and appreciated
I hope we’ve taught you what it means to be responsible.
To respect others.
To be kind.
I hope we’ve stressed that its not just because its the right thing to do,
its the best way to live life on this earth.
I have so many words inside of me right now.
A lot of angry ones, fearful ones, and sad ones.
So I’ll just write…
I’m so upset with our society.
I’m so upset Riley, at how we’ve treated girls.
I’m upset that we’ve shamed them into be afraid to stand up for
themselves, for their bodies.
We’ve made it impossible to stand up against rape.
When we should be doing everything we can to support
encourage the act of speaking up.
Violence of any type shouldn’t be silenced.
It should be seen for what it is: wrong.
Beck, I’m so upset because I feel as if we’ve done our boys
such a disservice but giving them an out when they’ve done something wrong.
We have allowed our boys to commit crimes against OTHER humans
and so many times without any consequences.
We’ve said that it is OKAY, to take advantage of another person.
To abuse their body and then cast it aside.
We’ve sent a message that almost encourages this behavior.
But what I’m really, really upset about is how we, the adults have handled these
We haven’t done enough frankly.
We haven’t spoken up enough.
We’ve tried to keep things from getting messy.
We have ignored that this is a serious problem.
And I say we because I’m not perfect.
I myself kept my own rape a secret because I was embarrassed.
I made myself believe that it was my fault.
As a parent, as your parent,
my job is to create a space that you can confide in.
I will not shame you.
I think that shaming is a big problem in our society today.
I want you both to know that,
your body, is yours alone.
Your consent, means the world.
As does someone elses.
How you want to be treated, is how everyone else
deserves to be treated.
I want to protect you from everything that is bad.
But I cannot.
I can only prepare you.
And prepare you I will.
And while this may be sexist,
these are words I have for both of you.
I do believe they can be applied to both as well.
Riley: (and Beck)
You my dear, are perfect in every way.
I am praying that God gives me the knowledge and wisdom
to teach you about how valuable you are.
I want you to know that your sexuality should be celebrated.
It is your choice, ALWAYS
how you use it!
Isn’t that amazing and beautiful?!
No one can tell you what to do with your body.
You always have the control over how your body will be used.
Respect your body and love it.
Do not expect any less from anyone else.
And if someone wants to disrespect you and your body,
they are not someone deserving of your time.
There will always be someone else that will love and appreciate,
who you are, and your body.
You need to wait for that person.
Beck: (and Riley)
I think you are the greatest and I think you’ll grow to be a brilliant
Right now you’re a sweet little 3 year old,
but in no time you’ll be a teenage boy.
Things will be different.
You’ll go through puberty and other changes I’m in denial
But you’re also going to get acquainted with your sexuality.
It’ll be crazy, and fun, and maybe weird at times.
I hope you’ll embrace it though.
I also hope that you’ll understand that your body is yours.
That another persons body is not your property.
They are not inclined to do anything they do not want to.
Please always respect a “no” if you hear one.
I pray you never force yourself onto anyone.
I pray that you will always value ones trust
over their body.
I love you son,
but know that if you ever, EVER harm another person
and their body,
I will not stand behind you and support that.
I will support justice.
Every action has a consequence.
I pray and hope that you will learn this lesson early.
You both are my world,
but I want you to have the knowledge and courage
I didn’t have when I was a teenager.
I hope that your dad and I will raise you in a way,
that rape won’t be something our family has to experience.
But it is a reality so know its something we’ll have an open discussion about.