Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Meeting the Future and Dodging the Bullets...

YouTube with traditional graduation march, as composed by Edward Elgar

Graduation could not have come soon enough for students and parents alike.  That cap-and-gown walk into the gymnasium was dignified, with a few smirks and sly looks.  We are outta here!

There were at least three girls that I knew for sure were in the family way, had a bun in the oven, knocked up, and pregnant. Not that this wasn't a surprise, being who they were and their reputations.  AND there were many more who were anxiously watching the calendars, crossing each day off, and waiting.  This, again, I suspected and heard the gossip, since no girl keeps that secret to herself.

Meanwhile, there were some parents with grim faces, clenched jaws, and hands balled up in barely contained fury.  These were girls' parents, who had seen the evidence bulging out.  Others were the boys' parents who forced confessions after talking with girls' parents.

AND THEN there were parents who discovered that their boys had made side trips to other schools, and this was a drama in itself.

Each of those parents were thinking: we raised up our kids right, in the fear of the Lord!... Whenever church doors were open, we sat in the pews singing hymns!... We went to church, youth group, church camp.... We had family devotions every night!...We prayed with them, saw them saved at the altar.  We did not talk about sex, because that would give them permission to "do it". HOW could this have happened?

Well, I will tell you why this happened:  All dating venues were off bounds since they were evil or sinful.

Bowling alleys?  They served beer there.  Movies?  Oh, heavens no--all those actors were sinners and who knows what the hidden messages might exist.  Miniature golfing?  Just the two of them?  They need chaperones for that, too.  Eat out?  Are you kidding?  We don't have money for that!   Dancing? That stirs up lust and invites the devil in.

All that was left was parking in a cornfield and making out, which means to kiss passionately and grope body parts. Oh, there were many many cars in a field, leaving farmers to wonder who smashed down corn stalks. All it took was a promise and a kiss, plus I'll marry you if you get pregnant.

When graduates marched out the gymnasium door, some knew that next week, they would be marching down the aisle, wearing a wedding dress in a lovely shade of ivory.

Traditional Wedding March, Mendelssohn, as played by Diane Bish

 Addendum
This was in my 1969 graduation.  Life was different then.  Birth control was for married women.  Pills prescribed were to them.  Buying condoms often required driving to the next state over. Yup, this issue was a non-issue, due to many factors.

18 comments:

  1. That is certainly a point of view I agree with. Too much restriction is a bad thing. On the other hand not always a good thing to get married under such circumstances either. I wonder why Pomp and Circumstance became a Graduation march?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is an interesting question. Will have to look it up!

      Delete
  2. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Lack of education/knowledge doesn't give permission as some think, it helps make one aware of the consequences of one's actions.

    The organist's last name is the same as my first name!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, it is! I did not notice that!
      So true. To know something does not give permission to act on it.

      Delete
  4. Too much or too little and everything can go down the crapper.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In the Bible Belt in the 1960s that was so true.

      Delete
  5. Did you know that the rates of teenage pregnancy are way down? Have been steadily decreasing for years. Mostly due to education...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The decrease in teen pregnancies is due to parent diligence and mostly to education. these numbers are 2016. In 1969, it was a different story entirely. Birth control pills were used by married women mainly. It was a different life back then.

      Delete
    2. I seem to remember birth control pills being available here to unmarried women. If you were sexually active and I think over sixteen, your doctor could write the prescription. I married in 1971 at eighteen and had been taking birth control pills for about four months before the wedding at my mother's recommendation, so I didn't get pregnant immediately after the wedding.

      Delete
  6. It is ironic that the very "policies" meant to prevent things sometimes only hasten them along. Food for thought:)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So very true. We see this issue played out in Congress to this day..

      Delete
  7. The measures taken to hide a pregnancy back in the day could be alarming. Some schools now have a daycare on site for students who have a child. That being said, things have def. changed in a radical way.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Education is so vital today. Being informed and seeing the results go a long way. Things have changed, and in a radical way.

      Delete
  8. Sigh. And all those who hanker for earlier 'better' times need to consider the full picture...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Earlier better times usually meant shotgun weddings in our rural area. There were many of those, with weddings being commonly held in parents' home.

      Delete
  9. Even now, with talk and education about sex, girls will still get pregnant too soon, too young. It doesn't seem to make much difference how they were raised, church going or not, active in many other social activities or not, even the quiet ones who seem to do nothing but study.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. San Marcos, about 25 years ago, had the highest pregnancy rate in the nation. A broad meeting with parents, sex education, frequent unmarried mothers with their 18 mo. old babies talked with the female students about all her ambitions before baby. Massive education for girls, and then boys.
      Pregnancy rates dropped drastically and have continued to stay low. Amazing.

      Delete

Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!