Advice to thrive by — for both parents and youth
Dear Readers: When I started Straight Talk in 2004, wearing sunscreen and avoiding beauty magazines was the famous advice. Only half of U.S. homes had Internet, mostly dialup, “social media” was a head-scratcher, and smartphones weren't invented. Then, bang, 2005. Every teen was a pioneer — first on MySpace, then stampeding to the Facebook frontier. In 2007, the iPhone launched and the real frenzy began.
Things might have worked out okay if the biggest presence on the playground wasn't pornography. In 2011, 12 percent of all websites — 26 million — were porn. One in four searches were for porn. Average childhood viewing age was 11. It’s gets less human and more mainstream each year. Child pornography comprised 20 percent of all porn in 2003. Today it’s epidemic.
Not surprisingly, the biggest issues Straight Talk deals with are rampant sexual-orientation confusion, intimacy disorders, and sexual assault. “Making love” is considered a joke.
After 12 years wading chest-deep in the murk of this prophetic age, my parting advice is for both young people and parents. You're in this together. BTW, there's nothing here I didn't apply to my own four Millennial kids — who are my best testimonial.
Editor's Note: Today is our last regular featured advice. I plan to keep the website open and the archives available — as long as I can afford to. I will also answer questions from readers as I can. If you put the question on our comment board, other readers may answer it as well.
It's been a pleasure getting to know each of you! I will miss you. Be curious, be kind. Take care of each other and talk to each other. —Love, Lauren
Straight Talk Advice is a 501c3 nonprofit. Your donation to help keep our archives open is most appreciated! Click here to be taken to our donation page.