Every so often I write a letter to the Editor of the Boston Globe. They never publish it, but I write anyway in order to let off a little steam ;-) . Imagine my surprise when I opened this morning's paper and saw the letter that I wrote last week in response to this article: The Sleepover: Teenagers and Sex. At first I was giddy with excitement. Then I read the letter. It wasn't mine. I mean, it was, but I barely recognized it. I certainly can understand the need to pare down letters for length, and my original was a little long (although not any longer than many letters that they print regularly), but what they printed was so severely edited that I'm not really comfortable having my name attached to it.
Would you like to see my original letter and the one the Globe printed?
As a parent of three teenagers, I read The Sleepover (Kate Tuttle, G section, Dec. 22) with interest,. I was hoping to learn something new about how parents can help their teens develop positive attitudes about sex. Instead, I read that parents in the Netherlands give their teens permission to have sex at home, which ensures the sex is “safe”(parents take responsibility for birth control). It’s rather like the parents who allow their teens to drink with their friends at home--what can go wrong if there are parents involved?
The Globe Editor's version:
AS A parent of three teenagers, I was hoping to learn in Kate Tuttle’s article about teen sex how parents can help their teens develop positive attitudes about sex (“Young love,’’ g section, Dec. 22). Instead, I read that Dutch parents give their teens permission to have sex at home, which ensures the sex is “safe.’’
Why do we put the focus of sex education solely on pregnancy and disease prevention? Why is there no focus on the long-term psychological effects of sex outside a committed relationship? What is the effect on society as a whole, when you consider the impact on future relationships and emotional health? Can this be considered positive, healthy sexuality?
Kind of boggles the mind doesn't it? It makes me wonder what happens to books in the editing process.