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50 Shades of Sick

July 26th, 2012by Emily Reis

Usually I mind my own business.  In fact, often to a fault.  Sometimes I keep to myself when I should open my big mouth and say something to somebody.

Welp, the other day I was picking out the family food at Kroger and I was presented with an opportunity NOT to mind my own business.  Something made me want to browse down the book isle, even though I don’t buy new books that often.  Low and behold, a beautiful teenage girl was shopping with her boyfriend, and guess what they were about to spend their money on?  Yep.  The Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy.

I was close enough to overhear them talking, and she was saying how her friends were just going on and on about it, and that even though it was expensive she just had to read it.  AND if she shared it with another friend, then it really didn’t seem like that much money at all.

I tried to strike up a little conversation and tell her that she really should read The Hunger Games instead.  Then I laid it on a little thicker and told her that there was some really sick stuff in Fifty Shades of Grey, and that she would basically be buying verbal pornography.

Who knows if she ended up buying it or not, but I’ll tell you what – it’s time we wake up and call a spade a spade.  I don’t exactly live in the cultural mecca of Ohio, so if teens where I’m from are reading this, it is probably the same everywhere.  And that is not okay.  In fact, it makes me feel pretty sick.  And it should make you feel sick, too.

I hate “venting blogs,” as I call them, but I’m not venting anger here.  I am extremely, deeply concerned for our youth.

If you haven’t noticed that teenagers’ lives have gotten pretty messed up by their trying to imitate healthy adult sexual relationships, well wait until they start trying to imitate – o be quite frank – really sick adult sexual relationships.

So parents, if your teenage daughters are reading this stuff – shame on you.  And parents, if you have teenage boys, you’d better hope that the girls they take on dates haven’t been influenced by it.

I know that adults are going to read whatever they want. While I disagree with that, this is a completely different issue.  There is NOTHING okay with teenage girls reading a thrilling, erotic novel that normalizes what can only be described as grotesque and sick human abuse and the extreme objectification of women.  It turns women into the prey of a sexual predator, and worst of all, it holds this model up as something enticing within the sexual life of a woman.

Obviously something in the female heart has a hunger for male attention, and if this type of book is attractive to women, we must live in a pretty lonely culture.  Here’s what I think – if you want to be a lonely, lonely person who cannot connect with anyone real – then immerse yourself in pornography.  It will change the landscape of your mind, imagination, and feelings – and whether you like it or not – you will start to see other people as objects for your pleasure. 

Clearly this is already a problem in the world of men and boys, but now we are holding this out to women…and teenage girls.

What a sad, sick trend – and you can bet there will be a huge flux of spin-off novels to further popularize the erotic genre for teens.  No, not just erotic, but deeply, psychologically twisted erotic.

Sex is great in the way GOD created it to be great – when it unites men and women in a lifelong, total, faithful, fruitful union that NEVER hurts, NEVER debases, NEVER abuses, and NEVER uses.  Wouldn’t you want teenagers to long for this kind of love, instead?

Emily Reis

Emily Reis lives on a farm in greater Cincinnati with her husband Patrick and three small children. She is a graduate of Franciscan University, where she earned a degree in Theology and Catechetics.