Ask a parent , “What is the most embarrassing thing to have happen in your home?” You might hear, “Our children listening to what goes on in my bedroom.“
In the age of YouTube, not only are we more comfortable with the funny things that happen to us, but also with sharing these moments with others. On December 7, a video hit YouTube that has all the makings of going viral. A young daughter hears her parents lovemaking and recalls what she heard. The impersonations alone are worthy of our conversations. And I suspect those who view it will hold back the laughter and banter. But if we stop there, we’ll miss a blessing that cannot be simple happenstance or mere coincidence.
Typically, a video such as this would not give me pause. But consider 5 reasons why this video is not only a great addition to your collection, but also what I call a “timely blessing”.
1. An Extra Measure of Protection. We Americans are a bit adolescent about sexuality. Unfortunately, we bring children into a world filled with wolves. Every week it seems a new story of some sick pervert molesting helpless children. As in these words, I am thinking about little Mary Love of Cincinnati, killed by Ralph Lynch who had the audacity to join the search team after Mary was reported missing. Her funeral was one of my saddest memories. These are the times of our lives. It’s why my three daughters knew the word vagina before the names of their closest relatives. And they knew that people were not to touch their vagina. This video, while hysterical in its own right, can be the humorous ice-breaker for later discussions around body parts and what should/should not occur with them.
2. Setting Expectations. The conversation that began with this young girl retelling the sounds of the mysterious goings-on behind closed bedroom doors will someday move to what in-fact happens when mom and dad are alone. And the young girl is learning at an early age that this kind of activity is best reserved for those in-love, indeed those who are committed as husband and wife. Imagine the progression of these discussions, and this girl now at 16 with Mr. Testosterone, captain of the football team, approaching her for some “post-game activity”. It is not difficult to imagine her remembering her parents, in-love and committed, and responding out of the model set before her.
3. Positive Voices. Christian author and psychologist Dr. James Dobson, Founder of Focus on the Family, says that children do not most fear you not loving them. Dobson says, what children most fear is their parents not loving each other. The idea is counter-intuitive. But consider pre-takeoff safety instructions from a flight attendant to adult passengers flying with children. Adults are instructed, in the event of an emergency, to place oxygen equipment on themselves, and then, fit the apparatus on their children. The point being, if you care first for yourself as an adult, you will be equipped to care for the child. What requires instructions for flight travel, is instinctive to children in family settings. Children know they are safe when love permeates their parents’ relationship. Conversely, children are thrust into insecurity when mommy and daddy are hostile towards each other, arguing, not speaking, no longer holding hands, and not spending times together as normal couples. Raised voices, curse words, and other hostilities short-circuit the security wiring of a child. Those tensions are burned into the neural networks of children who witness them. However, we can be certain that this video is now burned into the mind of a young child whose security is so intertwined with her parents’ mutual love that they are indistinguishable. The video, then, beyond the humor of the moment is peace to the soul of that cute little impersonator.
4. We Needed It. Just last week, the murder-suicide involving Kansas City Chief Jovan Belcher stunned the nation. Another video surfaced of footage from a police cruiser, taken just hours before the tragedy. Officers had found Belcher sleeping in a parked car. I watched that video, contemplating the same words of an article that discussed the terrible events, “Why, Jovan Belcher, Why?” Events like this send a jolt to our psyche. Added to the terrible events, 3-year old Zoey is now robbed of two parents, her life forever changed by actions that took less than the time needed to brush one’s teeth. Pop-pop pop. And that’s it. I believe God has a way of lifting our collective spirits. We mourn for Jovan Belcher and Kasandra Perkins, and pray for little Zoey. And as sad the moment, through this video, we can find solace that somewhere else in the world, love is still winning.
5. Myth Buster. Those of my generation were served nightly doses of Leave It To Beaver, The Brady Bunch, and Patty Duke. Though different, these and other shows of that period held to a consistent formula. They featured white families. Two parents. Promising children faced with normal childhood challenges. White picket-fence domiciles. And suburbia USA. All packaged and delivered into the homes of millions of viewers. The myth of suburban versus urban life became clear. And for the countless African Americans families such as my own and for neighborhoods across this country where black families congregated such as mine in Silverton, Ohio — life was good. Very good. The benefit of the doubt for wholesome environments was reserved for certain families that lived in certain places. And to some extent, popular media propagates the same dichotomy. But within this context comes an ordinary family. An African American family. Their financial fortunes are not known to us. But they are just a great family doing what families do. Couples making love. Children snooping around the house under the cover of nightfall. Sharing a little surprise, served up on a platter by a cute little girl. And laughter. The video reminds us all that in the end, we are all just people, trying to make the best of this thing called life.
So, thank you little lady for snooping on your parents. And parents, thank you for sharing this video. We are better because of it. I pray God’s blessings for your family.
And to the reader: Have you ever been busted by your children?
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