I realized something yesterday that as I start explaining, I am sure you will see the conclusion much, much sooner than I did. But here goes anyway......
I grew up in the typical Christian home and Christian schools where sex was pretty much a bad word. During pre-marital counseling we discussed the difficulties in changing thinking patterns from "Sex is wrong, sex is dirty, sex is bad" to suddenly "Hey, go for it! Have fun! You are supposed to have sex now." It is difficult to make the switch in your brain from sex is sinful to sex is accepted and expected. I have made it a point as a parent to make sure my kids know that sex is a beautiful gift from God that is a special way for a grown up man and his wife to express love. I never want my kids to view sex as a bad word, a dirty act or a sin but I also don't want them thinking that it is ok anytime with anyone. It is a gift.
Here is the mind blowing, rather painful realization I came to yesterday. I grew up believing sex was dirty. I grew up having some form of sexual relationship several times a week for 7 years. I projected that onto me. I was dirty. Sex was bad and I was experiencing sex, therefore I must be bad.
Until yesterday, I didn't realize why it is so important to me that my kids view sex in a healthy manner, as a special loving relationship between a husband and wife. Until yesterday I didn't realize that it was more than wanting them to see it in a healthy light, but also that I didn't want them to see it in an unhealthy light.
Now to change my stinkin thinkin. I am not dirty or less deserving of love because of the actions that were taken against me as a child. I have worth outside of my sexual being and my appearance. It was not deserved, it was not ok, it was not my fault. Now if I can internalize those words, I'll be doing good!