So, I like watching the TV shows about big families on TLC. I like Jon & Kate Plus 8, who had a set of twins and a set of sextuplets by chance because of fertility treatments, and I am in awe of the families where the parents have chosen to have thirteen or more children.
The family I have seen the most of is The Duggars, where parents Jim Bob (yes, really) and Michelle have seventeen children and are expecting another. All on purpose. Yes, really. Their oldest is 20 and the youngest is an infant.
Obviously this is their choice and none of my business but I can't help but make judgmental exclamations about them every time I see them on TV. It's mostly because I feel bad for Michelle. I just don't think the human body was meant to create and give birth to that many children. She happens to have done it, yes, but have you seen the look in her eyes? She's been having babies for twenty years straight and she has not healed! She's always wide-eyed and smiling and talking about how happy she is with a squeal. She is obviously lacking the vitamins and nutrients that she's given to her forty-seven children, and maybe her brain has shrunken a little too. I am not saying that to be snarky!, as I have had just one child and seem to have been afflicted. Yes, really. It's genuine concern, one regular mom to a turbo baby machine.
And things I don't know enough about to judge, but I do anyway out of sheer fascination:
... How do each of those seventeen children feel special, unique and independent?
... How do each of those homeschooled children learn age and grade appropriate material every day?
... Why, when they designed and built their new home, did they only build three bedrooms?
The most recent episode I have seen dealt with the engagement of the oldest Duggar, Joshua (I think?). He is twenty years old and proposed to his girlfriend, Anna, who he met two years ago at a homeschooling convention. Now, the Duggars don't date. They court. They don't
Throughout the whole episode, the parents, family and couple were talking about how special that first kiss is, and how wonderful it is that Joshua and Anna are saving it for their wedding day.
Ok. I kind of exploded.
I agree: a first kiss is special. I KNOW THIS more than most, because my first kiss, at age fourteen, was terrible and horrible and emotionally scarring. I am serious. I was so afraid of kissing after that, that I didn't have another kiss until I was 18. I became unshy to kissing after that, and without kissing and telling, let me say this: first kisses should always be special, whether it's the first kiss of your life, or your first kiss with a particular person. I have had sweet, breathtaking, awkward, hesitant, pushy, and unexpected first kisses. I wish they had all been perfect- some of them were, some weren't. That's life. But I am SO GLAD I did not wait until my wedding day for my first kiss, because that would have been twenty-four years of way too much sexual tension, mostly with myself.
My first kiss with my husband was perfect. In all seriousness. It happened three and a half years before we got married and it was the best first kiss in the history of the world. Our first kiss as husband and wife was also really great, for the record.
There's also this: because the first time you kiss someone, ever in your life, you might not be sure what to do. Where does your nose go? Which way do you tilt your head? What if your nose whistles? What if your lips are too tight? Too soft? What if EVERYTHING? Do you really want that to happen on your wedding day, in front of everyone? Or are the Duggars waiting until they are alone? What the frick?
I am glad I kissed Gabe before we were married. I am glad I kissed people before I met Gabe. You learn through kissing. Sure, sometimes there's lessons you don't need. Kissing can be sweet and intimate, though, and can accompany many a romantic moment where intercourse doesn't even happen.
Plus. Dude, it's really fun. And there's nothing wrong with premarital kissing, as long as it's not leading to other premarital things that your family, religion, or own set of morals frown down upon. It's not a gateway drug. It's lips. Soft and beautiful. Or firm and fun. What-have-you.
The choice to wait until marriage to make love is a noble and beautiful. But if you're waiting until you are married to kiss someone, do you also make love for the first time that night? Or do you wait longer, because WHOA you have to get used to this kissing thing first? Do you wait until your first anniversary?
I am just filled with all these questions.
I just think, the purity of kissing lies in your intentions, and if you have pure intentions with it, I don't see the harm.
Oh, also: Joshua flew from his home in Arkansas to Anna's hometown in Florida to propose to her. On their drive back to Arkansas, Anna's sisters tagged along as chaperones to ensure that Joshua and Anna didn't get out of hand with their intense hand-holding. It concerns me that these two have had a long-distance relationship for two years, and from now until their wedding they will spend no time alone.
Then, in Arkansas, when they went out to dinner, names were drawn out of a hat to choose their chaperones out to dinner. Because I guess that from now until they are married, little Duggars will be everywhere, making sure they don't spoil that first kiss by doing it out of wedlock.
As one of Joshua's teenage sisters pointed out, "Being alone can lead to bad things."
They do know kissing doesn't make babies, right? Or is that why Jim Bob and Michelle have seventeen children?
OH NO I DI'INT.