Thank you for your concern about the sexual climate and challenges your sons, daughters, and their friends are facing on their college campuses. Whether your child is currently attending college or will be attending soon, it is our hope that this letter will help you understand the invaluable role you have to play in helping your child redefine their campus sexual culture.
Unfortunately, students today are surrounded by examples of sexual perversion, rampant hooking-up, and sexual promiscuity. What is more, many universities now encourage this “hook-up culture” with programs and services that present biased sexual health information. Sexual experimentation and expression are often actively encouraged as healthy and normal. Some college administrations have even allowed the screening of pornographic films, demonstrating a real lack of understanding of how such material is detrimental to young men and women as they negotiate their own sexual decisions and relationships.
The fact is college environments are often hostile to the values we hold dear. Sexual self-restraint, premarital abstinence, and notions of sexual decency are scorned and disregarded as unreasonable and out-dated. There is an increasingly one-sided conversation on matters of marriage, family, and sexuality that favors a looser, “anything goes” standard. In such an environment, the values you worked hard to instill in your child are often completely undermined as wrong and old-fashioned.
Students are often unaware of the medical, sociological, and moral arguments supporting their values, making many unprepared to defend their views in or outside of the classroom.
We at the Love and Fidelity Network believe there is an urgent need to challenge and change this situation. We aim to educate students in the arguments their universities are not providing them – arguments supporting the value of the institution of marriage, the role of the family, and sexual integrity. We coach student leaders across the country to proactively respond to their campus culture, encouraging them to start student groups and to host speakers who contribute helpful information and resources on these matters.
However, these young men and women cannot accomplish this alone. Your help is invaluable to their success on campus.
We encourage you to take an active interest in the challenges your child faces at college. Encourage your child to use our website and learn how to defend his/her beliefs and commitments. Don’t hesitate to encourage them to become leaders on campus and to enrich university discussion with the unique and important voice they have to offer.
If your child is involved with one of our member groups on campus, consider becoming an advisor to the group, organizing parental support for their mission and initiatives. Consider financially supporting the group’s activities by helping fund some of their speakers and outreach activities. If you are dissatisfied with certain university programs and services, don’t be afraid to get a group of parents together to voice your concerns with the administration.
For information regarding this year’s Annual Intercollegiate Conference on Sexuality, Integrity, and the University, or to learn how you can sponsor a student to attend the conference, please visit our 2012 National Conference page.
You have an invaluable role to play in the college education and experience of your child. With your help and encouragement, we will undoubtedly see a shift from the current one-sided presentation of these issues to a thriving exchange of ideas.
Together, we can change campus culture!