At first blush, it sounds like the dumbest idea from MTV yet. Putting the stars of Teen Mom in a PSA about how to prevent pregnancy. These are, after all, the very girls who made their mothers grandmothers when they were just 16 and Pregnant. Not surprisingly, their "cuddling" suggestion is being mocked mercilessly.
In the typical girly pink font that appears on the show, the PSA touts it will share "what we should have done that night," followed by the likes of Catelynn Lowell, Farrah Abraham, Amber Portwood, and Maci Bookout sharing their shoulda, coulda, wouldas about the night they ended up pregnant teenagers. And sure, it could just be a really good promotion for the next season of Teen Mom (starting in July, set your DVRs y'all). But is this really such a bad thing? Take a look at the video:
There's a whole sector of parents who look at cuddling as this gateway to the hard stuff. Think of the prom chaperon that walks around with her yardstick, pushing kids apart as if a little hip to hip action is going to leave them unable to control themselves, gasping for the other to rip their clothes off right then and there in the middle of the gymnasium with all their friends watching.
My own parents had that sense about my then-boyfriend (now husband) and me. I can't tell you how many times my mother told me to get off his lap when we were in public because (and I swear this came out of her mouth, although she'll deny it to this day) it was just inappropriate to be that sexual with a boy in public. Yes, folks, sitting on his lap was like doing the nasty in front of the whole darn world. And don't get me started on her reasoning for refusing us on the request to go camping with a group of friends. As though we were actually going to drop trou in front of the campfire ... and said group of friends ... and start going at it.
Yes, kids are horny. No, not all kids are sex machines. What kids ARE are human beings who crave the feelings of acceptance and love. Touch, in particular, has been proven to provide that kind of high. It helps moms bond with their children (and one of the reasons breastfeeding is so good for babies -- because the babies are being cuddled, skin to skin). It helps lovers feel safe in one another's arms. And in the teen years, when kids are no longer able to snuggle on Mom and Dad's laps, they're at a loss, floundering to regain that feeling of safety and security.
Call me naive, but I was a teenager once. I remember how good a real cuddle felt. Heck, as an ADULT, there are nights when that's all I want out of my husband after a long, hard day being a working mom.
I'm not suggesting parents let their teenagers put on a full make-out session in the living room. There is still a time and place for PDA. But next time your kid's boyfriend or girlfriend joins the fam for movie night, how about turning a blind eye to the snuggles? They could save you from a starring role on the next MTV reality series.
What do you think? Is this a real service from MTV or just another way to drive viewership to the show?
Image via MTV