My son and I went out to the Order of the Arrow Ordeal on Friday and Saturday. (OA is the Boy Scout honor society) 42 new people were inducted into the lodge. My son was in charge of ceremonies for the last time before leaving for college, and also managed the near impossible on a Boy Scout trip - he got to spend time with his girlfriend. The ordeal weekend was held at our scout camp, and he met her while they were both working at the camp. An ordeal weekend is deliberately stressful on the new candidates - not enough to fail them, but stressful enough to be memorable - and much more pleasant for the members. That is, unless you do it the way I do. On each ordeal, the new candidates are gathered together in clans, and are led through the weekend by a member of the OA, who acts as a guide-by-example, and endures the ordeal all over again. That's the job that I usually do, for the adults who are experiencing the ordeal. I got home tired.
On Sunday, we took the family up to visit my wife's sister and her husband and son. It's the last chance the family has to get together before we take mari4212
and our son to college. Good company and good food - BUT - I discovered that I'm allergic to my sister-in-law's house. I started sneezing shortly after we arrived, and didn't really stop till on the way home. She's noticed that she sneezes more at home too, and is looking to have the ducts cleaned out.
Between being gone for most of the weekend, I missed out on two of the "Quaffle" competitions at hogwarts_elite
Quidditch matches. Sorry, Bronze Banditos.
There was one interesting moment in church, and afterward. We take the time during our services to celebrate any special events in people's lives - birthdays, wedding anniversaries, anniversaries of sobriety, etc. in the middle of the services. This Sunday, a girl that's been a member of the youth group with my son and her boyfriend got up. She just graduated from high school and is starting college in a month or so. He's been to college for the past two years, and they've been dating for two years. They got up to announce their engagement, which became official last Friday, on their second anniversary of dating. Both mari4212
's and my son's immediate reactions were "She's too young to get married".
My wife and I both noticed that she was wearing a mich tighter blouse than she had on previous occasions, and that her tummy was now bulging outward farther than her breasts. Yep - about five months pregnant. Both mari4212
's and my son still had the same reaction when we pointed out the evidence too them later - "Oh NAME DELETED how could you? You're too young to get pregnant".
Well, yes and no. They're certainly old enough biologically, since it happened, and in any century before ours, eighteen to twenty-year olds would already be married and raising families. On the other hand, American society still generally discourages getting pregnant before you are married, and getting married before you finish your education.
My father-in-law once defined a conservative Republican as a New Deal Democrat with a teenage daughter. Since I still like my Democratic label, I'm not reacting in quite the same way. Life for this couple would be easier had they not gotten pregnant, but 1) he's still in the picture and accepting responsibility, 2) she has supportive parents and a supportive church community, and 3) she had already chosen to go the local university and live at home, so she can still get an education. The successful marriages on my wife's side of the family for the last two generations have all involved moving in together after getting engaged and before getting married, and (in some cases) a pregnancy hat started after engagement but before marriage. My wife and I have no problems with our oldest daughter living with her fiance while they plan their wedding, because its cheaper for them than maintaining two different residences.
Part of mari4212
's and my son's immediate reactions might just be that our oldest daughter is almost ten years older than the girl who just got engaged, and they might see oldest daughter's actions as responsible ADULT decisions, while someone that is their contemporary (or younger) is making an irresponsible childish decision. They may be right, but I'm mildly amused that they're responding in a more conservative manner than I am.