Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Hormonal Issues

Taking the boys for (oft-needed) escapes from the house - a bike ride or a trip to the park perhaps - is becoming increasingly difficult without near-constant correction from yours truly. The reason? Not a fight between the boys (although it happens), not a swear word (although there are many), but the near-constant ogling and whistling whenever a girl is within a half-mile radius.

The "challenge" of looking after pre-adolescent boys is obvious. What is more demanding in this particular context is the cultural clash (or should that be full-speed head-on collision?).

Here (as I have previously commented) it is a norm for most women to dress very sparingly. In fact, many girls from a young age are positively encouraged in the poorer communities to attract a man's eye by dressing in what many would consider a non-”childlike” manner. Not to provoke a look and a whistle is considered failure.

When put into the mix - to stare is expected and to be stared at is flattery - what basis do I have for correction? In law, there can be no claim without first establishing there has been damage. Occasionally this is achieved via a subterfuge (eg in certain driving offences such as failure to wear a seat belt), but the exceptions merely serve to underline the rule.

But there is damage. There is loss. Maybe not now. Maybe not even in a few years. But in marriage, in relationship, there will be. Brazil has one of the worst records for marriage fidelity in the world. Is there any wonder?


Anonymous said...

Can only think of Song of Songs.....'Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires'!

Keep up the good work, Luke!

ma x

Luke said...

A Brazilian friend criticises me for "a lot of misconceptions regarding cultural values" and has accused me of being "blinded by some strong conservative classist sense". Would another Brazilian like to comment?

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