We’ve posted quite a bit over the years about the damage of abstinence-only sex education and evangelical “purity culture.” We’ve heard so many people who grew up in churches talk about how they were taught to avoid sex at all costs, even pledging to remain “pure” until marriage. If a man stumbled, a disproportionate amount of blame was placed on girls for dressing or acting a certain way.
The center of so much of this conversation was Joshua Harris, the purity-promoting author of I Kissed Dating Goodbye, a book he wrote in his early 20s. He has since apologized for the harm he caused, apologized separately to LGBTQ people, and even admitted he’s “not a Christian.” (Whether his change of heart will be accepted by those who were affected by his books remains to be seen.)
The non-profit news team at Retro Report just published a short documentary about “purity culture” and its aftermath. While there’s no new information for regular readers of this site, it’s a helpful introduction to the issue for people who are unfamiliar with it.
It’s a little too Harris-heavy for my taste but it’s not bad at all. I would love to hear even more from women who paid a price for listening to their youth pastors on this topic. Still, it’s amazing how it took decades for there to be any real movement at all on this subject within the church. It’s about damn time.
(Featured image via Shutterstock. Thanks to Jeff for the link)