Let them live, dammit!

It is taking more than fifteen hours to my ears to recover from the trauma they experienced yesterday evening. That is already eight hours more than usual, although I stayed there for only three hours. I spent the whole morning brooding over whether I should attend Trance Energy next month or not, given my increased hearing sensitivity — depending on how I feel tonight, I may also consider taking an appointment with my doctor.

I guess that’s what it takes to grow older.

Now, despite my hearing disability, I indulged myself in listening to a nearby conversation from my cubicle a few hours ago. The conversation involved my manager, some colleagues and someone I did not know who paid our office a visit together with his wife and baby. Although it strikes me that the only colleagues actually moving from their cubicle to join the group were those with newly born children (herd behavior?), I will not comment that part and rather focus on the part of the conversation where one participant warns the parents of the future they are facing.

In short, he was describing how his teenage girl (early teens) already asked him if she could sleep over at her boyfriend’s; a request that he denied, of course.

The absence of additional comments from his part or any questions from the group left me wondering what was so obvious and commonly agreed that could justify denying the request. Many explanations started to grow in my fertile imagination, and unfortunately they were prematurely aborted. Here are samples:

  • he fears that the she would become pregnant. That would be only if he think she’s stupid, and if he didn’t already take care of explaining to her how to use pills. Quite unlikely.
  • he fears that she would have sex. I’m quite sure he’s not naive. That couldn’t be it.
  • he fears that she would lose her virginity. The culture does not match.

That made me wonder what would happen if she asked him if she could sleep over at her girlfriend’s instead. Or with clothes on.

The most likely reasons I could find were that:

  • he thinks that letting her would be socially unacceptable.
  • he wants to control her life.
  • he does not like her boyfriend.

I am not sure I like the impression these possible explanations give me of the beliefs and value sytems of the people attending that conversation. I hope I’m wrong and I’m missing something.