Should Christian kids attend prom? That’s the question thousands of parents and teens face this time of year. And, one our family encountered, as well. In the end, we allowed our 18-year-old to make his own decision to go. But, his description of what happened there makes me all the more convinced that Christian kids have no business attending these events.
You see, unless a school has a strict “no-grinding” policy, attending these events is tantamount to viewing pornography and I’m not exaggerating. For those not familiar with “grinding,” it’s basically a lap dance from behind. Occasionally, as a teacher at our high school described, girls even get down on all fours – yes, in a prom dress. And, in at least one instance my son described, a couple grinded while a boy wrapped his tie around his partner’s neck, holding it like a leash.
Of course, viewing this degrading and perverse behavior is bad enough. But, often Christian kids participate. In fact, a relative of mine told me that grinding is prevalent at her children’s prom – at a Christian school. Unfortunately, this cultural phenomenon, which originated among young adults who got it from viewing porn, has become widespread among teens and even pre-teen children. Just a couple of years ago, it was common that only a handful of teens at a school dance actually grinded. Now, as one female student lamented, “If you want to dance, like regular, you would totally stand out.”
As I’ve talked with other Christian parents about navigating school dances, the consensus often seems to be that attending is okay. Make sure your kids attend with a group of Christian students. And, they can stick to themselves and avoid all the perversity. But, in most school dances, that’s simply not possible. The perversity is unavoidable. And understand, if your kids attend a dance with non-Christian friends, those seemingly nice, respectable kids likely will behave like animals on the dance floor. That’s how depraved this culture has become.
So, what can we parents do? For starters, we can express our disapproval to our local school districts. Several schools nationwide have successfully established “no-grind” policies. Further, some schools discuss the sexism and postural domination inherent in grind dancing in their sex ed classes. After all, this form of dancing involves girls offering their bodies as objects to be used for boys’ sexual arousal. As one sex ed instructor noted, “I don’t believe any student . . . would chose to be degraded or give their power away in public if they saw it as such.”
Most importantly, though, we need to teach our children their value and purpose: that they’re made in the image of God and their body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We also need to encourage them to guard their eyes. They need to mimic the Psalmist who wrote, “I refuse to take a second look at corrupting people and degrading things. I . . . stay clear of contamination.”