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bearess

Adult going to residential summer camp

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1 hour ago, The Latin Scot said:

I don't wanna be a pariah. :(

I think you can take some comfort in the fact that most people don’t think you are.  A few people in this forum do.

i am going to see my son (age 26) later today, I will ask him if he feels like a pariah.

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Ground truth: thinking back on the predators that I've known of ... the bulk were married ... with children ... even grandchildren.

Guys like @Sentinel947 and @The Latin Scot might be the least of our worries.

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I don’t think young unmarried men are treated like pariahs, but I do think it raises an eyebrow when young men want to work with very young children.  It’s very uncommon to meet a young, childless man who wants to work with kids under eight or so.  And I think that, when they do, there is extra attention paid to propriety, etc.  BUT, the men who do want to work with kids that age and love it/are good at it— they get treated like rockstars by the kids and the parents!!  My older son (10) had a father/son pair of hockey coaches this year— Dad played D1 hockey in the early 80s and has been coaching youth hockey since college graduation, so just graduated from college, where he played DII hockey.  The son also led the learn to play program for 4/5 year olds.  The parents ADORED him, as did the kids.  And, I did notice that he was scrupulous about never going in the locker room, etc.  But that didn’t take away from what a great coach he was and how much he was adored.

All that said, I’d be surprised if, say, a 20 year old Eagle volunteered to lead Lions next year, and I’d have my eyes open.  I would not be as surprised if a guy that age volunteered as a ASM.  When something is different/uncommon, you notice.

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1 hour ago, bearess said:

I don’t think young unmarried men are treated like pariahs, but I do think it raises an eyebrow when young men want to work with very young children.  

Do you really not hear the contradictions in your statements?

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4 hours ago, bearess said:

I don’t think young unmarried men are treated like pariahs, but I do think it raises an eyebrow when young men want to work with very young children.  It’s very uncommon to meet a young, childless man who wants to work with kids under eight or so.  And I think that, when they do, there is extra attention paid to propriety, etc. 

All that said, I’d be surprised if, say, a 20 year old Eagle volunteered to lead Lions next year, and I’d have my eyes open.  I would not be as surprised if a guy that age volunteered as a ASM.  When something is different/uncommon, you notice.

 

3 hours ago, David CO said:

Do you really not hear the contradictions in your statements?

I think @bearess 's phrasing was a little odd, but I think the point they make is sound. 

Parents get weirded out  by the idea of having a young male work with children, (like Cub Scout age children) vs teenagers- Boy Scout age. At least during my time in the public schools, I didn't start seeing male teachers until about 5th grade. 

I personally have no desire to work with cub age kids. I'm not great with that age group, because I haven't had kids yet. Teenagers I can relate to much better, and them to me. 

Even with teenagers, I had the opportunity to throw my hat in the ring for Scoutmaster of my Troop. One of my reasons that I declined, although not the primary reason, is I think it would hurt our recruiting efforts to have a 24-25 year old SM. Parents that don't know me would likely be a bit turned off by that. 

I still think the BSA National and the Council's need to provide better guidance on working with 18+ young adults. We have a lot to offer the program, but Venturing in most councils is a underutilized mess, and the transition from a youth member to an ASM can be hard especially if the troop adults don't know how to manage that. 

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This is kind of off topic for where this thread has gone, but bearess, you can fill out and sign a temporary guardianship form for your BF, and I believe this should get you around some of the problems with Scout regulations, such as the tent and one-on-one issues.  You can google "temporary guardianship form" and your state and can probably come up with one.

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3 hours ago, David CO said:

Do you really not hear the contradictions in your statements?

No, I don’t think it is contradictory.  “Raising an eyebrow” isn’t the same as being a pariah.  I think, at any time, men who wanted to work with very young children were the exception, not the rule.  You give the example of football, boxing, being coached by the brothers and the priests— I assume you were a bit older when that went on.  Maybe over ten?  It’s not incorrect to say that a man who wants to work with very young kids will be subject to extra scrutiny, and that man would be wise to avoid any hint of scandal.  Again, not the same as being a pariah.  I’d actually posit that young men now are more able to work with that age group, if they wish, than they were forty years ago.

As for older tweens/teens— I think, as a society, we’ve moved away from young people joining service organizations.  This isn’t just me thinking that, this is a fact.  My sons and I were at the parade yesterday— the Shriners, American Legion, Lions, Kiwanis, KoC— they are not young!  It’s the same with women, although it is less public—the PTO, the room mothers, church flower guild— nobody is stepping up.  That’s not about young men being isolated, that’s about generational differences in how we create community.  The result of that is that fewer young men volunteer to coach, to be ASMs, to be SMs.

I think we agree, @DavidCO on the outcome.  I think some of it may have to do with increased awareness of sexual predators, but much of it has to do with generational shifts in community involvement.

 

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