When I saw the opportunity to review FamilyLife’s Passport 2 Purity, I jumped on it! I have an 11-year-old boy, and I knew this would be perfect timing for him. My older kids have had “the talk,” but they have all been very respectful about not sharing that information with the younger siblings. So I was pretty sure my Sammy didn’t know much about this stuff. (I was right!)
The Passport 2 Purity program is designed help prepare your child for their journey into adolescence. Let’s face it, the world they are walking into is much different than when we were young. Their’s is a world of sexting, cyber bullying, online stalking and perhaps the most blatant moral defiance in the history of our country. Innocence is under attack, and you cannot win the battle with a single awkward talk or a strict set of rules. The only real defense for your child is a strong relationship with you and with God.
FamilyLife developed Passport 2 Purity to assist parents in building heart-to-heart communication with their preteens, while laying a foundation of purity that will prepare them for the potentially turbulent years ahead. It is actually designed to be done as a mother-daughter or father-son team, over the course of a weekend getaway, but we broke all the rules.
For one, I am the blogger in the family, and I would need to do the review. And my only pre-teen happens to be a boy. Plus, our schedule didn’t allow for a weekend getaway. I am sure that a weekend getaway would have been awesome (in fact, it inspired me to do a short prayer and Bible study getaway with my one of my older kids at the end of the summer), but I had a bit of a deadline on this review, and we just didn’t have the option of going away in that timeframe. Staying home had it’s benefits too. I’ll share more about that in a minute, but let me just say that if you can’t go away for one reason or another, don’t pass up the chance to do this awesome program with your child. It is AWESOME!
Since we couldn’t go away, Sam and I took about a week, and created very special time together each evening. After dinner, I had my older children watch the little ones, and Sam and I locked ourselves in my room for a few hours for our “date.” There are five sessions, but we did it over the course of six nights. The last night was our special celebration. It was the night that I presented him with special a gift to help him remember this time together (something the Passport 2 Purity program recommends), and we really reflected on the whole week and prayed. Sam was a bit overwhelmed by the new information about sex, but he said that he felt more mature after learning it.
For each session, we started out by listening to the CD. At first, I thought I would have rather it been a DVD. In fact, it was one of my early criticisms of the program. But after the first session, I had a change of heart. Sam and I grabbed some blankets and snuggled up on the couch in my room. We set my laptop on the coffee table, and he had the journal that comes with the series and a pen in his lap. There was something more intimate — more bonding about listening to the program instead of watching it. It made me think of stories I’d read about families in the 1930’s gathered around the radio listening to a program together.
After the CD session, we did the project that the program recommends. These were a lot of fun, and they were definitely object lessons that helped to drive the point home. I must say, throughout the entire series, one thought troubled me. Over and over, I kept thinking, “I wish had had this for my older kids.”
It is so much more than “the birds and the bees.” It is truly a guide to prepare kids in advance for the “traps” that are common to adolescence. It helps kids become aware of different temptations and possible pitfalls, and it walks them through the process of deciding ahead of time what choices they will make.
I loved the analogy of travel. Sam will always remember that the Bible is map; my husband and I are his guides, and Jesus is his compass. For Sam’s special gift, I gave him a cool bag with those three symbols inside: a Bible with the words “Your Map” inscribed on the front, a framed photo of my husband and I (on the frame, I wrote “your guides”), and a compass with a cross on it to remind him that Jesus will always point him in the right direction.
I know that Samuel will remember this week for the rest of his life, and that he will keep the journal as a very special memento. In it, my husband and I each wrote him a letter that he has already read more than once.
If you have pre-teens, I can not encourage you enough to get this program. I am so excited to do it with my younger kids when they are ready. All I will have to buy is a fresh journal for each child.
(In accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.) Opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.