Let's Talk About Our Daughters Dating
Scrolling though my feed, I see this kind of post/picture a lot out there in the Dad spaces:
Even a few weeks ago, former NFL player Jay Feely posted a photo to Twitter next to his daughter's prom date "warning" her boyfriend.
I get it. At the core it's about wanting to protect you child from heartache and pain. I think the attempt at adding humor through violence here though, exposes something underneath the surface. It's a machismo mentality that actually works against us connecting more deeply with our children. The world is full of people trying to flex their muscles at anything they see as a threat, versus inviting it to the table of conversation, which might actually allow everyone to feel more safe.
Our daughters are not our property.
This isn't 1812 anymore.
Also, they should not have been property in 1812 either.
As a father of a daughter (yes, I know she's only one), I’d like to offer a different narrative. While this might not make a t-shirt, I think it's important to know that not all dads are waiting for their daughter's dates armed with weapons. I love and respect my daughter and am supportive of her journey. She’ll have ups and downs. She’ll break hearts and have her heart broken. Relationships are messy, but essential to finding ourselves and place in this world. While I never want to see her hurt, my job is not to prevent the pain, but teach and model the tools to walk though it and learn from it. So to you, future boyfriend or girlfriend, I’m here to help you navigate in whatever I can because I’m crazy about my girl and desire her happiness. If she cares for you, than so do I.
Also, number 10 on the shirt pictured above wasn't really thought through.