I shared this photograph yesterday evening on Facebook.
This is actually the second time that I have shared this particular picture. My sons all have daughters and I thought that they would get a kick of out reading the different comments.
Last night when I share this picture the response was somewhat baffling to me. One of the men that I am friends with began a conversation that pretty much stated that this type of response by a father was not acceptable because it promoted bullying and violence towards the young man who was involved with his daughter.
Okay. It's not like I don't get that point. In reality it is true that some of the points are threatening. However, I also know from conversations that I had with my dad over the years that his feelings about being protective of me and my younger sister were so strong that he felt justified in his stance about who we dated as teenagers. And quite frankly, there are points on this shirt that I know he has said or would at the very least appreciate.
A lot of women actually gave the post the thumbs up. A lot of the people that I am connected to on Facebook are women and men who are Black Boomers just like me. We all have stories about our fathers or mothers having a chat in this same vein. We got the humor that is a part of this shirt.
Father's if they are honest will tell their daughters that they are never comfortable when we start to date. Their reference point of discomfort is often rooted in their own intentions when they were teen aged boys.
Then the comments took another turn when it was brought up that many other women felt that girls should learn to defend themselves.
Ugh! I have to say this. My dad taught me several very useful defensive moves in case something happened and I needed to fend off an attacker male or female. Of course I am in favor of both female and male children learning self defense. It's a rough world out here and we cannot be with our children all of the time. Being able to break a hold or to stun an aggressive attack could make all of the difference between escaping or becoming a victim. And after being victimized, believe me, I felt a lot more empowered by knowing how to fend of an attacker.
The next comment that really made me pay close attention was this. "Women who depend on men will loose out."
Now this is a male who made that statement. I could take it a lot of different ways. But in this particular case I put in the context of the conversation thread. Basically he is declaring that daughters should not depend on their fathers.
This is an idea that I cannot wrap my head around. I believe that if a daughter has a positive relationship with her dad it is due to their interactions. A bond of trust has been established. He is the man that has her best interest at heart even when they do not agree on what that might be.
The discussion went on during different parts of the day. I finally decided that before it went too far off the track of reason, it was time for me to speak up.
I originally shared this picture to make someone smile or remember when a potential boyfriend met their dad for the first time and how their father responded or may respond in the future.
In an age where political correctness and the tendency to want everything and everyone to fall in line with our thinking, there is also a reality about life. There is a generation of women and men who have had this moment. It hopefully did evolved into a situation in which anyone's physical well-being was disrupted. It might be just a generational thing that only mature adults can relate to.