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It's How They Look At You


There was a point today during the time I was cradling my little girl here in my arm, trying to get her to take a nap, and she was just looking up at me. My son has done this 1000x over before, so I'm used to it. However, tonight, my little girl who is growing now like a weed looked at me, and it was different. It was different because even though my son has stared at me before from the very same position, she looks at me different. If you're a parent of more than one child, I'm sure you can attest to this very same occurrence. My daughter looks at me different, even at just 2 months old, than my son ever did. 

For now, it serves as a subtle reminder that sons are different than daughters, and as such, require us to adapt our parenting accordingly. This is the joy, and the struggle, of parenthood: the balancing act. I'm well aware of it, but don't want to forget it. I want to lead my children well, and shepherd their hearts as best I can. Children aren't a one-size fits all hat you can just slap on. Each child is different, regardless of how much it's sometimes hard to tell their baby pictures apart. 

Just some odd observations. It's nothing earth-shattering or new, but I'm sure anyone who has been the parent of a both son and daughter can relate. And, agree. 

A Word to "Bro" Culture

(image credit)

If you're a guy and you do not have a girlfriend, wife, and children... please read the following words carefully. If you are a guy who does have a girlfriend (whom you respect, I hope), a wife, and children then I'm sure you'll relate to the following. 

I recently became the father to a darling little baby girl. She's gorgeous and precious and very important to her mother and I. I can also assure you that during her formative years I'm going to do my best to love her so well that it wrecks any chance some young kid thinks he has with her. If some kid wants to win my daughter over he'll have to really out-do her daddy. I want the best for her, and some dude is going to have to that as well. Too many girls settle for dudes who will treat them like garbage in the end, and that's sad. What's even more sad is that there seems to be an ample supply of guys who are really just perpetual teenagers running loose out there. Some of them even have drivers licenses. 

Case in point: a while back, shortly before my little girl was born, I followed the most curious gentleman on my way to work. He was driving a Ford F-250 that he himself, in what I can only imagine was  a moment of sheer boredom (?), had given a customized paint job by way of spray paint. It was a really horrible abomination of automotive customization, but that wasn't even the most offensive part. No, that title would go to the sticker he so proudly displayed in his rear window. The sticker read, verbatim:


Yup, that's actually what it said. 

In what way is such a thing even remotely acceptable? Sadly, someone running a two-bit sticker printing operation thought it was funny enough to make, and someone with disposable income decided it was funny enough to purchase. 

Let's call a spade a spade here: such a thing as this is pure stupidity, and I'll tell you why. 

For starters, a guy driving a poorly spray painted truck probably knows very little about women beyond a simple, "Hey... that's a girl." So we'll give him a couple points for that at least. However, any man with at least a shred of dignity would never display such a sticker in a crass attempt to be witty or clever. It's neither of those things. It's pretty gross if you really think about it, champ. 

Secondly, it's pretty offensive to those of us with daughters who don't even know the person with such a sticker. What particular joy would one get out of someone with a little girl seeing that sticker? If you're a grown man and believe so foolishly that such a sentiment is hilarious, congratulations, you're still working from a frame of reference that is equivalent to junior high locker room humor, at best. The 1% of people who will find it amusing are the same people who also have one on their vehicles as well. I hear they're giving out badges to all members of the Mutual Admiration Society for Fools Like You. Go on get'cha some, bruh!  Here's your free tickets to the Nickelback concert next week. 

Lastly, you just make yourself look like a goon to the world around you. No one admires that behavior. If someone rolls up to my home to call on my daughter and I see that sticker in their car window, they'll know the feeling of having a door jammed in the face and the sound of sirens coming to investigate a prowler. I don't have time for that...

So let's just cut to the chase for all you darling young fellows out there who believe "MY OTHER RIDES YOUR DAUGHTER" stickers are awesome: get yourself together. No self-respecting girl wants anything to do with that sort of thing, and there's a contingency of hostile dads just waiting to run you off the road. You don't want that sort of heat, guy. 

Put yourself in the hypothetical situation of having a daughter of your own and how you would feel upon seeing such a thing from another drive. I know, it's hard to think about anyone but yourself, because that's how we got into this predicament to begin with, but try hard. The world doesn't need one more boy trying to wear man pants. The world needs more grown-up, responsible adult males who respond to the rising of each morning's sun with respect and purpose to their lives. Much more, there are a legion of girls out there waiting to be treasured, respected, encouraged, and loved. If you continue on a track as such a sticker would indicate, you're going to wind up wrecking someone's little girl and assuring yourself a place in the Hall of the Worst Human Beings Ever. There's no glory in that, so why try so hard? Try harder to be a person worthy of respect and admiration and worthy of imitation by other men around you. People see your truck and your sticker and they Instagram/Tweet/Facebook a picture of it in an attempt to mock you, not celebrate you. 

I know for some my words will seem self-serving since I just brought home a little girl of my one, but bear in mind that I was once a teacher to middle school students. This isn't something that I'm only attuned to only now because I have a daughter. No, I've seen it happening for years now. Fathers, love your little girls well. I cannot implore you enough to love them well because, as a I stated earlier, there seems to be no shortage of dudes out there who have no interest in loving your daughters well. They intend to disrespect them, and ultimately, ruin them. Spoil them not in the materialistic sense, but in the way you treasure, lead, honor, and love them so gents such as the one described above don't have a chance. Empower your little girl to have a standard for their future boyfriend/husband. 

And also, Fathers with sons: Teach them how to love, honor, and respect women. If you see this truck and this sticker, take a few minutes to teach your sons why such a thing is just stupid and that you better never catch them engaging in such a thing.