I talk and write much about raising sons to be godly men. This is probably understandable since I’m a men’s ministry guy with three sons. Our family started with three boys so our world was filled with construction stuff, camouflage and cowboy hats. We were so accustomed to boys that when Stacy was pregnant for the fourth time, we assumed that it would be another boy. We already had all the accessories, as well as the understanding that no matter how much you coach or how hard they try, they’re going to miss the toilet. (Especially when they all crowd around it at the same time!)
But then, a world of pink came into our lives and changed everything… for the better.
It has simply been delightful to see how God makes little boys and girls differently. We love them all the same, but differently. Hannah plays sports, will even wear camouflage on occasion, and she’s good with a hammer. But, she has maternal instincts that make her different. As a matter of fact, it was not uncommon for her to make sure her doll was well fed and tucked in for a nap on the porch before she went into the front yard to play football with her brothers.
She’s tough, but she’s beautifully different.
I remember standing in line at a store before she was born. I watched as a teenage daughter held her father’s arm and simply adored time with dad. I thought to myself, “I just don’t see the Young boys hanging out with me that way in the future. But I bet a daughter would.” And indeed she does, sometimes. I delight in time with Hannah and am extremely proud of the young lady she’s becoming.
My responsibility is a bit different with her.
I think often about the fact that one day I expect to stand beside her, as she holds onto my arm and the doors open in front of us. I’ll walk her down the aisle and place her hand in the hand of a young man, whom someone else is raising right now. We are already praying for this young man. (Honestly, with three older brothers and a men’s ministry dad, he’s probably going to have to be a pretty solid guy!)
Stacy is, and has been, incredibly helpful as she gives me insights about how to navigate conversations and emotions with my daughter. But, I’ve also received help from some other areas.
Here are a few that may be of interest to others out there who are raising daughters:
- Interviewing your Daughter’s Date – by Dennis Rainey
- Dad, Here’s What I Really Need from You: A Guide to Connecting with Your Daughter’s Heart– by Michelle Watson
- Check out Michelle’s Dad Whisperer Podcast.
- Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters: 10 Secrets Every Father Should Know – by Meg Meeker
- 52 Things Daughters Need from Their Dads: What Fathers Can Do to Build a Lasting Relationship – by Jay Payleitner
- 7 Common Things Every Father Must Protect his Daughter From – All Pro Dad