High school pick up.
I wish that meant the act of picking up my sophomore daughter in the car. But after sitting in the car waiting for her to leave cheer practice, observing the parking lot “happenings,” and filtering what I saw as a dad, I was convinced we have epidemic cluelessness as fathers. “High school pick up” is a theme not for cars or carpools here, but for what is happening to daughters of clueless dads being visually and physically preyed upon by young boys looking for the next girl they can conquer. So… dad… let’s start by talking about the clothes your daughter wears for a moment.
What’s your stance on shorts? I am not talking about the kind a dad in Utah protested by wearing cut off Daisy Duke style jean shorts to teach his daughter a lesson in modesty. I am talking about the booty shorts or yoga pants that leave no curve or cheek to the imagination becoming acceptable in the name of sports or cheer or exercise. My “high school pick up” experience made this loving father mad: one football player and eight female high school volleyball players in the parking lot all in booty shorts and cut off shirts. Forget about the guy for a second. Think about these young girls as a father. At that moment I wish I could have every dad of a high school girl on a simulcast conference from the parking lot. Listen: high school boys DO NOT need to see your daughters butt cheeks or draw them into imagining what they are like. I am not suggesting pants. Nor am I suggesting pulling out the tape measure. You were a young man once right? You know too short when you see it. That’s usually synonymous with too tight, too revealing, and way too visually noticeable.
More to the point, those are our daughters. And while your daughter may not be a volleyball player or cheerleader does she own yoga pants? You know, the sticky kind that catch all the “looky-LuLus” including the young men (and creepy old ones) eyeballing their backside. My daughter has a pair and she was walking out the door the other day when I stopped her from going out of the house. I told her, “I have the same rule as I had with your older sister, you can wear those but you have to have a sweatshirt or T-shirt that covers your biscuits.” She agreed and she knew. End of discussion.
She knew? Knew what? That the real power of a woman is her modesty and mystery.
Mystery and modesty was AWOL with this group of young girls at “high school pick up” but was this there fault? I say nope. It’s our fault dads. When they were young we gave them limits because we loved them. We said things like, “Don’t touch that sweetheart,” “Move back,” and “Hold my hand.” That responsibility never stops it just takes on new contexts, new dangers, and more dangerous consequences because they are semi-independent young adults experimenting with and testing the boundaries of your love. Sadly, for many of the our nation’s daughters, they have been morally and emotionally orphaned by their dads and, in the process, made vulnerable to the desires and designs of the “other man” in her life with ignoble intentions who is glad you don’t care. Really glad. If your daughter needs to dress in a revealing manner to get attention that is as much a referendum on her relationship with you as it is on Forever 21. Ask yourself: Why does she feel the need to show that much off? Then look in the mirror and get busy.
This week I want you to pick up your teenage daughter…. dad. Relieve your wife from carpool this once. Get there early. Watch and observe. Make mental notes of what you see. Think like a loving shepherd who noses the air and is vigilant for the wolves. Then open a dialogue with your daughter about some of these things on the way home. She may blush, push back, or even call you weird. Put your big boy pants on and get in there. You can take it and you shouldn’t care because you love your little girl too much not to engage this stuff.
You also know the consequence: that if you don’t pick up this discussion some other man is waiting to pick it up—literally.
DAD’S RESOURCES FOR THIS BLOG:
Check out How to Get Started with your weekly men’s group.
In case you missed them:
Every Man Ministries, founded by president Kenny Luck, gives men the tools they need to walk with God and navigate the difficulties of life. As the men’s pastor at Saddleback Church, Kenny Luck created a program for men to start and lead their own men’s ministries, the Sleeping Giant program. Watch Kenny’s teachings at EveryManMinistries.com.