Dads, Daughters and Halloween

It’s that time of year.  The leaves are changing colors, the brisk coolness of Fall is in the air, football season is shaping up and retailers begin their sexualized targeting of young girls with weak Daddies.

As Deborah L. Tolman said a few years ago,

“mini versions of sexy women will be winding their way through the streets of America this Halloween. They’ll have bought their French maid outfits, pink pussycat heels, and midriff-baring Bad Girl University sweaters online or at a big box store near you.”

boysgirlshalloweenFor pre-teens and teens everywhere scary or cute is out and sexy is in.  All the talk about raising ‘glass ceilings’ and empowering young girls to use their brains and exercise their leadership gifts is meaningless babble if we reward a culture that uses and abuses our girls instead of protecting and inspiring them to flourish.

We can blame the money hungry big box stores. We can blame the media and entertainment industry. We can rail against consumerism. Sure, they have blood on their hands.

But, where are the Dads? What has happened to the backbones of Fathers? Where are the men who will have the courage to disappoint their kids, look a little old-fashioned and valiantly man the gate of our little princess’s house?  Not everyone has a father present in their life, but many of these little tikes walking around neighborhoods – where, if I might add, pedophiles live – do.

Dad’s, hear me loud and clear, and without apology. Do not sit on the sidelines. It doesn’t matter if everyone else in your 12 year-old’s life is wearing a fill-in-the-blank adult themed outfit – Man Up. She may get mad. She may cry. She may say, “I hate you”.  Dad’s: get over it, because that is the job.  Your daughter doesn’t need a soft, shallow, spineless man friend in her life. She needs a Father. She needs Dad.

To steal an old line from Chris Carter on Sunday Night Countdown, “C’mon Man!”

Our daughters are a precious gift from God. They are not little sex objects for boys, men and retailers to ogle, use and abuse for their own benefit. Our daughters have so much more to offer than ‘sexiness’. Let’s teach them to offer their intelligence and leadership skills instead of what our messed up world expects. They are created in the image of God and therefore have immense value. This is nothing to trifle with and discount at Party City this fall.

As Tolman said, “Halloween can be just one more reminder that a girl has to be all sexy or she’s nothing”.

Well, not in this house.

And Mom, if Dad is absent or won’t man up, by all means give everything you have to fight in their place.

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