Chasing Contentment

Monday, May 8

I read a column on the opinions page of our local newspaper yesterday that made me so angry. I walked around ranting about it at various times yesterday, and if I think about it now, it still makes me angry.

The columnist wrote about her young adult son and dating these days. She mentioned how shocking it was that young teens were engaging in and talking about such grown-up physical activities. (I'm shocked by that, too, for the record. I am routinely astounded by things I see on the "Today Show" and "SVU.")

She mentioned that her son was propositioned when he was only 13 years old, and I agree with her that things of that nature shouldn't be happening... at 13 or 23, for that matter. But she said that when she confronted him about it at that tender age, he assured her he didn't accept the girls' offers. She said that at the time she was sure that the day would come when he would. And later, she said that he did, indeed, accept those offers at some point.

But that wasn't the point of her column. Her point was that it was difficult for boys these days to find 'nice girls' whom they could respect. There just aren't that many girls a son is willing to introduce to his mother, she suggested.

Whether or not girls should call boys on the telephone was her jumping off point for this discussion, and she said that her mother never allowed her to call boys and that she told her son not to respect a girl who would call a boy. I have a problem with that, though I admit my parents wouldn't allow me to call boys, either.

If I am going to tell Eliza that she should be looking for a relationship in which she can be an equal partner... and if I'm going to tell her that she is strong and smart and created perfectly by a perfect God... and if I'm going to tell her that she and the husband God has for her one day should draw on one another's strengths in order to minimize their individual weaknesses... and if I'm going to tell her that they should work out things in their marriage in the ways that the Holy Spirit leads without regard to traditional male/female roles... then how can I tell her it's not okay to call a boy?

If I tell her that she should be an equal in the relationship, why should she not be an equal at the outset of it? Why must the boy/man make the first move? A man's strength of character shouldn't be measured by his boldness of attitude. Truth be told, I asked Mike out on our first date. Sure, I worked it so that he felt like he'd asked me, but he didn't really. (And he'll tell you that himself.)

Certainly, I don't want Eliza to be forward with boys, to lessen herself by doing or suggesting improper things. But I don't want Griff to be forward with girls or to lessen himself by doing or suggesting improper things, either. Why would I expect something different from one than the other?

All of this got me riled up, but the thing that bothered me the most was this columnist's insistence that there were so few 'nice' girls for her son to meet and call and bring home to meet mama. Maybe the nice girls have figured out that her son has been accepting the other girls' offers and weren't interested in that kind of boy.

After all, what would be the value in saving oneself to be taken home to meet the mother of a man who didn't bother saving himself, too?

[  posted by Chel on Monday, May 08, 2006  ]


Boy am I glad you got around to asking me out before I made a complete fool of myself or, worse, ruined the course of my life forever.

By Blogger geauxstros, at 2:11 PM  

great post, girl friend! i'd love to see more of your writings on this type subject. it's so important for us as parents to be thinking about these issues!

be blessed!

By Blogger Radical One, at 2:06 PM  

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