But what would she say about dads?

5 May

Boundless blogger Martha Krienke, in today’s post for “The Boundless Show”:

One of my favorite TV shows is “A Baby Story” on TLC. I like watching the new parents anticipate and prepare for their new baby, and the birth often makes me cry. My tears, which are the happy kind, are partly a result of witnessing a new life coming into the world, but I also admire the mother who just gave her all on behalf of that little one. What a hero!

A mother’s love for her children is astounding. Giving birth is just the beginning; next is the 2 a.m. feedings and interpreting the baby talk of a 2 year old. And who knows how a parent potty trains a toddler much less finds the nerve to sit in the passenger’s seat while her teen gets behind the wheel.

The Mother’s Day card I bought for my mom this year says:

(front) Motherhood. It’s not rocket science.

(inside) It’s brain surgery on astronauts during a lunar launch while reciting the Declaration of Independence bakwards — only with less logic. Happy Mother’s Day

I think that sums up well the magnitude of a mother’s role and the difference she makes in her child’s life. This Sunday, be sure to take time to honor your mom and express your appreciation.

A couple of comments:

1.  Regarding the Mother’s Day card – would ANYONE be able to find a similar Father’s Day card?  The card just seems to be another in a long line of “moms are superhuman rock stars, dads are sperm donors” messages in the media.  I highly doubt anyone would liken a father’s role to even basic brain surgery, even if he were an actual brain surgeon.

2.  My single male readers should spam bomb Martha with bountiful negs designed to tinglate the Christian soul.  Unlike all of the ungrateful urban wenches harboring Sex and the City dreams, this chick loves babies so much she cries when women she doesn’t even know personally have babies.  She could be YOUR baby-maker!  Step to it, sons.

Also discussed in this week’s podcast:

She says she has infatuated feelings for almost every guy she meets. Not only is this habit starting to interfere with how she interacts with men, it’s also affecting how she views herself and her relationship with God. Candice Watters, a regular contributor to Boundless.org, offers advice for this college-age reader to begin seeing her male peers as brothers in Christ.

I haven’t listened to the podcast, so I can’t speak to the advice given by Mrs. CW, but it’s not uncommon for some girls to develop crushes on everyone possessing a Y chromosome.  Everyone knows someone like that.  (Given the cynical attitudes in the manosphere about what type of man is able to attract women, one does wonder how many of the men in her orbit this reader actually does notice, however….)

What I imagine is going on in this reader’s scenario is that she crushes easily on any guy who looks at her more than half a second, and she gets irrationally excited at ~possibilities~, leading her to fantasize about being married to whichever guy she is talking to at the moment, which she then feels guilty about because she may be trying to flirt with him when she hasn’t gotten the green light from him to proceed, OR she’s dreaming about Guy X when someone else is praying out loud, or she finds it difficult to think about God because Guy X COULD BE THE ONE, MAYBE, LIKE SOMETIME IN THE FUTURE AFTER THEY’VE DATED CHASTELY FOR A YEAR OR SO AND HE PROPOSES ON ONE KNEE WITH A BEAUTIFUL SOLITAIRE IN HAND AND HOPEFULLY HE THINKS “JAYDEN” WOULD BE A TERRIFIC BOY’S NAME AND OH NO I HAVEN’T PAID ATTENTION TO THE SERMON THIS MORNING I AM A HORRIBLE CHRISTIAN.

This isn’t something I’ve struggled with, but this reader’s scenario seems pretty harmless to me and not necessarily requiring a rehabilitation so she can “begin seeing her male peers as brothers in Christ,” which is, I’m sure, what all of her brothers in Christ are hoping for.  As long as the people around her are encouraging prudent behavior and a more reasonable view of the situation, things’ll probably work themselves out just fine.  If it IS a spiritual concern for her – for example, her fantasy life is going off the rails sexually, or her infatuations are blurring the lines between reality and fantasy, or she is blindly following her tingles with men who wouldn’t make suitable husbands – then she should definitely pray about it.

On a more practical level, if this girl is crushing on every guy she meets, then she should probably also be taking a closer look at these men to see if she can find a potential husband in one of them.  Finding lots of male peers attractive isn’t exactly the worst problem in the world to have.

If anyone has listened to the podcast, please fill me in.

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21 Responses to “But what would she say about dads?”

  1. Country Lawyer May 5, 2011 at 3:29 pm #

    Except that when she’s married she’ll undoubtably suffer from the “What ifs . . ” fantasy.

    Which easily leads to “I made a mistake” fantasy.

    Culminating in “God will forgive me anything” fantasy.

  2. The Man Who Was . . . May 5, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    According to the research, beyond the basics, neither the father or the mother makes much difference.

    See Bryan Caplan’s new book Selfish Reasons to Have More Kids.

  3. Ceer May 5, 2011 at 6:09 pm #

    I’m guessing that crushing on all males actually means crushing on anyone who’s demonstrating some semblance of alpha traits. That’s a big difference.

    I agree with Haylee that such a tendency may be useful early in life, but also that she may need help curbing that particular tendency later in life. A woman who naturally likes to flirt has to be careful, especially when dealing with more alpha men who have less inhibition with regards to cheating.

  4. lifeinlonglegs May 5, 2011 at 7:28 pm #

    I can’t identify with the baby story nostalgia, but the looking to each reasonable guy you see as a potential reeks of CODEPENDENCY and seems like 1) a good early 20s way to get a date… any date …if you have no standards or idea what you are looking for, specifically – and no idea of how this damages your rep…

    ….which is a good way to let your later developing some idea what you want, having expectations, and applying them to someone who can’t meet them.

    We can’t expect men to be God – we can’t look to them for our whole identity. Yes, being a wife mother whatnot should be a large part of our identity, but not the core of who we are: the core of who we are must rest in God or it gets blown around like the wind, [or culture] and before you know it you’re trading in your jeans for some kind of shapeless tunic and drinking colorful koolaid. Putting anything or anyone – including men – before God in our lives is simple idolatry.

  5. Aunt Haley May 5, 2011 at 10:32 pm #

    Country Lawyer–
    Except that when she’s married she’ll undoubtably suffer from the “What ifs . . ” fantasy.

    This is a pretty big logical leap. Most female crushes are benign and harmless, especially when the woman is already attached to someone.

    Man Who Was–
    According to the research, beyond the basics, neither the father or the mother makes much difference.

    “Basics” such as…?

    Ceer–
    A woman who naturally likes to flirt has to be careful, especially when dealing with more alpha men who have less inhibition with regards to cheating.

    Flirting and infatuation aren’t the same thing, though. Most infatuation goes nowhere and dies quickly.

  6. Chris May 6, 2011 at 1:20 am #

    The smell of desperation mixed with guilt is so offputting, ain’t it? You are describing the female equivelant of the omega or ‘the creep’

  7. The Man Who Was . . . May 6, 2011 at 9:45 am #

    “Basics” such as…?

    Feeding them, clothing them, enrolling them in school, not beating them etc.

    You can influence them most by picking their adolescent peer group through what school, church you send them too. A kid who hangs out with other church kids will be different than a kid who hangs out with headbangers or the offspring of the secular upper middle class.

    Caplan and Judith Rich Harris have more details.

  8. y81 May 6, 2011 at 9:53 am #

    “I’m guessing that crushing on all males actually means crushing on anyone who’s demonstrating some semblance of alpha traits.”

    Not the boy-crazy girls I’ve known. They really mean “all males.” And they often end up dating guys who aren’t particularly successful in any objectively discoverable way. (Admittedly, it is possible that some of these guys are displaying “psychosocial dominance”: I would not be able to detect such a trait in someone under 30.)

  9. Hana May 7, 2011 at 9:04 pm #

    “COULD BE THE ONE, MAYBE, LIKE SOMETIME IN THE FUTURE AFTER THEY’VE DATED CHASTELY FOR A YEAR OR SO AND HE PROPOSES ON ONE KNEE WITH A BEAUTIFUL SOLITAIRE IN HAND AND HOPEFULLY HE THINKS “JAYDEN” WOULD BE A TERRIFIC BOY’S NAME AND OH NO I HAVEN’T PAID ATTENTION TO THE SERMON THIS MORNING I AM A HORRIBLE CHRISTIAN.”

    I have to say I love this (probably pretty accurate) internal monologue. I just have to say, guys, if your beloved happens to verbalize the thought that Jayden (or Aidan, Hayden, Kayden, Raiden (yes, it exists) or any other permutation thereof would be “a terrific boy’s name”, please, please, gently divert her. (Sorry, but overly trendy/badly spelled/made-up names is a pet peeve of mine.)

    Fathers/men being comparatively ignored while women/mothers are praised and pedestalized is another pet peeve, actually. Good post!

    y81 – I agree that the truly boy-crazy girls actually are at least somewhat interested in “most men.” I guess it’s not a bad “problem” to have unless it dominates the girl’s thinking completely/clouds her judgment (eg. to the point that she dates whatever boy happens to be available, no matter his credentials).

  10. Aunt Haley May 8, 2011 at 4:01 pm #

    Raiden (yes, it exists)

    Well, in this case, maybe the parents are just big Mortal Kombat fans. (FINISH HIM!!)

  11. anon dude May 8, 2011 at 7:23 pm #

    Whaaaa?

    Did Haley make a video game reference?

  12. Lover of Wisdom May 8, 2011 at 7:29 pm #

    You sometimes puzzle me, Haley. How does a good girl like you know about Mortal Kombat? Ah, the days of my youth learning every possible finishing move.

  13. Aunt Haley May 8, 2011 at 10:10 pm #

    Lover of Wisdom–
    How does a good girl like you know about Mortal Kombat?

    Mortal Kombat knowledge is the domain of only not-good girls?

  14. anon dude May 9, 2011 at 9:57 am #

    Mortal Kombat is the domain of young men(me) and teenage boys because it’s a video game

    Raiden is also a character from metal gear solid

  15. y81 May 9, 2011 at 11:18 am #

    Maybe Haley is a secret geek. Or else she acquired enough video game expertise to have something to talk about with young men.

    When I first met my wife, she had learned to say, “Do you think they should move Dave Righetti out of the bullpen?” (My wife did not, in fact, really know what the bullpen was.) A question of this nature is generally enough, on a date, to keep the conversation going for at least a half hour, as the guy gives his assessment of each member of the Yankees pitching staff, while the girl makes appreciative noises.

  16. Lover of Wisdom May 9, 2011 at 3:28 pm #

    Aunt Haley—

    Mortal Kombat knowledge is the domain of only not-good girls?

    I would say, ‘yes’. Something tells me that you aren’t as innocent as you first appear.

  17. Aunt Haley May 9, 2011 at 6:41 pm #

    y81–
    I have a blog and a Wii. That’s pretty geeky.

    Lover of Wisdom–
    How does having any knowledge of Mortal Kombat constitute a litmus test for innocence?

  18. Lover of Wisdom May 9, 2011 at 7:48 pm #

    Aunt Haley—

    All the girls I know find that chopping a man’s head off has an “eww” factor. Couple that with a video game, which girls had no interest in during the 90s, and it takes a special girl to actually know anything important about Mortal Kombat.

  19. y81 May 10, 2011 at 9:04 am #

    A wii is certainly geeky. (I don’t know what it is, to be honest.) But there are lots of female bloggers. I just saw an article about “Pioneer Woman” who I gather has a lot more readers than Instapundit or anyone like that. Lots of women in our church read her stuff, though I don’t know if it’s her blog or her books.

  20. Strong Man May 10, 2011 at 12:03 pm #

    I’d love to see incredible comments about Dads–hopefully in a month we’ll see some of that. Without men, we probably wouldn’t have rockets, brain surgery, and certainly not the Declaration of Independence.

    Interesting how the frame of reference in the card is still an arrogant comparison showing “We’re better than men at what men do,” Not, “We’re great because we’ve accomplished much, and have raised wonderful children.”

    Mothers and motherhood are wonderful and definitely should be celebrated. But not because they’re better than all men.

    Men are good also–they’re the actual brain surgeons and rocket scientists and they had the guts and the willingness to sacrifice their own lives in signing the declaration of independence.

  21. Jennifer August 19, 2011 at 5:53 pm #

    That’s so tragic to me.

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