This week, my article “How to Christine Blasey Ford-Proof Your Son” went viral. Even Tucker Carlson wanted to talk about it!
Frankly, the interest in the article shocked me. How can “be moral, don’t drink, and don’t blindly trust women” be so controversial? How can human nature be so hard to grasp? Why isn’t everyone asking how it’s possible that anyone #BelievesAllWomen? Lots of women lie, murder, steal, cheat, and all you have to do to verify that is read the news or any history book.
Many of you have asked me, “What about girls? What do we tell our daughters?” Never fear, friends! I’m here to help.
1. Take them to church
Yeah, I know, this is the exact same advice I gave for our sons, but I have more to say on the subject and church is for everyone. Beyond teaching girls basic morality, make sure you explain to them that unrepentant, intentional lying is a mortal sin. It will send them straight to Hell. It is far easier to teach morality to children when they know there are eternal (and very painful) consequences for their actions. Churches that avoid doctrine about an actual, terrifying place where souls go for eternal damnation, called Hell, will not be helpful in this regard.
Teaching children not to lie is a difficult thing because it comes so naturally to them, especially girls (and I know because I have two of them). Tucker shocked me a bit when he admitted that he generally believes all women and can’t fathom the idea of a woman harming him. Poor soul. He would have eaten the fruit. (“Eat some, Tucker. I swear, it’s good! The serpent gave it to me. It won’t hurt you.”) Women have a naturally high emotional intelligence — higher than men’s — and it comes much sooner in little girls than little boys. This gives girls the advantage at emotional manipulation. This is a gift or skill that can be used for good or for evil.
If you look to Mary, the mother of Christ, you can see her feminine skills used only for good, like when she changed the course of history and persuaded her son to begin his ministry earlier than planned at the wedding in Cana.
On the third day there was a wedding in Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding. When the wine ran short the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” (And) Jesus said to her, “Woman, how does your concern affect me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servers, “Do whatever he tells you.”~John 2: 1-5
Imagining the look exchanged between mother and son after Jesus’ pushback always makes me laugh. There had to be something between his refusal and her order to the servants and I speculate there was a loving and slightly humorous smile involved. She knew he would do it even as he was objecting because of his relationship with her — the most significant woman in his life. She had given him directions all his life in her role as instructor, mother and teacher. She knew how to get him to do what she asked.
Because a woman, beloved by a man, asked, he complied. I cannot tell you how many times this has been true in my life. The men who love me have moved mountains to give me the desires of my heart — to the detriment of their own safety and security — and sacrificing their wants in the process. They are precious, godly men. (Side lesson: Teach your girls to only ask for things when it is necessary and needed and to seek out only godly men who are in agreement with their faith.)
Mary did not scheme or lie in order to get her way but used her feminine gift of emotional intelligence to influence her son to come to the aid of others. No one else could have done this but her. I believe it was the same feminine gift that Eve used on Adam to cause him to disobey God. Instead of being influenced by the Holy Spirit, Eve allowed herself to be manipulated by the serpent of death to use her feminine power to destroy a man, and subsequently, all of mankind.
It is up to mothers to recognize that our girls have a great power within them to affect the men and boys in their lives and to teach them to never abuse it to hurt others. Teaching them what lying and bearing false witness looks like is the first step. I can’t think of a better way to do that than to let them watch the two opening statements at the SCOTUS confirmation hearings side by side.
2. Teach her to be sober, wise, and chaste
My good friend Doug Giles wrote a book called Raising Righteous and Rowdy Daughters and he has a chapter in it titled “Teach them how to drink.” Beer is not bad. Drunkenness is dangerous. His advice is to teach them practical ways to avoid drinking at parties by having a dark-colored beer bottle they can fill with water, which enables them to say, “No thanks, I already have one,” without having to face the peer pressure of drinking alcohol. This is a good rule for college, but in high school, any party with alcohol should be avoided. Never go to a party alone and never let a friend leave with anyone. Natalee Holloway’s parents sure wish her friends had made a pact like that.
Feminists will not like this one, but here goes. Since everyone is fascinated by yearbooks, I recently took out one of mine and found this inscription by one of my friends: “If you mean no, don’t dress like you mean yes!”
After I chuckled, I thought about how far we’ve come from that very sound advice. It doesn’t mean you deserve to get raped if you wear a mini-skirt. It doesn’t mean that you have to be Amish either. What it does mean is that if you want to be respected then dress like it. Two feminist icons, Chrissie Hynde and Camille Paglia, agree with me.
Hynde was sexually assaulted by bikers once and blamed herself for being drunk and sending out the wrong signals. She said if she was walking around in her underwear and drunk, “who else’s fault can it be?” She added, “If I’m walking around, and I’m very modestly dressed and I’m keeping to myself, and someone attacks me, then I’d say that’s his fault. But if I’m being very lairy and putting it about and being provocative, then you are enticing someone who’s already unhinged — don’t do that. Come on! That’s just common sense.”
It’s also common sense that if you are drunk you won’t be able to flee easily, are a softer target, and are setting yourself up to be prey. Paglia said it more eloquently in Time:
Misled by the naive optimism and “You go, girl!” boosterism of their upbringing, young women do not see the animal eyes glowing at them in the dark. They assume that bared flesh and sexy clothes are just a fashion statement containing no messages that might be misread and twisted by a psychotic. They do not understand the fragility of civilization and the constant nearness of savage nature.
It’s about self-defense, not slut-shaming.
3. Get her self-defense training and teach her to shoot
Speaking of self-defense, you are not helpless. You are not victims. You are made in the image of God and you have a right and a duty to protect your life and your chastity. Parents, put your girls in self-defense classes. Mine have had years of jiujitsu but you do what’s right for you. Don’t leave your girls unable to fight for their lives, considering that one day they may be in that exact situation. It is unconscionable to send a daughter into the world who doesn’t know how to put an arm-bar on an assailant or break a nose or disable a knee. These are learnable, useful skills. Get her to a gun-safety class and teach her to shoot. It’s not only good self-defense but also can be excellent father-daughter bonding time, where her dad can give her all those tips and share wisdom about life that you’ve been meaning to give her.
4. Fight like hell, get evidence, come forward, and LOCK THE BASTARD UP
If all of your preventative measures fail and some man attacks your daughter, you tell her to fight like hell, scratch the dickens out of his skin anywhere she can and get his blood under her nails. Then immediately get help, DO NOT SHOWER, do not change clothes, do not go anywhere but the hospital for a rape kit and call the police. Make sure you tell your daughter that no matter what she was doing, whom she was with, what rules she was breaking, what drugs she might have been on, and what she was wearing, you will support her 100 percent and you will fight with her to destroy any attacker who violated her. Tell her this now. Dr. Ford says she didn’t tell because she didn’t want her parents to know she had been drinking. This is a common issue for teen victims. Let your daughter know that, while you do not want her to drink, she can tell you anything and you will not judge her or punish her. There is nothing that can separate her from your love. She needs to know that right now — before something happens to her — so that if it does, she knows her parents are going to come out swinging in her defense.
Make sure you tell her that if she does not come forward, every day she waits is another day further away from justice until the day comes when justice cannot be had. Don’t wait for that day. Do it now. The only way women will overcome sexual assault is to become bold and courageous and the only place to learn that is in the home.
Parents, it is your job to keep your daughters from becoming victims — or victimizers. And what a tough job it is.