The gift of a dad
|by Kristine Steakley|
Last week, Gina asked if we'd read any good books lately. I just finished a great one that I think should be under the Christmas tree of every father with young daughters. Pediatrician Dr. Meg Meeker offers a prescription for parental success in Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters. This book will challenge and encourage any dad with a daughter.
Meeker doesn't pull punches with the grim statistics of what a daughter will face, from what she'll hear about sex in school (starting in kindergarten), to how likely she is to develop an eating disorder (the answer is: very), to the appallingly high risk that she'll contract an STD (10,000 new cases in teens every day). If you doubted it before reading this book, you'll be absolutely convinced after reading it that our kids need moms and dads who are willing to get real about the issues. "It's tough and it's frightening," she writes, "but this is the way it is. While you want the world to be cautious and gentle with her, it is cruel beyond imagination--even before she is a teen."
But Meeker provides a healthy dose of hope along with those stats, asserting (and backing her assertions up with science) that dads are the key to girls who successfully navigate the pitfalls of growing up today. Strong dads provide their daughters with a role model of strength and love; they teach their girls humility and determination; they defend their daughters' honor and fight for their families; and they show their children who God is. In a culture where dads are often portrayed as marginal and bumbling, Meeker tells a different story. Dads matter; a good dad can make all the difference in the world in his little girl's life.