The war against men has claimed another victim: their daughters.
In today’s America a man knows that he can be sued for workplace sexual harassment if he looks at a woman in the wrong way, if he makes a sexually suggestive remark, or if he touches her inappropriately.
He also knows that children, especially female children, are strictly off limits. Speak to his daughter in the wrong way and a man can find himself charged with child molestation. Even when the charges are false, it is very, very difficult to restore a reputation tarnished by the suspicion of child abuse.
It isn’t easy being a man in America today. The culture has made men into a threat, into the enemy of women and girls.
Not everywhere, not for everyone, but enough of the time for men to be wary in their dealings with female children.
The attacks on men, the stigmatization of men, the distrust about their motives have created a cultural miasma. If you were a father living in such a culture, would you want to talk about sex with your preteen daughter?
The toxic environment produced by the war against men has made men more likely to shut down lines of communication with their daughters.
Then, these same men are criticized for being too reticent, for not opening up, and for not expressing themselves.
The culture strongly encourages girls to discuss intimate matters only with other women. Who but a woman would understand a woman’s experience?
Of course, this deprives girls of a good relationship with the most important man in their lives. And it also tells them that the only people they should listen to are people who are just like them. So much for empathy. Narcissism, anyone?
And let’s be clear. While Time Magazine sexes up the topic by referring to sex talks, most girls do not want to sit around talking about gross anatomy with their fathers.
What they do want, and what they would find helpful, is an open line of communication, through which they could learn how boys see them, what it means when boys behave this way or that, how best to negotiate the difficulties of adolescent flirtations.
Wouldn’t it be a good idea for girls to learn something about the male mind, and, at the same time, to learn how to confide in an adult male whose primary desire is to protect them and help guide their growth and development?
Today Time Magazine reports two surprising facts: first that girls who enjoy “open communication” with their fathers have a healthier attitude toward sex and dating than do girls who have less communication. Link here.
As Time Magazine says: "Previous studies have concluded that girls who have open communication with their fathers — about everything — tend to have intercourse later in life and also have fewer sexual partners, both of which can be very good for sexual and mental health."
And second, that that, for all of the information that they have gleaned about human sexuality-- and they have certainly gleaned a great deal-- young women wish that they had learned more about men from their fathers.
College aged women reported this in a recent survey.
In Time’s words: "And, surprisingly, a lot of the women, most of whom were sexually active, wished their fathers had told them more. Specifically, they wanted to hear stuff only guys would know, about how to communicate with men and what the carnal landscape looked like from a male's vantage point."
If Time and the researchers are surprised, they are also saying that they had not imagined that girls who had not discussed relationship issues with their fathers were being deprived of anything of value.
[I am happy to welcome those of you who have arrived at this post via Instapundit or Dr. Helen. As always, I am grateful to Prof. Glenn Reynolds and Dr. Helen Smith for linking my blog.]