Father-daughter dances are no more.

I blame the Super Bowl.

Even though I tried my hardest to research, compose and publish this post last night, after re-reading the same sentence for the 9th time and working on this post for 4 hours without much progress, I realized it would have to be postponed. Hence the delay of this post.

And the team I was rooting for did not even win. The game was pretty boring, too…

To make it up to you, I invite you to a cupcake party! (P.S. Please remember to bring your own cupcakes, because I did not bake any.)

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Some of you might already know that I am not the biggest fan of political correctness. In fact, while it is meant for good, I believe it ends up doing a lot of harm. (My post on freedom of speech (or rather its infringement) can be found here for any of you that would like to read it.)

This time around, in the name of political correctness, a father-daughter dance got cancelled a WEEK before it was scheduled to take place. The school realized that event might be against the New York Department of Education’s guidelines, which were put in place last year and urge the schools to eliminate all “gender-based practices”. Needless to say the parents and the kids are not happy about this cancellation. Everyone was looking forward to it. The girls already bought their dresses. Hair and nail appointments were scheduled.

What is important to know, is that last year that same school hosted a mother-son bowling event and there were no gender related complaints whatsoever. For now, while the school’s administration figures out what they “can” and “can’t” do, the dance is rescheduled for March and is expected to be given more of an all inclusive name. The dance will now be for kids and any of their caretakers.

Unfortunately, I was not able to find the exact rules supposedly imposed by the DOE. However, in the age when anyone can use any reason to sue, I am not surprised that the school decided to be careful and walk on the safe side on this one.

I am aware that this is a complex issue because it is human nature to want to belong. No one wants to feel excluded. (Actually, I do not really mind, but that is besides the point.) But, where was everyone when a girl could not go to a father-daughter dance because she did know her father, because her father died, or because he was overseas on deployment? No ruckus was raised then. Those that attended had great fun, but those that did not – survived as well. Now, all of a sudden, everyone is punished and there can be no father-daughter dance because a girl might be raised in a family with two female parents? What happens when a girl is being raised by two male parents? Do they both get to come to the dance? Who gets to pick which one is the one that gets the honor? And if they both go, does it not make all the other girls with just one parent there feel less special?

In this post, I would like to show you why the relationship between a father and a daughter is so crucial to a girl’s early development as well as her future. I urge you to look up how not having a father figure affects kids. You might argue that two fathers or two mothers do a great job bringing kids up, but the truth is that the “modern family” model is still too young for any in-depth studies on how kids are affected by the non-traditional parents.

Children are very impressionable and their families are what they base their believes on. A girl looks at her father to understand how men act. She looks at how he treats her mother to find out how she will be treated later on in life by her own man. This is why even if parents divorce, it is of utmost importance that the father still acts respectfully towards the mother. This teaches boys to be respectful towards women, and it teaches girls that they are to be respected and that a man takes care of his family and his responsibilities. From the interactions between her parents, she learns how to become a successful woman and how her relationships with men are supposed to look like. When the learning process is positive, she grows up to be a confident woman, but if that learning process is turbulent, she, and her relations with men, might be troubled.

What I am trying to say is that fathers are important to their kid’s development. If a father touches his daughter inappropriately or hurts her, she will grow up thinking that is the norm, which is why it is important for the father to set boundaries and show the girl what is and what is not appropriate when it comes to physical contact. Girls that have a close-knit relationship with their fathers are less likely to become sexually active (and risk becoming pregnant) in their early teenage years. Because they are fueled to focus more on education, they start their sex life a little later in life. Such women are said to have more fulfilling and emotionally supportive relationships.

Studies suggest that women become more successful if a father is involved in their academic life, the furthering of her education and the development of her passions. Nowadays, I see a lot of self-esteem issues, and I notice it mostly in people who were not complimented by their parents. A father telling his daughter that she looks pretty can do wonders to her self-esteem. He needs to show her that he loves her unconditionally.

To continue with the mental well-being, I would like to inform you that research shows that girls who did not have good relations with their fathers during childhood, are prone to be overly sensitive, and to overreact when confronted with stress. Such girls would then use words such as “rejection” to describe their relationships with men. The girls who had a close relationship with their parents are able to express their emotions easier, handle stress better and are less prone to depression and anxiety. For more details on this study click here.

Of course we all know that girls are subconsciously attracted to men who resemble their fathers. Even women who consciously look for men who are nothing like their father still make their opposite “picks” based on their fathers. Women who had a close relationship with their fathers are more likely to be satisfied with their marriages, which you can read more about here.

This was just a summary. A reaction towards the article about the cancellation of the dance. A reaction towards something that aims to dismantle something so crucial – a father-daughter bond. Before you depart, I wanted to share a fantastic link with you, which neatly lists “10 Reasons Fathers are so Important to their Daughters”.

With all this being said, I believe that a relationship between a daughter and her father needs to be celebrated.

If you are a girl, I would like to know how was your relationship with your father and do you think it influenced you in any way?

Stay golden,

Signature.

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Disclaimer: The picture used for this post is not my property. Source: here.

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55 thoughts on “Father-daughter dances are no more.

Add yours

  1. I agree with your perception of what is happening with political correctness. It is to the point we have blurred all lines to avoid hurting anyone’s feelings. The problem with it is our children are not learning that there is pain in life and we have to learn how to deal with it and accept life on life’s terms.
    My father died on my birthday when I was 9 years old. It was a very difficult time, but I never felt envious of my friends who still had fathers. Way back in my young life, if there was an uncle or much older brother to step in for a missing father no one ever questioned it. It would still be Father/Daughter dance, but everyone would know and accept substitutes. Everything these days is exaggerated with “inclusion.” Everything has to be overanalyzed.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. So well put! Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

      “The problem with it is our children are not learning that there is pain in life and we have to learn how to deal with it and accept life on life’s terms.” DITTO! People try to bring their kids up in a world that is made of sunshine and rainbows… That is NOT the reality. And by doing so, they are hurting them more than they are aiding them. And then there are those who go to the other extreme – claim to teach their 4 year olds about bigotry… Like c’mon…

      Liked by 3 people

  2. It sounds really frustrating. I just saw some recent pictures of my 9 year old cousin with her dad at the school’s father daughter dance event and my heart felt soo full! It was adorable! Having said this my question is – Instead of eliminating these types of events based on gender, why not just add some more events and name the event gender neutral? I’m sure no one would complain having one more events and the kids may even enjoy having more fun events!

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Very well articulated. The father-daughter connect is a very delicate one… for there are no well laid down tangible boundaries…A well balanced one brings out immense joy for both, bringing out the best in the daughter.. An abused one messes up her psyche for good.

    I’d written a piece, a ballad titled “Numb” based on true happenings with someone close. In case you haven’t read it, here’s the link; do have a look:-

    https://phonynonie.wordpress.com/2018/01/14/numb/

    Liked by 2 people

  4. It’s an interesting perspective. I agree with you on the fact that political correctness has taken over happiness. As another blogger here has said, adding some other event for inclusiveness would be a good idea. But then, as you said, people would complain even then. So maybe we could make that other event open for only those with two mothers/ fathers. It’s just a thought.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. yes. I had a great relationship with my father..he taught me to read 4yo for ex
    he was alcoholic tho, but a very awesome person
    a lot of my happy childhood memories r about my father or time with him :))
    I think its very important for a child (and a girl) to have a good relationship with her father and meet (if living separate) every day/week

    Liked by 3 people

  6. Said so perfectly. Although there was a ton of love and care between my dad and I, I apparently did not enjoy with my father like how my daughter does with her dad today because the culture I am coming from, in those days, parents are only Godly figures and especially father has to be respected to the extent that you cannot joke or play around wth him. Please note I am talking about 30-40 years back. Now the culture has changed there. It was only after I grew to the point when I had kids I opened up with my dad for jokes and fun. Until then it was all serious. But I still relish our relationship.

    Liked by 3 people

  7. ” You might argue that two fathers or two mothers do a great job bringing kids up, but the truth is that the “modern family” model is still too young for any in-depth studies on how kids are affected by the non-traditional parents.”

    In Uganda, as in most parts of Africa, we have not gotten to a position of being comfortable with the modern family. Inclusiveness is not even a thing here, yet. For us parents are father and mother or father and mother figures.

    This is my personal view: Much as homosexual parents can equally bring up a child as heterosexual parents, a child needs a father and mother figure in their lives to fully develop mentally and in ways you have explained. This can be explained by the Oedipus and Electra complex.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Dear Floatin’
    Great post and as a father of three daughter, and three boys, I did have a few opportunities to get it right, or close to. My children are all in their 40/30s now and my girls and I enjoy a great relationship with each other. They did grow up in a disfunctional household and I determined as they grew that the best thing I could do for them was to be there for them and support and encourage them in the things they did. It meant in the long term that my daughters and I know we are there for each other. I’d like to think I am more than an ’emergency’ babysitter for them. We meet regularly, have dinner, boys included and I am fortunate they all get along so well. We didn’t have father/daughter dances in my time, but I knew all the rules of netball and I was familiar with the other mothers in my girls dance schools…..
    It is an important aspect of family life I think the relationship between fathers and daughter as I do agree girls do see in their fathers what men are about.
    Thanks for sharing such profound thoughts.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you for such an in-depth comment and for sharing your personal story. I’m glad to hear that you made it work and that you all are still so close. Being there for each other is what family should be all about.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I agree with you on the importance of a father figure. I was not close to my dad and he was always away because he was in the army. I had no father to rely on and so I had to depend on myself since I’m an eldest child. I had issues building relationships with men because of that, but it’s not all that bad because it made me stronger than most girls I know.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. This is a crucial issue only in other countries as being gay attracts a 14 year sentence with emphasis on HARD LABOUR in my country(the living conditions of most prisons are not good enough for animals).
    I don’t think they’ll be a hearing, it’s just straight from their house to jail. That is if they survive being videoed, stripped naked and paraded.
    So such issues aren’t up for discussion.

    The father-daughter dance isn’t really a thing around here yet. It is still very new and done only in a handful of weddings.
    Regardless, I agree with you on the importance of a father daughter relationship as I am extremely close to my dad.
    All you have written is well thought out and couldn’t be more true of the benefits of a father – daughter relationship.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you so much for your comment. I really enjoy reading perspectives from people from different corners of the world. It broadens my horizons, which is something I strive for. Glad to hear you and your dad have a close relationship.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. This incident you have reported is quite concerning, though not surprising at all. This is true PC gone mad. The worst about it is that nowadays even relatively sane people act PC simply because they are afraid of possible consequences, like you pointed out. Is there a bottom somewhere to this damning trend? I could not say. I fear not.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Hi there. Just read this post and you are so correct. Just look at what my daughter has gone through. Her early years are of me going to work at 5pm to 9am. Coming home and being abused by her biological father. Then I find out that he was physically abusing her and actually took her by the hair and pushing her down a flight of stairs. In 2013, Mark the man who is truly a man, came in and rescued my daughter and my self. Our daughter although not his biological daughter, are very close and there are times when you would think that he was by the habits he started her on. She had a boyfriend come over one day and he sat at the fire pit (chopping wood), But when she and her boyfriend broke up, he told the next little boy to be careful, because her daddy wilds an axe. If there were ever a father and daughter dance, he would surely go. As would I. Because its that important to me as well to participate in her life. I love this little family and in so much love. Even though she now has ADHD and Oppostional Defiant Disorder. We are working hard to get her past that and to lead a happy life. Sorry I went off because this is a touchy subject for me.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh, no need to apologize. I was touched by your personal comment. I am SO happy to hear that you have a real man now and that he takes great care of your daughter. The axe wielding is badass!
      Thank you for reading, commenting and sharing your personal story! You have great building blocks, so I trust your little family will be just fine.

      Liked by 1 person

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