I don’t have a son nor do I have a daughter so this post is purely theoretical, but based on my own real-life experiences. I firmly believe that parenting a son in this day and age is less anxiety-filled than parenting a daughter. Here’s why sons are superior:
A month ago, while having drinks with Dean and his friends, the topic of parenting came up—as it usually does because his friends wax on about their kids and of course, we love hearing updates. These friends both agreed that having a daughter was so special, even more special than having a son. They considered their daughters the ultimate gift. Reality set in for me as they continued to gush and I blurted out, “Why is it so special to have a daughter? So you can watch her get raped?”
Silence. Dean’s friends looked at me in shock. Dean literally put his hand around my mouth and told me to shove it. I persisted, “Of course you wouldn’t understand because you’re men.”
Cmon people. Let’s actually talk about this and not act dumb. All you have to do is pickup a newspaper and scan the headlines.
Gang Rape in India
Teen Commits Suicide After Rape
5 Year Old Raped
These are real life events that affect women. WOMEN! I’m not saying that the opposite sex isn’t also subject to assault (i.e., Jerry Sandusky), but the majority of assault cases are men against women. And many of these go unreported!
When I got lost while traveling alone in Bali, I was suddenly encircled by a band of motorcyclists jeering at me. My only saving grace was a local woman who whistled for me and pointed me in the direction of my hotel.
In Istanbul, there was a man who pinched my butt on the train. In Africa, I ultimately came out unharmed, but got embroiled in such a horrible situation that I won’t even speak of it. I literally shut down when I think of the memory.
You can say, those are risks I take for traveling abroad. But no, harassment can happen in your own backyard. I was either in high school or home from college. A friend of my dad’s stopped by. I let him in the house because he was a good family friend. I asked where his wife was and he said she was sitting in the car. He then started to tell me how pretty I was and maybe he could take me out to lunch sometime. I mean, SICK! He handed me his business card, then next came his face crashing into mine as he swiped a kiss and told me to call him sometime. This was a good family friend, in his fifties, Japanese, with his wife sitting in the car outside, a man who had full-grown daughters of his own! I make mention of his ethnicity because the Japanese are known for being a respectful culture and here was this man/father taking advantage of a teenager!
Am I making myself clear? Men wouldn’t understand because they’ve never been subjected to the amount of sexual disrespect women get all the time. Am I biased? No, because Dean and I want a healthy child no matter what sex. Am I sexist? If being fearful for the female sex is sexist, then I guess I’m sexist. Am I correct? Yes. Given what has happened lately with the number of incidents of women being raped, given my own personal experiences, I am freaked out for young women out there. I fear for them and I’m concerned for the mothers who have to parent them. What are we going to do? What can we do? Lock our daughters in their rooms?
What a scary world out there. Be on guard, women.