This was the scene at my stylist’s as I was getting my hair done. It went like this:
A girl and her mom walked into the salon. My stylist says to the young girl:
Stylist: Hi! You didn’t go to school today?
Girl: (smiles) Nope! I’m getting my piercing today.
Stylist: So your dad said yes?
Mom: No, she didn’t ask him because she knows that he is going to say no.
Girl: So, yeah we’re not going to tell him.
Mom: (looking nervous) Yeah, when he finds out he is going to be mad. He doesn’t believe in this. There will be hell to pay for this.
Girl: (rolls her eyes) So? I know people who have two piercings.
Mom: (laughs nervously and shrugs)
Clearly we see a mom who is not in control of her daughter and who has serious anger issues towards her husband. Sadly, they acted like two teenagers against the establishment. You have to see what the long term effects of this is. The daughter learns that men’s opinions don’t matter and that you do what you want to do behind your husband’s back. A mother is teaching her daughter how to dishonor her husband and her father.
The wife clearly has no backbone and no idea what it means to help lead a house and family successfully. Fathers matter, they hold their family in safety. Whether society tells us that they matter or they don’t, fathers really matter. I don’t remember a single time when my mom went against my father over his opinion when it came to his children.
This scenario was nothing new. I see it al the time and always with bad results. I have never seen a woman, who keeps secrets from her husband regarding their children, end up in a place of honor with honorable children. The reason is because it’s the abdication of leadership. Where there is no leadership, the chaos runs wild. There should be a healthy respect of parents and a desire to please them. When a woman undermines a father by keeping secrets she most often ends up with results she could not have foreseen especially in her daughter. A daughter looks for significance and value from her father. When she finds out her father is worthless in the home and not worthy of her mother’s honor, then she looks to other men to fulfill that value within her. A mother who keeps secrets from her husband does her daughter a disservice.
Likewise, when the shoe is on the other foot, and a father keeps secrets from a mother, the daughter looks suspiciously at men. Men lie, men don’t tell the truth, men keep secrets, men don’t care what women think, is the message she gets. The abdication of leadership has long-term effects.
When I goofed up as a child my first response was, “My parents are going to be so mad.” I knew I had disappointed them with my actions. This girl at the salon had none of that towards her parents. Her mother clearly wasn’t strong enough to stand up to her daughter and this will have bad consequences to it.
What I see today is the clear abdication of leadership in parenting. I see that no one wants to be the bad guy. Parents just want to be liked. Parents fear rejection and we are definitely afraid of losing our children. We’re afraid they’ll run away. Where are they going to go where there is a warm bed, and three square meals a day and run of the house? I don’t think my grandparents ever feared their kids leaving home before it was time. I hear parents say, “You don’t want to push them away.” Some of those parents have kids who are doing things they shouldn’t be doing. These kids don’t love their parents more, they surely don’t respect their parents more, and these kids are looking for boundaries somewhere.
Our kids depend on us to be leaders, our kids are not equipped for leadership and we certainly aren’t doing them any favors, nor are we teaching them how to lead productive, united lives with the family they will one day form. Although, they don’t act as if they want leadership, they thank parents later for their leadership.
I know a young woman with three kids who each have a different father. She lives at home and was never married. Now that she is older she blames her parents for never saying no to her. Her parents say now, that they didn’t like the guys she dated but when it counted, they didn’t put their foot down. Now it’s too late for the whole family. Is it the parent’s fault ultimately? Not entirely no, but they share responsibility. The things they allowed in their home, is a direct result of the fruit they all now have to bear.
This deal about, well if I as the parent don’t let them, then they’ll sneak and do it anyway doesn’t hold water. It clearly doesn’t allow you to abdicate your responsibility. When the child respects you and understands your rules and the consequences it may not stop the behavior but it helps. And if they go off and do it anyway? Then your account will be clear before God that you did your parenting to the best of your ability and that you were stood your ground morally and ethically. Then who could blame you?