This was written by a very good friend of mine. I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did!!
To My Children\'s Father:
I\'m writing this letter so that you understand the importance of being a father. I may have carried our children under my heart for 9 months but you are the man that our son is going to want to emulate and the man that our daughter is going to want to marry someone like. Your \"job\" as a parent is important enough so that I felt it was necessary to write this.
I gave birth to them, until they are walking without a wobble and talking clearly if I say that something is \"too dangerous\" to do with them my \"vote\" counts for more than yours does. I\'m sorry that it has to be this way but remember that there will be times when your \"vote\" is worth more than mine as well so in the end it will balance out. Don\'t yell at me if I tell one of our mothers that she isn\'t seeing our children without our supervision after she decides that it might be a \"good idea\" to take our child to the store without our child being in a car seat. The same holds true if she decides to feed them something that she has been told they are allergic to. I hold the \"trump card\" and I will NOT hesitate to play that card where the safety of our children are concerned.
It is very important that you not tell our daughter through word or deed that she\'s not \"as good as\" our son. The fact that she is a girl doesn\'t mean that she shouldn\'t learn to change a tire, bait her own hook and play with trucks. It is important that you don\'t put a tiara on her head and treat her like a princess; the world is not going to appreciate it if we turn her loose with the belief that her actions don\'t have consequences.
It is equally important that our son not get the impression that he doesn\'t have to do something simply because he is male. He is going to need to know how to do housework and cook just as much as his sister is. Yes, I know, you think it\'s ridiculous that I want him to know how to do dishes and keep his room clean but you need to remember that I also want our daughter to know how to change a tire and mow the lawn. Our son also needs to know that his actions have consequences.
You may not give me that stupid \"Tim Taylor\" look and ask where \"my\" child got the idea to do something that they have seen you do. Your actions have consequences too and you need to think about those consequences before you decide to do something that no sane person would ever do. Just because \"it was there\" is not reason enough to justify doing something stupid. If you get an attack of the stupids and do something irresponsible you need to be prepared for our children to follow suit. Don\'t stand there in the emergency room trying to justify the stupidity of showing them how to do something that got them hurt... stand there and wonder how long it\'s going to take me to stop wanting to smack you up aside the head with a cricket bat or a frying pan for showing our children how to have a completely reckless disregard for their lives.
It is not enough that our children attend school. We have a responsibility to future generations to ensure that they arrive at school prepared to learn, with good study habits and their homework completed. We need to do more than merely tell our children to \"do their homework\"; we need to supervise them while they are doing it and ask questions about it so that we know that they understand the material that they are being taught. We may not always understand or agree with what they are being taught but I am certain that they would not be being taught what they will be taught if it was not material that they need to know.
I\'m not going to ask you to take our daughter to buy her first bra or ask you to take her to the store for \"feminine hygiene products\" but I am going to tell you that you had better be talking to our son about the importance of birth control when it comes to sex, just like I will be talking to our daughter about it. You may not kill the boy who gets our daughter pregnant unless you are willing to accept it without question when some other father decides to kill our son because he got someone else\'s daughter pregnant. Yes, I know, she\'s YOUR little girl... but if our son gets someone pregnant you have to remember that the young lady in question is ALSO someone\'s little girl and that father has as much right to be upset as you do.
As our children grow the challenges that we face as parents will change. Peer pressure, drugs, alcohol and a wealth of other things will become virtual landmines that we must navigate. It is not enough that our children be part of the community in which we live, we must ensure that they are involved in the community as well. It won\'t hurt them if they are picking up trash or shoveling snow for senior citizens. Nor will it hurt them if they are involved in activities through church or the volunteer center. Anything which helps to give them a support system if they ever get into trouble cannot possibly be a \"waste of time\" or \"bad\" for them.
When it comes to dating I expect you to tell our son if you see his girlfriend selling herself on a street corner. I also expect you to be reasonable when it comes to the boys our daughter is going to date. Remember, my father couldn\'t stand you when he met you and you\'re still living to tell the tale. On the other hand if someone decides to abuse one of our children I expect that you will come bail me out of jail for killing the lowlife scum just like I would bail you out of jail for killing the lowlife scum if you found out about it first.
\"Wounded knees and broken hearts\" will happen. We cannot stop them nor can we protect them from every little thing that might harm them. The best that we can do is give them the resources and tools necessary to heal. Our children are miracles and in the middle of the night we may wish that we could hold them forever, cradled safe in our arms. Unfortunately, we can\'t. One day, no matter what we do to try to stop time from marching forward, our \"babies\" of today will be all grown up and meeting the world as adults. We have but a short time to teach them all they need to get along in the world and be productive members of society. What we do between now and then is going to determine how well they function in society. Let\'s try to help them be the type of people that function well in society.
Your Children\'s Mother