Dear Daughter: I Hope You Have Awesome Sex

ApprehensiveDad

Ferrett Steinmetz is tired of being told that he should point guns at his daughter’s boyfriends.

There’s a piece of twaddle going around the internet called 10 Rules For Dating My Daughter, which is packed with “funny” threats like this:

“Rule Four: I’m sure you’ve been told that in today’s world, sex without utilising some kind of ‘barrier method’ can kill you. Let me elaborate: when it comes to sex, I am the barrier, and I will kill you.”

All of which boil down to the tedious, “Boys are threatening louts, sex is awful when other people do it, and my daughter is a plastic doll whose destiny I control.”

Look, I love sex. It’s fun. And because I love my daughter, I want her to have all of the same delights in life that I do, and hopefully more. I don’t want to hear about the fine details because, heck, I don’t want those visuals any more than my daughter wants mine. But in the abstract, darling, go out and play.

You’re not me. Nor are you an extension of my will. And so you need to make your own damn mistakes, to learn how to pick yourself up when you fall. I’ll help. But I think there’s value in getting lost. I think there’s a strength that only comes from fumbling your own way out of the darkness.

Because consensual sex isn’t something that men take from you; it’s something you give. It doesn’t lessen you to give someone else pleasure. It doesn’t degrade you to have some of your own. And anyone who implies otherwise is a man who probably thinks very poorly of women underneath the surface.

Yes, all these boys and girls and genderqueers may break your heart, and that in turn will break mine. I’ve held you, sobbing, after your boyfriend cheated on you, and it tore me in two. But you know what would tear me in two even more? To see you in a glass cage, experiencing nothing but cold emptiness at your fingers, as Dear Old Dad ensured that you got to experience nothing until he decided what you should like.

You’re not me. Nor are you an extension of my will. And so you need to make your own damn mistakes, to learn how to pick yourself up when you fall, to learn where the bandages are and to bind up your own cuts. I’ll help. I’ll be your consigliere when I can, the advisor, the person you come to when all seems lost. But I think there’s value in getting lost. I think there’s a strength that only comes from fumbling your own way out of the darkness.

You’re your own person, and some of the things you’re going to love will strike me as insane, ugly, or unenjoyable. This is how large and wonderful the world is! Imagine if everyone loved the same thing; we’d all be battling for the same ten people. The miracle is how easily someone’s cast-offs become someone else’s beloved treasure. And I would be a sad, sad little man if I manipulated you into becoming a cookie-cutter clone of my desires. Love the music I hate, watch the movies I loathe, become a strong woman who knows where her bliss is and knows just what to do to get it.

Now, you’re going to get bruised by life. But I won’t tell you sex is bad, or that you’re bad for wanting it, or that other people are bad for wanting it from you if you’re willing to give it. I refuse to perpetuate, even through the plausible deniability of humor, the idea that the people my daughter is attracted to are my enemy.

I’m not the guard who locks you in the tower. Ideally, I am my daughter’s safe space, a garden to return to when the world has proved a little too cruel, a place where she can recuperate and reflect upon past mistakes and know that here, there is someone who loves her wholeheartedly and will hug her until the tears dry.

That’s what I want for you, sweetie. A bold life filled with big mistakes and bigger triumphs.

Now get out there and find all the things you fucking love, and vice versa.

This article originally ran at theferrett.com under a slightly different title.

You might also like a mother’s letter to her son:

An Open Letter to My Son About Sex

 

Photo—Stewart Black/Flickr

About Ferrett Steinmetz

Ferrett Steinmetz - @ferretthimself on Twitter - is a Nebula-nominated science fiction writer and C-list blogger who blogs about puns, politics, and polyamory at http://www.theferrett.com - that's two "r"s, two "t"s. His urban fantasy debut novel Flex, described as “A desperate father will do anything to heal his daughter in a novel where Breaking Bad meets Jim Butcher’s Dresden Files,” arrives on September 30th and is available for pre-order. He lives in Cleveland with his beautiful wife Gini, a friendly ghost, and a small black dog named Shasta.

Comments

  1. John Schtoll says:

    AWESOME. I just wish more people thought like you.

  2. I don’t have a daughter but I’ve seen the “dating my daughter meme” all over the web and I had similar thoughts as yours. Thank you for sharing.

  3. Absolutely incredible thoughts about your relationship with your daughter. I do not have kids yet but when I do I hope I can be half the man this champions. I thank you for your courageous words, and the discomfort I’m sure came with sharing them.

  4. Wave Willow says:

    This is AMAZING.

  5. Old Toughguy says:

    I don’t mind my daughter having fulfilling relationships. I don’t mind her even desiring sex because she has figured out that her body can receive and give pleasure…..but I WILL stand , armed, to prevent the mistakes of my misspent youth. there are things that are too bad to want for her, even in the name of experiential maturity. I , too, agree that the memes are just that: internet chatter….so, ease up there , ya fuckin’ hippy. But be reminded, if some little turd shows up at my house without the highest level of respect for my child and a determined desire to prove it to me….he can expect a hardened response. Let’s be realistic, no matter the amount of supervision and upbringin’ I provide, the “bad boy” will sometimes look like a titillating onetime event…..then that one moment of letting her guard down can prove far more than she bargained for. I want the devious mind to have a brake, the conniving manipulator to have a check. yep. I’m THAT guy. wanna date my daughter? let me tell you about my days as an Army Drill Cadre’ member…..

    • On that note, Toughguy, you can count on nearly every guy pretending to be something other than who he is whenever they’re around you. If you think you can’t be fooled by a nice-guy routine, you already have been.

    • Mom of two daughters says:

      I’m with you OTG. And I do sell dildos. I am all about my girls have fulfilling sexual relationships at a proper age by someone who is respectable and truly cares for them. Guys (especially the high school/college set) are mostly looking to just get another notch on their belt and then tell every one about it. Let’s face it — it’s the girl that ends up with the bad reputation. So until society changes and stops glorifying the boy for his conquest and vilifying the girl as a slut it is my job to help them make decisions as to who is worthy of their bodies. Also, it is my job to teach them that generally as women sex is actually better when you are in tune with someone emotionally and mentally as well as physically. My daughters are entitled to the total package when it comes to sex

      • Tom Brechlin says:

        OTG, You have my vote as well. “Cleaning this Gun”(Come on in boy) by Rodney Atkins is one of my favorite songs.

        I didn’t keep my daughter in any glass container and she did real good. I sure as heck didn’t need to prompt her to enjoy life much less have sex. I allowed her to take control of her life and be okay with the beliefs she was raised with and if anything, she stood firm with those beliefs and didn’t give in to the shaming that happens when young ladies decide to wait until their married. Matter of fact, her best friend growing up married her love last year, difference is that she married 5 years later then my daughter and she maintained her values as well.

      • Furious Styles says:

        “So until society changes and stops glorifying the boy for his conquest and vilifying the girl as a slut it is my job to help them make decisions as to who is worthy of their bodies”

        @ Moon of Two Daughters, I agree that the double standard needs to die. Nothing wrong with letting your teen children know your values about sex But unless you can telepathically commandeer your daughter, I don’t see making the decision for them as a possibility. Young people are insanely creative in figuring out ways to, so to speak, crawl three miles over broken glass to get to what we tell them is forbidden.

    • “I want the devious mind to have a brake, the conniving manipulator to have a check. yep. I’m THAT guy. wanna date my daughter?”

      And how do you know your daughter isn’t the one with devious mind? The conniving manipulator?

    • Hi Old Toughguy
      Imagine when guys out of “PUA school” look for somebody to use their new skills on.
      They start with girls that are insecure or not tradition beautiful( called a 5) with the intent of moving up the scale to a 10 eventually.

      The man that wrote this letter has never been a young woman.
      He knows nothing about the advice she needs.

      • You would be surprised at how many so-called PUA’s end up having relationships with the first girl they end up have sex with and how hurt the PUA’s themselves are when it doesn’t work out. They are not as cold blooded as they pretend to be.

  6. I’m am nothing short of stunned at how simple, clear and wonderful these ideas are. And how rare this seems. Thank you for saying what needs to be said. You have my deepest respect, Ferret.

  7. Scott Heathcote says:

    The only thing I disagree with in your article is the assertion that anyone who disagrees with you must think poorly of women. This is the same type of shaming method the rather extreme feminists have been using for some time.

    Other than that, good article!

    • Reread it. You clearly misread it. He isn’t saying that anyone who disagrees with him must think poorly of women. He’s saying that anyone who implies that women don’t have the right to enjoy themselves must not think very highly of women. Big difference.

      • Anna, I was going to write almost the exact same thing except for your last sentence I had “Not the same thing.” Great minds think alike!

  8. For me, and that’s the only person i can speak for… i have 2 things i tell boyfriends of my daughters (all told i have 4 3 biological and 1 step) they are the same things i tell my sons Girlfriends (1 and 1)… number 1) respect my child, if you don’t we have a problem and i am NOT a person you want to have a problem with, I am well trained as a martial artist and have a bit of a mean streak when i am angry and if your disrespect goes deep enough i WILL use violence… this is a reality of me, i have yet to need to use this rule save once, an older young man was dating my then 15 yr old daughter and did not respect the fact that she was 15. While i did not get violent his life got very complicated. Usually it’s about making sure they have some form of speed bump in the downhill race of physical momentum.
    Number 2 i have used more often than i could explain, it goes like this…” My daughter values you, so you happiness goes hand in hand with hers, if you need someone if you’re confused, scared and don’t know what to do Call me, come over, if it’s after midnight you’re bringing the coffee. This has ranged from, trying to understand what was going on in their heads to acting as mediator for fights with their parents. a few of them have stayed my friend after. this isn’t about sex, i would be a hypocrite to tell any of my children not to have sex… at their age i was a whore. however we have looked at them an suggested that if they aren’t ready to talk about it , honestly and openly, then they probably aren’t ready to experience it and when they are, IF they tend towards the same tastes as i do , they need to know what is safe and what is not. Being a parent isn’t about instilling fear, it’s not about making a boy treat your daughter right because he’s a afraid of you, it’s about making sure they have their head on straight so your child has the chance at the relationship they are worth with the person they chose.

    • TheKiltedKimchi says:

      M.J.O., as a father of an almost teen daughter, I relate and agree with just about everything you say here.

  9. Chris Harrison says:

    My daughter’s only 4, but this way of thinking about my relationship with her is applicable far beyond notions of sex and pleasure.

    Thanks for the wake-up call.

  10. “Nor are you an extension of my will.” What a great statement, really, the whole column is swell. Good work, Sir.

  11. You are the ultimate feminist. Well done, sir.

    • Or maybe just a great dad?

    • Nothing to do with feminism, for fks sake… the guy never mentions any “movement” or “affiliation.” I always hate it when people try to claim some sort of positive/heroic/lauded stance for their pet cause or belief system. (Or, vice versa, when somebody acts like an a-hole and posters try to claim they must be a member of X political party of X belief system).

      I support everything in the article, thought it was fantastic, and I’m really not a fan of feminism. (Yes, I believe in equal rights for women. No, I don’t think that has much to do with what feminism actually is or means in this day and age.)

      • It really does, though. Anyone who engages in any type of sexism and calls him or herself a feminist is lying. If you empower your children to become their best selves, you have engaged in one of the pillars of feminism. It’s in the handbook.

      • Agreed. Its not like ID’ing as feminist or whatever label would change the validity of what he’s saying and its not like no one can come up with a proper way to handle teaching their child about sex without feminism.

  12. Excellent read. It is refreshing to finally find the opposite perspective in a world dumbed-down by patriarchy.

    • Michael Rowe says:

      This has nothing to do with “the patriarchy,” for God’s sake.

      • Bunny Watson says:

        This has EVERYTHING to do with patriarchy. The “10 rules’ thing is all about a father asserting ownership over his daughter and her body.

      • Danielle Macdonell says:

        This has everything to do with patriarchy. It’s about the patriarch’s right to keep his property pure, until he bestows it in an acceptable (to him) marriage. It’s a man controlling a woman for his own benefit, and that is exactly what patriarchy is. Do you understand how wrong that is? How have you threatened the girls your sons date? You can’t control humans, you can only inform and guide them, they will be the judge of your examples.
        This explains it well.

        Sweet Honey In The Rock – Of Children
        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HCVvoL_F5gA

      • Hi Michael

        You need to read up on theories of patriarchy , men’s control of women, control of their bodies and control of women’s sexuality including their daughters sexually .

        Have you never heard of honor killings ?
        Don’t you know what the girls have done before they are slaughtered, or asked to jump from balconies or accidentally fall out of windows in tall houses?
        Wake up Michael,wake up.

  13. Hear, Hear!!!

  14. Oh my goodness, you wonderful, wonderful man. I have been in a relationship with the same man for almost two years and my father is only just beginning to grasp this. Your article really hit home. Beautiful. Your daughter is so, so lucky.

  15. Chris Jones says:

    “A bold life filled with big mistakes and bigger triumphs.”

    Couldn’t say it better myself. Especially in a world today where the mass want to shield their kids from heartache, defeat, and hurt. Those are things that drive people to be stronger, to overcome the odds. Without heartbreak, you really can not appreciate that special someone when they do finally come along.

    Great readl!!!

  16. Hallelujah! Let’s pass this around to “all dads” on Father’s Day. Wait, let’s make that every day… A reminder of the responsibilities, yes – but also the joys.

  17. Jill Swedersky says:

    Amen! They’re only 7 and 5, but would your daughter entertain the idea of dating one of my sons? Because this is how it should be!

  18. Nice ideas … but he said nothing about if he’s discussed with her about getting pregnant before she’s out of high school … or while still living at home … parents generally could handle their children having sex if it did not too often lead to the grandparent/parent again syndrome nowadays.

  19. Sheople,

    Did I miss something? The man doesn’t even have a daughter. Check a BIO or two. As the father of a beautiful 16 year old girl I know first hand what it is like to watch her drive off with her seventeen year old boyfriend and only hope that they can have the will power to do the right thing. Times have changed no doubt, but believe me, I would never openly condone my daughter having sex at the age of 16. I read this article a number of times to make sure I wasn’t taking it out of context. I may be and I must say that I would only wish my adult daughter the most exquisite experience she could have when she makes love to a person she cares about. But, c’mon, not my 16 year old.

  20. Michael Rowe says:

    Gorgeous piece of writing. Now there’s a man.

  21. I think this is brilliant. My father has always greeted mine and my sister’s boyfriends with a smile, a handshake and genuinely kind conversation. He has respected my ability to make decisions about partners based on my own desires and needs. I’m happy to see many other fathers on here who seem willing to do the same.

    The only suggestion I would make to the article is it would be great if the author acknowledged that his daughter may in fact have no interest in sex; assuming that all girls do eventually want to have sex erases the experiences of asexual persons. other than that, i love it

  22. I’d really like to hear this father’s take on raising a boy in regards to the same topic.

    • I’ve never raised any sons, so I really don’t have any advice there. As it is, I’m loath to give advice on raising daughters, as I don’t think there’s a lot of general advice that goes well.

    • I am raising boys and I’m also sex-positive and uninterested in controlling my sons. I am VERY interested in seeing them behave ethically towards others in all relationships, and that I will “enforce” to the best of my ability.

      • I’m raising both a son and a daughter. My daughter is three, so this is not a discussion topic for us at this point, although it has always been my parenting policy that no question go unanswered. My son is a newly minted teenager, and we have a great number of conversations about sex and dating and treatment of the women he chooses to be involved with (I do mean women – he has informed me that he is straight, I’m not just assuming). At this point, before dating is a serious part of his world, we’re working on how to treat the women/girls in his life with respect. I’m also, in a sense, teaching his male friends the same thing. It’s a mixed group of friends, and when they hang out at our place it is mandatory that the boys as a group walk the girls home safely, as two of them have to walk through an unlit park to get home. I don’t insist they do this because I think the girls are incapable, but rather because there are many men in the world who don’t respect women’s safety at all, and instead of telling girls where to walk we need to create boys who respect them enough to makes ure they’re okay. We discuss what words are acceptable and which ones are absolutely banned, and we talk about stereotypes of both men and women and how many are hurtful in ways the others can’t understand.

        We have constant conversations about puberty, as that’s kind of where his brain lives right now. We talk about consent in terms of “the enthusiastic yes” being the only time one should assume sex with a woman is acceptable (if they’re super drunk or even passed out, that is most definitely not a yes on their part). We talk about condoms a lot, because men are limited in the amount of responsibility they can take towards disease prevention and birth control. He knows that when he decides he needs them, I will buy them for him to ensure he always, always has them available.

        I respect my son’s intelligence. I respect his good judgment, because we’ve had some very detailed, slightly uncomfortable conversations, of which I picture many more in the future. I certainly don’t think that because his body originally grew inside me that it gives me carte blanche to tell him what to do with it, and I plan to take the same approach with my daughter. I don’t want them to not have sex. It’s one of the best parts of being human. I just want them to do it under circumstances that are both mentally and physically safe for who they are as a person at that time.

        • You are a very good mother

        • It’s funny.

          We teach girls about safety, and boys about consent.

          For all that we progress, we still treat the penis like a weapon.

          • I think it’s moreso that boys are generally physically stronger than girls, so girls need to know how to defend themselves/keep themselves out of tricky situations. Also, society still has a double standard whereby women are expected to be chaste, but men are not discouraged from *wink wink nudge nudge* having as many partners as they want. Thus, boys learn if a girl is really consenting, and a girl learns how to be safe from boys that may otherwise overpower her.

            It is sad that we expect men to be the sexual aggressors, and women have to keep their guard up against them. Unfortunately, unless boys learn to respect girls as equals, this state of affairs will not change for a while.

        • My parents never taught me to respect women, they taught me to respect everyone, including myself. Its my belief that if we respect ourselves, we wont disrespect anyone because we have the sense of it, how it feels to want to be respected and how it feels to be disrespected. Therefore we must teach boys first to respect themselves sexually, their body, that no one have rights to touch their body sexually without their consent, including female sexual perpetrator. We must teach them that women CAN rape men, and it happened. We must teach them that boys have interest in women other than sex, that its a myth that men only want sex, that its okay for them to don’t want to have sex and its okay for them if they want to wait to have sex for the right woman.

          Once they developed their idea of self respect, its easy to think that other people, male and female, should be respected. Therefore they become a man that fully respect women, a man who really honored consensual sex, and a man who respect everyone, child, adult, elderly, women, men, trans gendered, gay, lesbian, bisexuals, jews, muslims, black people, arabs, chinese, indian, etc.

  23. Dear Horrible Father who wrote this. Don’t seem to think that at anytime that I will condone sex for my 14 – 17 year old daughter when she’s dating. You are getting the wrong impression over those things that are said and written in jest and humor. They are there to make a point that as a parent we are not OK with them out there having sex and that we have a sense of humor about it. It has to do with being able to allow our children to be consciously aware of the ramifications of it and our opinions behind it. A good parent knows how to talk to their children and a better one knows how to give their children boundaries and know responsibilities.

    • Well, the “Horrible Father” just disagrees. And so do I. I don’t think he has the wrong impression at all. Humor has meaning, and the meaning of that 10 Rules list is don’t touch my daughter I will fuck you up. And that’s patriarchy and an attitude of ownership that is not a hallmark of good parenting. Smart kids will rebel against controlling parents.

      • There is a difference between “controlling parents” and parents who set boundaries.

        I raised two boys…I kept them away from hanging out at the malls because I wanted to keep my boys away from the girls who felt that by dressing almost naked was a way to attract a boy…maybe so, but not the boys I wanted mine to be. I wanted my boys to respect a girl, not see her as a sex object. We openly talked to our boys about sex…we even teach a sex course for teens…by giving them choices to save sex for marriage if they so choose. My BIGGEST concern these days are the STDs (STIs) out there that so many keep their head in the sand about.
        My oldest ended up having sex with a girlfriend…she was the pursuer. She’d had several partners before him. When they ended up breaking up, to really shatter his heart, she told him she had sex with a stranger at a party while everyone watched. My son was devastated. When he started dating his now wife, he talked to her father about courting her, her father requested that he get tested for STIs and AIDS…this was how serious the father was about PROTECTING his daughter. They are happily married with no worries about whether down the road, when they want to have children, her insides are possibly scared from an STI she didn’t know she’d had and she now can’t have children.
        Give your children ALL of the information out there, so they can make the right choices for them. This is NOT controlling them…it’s loving them!!!

    • I don’t think that he was promoting sex. Good lord. It’s s commentary on life and a positive approach to leading his daughter into adulthood.
      Ps. Yours will be the kids having sex in the bushes because its “forbidden”. Just saying.

      • The title of the post is: “Dear Daughter: I Hope You Have Awesome Sex” – while it (the post) portrays a positive attitude that sex is something to enjoy it also promotes a nonsensical attitude that a father shouldn’t give their children boundaries on dating; in regards to sexual relations and with the addition of the ’10 things’ lists that not having your children know your thoughts about it is practically giving it cart blanche consent. While those 10 things most of them have some serious words about killing and such those are as I take them not something I will ever do.

        ps. to your ps. at least they will know that while they’re doing that they understand the consequences and do it for the right reasons with someone that respects them and they respect themselves.

        • You keep misusing the word ‘regards.’ Unless you are signing a letter or noting an action (i.e. ‘he regards the flower.’) the correct use of the word is ‘regard.’ BTW your views are outdated, your kids may choose to have sex and it should be awesome. And they, if you’ve raised them, will make good decisions–educated choices. Also, I’d like to note that you said the ’10 Things’ list was written in “jest and humo(u)r.” In that mentality, you should have no problem with the title of this article as it seems like it”s intention was both in jest and also shock provoking. For, if it’s just humour, it should have no meaning, right? Wrong, humour is an incredible vehicle that allows people to discuss controversial topics, such as this. Humour also reflects the over arching attitude of a society’s political, sexual, etc atmosphere. I hope that my children have a wonderful, consensual, fulfilling sex life. I also hope the find fulfillment in all other parts of their life.

    • No offence, but children are going to have sex. I know a lot of friends I went to high school had sex between the ages you are stating. He is not pushing his daughter to have sex, he is simply stating he will not at hostile towards the people she chooses to be with. The more you push abstinence, the more tempting it becomes, it’s the forbidden fruit that every teen wants to try. The most you can do for your children is teach them how to be safe, remind them of what can happen and be as open minded as you can. Otherwise, you push you child away and create a negative environment for them and yourself!

    • Dear Misogynistic Prude,

      My father didn’t condone sex when I was a teenager, but guess what? I had sex anyway. It’s far more responsible to recognize that teenagers A) are pretty much walking hormones B) often don’t do what mom and dad say anyway and C) are edging up on adulthood and need to learn to make their own decisions.
      The few studies that exist on comprehensive sex ed is more effective at protecting kids from STIs and pregnancy than abstinence only sex ed. Why would you teach that in the home if it clearly doesn’t work?
      Also, sex isn’t wrong or bad or dirty. Sex is wonderful and amazing and EVERYONE deserves to have a healthy sex life (as long as they’re having sex with other consenting human adults). I’m going to teach my daughter that sex isn’t without risks. There are social risks, health risks, and emotional risks. It’s a big deal and shouldn’t be taken lightly. But, if she feels she’s responsible enough for sex, I want her to ask for birth control so she doesn’t make me a grandma too soon.

    • I think you just missed the point of the entire article. Also, maybe grab a book on human physiology. Your 14-17 year old is going through puberty. It’s driving them to have sex. You can’t stop it by trying to stop them from doing it. All you’ll do is teach them that sex is dirty and wrong, alienate them, and force them to sneak around and lie to you.

    • I’m absolutely okay with my teenage kids having sex. I will take my daughter to obtain birth control when she’s of an age where she might need it. I will buy both my son and my daughter condoms so that they’re always available. What I will not do is pretend I am in charge of any other person’s physical being. As children they’re learning respect for others, how to be a productive part of a family and a society, and that everyone is equally important. If they deem sex to be something they’d like to have as part of their lives, so be it. Here’s a condom.

  24. I am an antiviolence educator and I feel exactly the same way. I wrote a very similar essay about my hopes for my young daughter as she grows.

    http://blog.mindbodymama.com/2012/06/mind-body-mama-sex-ed.html

  25. Nemo Starem says:

    Who are you for denying consensual, responsible sex to anyone, Philip? Do you think yu own them?
    And then there’s the double standard: If it’s a boy, you encourage him. If it’ a girl, you forbid it. Funny how thaat works, huh?

    • I have a 17 year old son, I do not encourage him – I talk to him about the responsibilities and what will happen. I explain the actions of sex what end results are possible; and like the girls I explain that is not a good idea to be sexually active until you are in a place in life that can afford to live with consequences of those actions.

      Who am I to deny it? I am the parent who want’s their kid to go to college; to enjoy life before having children of their own or getting some STD.

      The articles title itself says “go have good sex” and makes remarks to the 10 things about dating my daughter meme’s going out. Take from the article what you will but it would have been better if the author had a different title that promotes underage sex for dating daughters, yes .. they start dating at around 14 if not sometimes earlier. While I understand that you want to promote “enjoyment” of it; it’s the wrong steps to have taken to make that point. You should NEVER promote underage sexual activity.

      • ^ uh, didn’t have a title – edit

      • “Who am I to deny it? I am the parent who want’s their kid to go to college; to enjoy life before having children of their own or getting some STD.”

        I started having “underage” sex when I was in my teens and have since attended college, have not had children, I have ZERO STD’s and I’m very much enjoying my life, which happens to include an active and fantastic sex life. The solution to the issues that you listed above are not discouraging sex, but encouraging safe sex and all the things that the father who wrote this is encouraging.

      • Um, he is not PROMOTING underage sex…he is facing the reality that underage sex happens, no matter what we as parents do to prevent it.

        The idea that your daughter is your property and something to be controlled by the father is what the author is speaking out against, and those memes are extremely degrading and violent. I don’t find them funny at all.

        I get it, dads want to protect their daughters, but by treating your daughter as if you have dominion over her body and her sexuality, you are setting her up to be a victim, not a strong advocate for herself.

        The idea that a woman of any age must submit to the “rules” set forth by the men in her life is ludicrous. We have a very big problem in this country right now with rape culture and the idea that ANY woman needs to do what you tell her in regards to her own body just perpetuates this culture and reinforces to our boys and men that women need to be controlled.

        Yes, we teach them about consequences, we share our desires for them, but we also have to face the reality that they can and will make their own decisions, and it really isn’t up to us to decide when and if our children are ready to be sexually active. Period.

  26. This is far too liberal for me. Kids want boundaries and feel lost without them. It’s our responsibility as parents to guide our children and help them develop morally correct ways of relating to each other. I don’t like those “rules for dating” either, but that’s because I don’t like threats and violence (and guns). I do tell my son the truth about sex: he will enjoy it more and he will love his future wife more if he values himself and her enough to wait until marriage. When my daughter is old enough to discuss this, I will give her the same message. Sex is meant for our pleasure. But making it into a game devalues it and causes lasting problems.

    • I like your strategy a lot. Sex isn’t like simply falling off a bike (oops, you’ll be better next time!). But I think honesty, open communication, and boundaries (wait, this is like ALL matter related to raising kids) are the goal here.

    • Tom Brechlin says:

      I’m with you Suzi. And I love the comments that a “lot” of kids do it so I guess that makes it okay. I hear the same thing about drugs with the kids that work with and they say, a lot of kids do drugs, what’s the big deal?

      I was more interested in nurturing my kids into developing solid relationships, know each other as to who they are as people. An adolescent isn’t mentally equipped to handle the ramifications.

      You know what’s funny? I wrote an article here at GMP about contracting with your adolescent kids. I honestly didn’t expect any kind of responses in that it was simply an article based on my experience. I heard nothing but someone writes about his child (yes, a teen is still a child) having sex and people come out of the woodwork and praise him for being progressive.

      Hells bells, we have the morning after pill for 14 year olds, so I guess if sex wasn’t that great, you have a pill to fall back on …
      Sad

    • I think adolescents are at least as capable if not more capable than adults of forming good relationships. And if I had a kid I would encourage them to do so. The only good thing in my life has been the sexual relationships I formed with people I really liked. School, career and everything else are not as important. Nothing has had a greater impact or been more important to me than my relationships. They are my only cherished memories.

      Love isn’t a dangerous thing…its the only thing. There isn’t anything more important as far as I am concerned. I would never deprive my child of that experience.

    • concerned says:

      Suzi – interesting assumptions about the fact that he will partner, with a woman, and marry her… Reflect?

  27. I guess this depends on the daughter’s age. My girls are 7 and 9 years old. We have frank discussions about sex and about how they own their sexuality. I’m trying to teach them this at a young age so hopefully it’ll stick with them.

    With that said, kids in general (boys and girls) are not mature enough to make sexual decisions at a young age. The ramifications of ‘sex gone bad’ are too great to simply say ‘well, it’s fun and you need to learn on your own.’ Aside from disease and pregnancy, there’s the emotional fallout too (I felt forced to go further than I wanted).

  28. In this day and age we don’t need to encourage children to have sex. They are doing it in unprecedented amounts. The last thing any modern teenager needs is to be asked to “speed up” down a highway they are already barreling down. A highway fraught with danger. We don’t live in prudish times. I think the spirit behind the “10 rules to date my daughter” were meant as a reaction to a world in which teenage pregnancy and STD transmission is higher than at any other time in North American history. It is irresponsible to prevent today’s teens and pre-teens from hearing a “slow down” version of adolescent sexuality. As far as making sure my daughters have a full and customized life, teaching them the sacredness of their sexuality, and therefore its importance will do more to empower my daughter to be herself. Or else she will enter the sexual rat race of the junior high and high school years, where boys will be trying to use adult equipment when they only have adolescent minds. Leading them to view females as pleasure objects and putting more pressure on her to conform to someone else’s standard than my call to abstinence ever could.

  29. Teaching your child that sexuality isn’t wrong isn’t the same thing as being protective of her. I’m a 19 year male, without kids haha, but frankly I find the tone of this article rather naive. I think parents have a responsibility to act as parents, even if we as teenagers hate having them there. The boundary between parent and friend has to be clear enough that a parent can be in the loop but also stop their child from making bad decisions. I don’t think that keeping your daughter, or son, out of a relationship somehow objectifies them, especially if they’re under 18.

    Thoughts?

    • I’m 30, and female, and honestly I dont think this is naive at all. The reality of it is that there’s a ton of damage that “purity” and “wait till marriage” approaches when taught harshly do to young women. I was told dont have sex, I was told so many things were wrong, or bad, or dirty.

      I was told nothing of enjoyableness, how to have a healthy relationship, what the risks and cons and pros of any particular thing were. It was simply – have sex get an STD and a kid and die miserably, or wait till you’re married. Sex *terrified* me, and for a very long time I thought all of it was just disgusting, including parts of myself.

      Oddly enough, I obeyed for a long time. I waited till I was nearly 23, and in college. I didn’t get married, but I did wait that long. I wish I could tell you that it was a good experience but it wasn’t. I didnt know what a proper, healthy sexual relationship looked like, my parents didn’t really have one and other than “IT”S BAD AND WRONG” I had nothing to go on. The next relationship I had that I got into bed with a guy was just as bad. For the record, I did not get any STDs , nor children because thank god my friends were willing to clue me in to what abstinence only education and my parents were not.

      It wasn’t until I was 27 that I got any clue what a healthy, mutually beneficial relationship looked like. For the record, I’m still not married, or even really attached, but I do finally know how to have a fun, and healthy time with someone and have neither party regret it.

      I still deal with issues that I’m dirty, or a slut, or whatever, due to things I was taught. But I know in my head it’s wrong. You don’t magically drop everything you were taught by turning 18, you don’t undo all of the things that have been ingrained into your head. I wholeheartedly think this dad is awesome for being willing to treat his daughter like a person and encourage her to do things that will be the right thing at all ages.

  30. I am so happy you wrote this and even happier that you left open the fluidity of sexuality and gender! Thank you for being such an awesome dad!

  31. It has been well documented that young women who feel that they are in control of their own sexuality and pleasure are less likely to have sex they aren’t ready for. By being honest and open about the joy of sex and the importance of sexual fulfillment we are teaching these women that they are not ‘objects’ for boys sexual gratification, but that their experience is equally as important.

    Good on you Dad. By approaching this topic without shame you are setting your daughter up for a fulfilling and safe sex life. When SHE is ready.

    • absolutely agree with you Nikki. I am a 19 year old girl who was privileged enough to be brought up by parents that recognised my agency as a woman. It had the exact opposite effect of what some people on this comments thread are suggesting it would – it taught me to value myself, my body and my sexuality – at my own pace, and allowing for a sensible balance to be struck between my privacy and my safety.

  32. Good sex doesn’t necessarily mean having sex with multiple people; just because teenagers are having sex doesn’t mean they’re going to get pregnant; and your kids are more likely to get STDs in college rather than in high school. There is nothing shameful about having sex. We should be teaching adolescents how to have safe sex and not to be terrified of it.

  33. wow people…really…..why are you having such a damn cow about this article? Let the man say what he has to say. If you don’t agree or like it then shut the hell up and don’t read it. Simple solution. You’re reading way too much into it if you honestly think the father that wrote this is promoting underage sex…all he’s trying to say is that he loves his daughter, he’s gonna be there for her, and he’s not going to threaten or automatically hate the people she choose to be with. Sex is part of life…ask your parents about it…if not for sex YOU wouldn’t be here right now to complain…none of us would (with a few exceptions of course but that’s another topic entirely). Why not just quit complaining and attacking someone just because their opinion is different than your own?

    To the man who wrote the original article…GOOD FOR YOU! personally i think your daughter is a lucky girl to have a father that cares enough about her to be as honest and open as you are, not just with her but with the world at large. Keep it up!

    • Mark Neil says:

      “If you don’t agree or like it then shut the hell up and don’t read it. ”

      Given this article is basically the authors response to the meme he describes, your solution would apply just as effectively if directed at the author… but you didn’t direct it at him… why not? Why the double standard?

  34. Mark Neil says:

    “And anyone who implies otherwise is a man …”

    Pretty sexist assumption there. I know I know, no woman has ever slut shamed another woman, right? Nothing says I love my daughter” like sabotaging her view of gender right from the get go. I’ll give you credit that you are attempting to take the piss out of a meme that is way way worst, but to do so using the exact same view of men the meme promotes (men=bad) is problematic. Also, shouldn’t you be telling your daughter that it is OK for men to feel the same way? or is it only women that shouldn’t be shamed for wanting, and wanting to give, pleasure? Since, if she were to feel men were undeserving of having such feelings, it wouldn’t be a problem. After all, she’s not a man, so your criticism doesn’t apply, right?

  35. I may be coming from a narrow point of view, but I am certainly not narrow-minded when it comes to this.

    I am in agreement with the author with regards to allowing my daughter the space to experience all of the joy, pain, triumph, and life-lessons that she can handle. In fact, my goal, as a father, is to guide her to a point where she can make all of the good and bad decisions I made when I was younger and learn from both on her own. I hope that she is able to venture out into the world and live an independent life without the constraints of preconceived ideas, prejudice, fear, insecurity, or a lack of self confidence.

    Here’s where my “Daddy Shotgun” comes into play: my daughter is autistic.

    She has a naivete about her that needs to be conquered if she is ever going to be able to navigate the murky waters that is dating. There are simply too many sharks out there that will take advantage of her and toss her aside.

    This is not to say that I do not have faith that she will get to a point where she is able to harpoon a few before they ever get too close, I just wonder at the scars she will have to heal before she understands the difference between a keeper and one that needs to be thrown back.

    (No, I don’t fish. I just started with the analogy and decided to keep going…)

    In the end, her life needs to be her own. I will try my best to provide her with examples of what a good man acts like and, hopefully, she will learn from them either through observation or osmosis.

    • H Papa Bear

      Thank you for bringing up the fact that many of the young are vulnerable. It is not only those with autism but also many many others ,both girls and boys.
      I hope your daughter find her great love one day.

      Closeness and intimacy is complicated for many.
      And it is hard for many to read another persons intentions.
      You watch out for the sharks Papa Bear :)

  36. Very well stated. Thank-you.

  37. nycgrlupstate says:

    your daughter is very lucky to have you as her dad.

  38. THANK YOU so much for writing this.
    I am so sick of seeing that disgusting piece of misogynistic bullshit being passed around (by women even!?!?) and wonder how many people know that actual behavior like that damages their relationship with their daughter, her view of herself, other men, and leads to the kind of kid that ends up lying to her parents and sneaking around. You aren’t the only man who feels this way, thankfully. I know men who believe as you do and they are thankfully raising daughters. THIS HERE: This is how a man who respects women thinks and raises a daughter.

  39. Actually… most of the “10 Rules For Dating My Daughter” were pulled from W. Bruce Cameron’s Book “8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter” (which was later turned into a television show featuring Kaley Cuoco and John Ritter) and were written satirically.

    If you’ve ever read the book, you’ll realize there’s nothing but love and support and plenty of comedic denial for a dad watching his young women grow up. In fact, his book gave me a greater appreciation of my girlfriends, their fathers, and how I should show respect for both. How Cameron’s “rules” are used in pop-(sub)-culture as distributed and bastardized throughout the internet… that’s another story.

    This post – same intent, different wording, just as much helpless denial from a dad watching his girl grow up. Two different dads separated by 10 years each with the same simple message: respect yourself and your body, no matter how you choose to use it.

  40. Michael B. says:

    Mr. Steinmetz,
    Beautifully written and well-articulated. I don’t yet have children, but I can only hope that when I do I will have your sense of openness and support for what has traditionally been a tricky subject. Thanks for setting such a wonderful standard.

  41. When I was 14, my Dad called me a slut in front of my friends and boyfriend because he caught me lying on the bed snuggling with my boyfriend. We were in my room watching TV. It was innocent, and yet that comment left me scarred. I still feel dirty and wrong for wanting pleasurable experiences. I am happy to know that not all fathers are like mine.

  42. Sabastian grace says:

    Same here! I’m 20, with no kids, never had an STI, and have been sexually active since I was fifteen. I respect myself as a woman and the fact my mother educated me about sex but didnt forbid it from my life allowed me to make smart decisions. My mother made it possible for me to go to her for advice and proper protection. She made it easy to talk about because she taught me it was nothing to be ashamed of. Sex is natural. Kids will have sex with or with out your permission. If you forbid it, we are more likely to go out and do it. With out thinking about the consequences. I will raise my future kids like this one day. Sex will ALWAYS be an easy topic to talk about in my household. I find its the shelter kids and kids of strict parents in my area that end up with sti’s and pregnant.

    Since I was raised similar to this mans daughter, I know she will be smart about her decisions. He isn’t just telling her to go have sex willy Nilly. Guaranteed he had taught her the consequences and dangers of sex if not handled properly. But it’s nothing to be ashamed of. Keep your judgements to yourself.

    Also I’ve been with the same man for two years and I do not love him less, than I would have if I would have waited for him and our wedding day. He loves me as much as he possibly ever could as well. My history has never once affected our relationship.

  43. Hoerof Bakunfea says:

    i don’t really understand this mentality. a common feminist position I hear is that girls need to be having more casual consensual sex (justified by disrupting sexual economics, or consensual sex being good in any circumstance/an absolute good that needs to be maximized or something like that). In this article and elsewhere, you see the argument that consensual sex is by nature not exploitative, and to see it as otherwise is wrong. Ok, but which is the bigger problem, the dudes out there that DO see sex as exploitative, and pursue casual sex with such selfish intention in mind, or just the mean ol’ protective dad? Honestly, I think the encouraging-more-casual-sex mentality and the sentiment of this article don’t really do anything to address some of the real problems/problematic people out there, and may in fact exacerbate them.

    • I think the two options you stated were extremes upon a spectrum. Sex outside of marriage with your one and only true love whom you lost your virginity to is not all casual, meaningless one night stands. There’s a whole range of commitment options available that hopefully both parties are fully aware of and consenting with and not trying to trick each other into. I think his point is that if his daughter makes the choice to consent it’s totally her choice. Whether it’s a one night stand, an orgie, or a long term boyfriend that may or may not lead to a lifetime commitment.

    • I appreciate this article as a father of a 16 year old who is just going through her own appropriate milestones. At no point does the author attempt to put his daughter out there and implore her to have more sex. Unless you were raised in that glass box, you’ve had sex, and probably as a teenager.

      No where does this essay implore that the daughter debased herself, in fact treats sex as not only a normative subject, but one in which may be liberating. Responsible people, we’ll taught firls and boys should and will have sex. There is nothing wrong with that. There is something wrong with trying to prevent nature.

      I don’t want my daughter to be in an abusive relationship, or one in which there is the potential for manipulation, but rather I want to be there to support her for the good relations and the less than good relations, because whoever she chooses to have relations with, gay, straight, trans, is not my business.

      As a father my business is to, upon request, give sage advice based on my own past, and to be able to ensure her safe spot is sacred. I believe that the author concurs.

      In the words of a good friend, a Christian woman, who had at 26 was four months before her marriage (and her first sexual experience) “This shit about celibacy until marriage was great, when people got married at 15!”

      • Plaindrifter says:

        You are wrong and I take offense to your statement. I live in California the most unsheltered state in America(not a glass box) and I am a 32 year old virgin male. I am actually quite handsome and have turned away more women then I have been turned down. I keep my celibacy out of religious belief and am not ashamed about it as modern society would have me be. It’s actually something I am proud of and believe is the right way to be until I get married.(Which still might happen) Anyone who believes religious morals and celibacy have no purpose just have to look at the societal break down in the most liberal cities in America where the traditional family has been all but dissolved such as: Oakland, Detroit, Chicago, and a slew of other gang infested cities in California(like the one I live in) where all sense of traditional morality and accountability has been lost. Believe me, whether you believe Jesus rose from the dead or not, lack of ethics and morals DO topple societies. This has been proven time and time again but most famously by the Roman Empire.

        • I agree that lack of morals and ethics are serious problems and can undermine civilization, but I don’t think that people deciding to have sex out of marriage leads to gang violence. I think that has a lot to do with poverty and the ethics and morals we use as a society to justify keeping people in poverty. If you want to remain a virgin until you’re married and are happy doing so that is wonderful for you. That is the choice you made and continue to make every day. That is not the choice the rest of us must make in order to avoid God’s wrath on society.

    • You are wrong my friend. Once people (the awful men you are talking about included) get enough casual sex, they become bored, and want meaningful sex. It’s the same way, we will eat junk food, but if fillet mignon and lobster is available, we are much more likely to go for that. We are all hungering for meaningful sex, we just aren’t all hungering for lifelong, closed relationships. Women, of course need to learn how to seek out and find good men, but in the process, they should have fun, enjoy their bodies, and don’t take everything so seriously. Casual sex can be good for us.

      • That’s one hell of a generalisation, yeah?

        ‘Once people (the awful men you are talking about included) get enough casual sex, they become bored, and want meaningful sex’?

        Ever heard of sex addiction?

    • This article encourages autonomy of sexuality. Not that sex need to be more casual, but that fathers don’t have total right over their children’s sexualities.

    • I don’t think that “girls need to be having more casual sex” is a common feminist belief (if it is, it’s a dumb one). What I hear more often in the feminist community is the sentiment that causal sex should be safer for women and they shouldn’t fear for their social standing, self image, and livelihood at the prospect of some causal encounters (risks for woman in a causal encounter: physical abuse/assault, slut-shaming, higher risk for STIs, pregnancy, ostracization, etc. Risks for men: minor physical abuse, STIs)

      That being said, this article never actually takes a stance on causal sex, because it’s not about casual sex. It’s about fathers not trying to limit their daughters by shaming them and scaring them away from sex and romantic relationships. It’s about letting young women decide, for themselves, what type of sexual experiences they want to have and, as a parent, allowing them to make a few mistakes and suffer a couple heartaches. This may include causal hookups, but it may also include committed, long term relationships.

      Your comment seems unrelated to the authors thesis.

    • The author is not suggesting his daughter have more casual sex. You need to read it again.

  44. The point of the fatherly mindset “take advantage of my daughter and I will kill you” is founded in both a good masculine sense of value for women, and a fatherly interest in what is best for his children.

    Having great sex is fun. But it is also shallow when separated from openness to procreation, which is why “good” girls want to wait until marriage, and why good dads want their daughters to wait until marriage. Sex feels good. And YES it is the girl’s choice. But the just because she chooses it doesn’t make it the RIGHT choice. A dad knows that, and so the protective side comes out when he says “If you pressure my daughter into giving herself to you, or if you even ALLOW her to make that choice, and thereby degrading her to the level of a pleasure object, I’ll metaphorically kill you.”

    “It doesn’t lessen you to give someone else pleasure.”
    No it doesn’t. But it does lessen you to cheapen them or yourself to an object of pleasure.
    “It doesn’t degrade you to have some of your own.”
    Right. But we’re not just talking about pleasure. We’re talking about sex. Which is more than pleasure, and not just an expression of “love”. It’s a complete giving of self. To make it less than that is to cheapen both the act and those involved.
    “And anyone who implies otherwise is a man who probably thinks very poorly of women underneath the surface.”
    This is the opposite of true. Anyone who implies that sex is merely about pleasure is unconsciously objectifying people, degrading themselves, and suggesting that sex become an act of violence towards women (Even if the woman does enjoy it.)

    Sex is not bad. But waiting until marriage is NOT a “glass cage” filled with “cold emptiness” and an overbearing father. It is a choice, albeit difficult and misunderstood, that ultimately holds a higher happiness and reward. A good dad knows this. And although he may respect his daughter’s decisions, he also fears the worst, and wants to make sure the guy she’s going out with is not going to pressure her into making the wrong decision. He does this out of love for his little girl. Not some deep seated lack of respect for her! That’s what dads do.

    That’s why this article is misleading and wrong.

    • Get real dude says:

      “But it is also shallow when separated from openness to procreation, which is why “good” girls want to wait until marriage, and why good dads want their daughters to wait until marriage.”

      Nobody cares about your religious agenda. Sex is different things at different times to different people. What’s important is developing the emotional maturity necessary for sex and practicing safety and good consent. Hopefully you won’t force your patriarchal virgin mythos on your daughter and have her suffer the frustrations (to say the least) that come along with it. Also why assume your daughter is destined for marriage?

    • not everyone shares the same values that you have. not everyone waits for marriage to have sex. that is old fashioned thinking anymore…..not very many I knew in high school, over 16 years ago, subscribed to the “no sex until marriage” thinking. Quite frankly, most people want to know what they are in for before giving themselves to one person and one sexual experience for the rest of their lives. That doesn’t make them wrong, nor does it make this father wrong for allowing his daughter to make her own choices. After all, it is our own spiritual relationship with what ever it is we choose to believe in that really matters. Your god is not everyone’s god, nor are your opinions everyone’s opinions. Marriage is a concept, like money….it has great meaning for some and non for others. Two people can love each other fully and be committed for life without having every married. People can marry and hate each other, then divorce. See, there are many angles and perspectives.
      If dad’s force their will upon their “little girls” they often rebel. Respectful, realistic, caring communication is the best gift a dad can give his daughter.

    • A woman’s value or worth has nothing to do with her “purity”. She’s a person not a vintage car with value based mileage and her choices are her own. If she decides to wait, great. If she decides not to, great. She does not lose or gain value either way. Too many, far too many women and girls have been fed this awful nonsense that whether or not they have had sex (regardless of consent) has something to do with how valuable they are as a human being, how worthy of love they are from their future partners, friends, parents, and even God! It’s a sham and it’s quite frankly nobody’s business. Not even her father’s.

      • Hi Kristen

        I do not know where you live.
        Many men on GMP tells us that they ask women they date :” what is your number ?”
        And tells us that they will not have a relationship with a woman that has had more sexual partners than themselves.

        And they will not marry a woman with what they see as having a high number.

        So this must be the dominant values in America in 2013?

        For some reason all those men are silent now on this thread. I find that interesting.
        It think it is wrong not to inform young women about the facts of life. This value or attitude among many men is one of the facts of life,still today.

        Has men’s fear of women’s sexuality, their jealousy of her former partners and anxiety for her being pregnant with children not their own biologically vanished ?
        I don’t think so.

        • Mark Neil says:

          “For some reason all those men are silent now on this thread”

          Wow. the hostility, the taunting. Ever consider they haven’t commented because they agree, and don’t feel there is anything that needs to be discussed? Or are you just looking for a fight?

          And while I’m not one of those you’re speaking of, I have commented… and nobody has responded to that. Can I likewise taunt you for your failure to engage, given you’re actually involved in this thread?

        • Thankfully, I have never had the displeasure of someone I’m interested asking me such an idiotic question. A man who would think that there’s some magic number of lifetime partners is in no danger of me having any desire to be intimate with him let alone marry him. Hopefully, I would have weeded him out of any such possibility from simple conversation long before that was even brought up. I’m not typically attracted to people with that much insecurity or self-esteem issues that they feel like money, accomplishments, intelligence, or previous sexual experience is somehow a competition. I’m an extremely independent person with the means to take care of myself and no shortage of male interest. I’ve got plenty of options. That phenomenon may not have vanished and I’m sure there are men like that out there, but I’m not about to allow any of them to get close enough to touch me.

    • I think you’re misled, and it look like you may be under the influence of some form of religious morality.

      Sex is not bad. Sex is also not inherently good – it is what the two people involved make of it. This father is to be commended. It is obvious to me that he is open with his daughter, and that he understands all the various sides of sex.

      You can give a child your opinion – that you would like to see them wait, that you are willing to accept that they may not, but you cannot control them, and if YOU make them feel less for their choices, it is YOU who will be exacting a price from them, and hurting their ability to give and receive pleasure with free and open heart.

      It doesn’t make a woman (or anyone!) less to give someone pleasure. No, not even if the person who coupled with them doesn’t value them they way they should – doesn’t love them. Sometimes, sex is just for pleasure, and that’s okay. I don’t do that in my life, but some do, and there was a time when I tried it for a while.

      It doesn’t degrade you to have some of your own. Sorry, but your argument against his point here is just baseless. Sex is not inherently a complete giving of self. You can give as much or as little of yourself to sex as you wish, and to the partner you’re having it with. Haven’t you ever had some-not-so-great sex and found yourself a million miles away in your head?

      “And anyone who implies otherwise is a man who probably thinks very poorly of women underneath the surface.” This is a beautiful statement, and one that should ring true for anyone not confined by religious impetus to limit their own or other’s sexual experience. Also, the author of this brilliant blog is not saying that sex is ONLY about pleasure, he is saying that PLEASURE IS OKAY, and that the giving and receiving of it is a good, fun thing. I am not sure where you get that “sex becomes an act of violence toward women” – because the author here is clearing talking about consensual sex, and explaining to his daughter that IT IS NOT something taken, but something given – by both parties.

      Frankly, I don’t know why I’m bothering, because you lost the whole thing with calling sex “shallow when separated from openness to procreation.”

      You know what? I’m a woman who doesn’t want children. The world doesn’t need more – there’s plenty of gals out there ready and willing to have babies. I’m not one of them. And I will not deny myself the pleasure, the love, the bonding that comes from sharing beautiful sex with my partners. I’m glad for my early 20s, when I explored friends with benefits and short term trysts and even the rare one night stand. I learned about sex, I learned about myself and I learned beautiful and sometimes painful things about human interaction. My sexual experience is not shallow, and never will be. In fact, I think that sometimes, it might be deeper than sex with procreation as a goal, because giving pleasure to my partner IS the goal, and that allows me to be completely present and real, not distracted with hopes, and images of babies, and a ticking biological clock.

      You know what? My dad would have preferred that I would not have discovered sex when I did (17 with my high school boyfriend.) But he’s a great dad. So, when I told him, we had a serious talk about it all (not our first) and he made sure that I had everything I needed to be safe. Because he knew he couldn’t keep me in a glass cage, and knew that I was the type of girl who would not let others use me, or let myself be degraded. His trust in my choices is far more dear to me now than his perceived “protection” had he threatened bodily harm to my boyfriend, and locked up with a chastity belt.

      Don’t let your personal morality or religiously influenced ethics about when is right for YOU cause you to put your daughter in a glass cage, or to make her feel guilt for trying to test and experience the pleasures that life naturally makes us curious about. Be open. Be sure she knows the physical and emotional risks, and then, if she makes the decision anyway – don’t screw up your relationship with her by ending a relationship, grounding her, or shaming her. You’re the only one who can make her less, at that point. And it sounds like you’d be willing to do it.

      • I am at such peace reading your response, Julie. I didn’t even attempt to get into the thread because of the procreation argument. Mind you, I am a mother of one, and carrying another one. I have had sex with my husband only twice or thrice with the intention of “procreating”. (Yes, I have been lucky with my fertility) But the focus of giving and getting pleasure was never lost even then. And that is what sex essentially is to me even when it is a bit awkward at 5 months pregnant :-)

      • Julie, just wanted to give you a virtual fist-bump for that awesome comment. Well said!

        • Thanks to both of you for your support – I NEVER comment on blogs, but some arguments are worth the time to be eloquent.

    • Why is having sex wrong? THAT is what’s wrong with society. Because we see sex as some giant thing, giving yourself to someone. Its not that big. Giving myself to someone is completely being devoted and making someone else’s wants and needs a priority, to make sure theyre happy and to nonetheless LOVE them and show them that love. If I want to have casual sex it doesn’t lessen me or make me feel bad about myself. I’ve been with plenty if guys, and I’m currently on the road to getting married and my past has not once affect my current relationship. My fiance loves me just the way I am, I don’t think waiting for marriage makes a man love a woman any more. Everyone has the choice to have sex when they feel ready. No one else can tell them when they are ready, nor make that choice for them. If a young woman chooses to have sex, its right (for them at that moment), which in the long run all that matters. (This is coming from that girl with a “good dad” who wouldn’t even talk about sex in his home with his children, unless it was preaching about not having sex. I feel sheltered and also I feel like after I moved out, I slept with as many men as I did because of feeling caged and sheltered all though high school.) There has to be some sort of middle, meeting ground for this topic.

    • Did you really use the phrase “a masculine sense of value for women”? Valuing another human being is a trait everyone should share and it should extend to all people. It is your choice to do what you want with your body. There is no reason that having sex for pleasure is “cheapening the act” if it’s consensual and safe. The value of a girl shouldn’t be measured by the amount of sexual partners she’s had or for what reasons she partook in casual sex. Having sex doesn’t make you a “bad” girl, and remaining virginal doesn’t make you a “good” girl. That’s a ridiculous sentiment. Sex is not a crime. There is nothing wrong with casual sex. At all. And sex need not be a complete “giving of self”. Waiting until marriage is an individual’s choice, but it is in no way “better” than the choice to be sexually active before marriage (actually I would argue in the opposite direction).

      I personally find your comment misleading and wrong.

    • Giving or receiving please does NOT make you an “OBJECT of Pleasure”! By insisting that it does YOU are the one objectifying people. Giving or receiving pleasure makes you a PERSON of Pleasure. It makes you a person who is giving or receiving pleasure and nothing more than that.

      I agree with you that sex is not just about pleasure, the article does not imply that. Sex is about pleasure, intimacy and emotional connection. You do not get to define what sex is for everyone “a complete giving of self”? So once I’ve had sex, I’ve totally given myself to another person? What if I want to then “give myself” to someone else? Do I no longer have that ability because my “self” is locked away with the person I gave my virginity to?

      Of course not. Sex is sharing yourself with others, sure, but not *necessarily* just One Person per Lifetime! If you want to do that, fine- but don’t go around insisting that your way of loving someone (ie one person per lifetime) is the only correct way! That is supremely arrogant and insulting.

      If I have sex with more than one person, and I enjoy it, and they enjoy, and I respect them and they respect me, where is the cheapness?

    • Tim,

      Obviously sex is more than “merely about pleasure”. But neither is sex always a “complete giving of self”, and nor should it be. That’s a very black and white view of something which has many shades of grey. (Pun intended.)

      It’s probably worth noting that your opinion is your opinion and may not always be correct. Personally my opinions have changed through the course of my life – I’ve learnt more and realised that I was wrong in the first place. Is it possible that will happen to you?

    • “The point of the fatherly mindset “take advantage of my daughter and I will kill you” is founded in both a good masculine sense of value for women and a fatherly interest in what is best for his children.”

      This is were you go wrong (from the first sentence). A good masculine sense of value for women???? Why should men get to decide what values a woman should have? That is were the whole problem begins and where Misogyny has its roots. Your whole argument is flawed when you made that statement. No wonder you think women objectify themselves if they chose and want sex, because according to you they shouldn’t.
      So if the women do not do what you think they should, according to your ‘masculine sense of values for women’, you look down on them despite the fact that they make the choice.
      This article is not misleading, In-fact it hits the nail on the head about the ingrained misogyny in you society…which we can clearly see in your comment.

    • “But it [sex] is also shallow when separated from openness to procreation”

      I’m sorry what? Sex is something that brings two people together in love for one another. It is absolutely not shallow if you are either not ready for children, do not want more children or do not want children at all. Sex is not just for baby making for crying out loud.

    • Tim,

      I could pick this apart more thoroughly, but I don’t think I have to.

      Basically, you are confusing ‘has a different opinion to me’ with ‘wrong.’ You are also confusing ‘good dad’ with ‘man who agrees with me.’

      Many people do not believe that waiting for marriage to have sex holds a ‘ higher happiness and reward.’ You have no evidence for this, so please accept that this is pure opinion.

      You say that it ‘ lessen[s] you to cheapen them or yourself to an object of pleasure.’

      I have never found this, and know that many people feel the same. The pursuit of good feelings is a natural impulse. Fun does immediately equate to sinful or wrong. I have never felt cheapened by sex any more than I have felt cheapened by hugging my friends because I love them, by eating nice food because I like the taste, and so forth.

      I find your views odd, anachronistic, and patronising to women – this is my opinion.

      You need to understand that just because someone has a different opinion to you, does not make them wrong. You do no have the monopoly on truth and rationality in the world.

      Please do not call this man a bad father because he has a different view to you.

    • Plaindrifter says:

      You know your stuff. Keep it up no matter how many ignorant people you run into. They’re going to need the dose of truth.

      • “The dose of truth.” Quaint. Glad to know you guys own it exclusively.

        • Plaindrifter says:

          There is only one truth. Granted however seen through different spectrums. The question is have you evaluated existence thoroughly enough?

          • This is so completely arrogant. I know your philosophy likes to advise you that you and those like you are the only ones with truth justifying your inflated sense of pride, but the real question is, can you find truth without appealing to an authority?

    • Hey Tim,
      Your mindset is exactly the problem. Sex is not “solely about being open to procreation.” Its about the joy two people can find in being intimate. The problem is, its so very difficult to get there because of all the guilt folks like you dish out.

      I have an ex mother in law like you. She viewed any act of sex outside of marriage as an act of violence against women. As far as I can tell, its some kind of coded religious language. THAT mindset is what I would consider to be wrong. Sad, damaging and wrong.

    • Tim: I dont agree with you at all. For me sex is fun, sex is nice, sex is awesome but it is not something that will scar me if i I use it.
      The idea that a woman should wait until marriage is based upon the thought that sex is something women give to men, and that a virginity is the biggest gift of them all. Sex is something I do for MY sake. Its not something I use as a gift.

      I like to say to my daugher: Hell girl, fuck around. Or wait. Or do what YOU want. Sleep with girls, or boys or transgender people but NEVER let someone tell you that you are a slut for having sex.
      Enjoy life. Live life. But use protection.

    • Hi Tim

      You write:
      “Having great sex is fun. But it is also shallow when separated from openness to procreation”

      A woman that has never given birth before 42 will not be a mother (unless the doctor help her.)
      So you think 42 is the age women without children should stop making love?
      Or their lovemaking from then on is merely shallow?
      She may live another 60 years or more,married or not.

  45. This is pretty great but I take exception to one thing:

    “Now, you’re going to get bruised by life, and sometimes bruised consensually.”

    Don’t tell her what she is or isn’t going to want. You don’t know what she will consent to. Maybe she doesn’t want to be bruised, maybe she doesn’t want to bruise. She MAY, but stating that she WILL is dead wrong. That’s a huge assumption and has no place in this otherwise enlightened piece.

    • I think you’re misinterpreting the usage of the word bruise. We all get bruised by life. We have no choice in the matter more often then not. Sometimes the choices we consent to leave us bruised because we are unable of seeing all the possible outcomes of a scenario. These types of “bruises” are often more painful and longer lasting than the ones that physically happens to ones body. How often have we all found a small bruise and can’t quite recollect how we got it, but we can trace an intricate map of the metaphorical bruises that have happened through out our lives.
      In short: It’s metaphorical. It’s sweet. Quit being a grumpus.

  46. My daughter is 21 and, up until a couple weeks ago, had never had more than a few dates and maybe a peck on the cheek (much to her consternation). This summer she’s been working on an archaeological dig in Europe as part of her studies. There she met a guy she was attracted to and vice versa. He’s a fair bit older and had more experience/history; she was honest with him about her chronic virginity. Their friendship progressed to the point where he rented a hotel room for the weekend (away from the rest of the dig team communal home) and she had her first sexual experience. Several, actually. How do I know all this? She Skyped with my wife for 2 hours yesterday and nervously, embarrassedly, but excitedly told her all this. She was afraid I would “freak out” when I learned about it. Are you kidding me? When I found out, my reaction was “well, thank god that’s finally over with! I hope she had a great time.” And I do. I’m really very happy for her. I’m happy that she found a guy she felt comfortable moving forward with, even if they never see each other again after this summer. I’m happy she found a guy who had some experience in how to treat a lover in bed (even if he was hitting puberty about the time she was born). I’m happy that she’ll always have the memory of her first experience with sex during a romantic weekend in a hotel in rural Tuscany. I mean, come on, who wouldn’t love THAT for the scrapbook? So, yeah, I hope she had awesome sex last weekend. And I hope she continues to have awesome sex for the rest of her life.

    • A hotel room in rural Tuscany. That is something to cherish the whole rest of her life. What a great memory for her!

  47. tengalaxies says:

    I’m a 29 year old woman and I will be forever grateful to my father for having this attitude when I was growing up. He always acted like I could take care of myself, which gave me the confidence to do so. The “father threatening date with a shotgun” meme has always pissed me off. Yes, there are men who act in bad faith; openly threatening them doesn’t empower your daughter to deal with them for the rest of her life when you’re not sitting on the porch waiting for her to come home any more. My mother actually did warn a boyfriend not to pressure me for sex once, but she never told me about it at the time, which was all for the best.

    My sexuality is not a prize to be won. I wouldn’t even describe it as a gift I give. It’s something I use when I think I’m going to get pleasure out of it. Something I do because I want to, not to be nice. It’s certainly not something for my father to guard from thieving men. The idea that women can’t possibly want sex just because they like it, that we don’t feel sexual attraction, is toxic and needs to die.

  48. Ailsa Abraham says:

    My hat is off to you, Sir. How I wish other parents would take that attitude. After all – if they hadn’t had sex, the offspring wouldn’t be there in the first place. Hoorah for a sane, healthy Pa with his head in the right place! Congratulations.

  49. herpyderp says:

    the dads who get overprotective over their daughters when it comes to men are usually the same dads who will high five their sons if caught getting it on. girls can be just as horny as horny as guys,and hormones can get the better of both genders. you just won’t hear them talk about sex as much because society doesn’t shove it in their faces every chance it gets,like it does with the male gender. why the double standards?,why raise your daughter as a perfect priestess of virginity and raise your son to be a sex crazed gorilla?

  50. Roger Andreas says:

    Wow, another dad wanting to be his kid’s BFF instead of a parent. Why am I seeing so much of this lately?

    The reason a father is expected to take that position with a boyfriend is not to be a jerk or to make threats, but to set very clear boundaries for the boyfriend and reaffirm for your girl that you’re there to make sure those boundaries stay in place and she feels protected and in control. It doesn’t mean you have to make threats of killing the boyfriend or hurting him. It’s not about threats. It’s about making sure the boy understands where the line is.

    This whole attitude of reacting against that and refusing to do your job as a parent is disgusting, no matter how you dress it up or intellectualize it. You’ve failed in your responsibility to be a dad and you’ve become very confused by some silly, exaggerated attitudes other fathers joke about. How unfortunate.

    The first time my daughter went on a real date, I pulled her boyfriend aside and pointed to the photo of my daughter on the wall, taken when she was about a year old. I said to him, “Do you see that? That’s my daughter. In that picture, she’s a baby. No matter how old she is, she’s always going to be my baby. If anyone does anything to hurt that baby or treats that baby badly, how do you think a father would reasonably react?”

    I didn’t have to say anything else. He understood. No threats, just a simple understanding that this girl you’re taking out is amongst the most precious things in my life and you will treat her as such. If that expectation cannot be met, you should date someone else.

    Why is that so hard for the author of this piece to do?

    • If my dad had done that with people I dated when I was a teenager I wouldn’t have brought a guy home to meet my parents until we had been dating a while and I’d warned him. Also I would have been offended that he felt the need to tell someone that I had chosen to date not to hurt me and imply that if they hurt me then they would be hurt in return, which is what you are implying.

      I would have been more secretive because it showed my dad didn’t respect my judgement of someone and thought that I’d date someone who would cause me harm. Also I would have been more wary of coming to him if something was amiss. Luckily this never happened to me but if I thought there was a chance that my dad would hurt someone who hurt me but I still care about he would be one of the last people I would come to. You should be there for support not to scare the boy.

      Also would you do that to your son’s new girlfriend, if you had a son? If you would then fair play you are treating your children equally. Why can the son take care of themselves and not the daughter.

    • Helena_333 says:

      Roger Andreas, you state that a father needs to set boundaries to the boyfriend and to reassure that he understands and respects them. Well, I agree with you that every person (boyfriend or not) needs to know the boundaries of a relationship with any other person and that he or she respects this persons will. But why does a young woman needs a father, brother, mother or any other person to ensure that understanding? Isn’t she able to tell her boyfriend what she wants? Isn’t she able to tell him what she doesn’t want? Why would he understand it better, hearing the same thing from your mouth than from the mouth of your daughter? And why would your expressed concerns match her feelings and her will better than her own words and gestures?

      In understand your statement that your daughter is precious to you. But more than that, she is precious for herself! She wants to live a good life and to have good relationships that match her needs and her hopes (which are not necesseraly your needs and hopes, by the way). It is absolutely necessary that she learns to know, state and defend these wishes by herself. You will not always be on her side and not always be her protector. She will have to take care for herself and the problem is not with boyfriends only, but also with colleagues, seniors, friends and other people. Yes, there is a risk of beeing hurt, when you interact with other humans. Boyfriends are only a small part of humankind.

    • Hi Roger

      I would have loved it if my father acted like that when I started dating!

  51. The dialogue in the comments is fascinating. It’s as if people only read the title and not the article. Number one, the author’s name is Ferrett, and I would like to be the first to acknowledge what a fantastic name that is. Second, at no point does the author in any way infer that his daughter is young. Poking around on the internet I found the author mention that both daughters are in their twenties; however, I would guess omitting this information was intentional, because this is moot in the context of the article. If his daughters were ten and twelve, which they’re not, the article still does not imply in any way that he wants his daughters to have great sex before they are ready or promiscuously.

    The sentiment is simple and lovely– He does not make choices for his children. The best way to prepare children to make that decision, which they will make on their own terms whether you like it or not, is to promote a healthy dialogue acknowledging that sex is powerful, exciting, fun, emotional, not without risk, and as the article poignantly encourages– an approachable subject that a child should feel comfortable bringing to a parent for discussion free of guilt.

    I was PROGRAMMED from a very young age that sex and the human body are “beautiful” and sex should happen “between two people that love each other”. Again, both of these ideas were repeated over and over in many different contexts every time sex was brought up or depicted on television from age eight to eighteen. Despite being a socially adept and horny male, I lost my virginity at nineteen with my first love because I had a very idealistic desire to find sex with somebody I loved and cherished. I continue to seek sex with people I love, and find sex with those who I don’t love less fulfilling. I am certain I have had a more fulfilling sex life than the majority of my peers based on many conversations, and I attribute most of that to being programmed in a very healthy way.

    My point is– program your children in a way that will encourage them to love, enjoy being naked, and not in any way associate sex with secrecy or guilt. Years later, after lots of fabulous sex, they will thank you for it. Maybe they will choose to have sex “too young”, whatever that might mean to you, but if it’s with somebody they love it is unlikely they will regret that experience.

    • exactly how i raised my daughters. of course i want them to experience sex, but that raging, can’t control the tears, explosive orgasm because i trust you, body quivering and waves overcoming you kind of sex that only comes when the heart and soul are involved. it is SO different from casual sex that the two aren’t even in the same ballpark. Mistaking sex for love is an issue many girls today face, and this is why there are shows like Teen Mom.

  52. I think that what he’s saying is true. Making sex taboo only increases rebellious and dangerous behaviour where as being open and open minded about it allows discussion and advice. I think the mentality fathers have in regard to sons and daughters are very different I have heard lots of men say they will praise their sons when they engage in sex but they will shame their daughters so they’re inevitably teaching their sons to use and abuse other people’s daughters while maintaining that their own aren’t responsible or trustworthy enough to do it. I will teach my girls the same thing because Sex is normal and they’re going to do it and I hope I can trust them enough to choose the right guys and be sensible with their decisions. Women enjoy sex too it’s not just for men.

  53. “The point of the fatherly mindset “take advantage of my daughter and I will kill you” is founded in both a good masculine sense of value for women, and a fatherly interest in what is best for his children.”

    If there were any truth in that, wouldn’t you be better off talking to your sons than “protecting” the “value” of your daughters?

  54. Plaindrifter says:

    And the “fool” I’m refering to is…
    —Edited for content. Plaindrifter. We don’t allow personal slander in the comments here at the GMP. Go read the comment guidelines if you are uncertain as to what qualifies as acceptable discourse.

  55. Sorry. I don’t agree. I know my younger daughter had sex at 15, and I am SO happy for her, that she had her first experience with a boy she loved. They dated from age 14-17, and were in ‘love’ – It is a BLESSING to have sex with someone you love. I would NEVER EVER tell my daughters that I encourage them to just have casual consensual sex. That is just asking for self esteem issues to grow like weeds on a hot day! Self respect and self worth come first. No girl is going to have orgasms with a random guy she just met, especially some fumbling 16 year old, unless they are in a relationship, relating to one another, trusting each other, and the sex is an extension of the love they feel. Not saying they have to get married, but I do NOT want my daughters having casual sex. Believe me, they are adults now, and they’ve HAD casual sex once or twice, and they REGRET the hell out of it. We ALL regret most of the casual sex we have had as women. It was usually not a great experience and a bad decision.

  56. Thank you, Ferrett.

  57. Tom Brechlin says:

    I love how people stereotype the people who simply believe that they don’t want their children to have sex outside marriage. I can tell you, we have outstanding sex lives and they’ve been outstanding from day one. My wife and I never made sex out to be something taboo. And after 38 years of marriage, it’s still great! Just as I don’t stereotype those who choose not to wait as being some kind of beast, I would appreciate your doing the same.

  58. Tom Brechlin says:

    Sexuality is considered part of our identity as human beings. In His creation of humankind, God distinguished us from other animals by giving us reason and will such that we can control behavior that, in other species, is governed solely by instinct. So, although sexual relations ultimately can result in the reproduction and survival of the human race, an instinctual concept, our capacity for self-control allows us to regulate this behavior. Also, the mere fact that human beings are the only creatures who engage in sexual relations once they are beyond the physical capacity for reproduction, sets us apart from all other species which engage in sex for the sole.

    sexual relations are confined to marriage between a wife and husband. Within this context, the role of a healthy sexual relationship is extremely important. Having and raising children are encouraged. Once a child is born, the parents are expected to care for, nurture and prepare the child for adulthood, with a goal to equip the children with knowledge and willingness to accept and practice their faith and thus become a productive member of society.

    • Hi Tom

      You write:
      ✺”, the mere fact that human beings are the only creatures who engage in sexual relations once they are beyond the physical capacity for reproduction, sets us apart from all other species….”✺

      Do animals have menopause?
      As a cat owner I know cats don’t.

      Now I am curious. What animals have menopause?

  59. This article is beautiful! Made me cry of joy.

  60. Jehefinner says:

    As the mother of two girls I think this is beautiful. Bravo to you sir!

  61. This was SO wonderful to read. My own father attacked me once for wearing a simple shirt that said “BOYS” on it. It was the 80’s. It was just a simple t-shirt.

    Sex was vilified by both of my parents. And? It didn’t stop me from having it. It just made me feel ASHAMED for having it…. for many, many years.

    I wish more parents would teach their offspring like this blog states. I have two sons. One is just getting old enough for his first “talk”. I hope I navigate the waters as deftly as done here.

  62. Thank you so much for this article. Inspiring, uplifting<3

  63. wynema gonzagowski says:

    AWESOME!!!!!!! I have never hidden anything from my kids and I have never put them in a box with a grow light and kept them away from the world… And so far, that has worked well… ALL of my older kids have been out on their own, working and for the most part stable when they started their families, 3 of them were 21, one was 19… Still have 2 at home… (13 and 12)… I will continue to do the same with them.. Because of my openness my kids have always felt the ability to come to me when they have an issue and I have always been there… Raise your children with love and freedom not with fear and insecurities!

    • Agreed! I also don’t hide anything from my kids. That’s why I plan to tell them that recreational sex outside of marriage is essentially a vacuous testing ground that — although physically stimulating — does little to nothing for the heart. Better to seek meaningful connections above the waistline, sunshine.

      • It’s sad, and you have my empathy, that whatever experiences you’ve had have led you to believe that there are only two options, one of which is waiting until marriage and the other is recreational, meaningless sex. I have not yet married but the relationships I’ve had have been meaningful, extremely valuable to me, personally fulfilling and respectful, and yes, pleasurable too. Each has taught me valuable lessons about how to interact with other people in a meaningful way, to give and take, and how to balance romance with the mundane trifles of everyday life. I’ve grown as a person every step of the way – and though in the end, yes, I’ve experienced some heartbreak and some disrespect, and I’ve accumulated some regrets both in my own actions and in how I’ve been treated now and again – I’ve learned from that, and I value each of those lessons. It is not, as some might rashly conclude, all about “the sex.”

        It may be that I could have learned all those things within the context of a marriage, having learned none of them before then, but it seems unnecessarily stressful to me to have to go through all that with one person. I am a completely different person than I was when I was 18, or 20, or 25, and we all grow and change in different directions. I respect that that’s the right answer for some individuals, but I just wanted to say that there is a middle ground and that there is value in it.

  64. I agree with essence of a the article, but not all the particulars. If I were a gifted writer, my article would read, “Dear Daughter, I hope you have awesome sex with your husband.” Sex is awesome; I love sex. However, sex is powerful and outside of marriage and can do a lot of emotional, spiritual, and even physical damage. I agree that we should not desire for our kids to be clones of us, but I also believe that part of our job as parents is to guide our children and help them navigate life with as little damage as possible.

    • 50 Ft Queenie says:

      “sex is powerful and outside of marriage and can do a lot of emotional, spiritual, and even physical damage.”

      Do you have any facts to back that up, or it simply your opinion? If it’s your opinion, that’s fine, but please do not present it as fact. Also, marriage is not a guarantee against damage. There are plenty of dysfunctional marriages out there and plenty of strong, healthy relationships between people who are not married.

      • I agree with 50 ft. Queenie. Sex IS powerful and outside of marriage can be completely wonderful and lovely and even spiritual. The problem is if you are so timid and so scared of getting hurt that you are afraid to live. ALL relationships end eventually, even marriage. Some are meant to last for a short time, others for many decades. But expect and ending and accept it when it comes – in the meantime don’t shut yourself off from the beauty you could be sharing with a good person. Would you not make a friend because that friend may not be around your whole life?

      • This is another case of “locking someone up inside a box of our own desires.” Telling her she needs marriage to enjoy sex is merely an opinion, not a fact.

    • Your new title makes the assumption that every daughter is both straight and interested in entering the institution of marriage. Both assumptions could be viewed as another way to curtail the rights of an offspring to make their own mistakes, to learn, and to grow to who they want to be – not who a parent wishes them be. I think a good compromise might be “Dear daughter, I hope you have awesome sex with loving partners.” That way, the offspring is not being shamed to marry before enjoying sex, but is still being encouraged to use good judgement when choosing sexual partners.

    • Well said Steven. In our world where sex is portrayed as OK with anyone at any time, it is good to see someone who is willing to speak up against this insanity. I read some where (I apologize for not having a reference) it was suggested that all venereal diseases would be eliminated in 50 years if people reserved sexual activities to inside marriage. What a concept. Every time a person has sex, a real and powerful bond, like a band aid, is created through the release of hormones, whether the persons think there is or not. When that “relationship” ends, it tears the band aid off. The next encounter when the band aid is trying to stick, it is unable to stick as well, and eventually it can’t stick at all and the persons are unable to bond emotionally with their eventual husband or wife. The result can be divorce and we all know how damaging that is to families and society in general.

      But go ahead, encourage random sexual encounters, but be prepared for the damage in the long run.

      • The idea of marriage in general is outdated and bourgeoisie. We can also eliminate venereal disease through sexual education, and waiting for backwards, sex-negative people like yourself soon die out. Your bandaid anology is as hilariously simplistic as it is unscientific. Again, there is no evidence for (or logical reason to believe) your opinion that sex outside of marriage is damaging. It’s telling you didn’t actually respond to the other commenters points: what of all the abuse that happens WITHIN marriage? STIs are spread within marriage, too, by the way – you cant always assume the other will be faithful (maybe in your silly utopian world you can, but human sexual instinct will always trump irrational morality). And what about gay people living in backwards hellholes (like much of America – god I’m glad I’m Canadian) where they can’t get married? I’d assume you didn’t comment on that because your views on sex are entirely based on your personal religion (YOUR religion, not everyone elses.) – they’re certainly not based on objective fact.

      • @ Mike
        There is a big difference between advocating sex only between married partners and “random sexual encounters.” It seems most reasonable as a parent to encourage their child to have “responsible sexual encounters.”

      • You are making a vast generalization about how people respond to a sexual relationship. Everyone is different and while this may be true for you, it is foolish to assume you can put every other person in the world in the same box. Some people have more than one sexual relationship before finding the person they choose to marry and have seen first hand how those past relationships are remembered fondly as experiences that shaped them into the people they are today. The happy, loving people that are in healthy relationships. As for your comment on STDs being irradiacated by only having sex when married, I’d like to know where you read this as I am pretty sure it was not based in science, but in religion.

      • “Every time a person has sex, a real and powerful bond, like a band aid, is created through the release of hormones, whether the persons think there is or not.”

        This is actually not factual, and pseudo-science AT BEST.

      • Pardon me Mike, but quite a lot of people don’t fit into your cookie cutter version of a meaningful relationship. A lot of us have no interest in marriage, especially seeing as it is something invented by religions that not everybody follows. Then there’s the fact that a large number of us are polyamorous people who share their sexual experience with others; AND marriage doesn’t guarantee that the couple aren’t out screwing other people anyway. So there goes your impossible theory about STDs being gone in 50 years, don’t believe everything you read.
        The only thing that states sexual encounters between one person and multiple others is wrong is some people’s twisted view of the bible. And contrary to your wonderfully constructed band aid analogy, the chemical reaction that occurs during sex doesn’t lessen when you switch partners, it is something your brain does regardless of whose parts are inside whose after how many others and I don’t know who told you otherwise; because getting back to thy polyamory thing, it still happens just as strongly between the couple and the other people they have sex with too.
        So please don’t force your religious institution on those of us who don’t share it and/or know better. And don’t respond with it being the one true belief either, because my belief system is quite a bit older than yours and it works out just fine WITHOUT hurting other people.

      • This is the problem. For you it’s either marriage only or “random sexual encounters.” That’s a fals dichotomy. You can have beautiful, valuable sexual relationships with many people in the course of your life while still being smart and making good choices about who you’re going to do it with. By forcing this black and white viewpoint, you’re encouraging the attitude that leads to guilt, loss of self-respect and loathing of the partner, and your kids WON’T learn who is worthy of their love.

    • You’re completely disagreeing with the man who wrote this. This man is speaking his mind and going against the normal societal fatherly role of trying to keep your daughter “pure,” chaste, and virginal. The fact of the matter is that people fuck. And they do it because it’s fun. Scratch that—it’s AMAZING. It’s WONDERFUL. So long, of course, as it’s consensual and protection is being used. And since sex is so damn good, people are (generally) going to fuck no matter how much they’re told it’s wrong or dirty or impure. They’ll just pick up some unjustified feelings of shame along the way.

      You can disagree with this little piece of writing all you want, but please don’t try to disguise it as agreement.

    • Just because you feel sex should only stay in marriage, doesn’t mean we all agree with that thought. Sorry you couldn’t have sex outside of marriage and not feel ashamed of yourself. It’s too bad that image was projected onto you & now you want to project it onto others.

    • I actually disagree that our job as parents is to make sure that our children (our children who will one day be adults) experience as little damage as possible. I think our job is to teach our children how to weather the damage that life inevitably causes, and the best ways to cope with it and to learn from it and grow. We give our children tools to work with, but they must learn the same lessons we did in their own time. Putting forward marriage as a way to avoid all the distasteful lessons of life is setting them up for a failed marriage.

  65. I love how supportive you are of your daughter, but I must argue that not all fathers who are protective over their daughters are trying to control them. My Dad and my husband had men that they were related to that abused the women in their life. They saw this, and the HATED it! That’s why my Dad was very protective over me and my husband is over our daughter. They don’t stop their daughters from enjoying life, they just let the men out there know that if you hurt her you will pay the price at my hands. And coming from a daughter of a protective father I felt loved, not controlled, and my daughter will tell you the same.

    • 50 Ft Queenie says:

      I didn’t see this post as Ferrett saying that protective fathers are trying to control their daughters, just that there are limits as to how far that protection can extend, especially as the daughters get older.

      There can be a fine line between protectiveness and controlling, and it’s essential to be aware of that. My father was very controlling, and I had people telling me that his behaviour was normal and that he was just being “protective”. Sorry no, it’s not normal to listen in on your daughters phone calls, open her mail, search her bedside table, throw out her books and magazines because you don’t like them. I would have loved to have had a father like Ferrett.

  66. Christ I wish you were everyone’s father, although, no, that would be time-consuming and expensive, so I’ll just hope all the other parents take a page from your book.

  67. Wow, life through rose-coloured glasses- how wonderful it must be for you. I also believe in empowering my daughter to be strong, and make enlightened decisions- and also to make some bad (learning) ones. Yet I will not, shall not, allow her partner to endanger her life through thoughtless actions. If that means a strongly-worded threat, couched in ‘witty’ terms, then I am happy, nay, enraptured to make that happen.
    I have been a teenage boy- I am aware of the callous (or naive) disregard for other people’s welfare. If a strongly-worded warning adds a mere 5% of caution to their hormone-fuddled brains, I will consider the cost to have been more than justified.
    Teenagers make many mistakes. The one’s they learn from can only help them in their future life. The one’s that can disrupt their existence, they are the one’s I hope to have a hand in preventing.
    So, in closing, let me say I agree with your sentiment- but washed down with a large slug of reality.

    • Oh Marc, how quaint. You think you’re intimidating!

      • I am, Nick, and thank you for noticing! Not all strong, self-aware types are neanderthals- some of us have passed through the bone-headed, brawling teenage years and have exited from the other side, educated, literate and still able to kick your smug, foolishly-ignorant arse!

    • 50 Ft Queenie says:

      If your daughter is over the age of consent, she is free to make as many foolish decisions as she likes. You don’t have to like it, but you do have to accept that she’s a legal adult. If that is his daughter in the picture above, she definitely looks to be 18 or over.

      My father was busy trying to police my sex life well into my late 20s, FTR.

  68. Half of me is like “awesome!” and the other half is going “… unless. Um.” So, “Awesome! – so long as the daughter in question if 18 or older.” I get snarly with the implication (don’t know if you’re making it, but some have before) that parents shouldn’t against, blocking, limiting their 15 year olds from the wonder of protected consensual sex. IMHO it’s nothing to do with thinking less of women, as I apply this equally to sons and daughters, but I do think people need more experience with romance and relationships before the squishy parts get all interlocking.

    • teenagers have sex. giving them information about sex needed to make informed decisions, access to condoms and other contraception, and teaching them healthy attitudes about sex is awesome- better than trying to ‘protect’ them or ‘block’ them from sex they are going to have anyway unless you homeschool them and keep them chained to their bedpost until they’re 18. teaching teenage girls that it’s okay to want to have sex, it’s okay to not want to have sex, that sex doesn’t always lead to love, that love doesn’t have to lead to sex, etc. is so much more valuable than being a hand-wringing puritan and basically ensuring that your teenager will hide their sex life from you and won’t come to you when they have questions, concerns, or a need for things like STD tests, condoms, doctor’s visits, etc.

    • Just one little point. Why 18? The average age of consent across the U.S. is 16 (in some states it is as low as 14).

  69. Thank you for twisting my brain. Actually… Youre right about this one!

  70. I think it’s important that women receive positive messages about sex and their own sexuality, so I think this is a good article.

    This is my critique of the article though, which I hope you don’t feel is me attacking you, or anyone else here.

    I’m tired of the male side of things being left out. I know this is a message to his daughter, but it’s an article in response to messages directed at men.

    Imagine if we reversed the roles and women were told that having sex with a man was such an awful thing to do to a man that someone would be justified in shooting you for it.

    Imagine feeling as a woman that sex was something you needed to ‘take’ from a man, because he would never really want to engage in sex with you for it’s own sake.

    Imagine feeling that you had to trick men into allowing you to ‘do’ sex ‘at’ him, rather than something he said a full and joyous YES to, or that his lack of a ‘no’ was the best you could hope for. These are the kinds of messages men receive about sex almost continually.

    Any negative attitudes towards women from men in this context are just projections of men’s cultural sense of being deeply flawed and not sexually valued. If we want better relationships between genders as a culture, we have to start looking at this part of the puzzle.

  71. As a daughter, mother, woman, lover, Thank you! I posted this on my facebook fan page!

  72. Hi Mark Neil
    I can not find you.
    The reason why I have not commented is that after I payed for one months membership in GMP
    I have lost notifications in my inbox, and my browser is also blocked when I try to open links.

    You feel I am hostile. That is interesting!
    I simply tell about many men’s attitudes the way they have shared it with us here on this website. Is that hostile?
    Are you grumpy because they are honest?
    Is it a problem for you that I believe them?

    Shall young women go out in life with their eyes totally closed?
    ( I am sure some men would like that.)

  73. I strongly object to his use of the word “genderqueers.” Ruins an otherwise pretty good piece.

    • Why do you object to his use of the word “genderqueers”? I object to it also, on the grounds that friends of mine who self-define as genderqueer use it as an adjective rather than a noun, so is should read “genderqueer people” not “genderqueers”. Is that the same reason that you object to it?

      Other than that, I think it’s an excellent article, and I’ll be looking for more of his writing.

    • Is there a reason why you object to the use of that word? I think the author’s intent was to be inclusive of folks of all genders.

  74. Hi Mark Neil

    I have looked and looked but can not see your comments on this thread.
    Where is it?
    Can you repeat it?
    Or are you referring to comments you have made on other threads?

    You ask if I want a fight.
    No Mark,I want honesty from men about how they see women , their sexuality and their sexual history when they look for a wife and mother for their children.

  75. Ceana Hope says:

    You sir are amazing. Well written. i wish more fathers understood that locking them away in their glass tower only opens the door for them to rebel later in life… and to sever your communication with your daughter. She won’t trust a control freak.. not to mention that control will come up time and time again in her life.

    Thank you for wanting to raise another being that will understand consequences of her actions, will understand that not all relationships last, and when they do end, the pain does go away eventually and that ending is a learning experience. I’m sure your daughter has self confidence, does well in school and has the best daddy daughter relationship with you ever. Don’t stop.

  76. I have to always remind myself that when I read things in an enlightened state of mind, I am the minority.

    See, when I read something like greeting my daughter’s boyfriend at the door while carrying a shotgun, I have never really read it as “it’s the 1950s and if you take my daughter’s precious virginity, I will force you to marry her and make her an honest woman.”

    I’ve always read it as “we all know it’s the 21st century and that my daughter is an enlightened woman who can make her own choices. However, she means a lot to me, so if you treat her poorly, or hurt her, then I get to play caveman, which involves a mastodon femur and your head.” (And even here, we see the use of hyperbole in the threatened violence)

    Sex is something that happens between two consenting persons that respect one another. I’m just going to take issue with any person who considers “consent” or “respect” optional in that equation. And no – neither of my daughters “need” to be protected by me – but that doesn’t mean I don’t want to do it.

  77. There’s lots of good instruction in here, specifically, not to treat your daughter like she’s a piece of meat andeveryone else is an animal. On the other hand, I think the aauthor’s view is overly optimistic about what the consequences of telling your child to go out and screw. A respectful relationship, like one between adults, would allow each person to draw upon experience, perception, and knowledge and to have a dialogue that attempts to find the optimum outcome for the desired activity. For instance, I’d want to compare my relationship with my partner, which developed slowly and started in mutual respect, with those of my peers, many of whom were, in my opinion, predatory…. And who continue to have tumultuous, tragic relationships into adulthood. I have a few close friends who never married, and have had a series of healthy relationships that are not filled with constant agony. I’d encourage my daughter or son to look at these things and think about them, and take time to make decisions. But, I’d also say, ethically, never to use someone as a means to an end, nor should you permit yourself to be used in such a way. To sum up: As a parent, my goal would be to encourage ethical behavior, not just a barebones hedonism.

    • I don’t seriously believe that the author’s message to his daughter is “Go out and have empty sex and don’t take any valuable lessons from the experience.” The gist of it, to me, is that the author’s aware his daughter is her own person who’s going to have a sex life and that this can be a tremendously rewarding thing, despite holding some heartbreak and turmoil in store. And that while he recognizes all this, he can still wholeheartedly encourage his daughter to go out and learn those lessons without trying to con, threaten or bully her into limiting her experiences based on what HE thinks.

      That in no way precludes the wish for her to find respectful, meaningful relationships. To me, it’s a good sign that he’s probably already instilled in her the kind of healthy mindset she needs to make that happen – on her own terms.

  78. Hi Mark Neil
    I finally found your comment .

    ✺August 12, 2013 at 9:53 pm “And anyone who implies otherwise is a man …” Pretty sexist assumption there. I know I know, no woman has ever slut shamed another woman,
    right? Nothing says I love my daughter” like sabotaging her view of gender right from the get go.
    I’ll give you credit that you are attempting to take the piss out of a meme that is way way worst,
    but to do so using the exact same view of men the meme promotes (men=bad) is problematic.
    Also, shouldn’t you be telling your daughter that it is OK for men to feel the same way? or is it
    only women that shouldn’t be shamed for wanting, and wanting to give, pleasure? Since, if she were to feel men were undeserving of having such feelings, it wouldn’t be a problem. After all,
    she’s not a man, so your criticism doesn’t apply, right?✺

    The reason why I don’t respond to it now I have read it is that I do not understand what you are trying to say.
    Lost in translation.
    English is not my first language nor my second.

    • Mark Neil says:

      My issue is in his assigning gender to the various roles. Someone who doesn’t accept the concept “It doesn’t lessen you to give someone else pleasure. It doesn’t degrade you to have some of your own” is a MAN ” who probably thinks very poorly of women underneath the surface”, as if no woman, ever has used slut shaming or similar assertions. And why is it only being presented as something woman are entitled to? This could have been presented in an un-gendered manner, teaching his daughters to both respect themselves and their needs, AS WELL AS the needs of her partners. And teaching her that, when anyone, including women, try to shame her sexuality, that it is wrong… not just when men do it.

  79. While decently written- This is a terrible article that looks like it may have been written to win brownie points or possibly could have been written by a teenage boy that knows the effects that the media plays and that telling girls to just “go have sex” could possibly get him laid. How about “If you are going to go have sex…. use protection! Cause babies cost a mess load of money and require time, patience, and love- and it’s also possible that the guy you think is “cool” right now may not be as “cool” when you are asking him for child support if he decides he doesn’t want to stick around. Then again…. The same goes for the boy…. “Son, If you must- Use protection! Going to court every couple of months over custody issues is a horrible way to spend the next 18 years of your life Unless you are ready right now to step up and take care of a child- Now, not down the road when the child is 17 years old” BtW your “about the author” doesn’t even mention a daughter. So if you don’t have a daughter you’re as bad as the guy in that Tony Danza movie. If you do have a daughter and the reason she doesn’t live with you is because she is beyond the age of 18 and out on her own then you shouldn’t be telling her what she can and can’t do anyway. Right? Isn’t this about not trying to not control your daughter? I am not suprised you have received “80,000” LIKES either. I’m sure a great big portion of them were teenagers that don’t want adults telling them how to live their lives by saying “Maybe you should wait” People are going to “LIKE” what they want to hear. Whether or not it is the right thing to do. “”Yes, all these boys and girls and genderqueers may break your heart, and that in turn will break mine. I’ve held you, sobbing, after your boyfriend cheated on you, and it tore me in two. But you know what would tear me in two even more? To see you in a glass cage, experiencing nothing but cold emptiness at your fingers, as Dear Old Dad ensured that you got to experience nothing until he decided what you should like””” IT SADDENS ME that in this great big world with such beautiful music, entertainment, people, things to do, invent, learn, places to discover and travel too, all the millions and millions of joys out there that you can do with a partner- that you feel that if your daughter does not go out and have sex that she is in a glass cage experiencing nothing but cold and emptiness.

  80. Paul Clements says:

    Freedom, even sexual freedom, should not be taught without also teaching the responsibilities which go with it.

  81. Ferrett, you are my hero. I agree with you 100% and we need to make some T-shirts or something.

  82. When I have a child, I’m going to say to it the same things my dad said to me: ” “.

  83. I have a huge problem with this article. I find it downright inappropriate, gross, and creepy that a dad would imagine this for his own daughter, let alone write about it in a blog. I would feel extremely uncomfortable being his daughter.

    • It’s sad that you cannot conceive of the idea that your children are their own, distinct, individual human beings and that they are – or soon will be – adults *who have the exact same wants and desires that you do.* And it’s sad that you would judge others for understanding and confronting this reality in a pragmatic, constructive, healthy way, instead of avoiding and hemming around the subject and teaching their children that sexuality is something awkward and shameful and not to be understood as natural.

    • As a woman whose father only gave me messages of fear “be careful” and shame “that’s all boys want,” I teared up reading this and wish I had a dad who told me this, who was sex positive, who trusted me and trusted life. As a mom with grown children, two daughters and a son, this article made me smile and reminds me of so many conversations in my home. There is nothing creepy about it, nothing creepy about consensual sex and everything wholesome about talking about sex in positive ways. As the author says, spare me the details, but yes, lets talk about sex at home! The culture is full of awful messages. It takes a LOT of guidance and real sharing for our kids, especially daughters, to come into adulthood with healthy sexuality.

    • Good thing you’re not!!

    • I find myself saddened and baffled that you would feel this way. You are perpetuated a frame of mind that is unacceptable with how you feel. Education, understanding and logical thought should be the path we seek to teach our children. For to long females have been made to feel wrong about their sexuality and just being themselves.

      Honestly when I read things like what you wrote, all I can think is that you are telegraphing some deep seated issues within yourself when you use terms like “gross” and “creepy” directed at the author. You should want your children to grew up with all the knowledge and support to live a wonderful, full life of many experiences. I think it’s great that like my wife and I, the author recognizes these truths. He is empowering and supporting his daughter. What a wonderful thing to be a truly supportive parent. I say bravo to the author.

    • If you were his daughter, you would read this and then give him a huge hug and tell him how much you love him and appreciate him. I have raised my four daughters and one son with very similar attitudes and they all love me because of it.
      #1 thing to remember about your children–and realize this the day they are born– they are human beings first; before they are “YOUR” children. They will never “belong” to you, just as you understand that you don’t belong to your parents. They are going to form their own thoughts, ideas, opinions, values and morals regarding their own lives and part of that include sex once they are old enough.
      It sounds like your parents raised you differently than this parent did. Perhaps your parents raised you with more traditional “Sex is gross” values and/or “Shhhh, don’t say that out loud, it’s just not right because sex is gross and should never be discussed” negative connotation. That could be one reason why you find this post creepy.
      Mother of four daughters and one son.

    • You DO realize your father slept with your mother, right?

  84. dude with daughter says:

    I cannot wait to see how many teen pregnancies result from this article.

    • seriously? says:

      This makes no sense- those happen anyway. Just because you’re having sex and are being encouraged to do it if you truly feel that it is right doesn’t mean you’re going to be stupid and have it result in pregnancy. Pregnancy is 100% preventable. And having sex doesn’t always make it happen, if you’re smart about it. It’s when you leap into having sex and neither one is prepared for it that pregnancy happens. If you’re smart, go for it. Have all the sex you want. Sex doesn’t change you as a person, it doesn’t determine your worth.

    • mr westie says:

      I can’t wait to see the therapy bill your daughter gets.

    • Get a Grip says:

      Statistically speaking, the more conservative the area, the higher the rate of teen pregnancies, because there is less teaching and discussion about matters of sexuality, and the predominant attitude is that if you pretend it isn’t happening, it will go away. Your shotgun won’t prevent your daughter from getting pregnant, dude, but your attitude may just encourage it.

    • Teen pregnancies are going to happen, but not as a result of this article. Teen pregnancies are going to result because of the parents out there that *CANT* openly discuss sex with their children.

    • I expect the opposite effect; open communication about sex will remove the taboo quality that is part of its attraction.

    • Constantine says:

      That is not how teen pregnancy works. When informed and given the proper tools, STIs and teen pregnancy should happen less! When told that what they are doing is shameful and wrong, sex happens in secret. THAT is when girls (AND BOYS) don’t get the help and protection they need. THAT is when STIs and teen pregnancy happens. Maybe YOU should educate yourself so that you know how it all actually works.

  85. While I agree with the general gist of your article (it’s a nice point of view for a father to be able to have), two problems I have with your point of view being relevant to the majority of people are:

    1) You are a step father, not an actual father. You weren’t involved in these girls’ lives until they were for all intended purposes teenagers. Now they’re no longer living with you.

    2) You and your “wife” aren’t in a traditional relationship whatsoever. Being polyamorous, neither of you see sex as something only between two people. Biological predisposition to polyamory aside, most fathers who are monogamous would not want to encourage their daughters, or their sons, to sleep around with little to no discrimination as you advocate.

    • Christina says:

      Andrew, I did not find Ferrett to be advocating a lack of discrimination. The discrimination he is encouraging is that she consents to her partner because frankly, as a father, that is ALL the influence you are ever really going to have in the situation. You may think you have more, but if your daughter does not agree with your opinion of who she should be intimate with, she will most likely go out and do it anyway without you knowing and perhaps for spite. So, being honest about this fact and instead empowering her with CHOICE (as opposed to making her feel like she is the prize to be won and has no choice on who wins it), and a safe place to talk about her mistakes and how to improve her decisions later might actually make her take in your feedback and opinions.

    • Nowhere in there did he say anything about “little to no discrimination.” The entire article is about encouraging his daughter to develop her own discrimination and to find what makes her happy without her parents ordering her to do what makes them happy. I am also monogamous, in that I commit myself fully to a relationship up to the point that that relationship may end – but I realize that each relationship I have had has made me a better person and has taught me something about myself and about life. I would absolutely, absolutely wish that on my child – that as they mature, each of their interpersonal relationships – whether those be sexual or merely social in nature – teach them something very valuable, so that they are better people when they approach their next.

      If you feel you can’t encourage a young adult to approach a romantic/sexual relationship with both discretion and enthusiasm, that is up to you. But it doesn’t lessen the meaning of this article at all if the author doesn’t share your exact opinion on the subject.

    • Hi Andrew

      If Ferrett is living in poly amorous family,why does he not tell us that?

      To raise children to polyamor is not the same as raising children to more mainstream lifestyle with monogamy.
      I am disappointed that he did not tell us about this.

      • The point of the article is that he’s not raising his children to the lifestyle he himself leads, or to what he believes is right. He’s raising his children to approach life with both wisdom AND enthusiasm and to find the lifestyle THEY feel is right for them. So mainstream or non-mainstream is not relevant.

        You don’t need to be disappointed! This is a lesson everyone can learn from, in their own way, not only people who live exactly the way the writer lives and share his exact opinions on everything.

    • Get a Grip says:

      This is what is known as an ad hominem attack.

    • 1) Incorrect. I was involved with one of my girls when she was six. Assuming that even matters, because:

      2) Incorrect. As a stepfather, I am an actual father. I consider them my blood-kin. They’re in my will. Even if, for some highly unlikely reason, I divorce my wife, I’ve made it clear that they remain in my life.

      3) Incorrect. She remains my wife, without any condescending quotes.

      4) Incorrect. I did not encourage anyone to sleep around with little to no discrimination. I encouraged them to enjoy sex. I generally find that not discriminating in sex leads to terrible sex.

      5) Incorrect. The fact that most people would not want such a thing does not make it a bad thing in and of itself. Look at polls throughout history to see how many once wouldn’t want freed slaves, or women voting, or non-landowners voting, to see the stupidity inherent in such a statement.

      So: Fail.

  86. On this topic I think we have a real language problem. In my mind, and from considerable, varied, experience I know the making love and being made love too is a universe away from ‘having sex’ and ‘getting laid’ much less ‘hooking up’. We still talk about sex as if we are Victorian prudes, all innuendo and animal references. What is needed is for all of us, at any age, to learn to own our sexuality and stop putting up emotional and physical barriers at the level of our waist lines. The next woman I hear make reference to “down there” may get Gibbs slapped by me.

  87. Jessica bracewell says:

    What is going on here is two extremes. No father is actually going to kill anybody who touches his daughter. He is being rightly protective and I believe teaching the guy respect. On the other extreme is a father that will let his daughter sleep with whomever at any age. I also have a hard time believing a father would be okay with that. A father must be protective of his daughter while teaching her respect and respecting her. The right thing here is the happy medium.

    • A mother of a son says:

      Telling your daughter to figure out what she enjoys, what brings her pleasure, is not being unprotective of her. I think maybe the author should have elaborated a bit more and said that along with this, parents need to instill in their children a sense of self-respect and self-value. No person possessing these qualities will throw themselves at every guy or girl who passes them by without question. If you have faith that your kids have a good moral compass and good sense of self, then telling them to enjoy themselves and figure out what they like isn’t as scary as you are making it out to be. Because you know that they are well-informed and mature enough to make good choices. Not only that, but when they make mistakes or misjudge someone (which happens to EVERYONE) they will trust you enough to come to you with it.
      Also, it’s not the father of the girl that my son is dating’s job to teach MY son respect. that is MY job, and one I take VERY seriously. It is up to each parent to do their own job raising their own kids, and to hope that you did a good enough job that your child won’t choose the kid whose parent didn’t teach them, because they will know better.

  88. Grandmother-Mother says:

    I have to disagree. Its easy for a man to see it merely as “fun” and something to enjoy. He doesn’t spent 9 months with a parasite (ie fetus) in him belly, while society treats him like a whore and flunky for getting pregnant. He like most men get to “walk away” if he so chooses from the “responsibilities” of what he creates during that “fun”.

    I experienced this first hand… and I dealt with the pressure of our society because I was forced out of college & onto the welfare system because I needed help to support the baby I refused to abort. I also know the way our society treats gals who refuse to abort those “unwanted” pregnancies! So reality check — for the GAL — its better to wait!

    I also know what the impact is as a mother, to watch your own daughter, who you groomed with an understanding of the sacrifices of single parenting — who enter marriage early — only to be victimized by the male dominated legal system when her abusive husband & she divorced…. and how SHE was stripped of her right as a mother when they took her 18 month of daughter from her & handed it to the unknown “voice” on the other end of that international phone call that “appeared” in court (because the voice was the father, who refused to appear in court) . Yeh, the judge punished her for choosing to marry early & start a family instead of getting a higher education (which the husband did, because she supported him as a wife and even helped him in his studies).

    So while this father’s advice sounds “Sound”… the reality is our Society still treats women & girls differently when it comes to that “FREE LOVE” and “Fun sex”!

    I recommend every gal remember that if they don’t want to have to “decide” about abortion (killing of their unborn ) solely because the entertainment was all she was after — to WAIT. While a Man may merely see sex as a “fun activity”… what women give up is far greater both in the sort term & the long term.

    My daughter still hasn’t seen her daughter — who now lives overseas and my daughter has no recourse because the country of residence doesn’t acknowledge women’s rights. For that matter, neither does the good ole USA, in reality.

    So I encourage every female to recognize that SEX / INTERCOURSE is an exchange of not only bodily fluid but a level of trust. Its something worth slowly building with a possible partner who will watch your back regardless. Not something to throw to the wind and sacrifice for a moment due to being horny.
    Horny moments come and go — but the loss of a child — lives on in your memory for ever. So does the social abuses and pressures our society places on women.

    Choose wisely. Not for the sake of some invisible Creator or belief system — but because the REALITY on the ground illustrates an imbalance between women & men in society — and the ramifications are greater for a woman.

  89. Hi Plaindrifter

    You have my respect as a voluntary celibate man. And I hope you find the one for you before you are 40.

    But let me ask you one thing. Can you give us a link to the research about what toppled the Roman Empire?

    In my local church they teach that it was homosexuality and I refuse to believe that.
    So where are all the facts about what made the Roman Empire crumble ?
    Do you think America is heading in the same direction ?

  90. This brought me to tears, I wish my dad was more like this…Kudos!

  91. Tim Schoonover says:

    More than once in this article he states that he knows this is going to hurt his daughter, why would you then tell her to do this. It sounds as if he has very little emotional ties to this young lady, I would think you would being trying to stop her from feeling bad and give her the tools to be a strong person. I hope his daughter finds someone that will help her choose the best path, because he is not it.

    • It is impossible to learn to be a strong person from someone else. This is counter-intuitive maybe, but sheltering a person while young from any bad experiences leaves them unable to deal with life on their own as an adult, just as sheltering a child from any and all germs leaves them with a weak immune system.

      I have done some dumb things that have hurt others immeasurably, and seeing that has caused me terrible shame, so badly that I don’t want to live with myself. And others’ actions have broken my heart in the same way. This has been true every step of the way – from when I was a small child to now, as an adult. But if I had never had those experiences – if someone had stepped in and prevented them for me – I never would know how to treat others respectfully, or how to stand up for myself so that I am treated with respect, or how to have dignity and move past frustration. From pain and anger and shame that I once thought was going to kill me, I’ve grown. As parents we need to know that we can never protect our children from every bad experience – and if we could, it would NOT make them happy, well-adjusted people. We have to admit to ourselves that when we shelter a child from frustration, or sadness, we are doing it for our own comfort – not for the long-term well-being of someone who will one day be an adult and need their own strength.

  92. I haven’t read all of the comments here, but those of you saying this is inappropriate are perpetuating a harmful double standard. Men high five their sons over sex all the time, while wanting to control their daughters and blame boys for their daughters’ sexuality. Talking about male sexuality amounts to “well, boys will be boys” while young girls feel like something is wrong with them when they inevitably start to develop sexual impulses. We live in a culture that teaches women that they are valued for their sexual appeal to men but that they shouldn’t want it too much or from too many people. He addressed that he doesn’t want the details, but he hopes his daughter has a healthy sexual life on her own terms, not his. I think that’s wonderful, I think women are shamed for being sexual enough, and there needs to be more open discussion about female sexuality.

  93. grandma fooker says:

    Hey grandma,

    I just wanted to give you a friendly reminder and let you know this isn’t the 1950’s anymore. No one really cares if a teenager gets pregnant anymore. It’s become the “cool” thing to do. no one really cares, this isn’t 1950s. people might call her a whore and a fluky but guess what, people are gonna do that anyways because that’s what people of this era do. hate and talk shit. so next time you go outside and pick up todays newspaper please do me a favor. Check the date. K THX

  94. Cayanne Ramuten says:

    Right on. As a mother of a girl, as a daughter and as a woman, I love so much of what you said! Thanks

  95. Willa Cartwright says:

    Excellent article.

    Females are not property and Fathers do not get to dictate the intimate dealings of their daughters – not should they want to.

    And naturally, neither are sons property either.

    Father’s who think they can and should tell their daughters who to who and under what conditions their daughters can have sex, are the creepiest men on the planet.

  96. D.S. Ritter says:

    Great article. It’s nice to see a father who doesn’t cling to the sad double-standard of today’s purity culture and actually understands. So many people today are still so backwards in their attitudes about women and sex that it’s refreshing to read about a decidedly more enlightened opinion. Thanks!

  97. Hi J

    You write:
    ✺” I think
    women are shamed for being sexual enough, and there needs to be more open discussion about
    female sexuality.”✺

    As a woman I agree with you.

  98. SingleMom says:

    Each person has their own sexuality, emotions and social culture in which to live. “Know thyself” would be the mantra here…in all aspects. I believe the author was saying to not live according to his preconceived ideas of what is right for his daughter. However, I believe, on the flip side, that sex is a different experience for men and women on many levels. This would also be a healthy conversation to have with his daughter along with the responsibilities that come with being sexually active. There are many and our society tends to turn a blind eye to most of them.

  99. I agree that no, having sex or wanting sex in itself is not a bad thing. However, I am alarmed at the thought of a father not recognizing that even in circumstances where it is consensual, guys can (and will) use his daughter for selfish pleasure. And just as that should be a concern for him, it should also be his concern to teach his daughter that using guys for her own selfish pleasure, whether consensual or not, is wrong. Just because two people want to have sex does not mean they are doing it for the right reasons or with compassion and love for one another. It saddens me that this world has embraced this kind of dangerous philosophy.

  100. ferguson447 says:

    While I think it is good to talk to your daughter openly and honestly about sex, and encourage her to enjoy and not be ashamed of sex, it’s just as important to teach her to be conservative with her body. That it’s a glorious gift that should only be given to a very small number of other people. And, that there is an appropriate age and mental developmental stage that needs to be reached before engaging in intercourse, or any sexual act really. I don’t think many fathers deny or have qualms with his early 20’s daughter having sex but rather, these “jokes” are aimed more at the fathers with early teenage daughters. Are you really and seriously comfortable, heck, not just comfortable but encouraging of your 13 year old daughter engaging in sexual intercourse? I would hope not. As a parent, the best thing you can do is be honest. Yes, talk about sex. Openly, honestly and in a non-shameful manner but be sure you explain the potential consequences. Information, without judgement.

  101. Sarahjane Paynter says:

    I’ve just been in tears at how beautiful this is, I only wish I’d of had a dad that cared about me as much as you obviously care about your daughter.
    There will always be people who moan and people who miss the point but the important people are the ones who read this and it makes them think differently.
    Thanks so much for sharing!

  102. Isn’t the whole glamorization of experience in place of education fad over? Teach your daughter. I promise that is a good thing to do. Education should precede experience, not the other way around. Quit trying to wash your hands of her future failures, too. You bear some responsibility with those.
    Yeesh. Hippies.
    Although in his defense that “Rules for dating my daughter” thing is also horrifyingly stupid, so I suppose I understand his overreaction.

    • .He is educating her in how to apply her own will and judgement. He’s educating her in how to utilize experience as a teacher. He’s educating her by showing her that behavior and action are predicated by how one applies one’s intelligence and judgement.

      In short, he IS educating her.

    • Education comes from experiences.

  103. This article is extremely narrow. Did the author even bother with a quick google search before writing? Because if he had, I think he’d’ve learned that it’s stupid to assume that just because a TEENAGE GIRL, whose brain isn’t fully developed or functional yet (her prefrontal cortex isn’t done yet, so she has a hard time making good decision and predicting consequences, and her amygdala is in hyperdrive, making her more sensitive to emotions and social acceptance than she ever will be again), is having sex, that that sex is also awesome — or even wanted.

    A recent study showed that over 41% of teenage girls who have had sex reported that it was not wanted — that it was manipulative, that she was afraid her boyfriend would become angry if she didn’t LET HIM stick his penis into her body, or, in 10% of the cases, that it was physically forced (that means rape).

    Does that sound awesome? Does that sound empowering? Because to me, it sounds sad and dangerous. Especially considering that reporting unwanted sex is correlated with lower condom use, higher prevalence of STDs and decreased mental health.

    If you actually care about your daughter (or stepdaughter), then help her avoid this. Talk to her about how it is okay to wait for the right person and the right time. Talk about different ways to say no. Talk about ways to recognize and protect herself from emotional and physical abuse. Talk about the importance of being true to yourself, and not just trying to fit in with others.

    I mean, come one. 41%? Her odds are hardly better than chance.

    • I think he does get it – and I think you miss his point.

      By not villifying sex, and by not acting as if he is automatically opposed to anyone having sex with his daughter, he is trying to create an environment where maybe, just maybe, his daughter will be more comfortable talking to him if there is an issue, such as those examples you mentioned.

      He’s not encouraging her to go out and have sex, but he is telling her it’s ok for her to do so, on her terms – they’re not the same thing.

    • The facts which you have stated are precisely the reason for the article.
      Having been a teenaged girl, I for sure, wanted sex. My parents taught me: it is what it is, and be sure it’s what you really want. They also instilled in me the self esteem to not drink or do drugs, which really helped me keep sex under control, but the first time it was presented, in a situation I felt comfortable with, I went for it and I was proud of myself after. But, because I believed the choice was mine, It was a great experience.
      We never talk about a boy’s cerebral cortex not being formed, when speaking of sex.. so I find it degradingthat you did. Teenaged girls, while not adults, often take on mental tasks far beyond their cerebral age. Sex happens, it’s biological, our bodies are forcing us to want it. Keeping it from being a shameful thing that you “don’t want” will help young women realize that it is up to them and it can be a great physical thing and if you try it and like it, especially at that age, it’s normal and you don’t have to be ashamed. Silence = Death.

      • This, so much! Thank you!

      • Keeks… you can take offense to them not bringing up a boys cerebral cortex, but the issue in this isn’t ABOUT boys. It’s about girls, and more specifically, his daughter.

        It’s wrong to demand your child listen to you 100% on this subject, because you are not living their life. You are not the one who knows when their child is ready. No matter what, the more you demand they not have sex with any boy and all that, you’re driving them to have sex just because it’s a forbidden fruit.

        At the same time, to just let your daughter loose on the world to do whatever she wants, you’re doing her a disservice. This man has actually brought his daughter up with mostly the right viewpoint. If you want it, go for it, but just be sure you’re ready for it. Don’t let people dictate who you are or how you should act, be your own person. Do your own things. Make your own mistakes. Life is about failure and picking ones self back up when you fall.

        Now Keeks… I find it degrading that you bring boys into this when this subject isn’t ABOUT boys and the cultural norm for them, but of DAUGHTERS, and how to raise them with this in mind. Bringing sexism into the mix just because someone has brought up an aspect of the female body you may not be mature enough to accept is stupid. Don’t drag guys into this when the above article isn’t ABOUT guys. Emma has a valid point in that teenage girls are NOT fully developed. Emma never ONCE said guys were, or that guys had a better grasp, or that guys were further along. You’re just getting defencive for no reason.

        • Barbara Saunders says:

          Uh … it is relevant. When girls are told they “shouldn’t go out after dark,” lest they be raped, yet boys are not warned about fights and robberies after dark, something is wrong. When girls are told that their “brains are not developed” enough for sex in physically mature bodies while boys are not told the same thing, something is wrong. When girls are told they’d better spend their years at Princeton scrounging up a husband (at least a decade in advance of the biological clock urgency), while boys are told to focus on their careers and studies, something is wrong.

          Boys and girls are BOTH harmed by being indoctrinated with complementary points in the same narrative. To talk about one without reference to the other weakens the critique.

      • Also, let’s not forget that a female’s brain is more developed at the age 17 than a male’s.

    • I love how you rattle off numbers about how teenage girls brains don’t quite function right. There’s a difference between actually RAISING your daughter, and just manipulating her life. If she knows about the risks, she knows how to protect herself, then she is JUST as empowered as any other woman. You talk about the different ways to say “no”, but part of the world that we’re trying to create for young girls is the fact that you don’t HAVE to say “no” if you don’t want to!

    • Nice dropping of the statistics. You must have missed the part in class about “causation does not equal correlation, and vice versa.”

    • @Emma, the stats you cite come out of a society that tends to be sex-negative, fails to reliably provide sex education, consistently slut-shames women, all while providing a stream of 24 hour sexual imagery across all types of media. What would the statistics be if boys and girls were given quality, age appropriate sex education? And as a part of that education, it included the knowledge that sex is fun, natural and routinely engaged in by healthy adults?

    • I may have missed something, but this article never says she is a TEENAGE WOMAN. Seriously, go back and read it. This is NOT a comprehensive treatise on teenage sexuality, sexual misconduct, protecting oneself from rape/manipulation or sexual health. I think YOU missed the point of the article, which a father’s earnest offer to be loving and supportive, rather than manipulative and controlling.

      From the sound of it, you WOULD be the one who keeps the woman in a glass cage and decides for her what is acceptable and what is not. Gee, that sounds a bit coercive, doesn’t it? I love you Internet armchair psychologists. Just keep missing the point, blabbing advice you’re not qualified to give and let your Dunning-Kruger run free. The rest of us are capable of seeing this article for what it really is, encouragement rather than humorless banal threats and a refreshingly practical approach to sexuality.

    • wynema gonzagowski says:

      OMG! He is not encouraging her to have sex, hi IS saying that IF she does it should be on HER terms!!! Coercion and Rape are never acceptable and do not qualify as a consensual act which is what he is saying… And he didn’t write a RESEARCH paper, it was a letter to his daughter….

    • You have utterly missed the point of what this father is trying to relate.

      Everything you warn against is everything that this father is warning against. He would be appalled if his daughter had sex because she was afraid the boy she was with would be angry if she didn’t. He would be opposed to such action and would most certainly advise against such behavior.

      You have completely failed to see what this father is telling, namely: exercise your own power of judgement and follow the course of action you believe correct…DON’T do something just because I-or anyone else-thinks you should do it.

    • Excellent post, Ferrett.

      Stay the course and don’t listen to the hysterical/hypocritical comments by some on this thread who are nothing more than sex-negative, New Age Puritans masquerading as Guardians Of All Things PC.

      I am also a middle aged dad with a beautiful tween daughter who will no doubt be accosted by all sorts of potential suitors any year (month? day?) now. I used to joke about buying a shotgun when she hit puberty, but at some point several years ago those tired old quips just died in my throat, as I realized more and more what a horrible double standard that line of thinking was, however “humorous” its intent.

      We never seem to get worked up about our teenage SONS experimenting sexually, at least not in the same way that we do with our daughters, do we? With our sons we’re not trying to protect abstract notions of “virtue” or “purity”, rather we just don’t want them to “knock some poor girl up” before they get a chance to go to college or don’t want them to “catch something” from some skanky ho.

      Predictably, Ferrett’s detractors immediately cleaved to the low-hanging fruit of the date rape and sexual coercion arguments to make their point. There’s just one problem: their “arguments” are arguing a point that the author wasn’t trying to make in the first place! Its like walking in on a Faux News interview and watching some pro-fracking stumpers trying to win their debate by changing the subject to how environmentalists are all hypocrites because some of them still own cars. Maddening, absolutely MADDENING.

      So stay the course and don’t listen to the strident yelps of your detractors, Ferrett. Again, excellent, even-handed and RATIONAL post, which is more than I can say for some of the commentors here.

      I am already committed to taking a calm, rational, “listening first, knowledge second”, sex-positive approach with my daughter and intend to continue doing so. The hyper-PC dogmatic bullshit that some are spewing on this thread will only serve to strengthen my resolve, and I hope it does the same for you.

      Thanks again for having the courage to say what needed to be said. For a site aptly named The Good Men Project you are a shining example of a good man.

    • This is the same rhetoric I have been hearing for years. Go ahead and let the kids spread their legs for whomever they think they’re in love with at the moment because they’re going to do it anyway.

      This is just an excuse to be lazy. An adult who does not want to be bothered taking the time to teach their daughter self respect, decency, moral conduct and how to protect her heart AND body while she is growing up and learning who she really is.

      This advice plays perfectly with the Planned Parenthood new mantra. Support horny little boys who want to get it on and don’t want the responsibility that comes with sexual intercourse. Way to keep the abortion mills running! At the expense of impressionable young women who do not know the dark side of abortion. They don’t know that abortion is linked to several kinds of cancer. They don’t know about the suicidal depression that millions of women have experienced. They don’t know about the murders that take place because of botched abortions. They probably have never heard of the “House Of Horrors” found in the now convicted abortionist, Kermit Gosnell’s clinic. They don’t know how many women are not able to have children anymore because of the abortions they had years before.

      The also don’t really understand the sinister sense of humor that abortionists have. If you go to a Planned Parenthood clinic for condoms. You will end up with the cheapest ones on the market with a higher failure rate. Because Planned Parenthood makes it’s money off of killing children.

      That’s not to include all the practical jokers in drug stores who like to poke holes in condoms on the shelves. So much for that protection against STDs.

      My guess is this father is one of those sow-your-wild-oats-before-you-get-married types. What parent in their right mind actually believes that teenagers are mature and experienced enough to make major life choices without parental guidance? Hell, you still need your parents advice when you become an adult! After you have emerged from the blissful ignorance that insists you are smarter than they are!

      I care too much about my son to let him just go off like a loose cannon without knowing there are consequences for the choices he makes. I have had many talks with him about girls and choosing the right one. Having a marriage that lasts. Breaking the family cycle of divorce. I also have been instilling in him the importance of being a good provider and protector for his future family. And that he needs to know who he is first before he chooses a girlfriend. Without knowing who you are, you will be constantly chasing after the wrong people instead of choosing the person who is the right fit for you.

      A GOOD FATHER would put more effort into guiding his daughter to adulthood.

      • Its FAR better to prepare them with Planned parenthood than with fire and brimstone points of view. Your arcane points of view may have worked back when sexually enlightened women were only in whore houses, branded with a scarlet letter, or burned at the stake…but newsflash…Women get horny too but I don’t think the author or anyone else here is saying fuck every one you fancy…..except maybe you.

      • Sorry CG, but NO.

        I calling BS on you right now. Notice how you only mention “spreading your legs”, NOT “putting it in”? Right, double standard. Girls v boys. I’d love to say I’m surprised but I’m used to it by now.

        Please RE-READ Ferrett’s post. Unless your native tongue is Esperanto you should have no problem discerning that he NEVER mentions abandoning common sense talk with his daughter about everything from boundaries to STDs to “no means no” or any other of the countless crimes of omission that some of you are unjustly accusing him of committing.

        People, by all that is holy please READ HIS POST AGAIN, this time *WITHOUT* your own built in prejudices and baggage (if that’s even possible for you, which I doubt).

        I am quite certain that the author is in fact a “good father”. Society does all it can to brainwash us into believing that only mothers are good parents and guardians, and that as men the best we can hope for is to bungle our way through an awkward fathering career rife with missteps, bad advice, half truths and emotional disconnection.

        So along comes a dad who is proud to go out on a limb and admit that he’s trying to buck the system and CONNECT with his daughter in a way that is all too rare these days, and how do some of you people respond? You pillory him publicly, troll-style. Nice job, WANKERS.

        Normally this would be where I’d finish with an upbeat closing sentence, one that expresses my desire that the CG’s of the world grow up one day and come to view sex as something substantially more important and profound than merely “spreading your legs”, but I’m not holding my breath on that one.

      • Mama Wrench says:

        I hate the mentality that says that parents of daughters should lock their doors and bar the hatches, but I hate the mentality that says that all dads should high-five their sons for going out and “getting some” with every pretty teenage thing who looks to their heartthrob of the week for today’s fix of love and acceptance.

        I have two boys. They know what I expect of them: To defend those who need defending, to respect others, and to never use their strength to hurt or coerce. They know that the defining characteristic of humanity is the ability to control our instincts and compulsions rather than being controlled by them. Teen sex might be fun. But is it really exhibiting love and fostering trust to put your girlfriend at greater risk of STDs? Is it really love to put her in the position of choosing how to deal with an unplanned pregnancy? Is it really love to teach her that love is just a feeling that comes and goes with time, rather than a time-fostered commitment to accept the trials and joys of life together? While it’s true that sex and love are not synonyms, it’s also true that women are uniquely predisposed to foster love toward those with whom they have sex, and to experience greater heartbreak when that love is betrayed.

        TL;DR: Just because purity-bashing for adults is often associated with negativity does not mean it’s wrong to give daughters proper guidance on sexual integrity — including the benefits of saying “No.”

    • Hahaha, your comment made me laugh and feel sick at the same time.

      You talk about us as if we were dogs or breeding cows, or some scientific experiment. I’m a young woman, and if I took your dehumanizing analysis of this article to heart I doubt I’d have the self-confidence or self-love to value sex or any part of my life for that matter. Ultimately it’s my choice to believe that I and my sex can be strong noble people with a great capacity for love, forgiveness, and hope. In other words it’s up to me to give your words power over me or not. (I don’t by the way) But before you go voicing your opinions of “teenage girls” you should know that not all are as stubborn as I am. Telling a girl that she is no more than an undeveloped brain with whoreish desires could be traumatic and detrimental to her self-image, and seeing as you have little ability to emphasize with my kind I suggest you take my word on that.

      I don’t think you’re the kind of person who says things in order to hurt young woman, merely the kind of person who stemming from a well of sexual insecurities and ignorance of the female sex says things out of fear. Not caring who they might hurt as long as it means you won’t be hurt. The man has a daughter. He doesn’t need some statistic to tell him what we are like. Believe me he knows

    • Emma has her own self-esteem, daddy, and rape issues. I love sex, I want my daughter to love sex, and that’s a strange and tall order when I’m talking about my 5 year old’s future. I think she’s going to be so hot she’ll need a troop of men with baseball bats behind her at the ready to fend humpy young boys off her all day long….OR I could teach her what a humpy young boy does, and through example of the awesome man her momma found, know what it looks like to be treated well. Her daddy issues will actually resolve themselves when she finds out how her biological father is half the man her stepdad is and hopefully know that she can avoid such a major mistake for herself and actually have her lovechild with a real man. It’s through the mistakes that I know what makes a real relationship, and my fiance agrees. 3 years together is like we met yesterday and we only waited a couple of weeks to hop into bed. Frankly, I think you need 3 dates and we waited a little longer, but I didn’t marry him first and I don’t want my daughter to land the wrong guy just to screw him.

    • someone in their teens has a well functioning brain , in fact when i was a young teen i thought well with what i should or should not do

      • Rob, exactly. When I was a teen I had a brain and I used it. I learned to respect myself and it was because of that self-respect that I made my OWN decisions regarding sex (and a whole lot of other things) rather than bowing to coercion. This idea some have that teenaged girls (or boys for that matter but they seem focused on girls) are all hormones and no coherent thought is ridiculous.

  104. Hi Hezaa

    Let me be personal. I grew up with a mother and a father, they were married for life.
    My mother raised my exactly the way Ferrett teach us here.

    Her father had one rule when he raised his daughters. He locked his for door at ten in the evening. If a daughter came home later she had to sleep outside. I live up north with temperature down to minus 35 Celsius. It means death in my climate.
    So my mother rebelled against all this and let the pendulum swing to the opposite side when she raised me.

    She meant well,but it was not wise. So I do not speak here as mother raising my daughters but as women that was raised to be comfortable with my body and sex,but also totally naive.

    My father was silent but I never felt any disapproval from him about sex or boyfriends. Never.
    So I speak as a woman who was raised this way,and know what it means.

    Of course I would like to see a society that is positive to men’s and woman’s sexuality!
    But we are not there now,not even close..

    The fact that a little group of persons live in polyamor families does not mean the rest of society have changed in their values and norms about sex,fidelity and marriage. And with hardcore online porn I am not so sure that it heads in the right direction. More persons make love to porn stars in their phantasy than to person they have sex with in real life.

    Ferrett means well. My point is that in no others area in life can you be more harmed emotionally than in your sexuality, your sexual love relationships. At least that is my experience. To make good choice means you must know,be informed about the reality of the society you live in.
    I guess you are a man.

  105. As a girl in her young 20’s now who grew up in a household where I was basically told “don’t have sex, you’ll get pregnant or STD’s” and “boys only have one thing on their mind”, reading this article made me sad and wished that I could have had as understanding of a parent as the one who wrote this piece. Due to my conservative and overprotective parents, I could not be open with them about the fact that I was sexually active, which resulted in a lot of sneaking around, lying and secrecy. If my parents would have been more open and supportive of me about sex, then I feel as if I would not have grown to resent them as I did and I would have probably had a better, and not to mention more honest, relationship with them.
    What people need to understand, however, is that this author or parents that share similar views with him aren’t encouraging their daughters to go out and be promiscuous and have sex with every stranger they stumble upon, they’re only being supportive of them being sexually active when their daughter’s feel the time is right. Also, girls whose parents don’t believe they should be having sex can go out and be promiscuous as well- if they want to get around, then they’re going to, whether you are open with them about sex or not.
    Controlling parents create sneaky children that usually end up doing the things their parents tell them not to do, like sex, but instead they just do it without their parents knowing; believe me, I know this firsthand. Your kids are going to have sex whether you want them to or not, wouldn’t you rather them be able to talk to you about it than have them going behind your back and doing it?

    • Well said! I had a similar situation growing up. It wasn’t until long after my dad remarried that I actually got “the talk” at all, let alone an open ear to turn to for the issues that arise. When your family closes that door, you have no “safe garden” as Ferrett put it. It’s not about pushing your daughter out into the world before she’s ready. It’s not even about apathy towards her decisions. It’s being willing to be open, to listen, to accept who she is, and be there for her, regardless of where her journey to self-discovery may take her.

    • Well said. My parents were very strict and sex was something that one could not be open about even though, my parents educated us, it was often followed by “if I find out you are having sex, you will be recuperating in a wheel chair”. It did create sneaky daughters. Well, one daughter. My sis was very sexually active behind their backs and when she was caught, she was treated like a condemned criminal. Finally she got knocked up…and was shunned for a while. It wasn’t a good time. Reading this made me wish my parents were a bit more understanding.

  106. I love this. I wish my dad had understood this when I was younger. If I ever have kids, I hope it’s with a father like you. Thank you for writing this, and I hope you and your daughter have lovely lives. <3

  107. Thank you, thank you, thank you. I am saving this article and I will read it many times and share it widely. I have two daughters 7 and 8 and I want a free and fulfilling life for them. By acting as their guard dog, I’m subjecting them to the very sexist B.S. that I’m supposedly protecting them from. Thank you again. Well said!

  108. Thank-you for writing this!

  109. Susan Hartmann says:

    Disgusting. I imagine you go to a church (assuming you do at all) that believes god loves you no matter what you do. The empty hedonism which you advocate is a major factor in our cultures decline. In your word there is nothing but one furious tussle for gratification after another with consequences ignored or passed on to others. When our society finally collapses your kind will perish (and good riddance) while tjose with values and morality will rebuild. But as long as you’ve had your fun I suppose you don’t care about the future.

    • inurashii says:

      So do you have any actual citations on your bizarre assertions about the decline of society? Or are these all drawn from your surely not confirmation bias laden perspective?

    • In regards to this subject, you are representative of our society’s problems, not the author.

    • @Susan: Ah, the joy and compassion that (some; supposedly) religious people bring into this world (sarcasm, if you didn’t get it). How nice of you to want other people (nay, “your kind”, again showing that compassion) to perish.
      The future, I imagine, will belong to those that can embrace the fun and love that sex can bring. The shallowness of the others will only reflect back on themselves.

      • Susan Hartmann says:

        We are in that world already. Children are sexualized earlier and earlier, the idea of right and wrong arebeing replaced by whatever feels good. Ferret himself wants his flesh and blood to be a degraded object and to enjoy the degradation – and to use others the same way. And everyone who dares disagree with him or other hedonists are condemned as prudes.

        • Susan, I’m sorry that you think sex is degrading. It isn’t supposed to be. The kind thing to do would be to wish you a better relationship in your future, so I will wish you that.

          The realistic thing to do would be to remind you that your own attitude will have a lot to do with whether or not that happens for you.

          • Susan Hartmann says:

            I was raised in a household similar to Ferrets ideal. What it led to was a life of drug addiction and prostitution – at the beginning of which I was proud of myself of for being liberated and independent. After multiple rapes, beatings, suicide attempts and abandonments by what would become to be known as polyamorists I found the strength to say no. I realized way too late that you protect what you value. Mr Ferret doesn’t value his child he values his own pleasure above his responsibilities as a parent.

    • Yikes Susan, maybe you need to spend a little time in church and reflect on the negative assumptions and judgment you just unleashed. It really doesnt appear that you understood the author’s point but took the available opportunity to wish his “kind” death anyways. How Christlike

    • Unfortunately, if anything can be attributed to our culture’s decline, it’s helicopter parents who try to do everything for their children to “protect” them from having any negative experiences and simultaneously avoid ever discussing the realities of life in an earnest manner. What they produce is young adults who lack any kind of empathy for other people, do not know (because they’ve never experienced) that their actions have real-world consequences, and cannot handle disappointment or frustration. In short, the kind of brutish, aggressive, narcissistic young men who destroy the lives of young women, and the kind of empty-headed, hedonistic and naïve young women who you decry here as having no morals or values.

      What young people learn from engaging with both caution and enthusiasm in all of their interpersonal relationships – romantic or otherwise – is respect for others, self-empowerment, negotiation, and discretion. In short, morality.

      If you read this article and honestly believe the author just advocated empty hedonism, I really worry about our youth’s reading comprehension levels as well.

    • It’s hard to believe there are still people in this world like you who are so closed-minded and indoctrinated to believe nothing more than they’ve been told (since clearly you haven’t researched the issue on your own, or looked at the other side of the issue with an open mind). You need to empathize with the views of others and respect theirs, and in return people will respect yours. As upsilion said, you seem to have missed the author’s point. If you disagree with it, that’s fine, but to go so far as to wish that his “kind” will perish and to suggest that those who view their own morals with tunnel vision, no grey area, and no room for evolution or change (like yourself) will be “rebuild” is incredibly cruel and foolish of you to think. What a sad, hateful perspective to have of the world!

    • Your behavior emanates far more hate than I would think whatever god you believe in would advocate.

      How unfortunate to live such a sad, angry life, due to some fairy tale.

  110. I like it , I think that’s the actitude parents should take now a days, there’s no way we can cover the sun with just one finger. I got to face our present reality.
    Thanks and cheers!

  111. What a wonderful article. Way to add a page to the manual on how to be a good dad. :-)

  112. Rebecca Webb says:

    Way to lower the bar, Dad… How I wish I had not bought into the late 70’s early 80’s mentality that sex had no consequences, least of all to my spirit and my image of myself as I tried to find “love” in it’s cheapest and most damaging form. How I would’ve loved to have had my Dad around to explain to me why I was valuable enough to wait, how important I was to him and that there is a better way. But unfortunately, my Dad died when I was eleven years old. And you know what? I’m still not over it at the age of 53. So to all the Dads out there, do your job and protect your daughters, because if you don’t no one else is there who will.

    • That’s precisely what he’s advocating. Having an open and honest dialogue about safe sex, saying no, understanding when you’re ready, etc are all valuable ways to protect your children until they are adults and have to sort it out for themselves. I’m sorry you’re in pain from the loss of your father, but I think it’s clouding your ability to understand the author’s intention which are much more noble than allowing his child a sexual free for all

      • Mama Wrench says:

        I’m not really seeing where he’s advocating any kind of restraint or real education on the issue — not just “Use a condom and don’t get pregnant” education, but actual education on her susceptibility to STDs as a teen compared to as an adult as a result of her developing body chemistry, her brain chemistry and how it interacts with the mass endorphines and oxytocin associated with sexual activity and how repeat sexual encounters can desensitize her over time to feelings of love and connection, her unique responsibility for the consequences of sexual activity which her partners will never have to deal with. My parents were clear that no mistakes would make them love me any less, but also emphasized that no actions are absent consequences.

        In contrast, this article basically reads, “I really enjoy sex, so my teenaged daughter should enjoy sex, too.” What would his reaction be to his 30 year-old daughter crying on his shoulder because an undiagnosed chlamydia infection contracted in her teen years rendered her unable to conceive a much-wanted child? Or if the all-too-common hook-up/break-up of teen dating leave her feeling used and incapable of feeling intimate with sexual partners? These are not uncommon reactions; in fact I think they’re epidemic and frequently ignored by parents who see giving guidance as “control.”

        • Joanna Schroeder says:

          I don’t think it’s fair to presume that just because he’s not saying it here means he wouldn’t teach safer sex. That’s a dramatic jump of logic.

          I mean, he also doesn’t mention that he’s going to continue to feed her nutritious food and tell her to wear her seatbelt while driving in the car, but I presume he’s going to do those things, too.

  113. Bravo. I’ve seen that internet twaddle of which you speak. The societal misalignment that a woman that likes sex is a whore but my wife / gf is supposed to like sex as much as I do. Id rather have a woman with that knows what she likes and how she likes it than to have to teach someone or find out that she’s a budding dominatrix or something else that’s just not my bag.

    To send the message that your daughter is unf**kable is more dangerous than facing the music and explain that sex is as destructive as it is wonderful so be smart and have fun.

    YMMV

    • Mark Neil says:

      “Bravo. I’ve seen that internet twaddle of which you speak. The societal misalignment that a woman that likes sex is a whore but my wife / gf is supposed to like sex as much as I do. ”

      I’ve seen the “Yes, I do have a beautiful daughter. I also have a gun, a shovel and an alibi” poster shared on facebook by 2 straight women. Am I to believe they too believe that a woman (IE, themselves) that likes sex is a whore, but their wife/girlfriend (??? not husbands? did their men suddenly transgender?) is supposed to like sex as much as they do?

      You see, it’s getting really annoying having behaviors enacted by both sexes being demonized and attributed to only one. The author does it, you’ve done it, many other commentors have done it.

  114. Bravo. I’ve seen that internet twaddle of which you speak. The societal misalignment that a woman that likes sex is a whore but my wife / gf is supposed to like sex as much as I do. Id rather have a woman with that knows what she likes and how she likes it than to have to teach someone or find out that she’s a budding dominatrix or something else that’s just not my bag.

    To send the message that your daughter is unf**kable is more dangerous than facing the music and explain that sex is as destructive as it is wonderful so be smart and have fun.

    YMMV

  115. Face it people. Your teenagers are more than likely going to have sex. The best thing you can do is educate them because the more you tell them they can’t do it the more their teenage attitude says to do it. As for the comment that, a teenagers brain is underdeveloped. Get with the times man. I know more teenagers that can rock your world intellectually than you can imagine. Humans have evolved and that goes for the teenagers as well. They are experimenting at much younger ages and there is no combating it. There is only educating. They’ll make the choices from there.

    • It is a medical fact that teenage brains are not yet mature.

      • Lenora Rose says:

        I think that medical fact means something different from what you think it means. A child’s mind is malleable and immensely more teachable than an adult’s, and their full personality is far from developed, meaning that the adults in their life have a disproportionately large influence – but that doesn’t mean a child doesn’t have their own opinions or know their own mind. Quite the opposite if you’ve dealt with a real child. They are full of opinions. They’re full of things they want to try.

        It takes wise parenting to guide that mind.

        So it is with teens. With the added complication that they are a stage more advanced, and part of that advancement is the beginning awareness and exploration of sexuality. A wise parent guides this, not by trying to lock up their teen (another part of the change between child stage and teen stage is an increased inability on the part of the parent to be able to actually stop forbidden behaviour), but by talking about it. Guiding.

  116. Isn’t this over reacting to an Internet joke? I have a 5 year old daughter and of course I joke around at what I’ll do the first guy that goes out with her.. but that’s all it is, joking around. She’s the love of my life, I would never want to harm or hinder her in anyway.
    So quit overreacting to a joke

    • Mark Neil says:

      When one of my friends posted this meme, I challenged him about what kind of message it sent to his son, that he feels it acceptable to threaten a boys life over the feelings of a girl… his response wasn’t to tell me he was joking, it was to tell me his own father-in-law welcomed him into the family by introducing him to his gun collection. He then proceeded to tell me he felt perfectly fine maintaining that tradition with his own daughter. And I live in Toronto Canada, not some southern redneck state. This isn’t just a joke.

  117. I am all for different teaching methods and allowing others to have their own experiences… but I feel that rules are important and doing what can be done to instill morals and values is important. Teenagers make a lot of mistakes and yes that is part of growing up… but it is also why they are teenagers and not adults… they are not responsible enough to make their own choices in full. It is okay to be a parent and dictate what is acceptable behavior. It is perfectly fine to have rules, yes rules that attempt to govern personal matters like sex, so long as they account for the personality and needs of the individual. You can’t just let kids run wild… it prepares them for the world as much as it provides shock upon entry to that world. Kids need guidance and structure and they need to know what actions are appropriate.

    Education is an important thing and I am sure you provide lots of that, but the idea of wishing good sex on a teenager seems incredibly frightening to me…

    • Jaime, you seem to be forgetting that teenagers grow up. (Actually, how old are his daughters, anyway? Everyone seems to be assuming they’re teens, but do we know that for sure?) He is wishing her a good, positive, healthy sex life at ALL stages. You can’t tell a teenager that sex is degrading and something to be frightened or ashamed of and expect that once that young person turns eighteen or twenty-one they won’t carry that thinking over into adulthood and either act on or react to it.

      The only viable alternative, then, is to teach teens to own their sexuality, to take responsibility for it and apply their own control to it rather than allowing it to control them. When a girl or a boy is taught that their sexual desires are normal and natural and not something dirty or shameful, they learn that those desires are not something to be afraid of but rather that they are just like so many other things in life — elements to be examined critically in the light of one’s present situation and future hopes… decisions to be made in the presence of rational thought… and that each person’s decision at each stage of life will be dependent on unique factors to be taken into account.

      Once a teen or young adult is aware of that and has been educated in how to apply critical thinking to such decisions, he or she is far better-armed against disaster than the young person who has only been told that sex is shameful and something never to be discussed.

      The things parents teach their teens are what lay the foundation for competent and healthy adulthood. Give a teen a healthy view of sex, and it’s more likely that he or she will delay sexual activity until an appropriate time and place… and also that he or she will take proper precautions to avoid disease and unplanned pregnancy.

  118. Of course. The dad has hundreds of partners. If he told his kid to do any different, he’d effectively be saying there was something wrong with being married to their mother and having lovers on the side. Obviously, their family is comfortable with this and so they attempt to reproduce it.

    My dad was a swinger. He tried to talk me into that life, too. Thankfully, my partner has more sense than that…. And so we were spared the misery.

    It’s disingenuous, however, to say OTHER parents are wrong for doing the same thing: teaching their children from their own life experience.

    It’s great to act like you are some altruist to let your children ‘choose their own way’… But if you are telling them to do what you did, then, you are doing what every decent parent does. Tries to teach their kids practical moral lessons. And, just like other parents, you feel the need to put down those whose beliefs and practices lead them differently.

    • Lenora Rose says:

      I didn’t read anything in the article that says the dad is teaching his daughter to have hundreds of lovers. That takes a real stretch of interpretation to read into ” I would be a sad, sad little man if I manipulated you into becoming a cookie-cutter clone of my desires.”

      If you’re looking at lines like “All those boys and girls and genderqueers” as advocating hundreds (Or even a more realistic “Multiple”) lovers, I think you’re misunderstanding. I read it as not trying to limit her by assuming she’s heterosexual. (Also, I’ve seen people have their heart broken by people they were dating but hadn’t had sex with.)

      My mom taught me sex was something positive and affirming I should enjoy and not be afraid to discuss. Her sex life and mine have, to the best of my knowledge, very few resemblances past the fact that she clearly had positive experiences, too. Because teaching a daughter to chart her own course and to find what she likes doesn’t mean copying the parents’ course. For all we know, the daughter’s sex-positive experience will be that she feels she can wait to have sex with the perfect partner, and stay with (him/her/etc) forever.

  119. Hi Mark Neil

    How many daughters have you raised Mark?
    Why are you so upset about that this article(the letter) is about woman’s sexuality and not yours?

  120. Man, I just wanna be as good to my daughter as you are to yours.

    Great advices!

  121. “I’m not the guard who locks you in the tower. Ideally, I am my daughter’s safe space.”

    I could not think of a better mantra for parenting. Beautiful.

  122. Jeff Harlan says:

    Great article. Now just don’t support abortion if there’s a “mistake”. Okay? Can we at least agree on that?

    • No we can not agree on that.

    • Sok Puppette says:

      No, that would be stupid.

    • I can’t believe you followed such a great article with such a small minded comment.

    • No.

    • no

    • *clap, clap, clap* This is right on. Sex+, baby.

    • *clap, clap, clap* This is right on. Sex+, baby.

    • There won’t be any agreement on that. The people who aggressively evangelize on the healthy, natural dignified pleasure of human sexuality in all of its expressions typically do not approve of the healthy, dignified forms of human life in all of its expressions. If you unwanted, you don’t exist. It’s true in Guantanamo…. It’s true in retirement homes…. It’s true if you are in gestation… It’s true if you are a black teenager with low grades waiting for a heart transplant… You just aren’t real.

      • This is the most ridiculous, ignorant statement I have read.

      • And why should we praise parenting that encourages children to only indulge in all the pleasures of life but shirk any responsibility or discomfort that may come as a result of that indulgence?

    • No.

    • Alaina Polhemus says:

      No, it will not be agreed on. You should teach your children safe Alex instead of making it confusing and absent from their lives. Abortion should still be an option, but it should also be a rare choice to make.

      • I didn’t like this article at all. I have seen how abortions, right or wrong, have haunted women 30 plus years after the fact. Sex isn’t wrong but it also isn’t something to do with every Joe walking down the street. Condoms break. AIDS is on the rise. Herpes is the gift that keeps on giving. Sexual warts, HPV, STD’s are there and everyone should be responsible and educate kids about the risks involved. I will be proactive with my child and education rather than watch and let her make irreversible mistakes. Sex isn’t cheap and conversely can be a beautiful expression between two people in love.

        • Not sure you read the article, no where did it say he wasn’t educating his daughter about protection. In fact, the opposite. By being open and understanding that sex is natural and is going to happen, he can talk to her about protection. By not thinking of sex as a bad thing that she shouldn’t be doing he can talk to her about protection. He never said he is turning a blind eye to what his daughter does. And by accepting sex as a beautiful and natural ok thing to do, you are not becoming someone who will sleep with anyone. And it you do want to sleep with a bunch of people that’s ok too as long as you are being safe. Condoms are extremely effective if used properly, which we can only ensure if we teach people how. There is a difference between controlling your child so they don’t make mistakes and teaching them how not to, or how to deal with them if they do. This is a beautifully written piece.

        • Patrick Rizzuto says:

          I have seen unwanted children born to mothers who did not want abortion (or in fact were denied it as an option) “haunt” women as well…as well as the kids themselves. You really need to mature your thinking. It is true that abortion led to a negative outcome in some cases, but those cases are a distinct minority – the vast majority are invisible blips on the radar, and considering the fact that these are medical procedures intended merely to maintain the status quo in the mother’s life, I’d say that invisibility to the public at large is perfect. You judge the merits of an action using statistics, not anecdotes. One example will only ever be one example.

          • Because the way to judge whether the outcome of an abortion was “positive” or “negative”, as you say, is all based on how it affects the woman, right?

            ….as opposed to the would-be child that was killed…

          • I’m guessing you dont have kids.I have never met a parent who regrets the birth of their child, while the ranks of pro-life movements are full of women who regret destroying their children growing in their wombs.

            • I have not met the mothers… but as a child my parents opened their homes to the children of such mothers… the 2-year-old boy with the inch thick medical history, the three-year-old boy covered in cigarette burn scars, the five-(-ish?) year old girl found in a box, the other 5-year-old girl that was a walking encyclopedia of abuses… that is just a small sampling of the brothers and sisters I had as an adolescent.

              And our home was one of a fair number, but still not enough homes for all the battered, neglected, and yes, very much unwanted children in the world. Thirty years later, most of them scattered who knows where, and I still think of them as my brothers and sisters, not “fosters”. Do their mothers think of them? Some might. Others, I’m nearly certain, did not.

            • Ullani, I’m sure tou have actually met many parents who regret having kids. You were just unable to read the signs.

              Personally, I am a parent and it was the worst decision of my life. However, saying so out loud or in public is not socially acceptable, so those who regret having kids generally suffer in silence. Despite my lack of desire for kids and my regret about having one, I’m determined to be the best father I can. Many “regreted” kids aren’t so luck and become the victims of abuse (verbal, psychological, or physical).

        • You didn’t really get the point of this article, did you? In fact, it looks like you read a totally different article. I applauded this mans mature approach to his daughters sexuality. Mature attitudes which no doubt his daughter will be influenced by in a positive way, rather than being dictated to.

          Further, as a woman who has had 2 abortions, after pregnancies due to failed but utilised birth control, I get sick to death of people going on about women who years later regret having abortions. What a crock of horse shit. I have never regretted having any abortion. Nor have the many other countless women I have spoken to over the last 40 years since mine, who have also undergone a termination. In fact, the number who have regrets I would suspect would be in a very small minority, so I wish people would stop using these few as some sort of justification for their political agenda of anti-abortion.

        • And you sound like the type of person who will never have a genuine and honest relationship with your kids.

          AIDS is not on the rise for heterosexuals. Stop with the 80’s style fear mongering, if AIDS was easy for heterosexuals to get most would have it by now, probably including you.

          • Lenora Rose says:

            I’m going to politely suggest that you read up on AIDS – especially in Africa, in some countries of which it has wiped out almost a full generation. And mostly via heterosexual sex. It’s still here, it’s nto a gay disease, and it’s part of why so many people use protection.

            It’s also irrelevant to the main article; because anyone who wants to teach his daughter that sex is an awesome thing is also going to teach her how to do it safely and keep it that way.

        • I couldn’t agree more!!! I think that is the biggest bunch of crap I have ever heard!! Not only do i not agree because of the health risks, social risks, etc but most importantly it is biblically WRONG!! The bible itself teaches that sex belongs only to a MARRIED man and woman. This children/teenagers are not in an emotional place to deal with the consequences of sex. The unwanted pregnancies, STD’s, emotional scars, etc etc. What ever happen to it being respectable to remain a virgin until marriage??!! Your virginity, male or female, is a precious gift that you only have to give 1 time, please do not waste it!!! Yes, I read the article and I have 3 children, 20b, 16g, and 11b. Both of my older children have thoroughly regretted having sex at such a young age and wish they would have heeded my guidance. I did also teach them about safe sex in the event that it did happen before marriage but also stressed that I was NOT ok with it and the importance of them waiting. To tell your child/teen to go out and have sex and experience it before they are ready just sickens me!!!

          • $10 says they felt guilty because you convinced them they were bad people if they did it before marriage. your negative outlook made a negative impact on what could have been she’s,thy fun experience.

            the bible ruins another family.

          • And you can keep you’re interpretation of the Bible to yourself, instead of applying it to non-Christians and Christians who actually read the Bible.

            You do know that the Bible advocates whoring out daughters to save their father’s life? And it advocates rapists taking their victims as concubines, as well as many other such practices.

    • Jeff, you clearly don’t grok the article… If he is true to his sentiment, he will support her CHOICE whatever that may be. You can push YOUR preferences on your children, he will support his as stated. You should respect that and not tell him he has to do something different.

    • FlowandMowtion says:

      In an age where the world’s population is our most pressing crisis, where near 8 billion humans consume resources at an unprecedented rate, having any sort of opposition to facilitating the termination of pregnancies is classifying yourself as ignorant, greedy, and oblivious to the collective human experience. If a mother who hasn’t the resources to properly care for her child is forced by right wing religious dogma to carry to term and give birth, not only is there a less then ideal situation for the child, but now there is a less ideal situation for planet earth. Have a child when you are ready to add to the collective human consciousness, sacrifice yourself for that child’s development, and ensure an enlightened future. Don’t have a child for any other reason. Not for the tax breaks, not for attention, not for the government, not for God. So no, abortion is essential in today’s society. Now if you want to find another planet, terraform it, and establish a collective there with a less then critical population (AS WAS THE CASE WHEN THE DAMN BIBLE WAS WRITTEN), you can make your own rules. Oh wait, no you can’t because that would be making someone else’s decision’s for them. Sorry buddy. Make your own choices.

      • I say we abort every undesirable child, born or not born. That will solve our population problem overnight. Give me one good reason why not? Who is with me?

        • Actually, babies don’t have babies and consume very little resources. The most effective option is to terminate adults because they do the most damage. And, generally, are very unhappy, always thinking of ways to get more for themselves at the expense of others. As an act of goodwill, the people who understand the crisis should show leadership, and sacrifice themselves for the survival of the planet.

        • FlowandMowtion makes a terrible argument here admittedly, but no pro-choice person I know supports murder, only that a fetus that cannot survive without an umbilical cord does not deserve the same rights as an actual human being.

          • And if it CAN survive without its umbilical cord? Can we spare their lives?

            • If the mother wants it out take it out without aborting it and it is the mother’s choice if she wants to give it up for adoption or keep it.

            • That’s absurd. If you can take something out without killing it…. You should. The only reason we don’t do this is for emotional and economic expediency. Women are not so weak that their lives will end if a 7 month old baby that they do not want to keep is given up for adoption. It’s ridiculous that a viable fetus that is indistinguishable from aa neonate except for the fact that it is inside the body (that it will soon be taken out of, no less) has to die to satisfy any other individual on the planet.

            • So even a 7 month old fetus, as it is already being removed from a woman’s uterus by a doctor, can be killed? Why? Peace of mind? This is a viable person, within seconds of having rights. That’s like how the Coast Guard turns away refugees before they set foot on US soil. It’s a cruel manipulation of law. Most pro-choice people I know really believe that viability is a significant issue. I think there would be a lot more common ground if people used a more rational criterion for determining the difference between persons and non-persons.

            • Viability is the best criterion we’ve got, so what if it is close to being viable on its own? It is not a human being until it can survive on its own, until then it is a parasite (the definition of parasite being a being that takes resources without giving any resources in exchange) that cannot survive without its host.
              Considering the only alternatives are birth (if you’re a extreme pro-choicer, I’m sure that you probably hate this option), conception (if you’re a pro-lifer), or such and such arbitrary event or time I think viability is the best option.

            • I agree, viability is a very reasonable position and one that enjoys broad public support. This is why I argue that, not only is it wrong to choose to kill a fetus after it is viable… The law should prohibit the practice, except, of course, in cases where there is solid evidence that life threatening injury is likely to occur to the other parties involved. The standard that is often supported by more extreme advocates for abortion is unreasonable, and intentionally negligent. I think a lot of energetic antiabortion activists are driven by the illogic of killing a fetus when it would be possible to just cut the cord and whisk the person away, with no change in physical outcomes for the mother.

            • To think about it differently…. If a patient as on artificial life support and you remove the life support and they die, well that is a gray area, and should take into account the wishes of the patient and other responsible parties. But if someone is on life support and is clearly recovering, for a doctor to hurry in on the last day and inject the patient with poison… And then unhook the machines and say, well, he was life support and didn’t make it…. That would be atrocious. This is what we do when we terminate viable fetuses. You can just uncouple the woman from the fetus and avoid the dilemma.

            • The problem I have with this is that there is a difference between a life support unit and a human, and there is a difference between a human and a fetus. Life support units aren’t profoundly effected (and put at risk) by the fact that they are supporting a human, and that human is already an individual with thoughts, feelings, and strong interactions with the world around them, a fetus has spent its entire life leaching off of one individual who if she wants an abortion probably is either unable to support the child or threatened by the child’s continued parasitism.

            • William, you are dodging the question…
              You say that viability is a reasonable place to draw the line. Then, I asked, well, why then, should elective abortions be allowed after viability? If you can simply remove the fetus from the uterus (which the doctor is already doing), cut the cord, and the two can go their separate ways. To which you reply, well, the mother cannot live any longer with the parasitic leech. To this, I say, she does not have to live with the ‘leech’… She can have the leech removed. The leech can grow up to become whatever she was supposed to be. The mother can go finish college or whatever. You, II, and everyone else knows that legally, a fetus has no rights. This is a sort of legal declaration which has no bearing on material facts like viability, consciousness, potential, the preservation of life, and trying to live doing the least amount of harm. A few weeks ago, the feds held the view that two men could never be married. But because intelligent, honest, and passionate people were willing to change this atrocious injustice, DOMA was struck down. Thank goodness people didn’t simply shrug and say, well, according to the federal government, gay marriage isn’t real. People saw through the nonsense of the legal position and did the right thing. People need to start doing the right thing…. And this means finding strategies to minimize the harm to human life while respecting the freedom and aspirations of all involved.

    • No

    • Gina Lepore says:

      Ok, really?? Whose ‘mistake’ would that be now, and who shall ‘pay’ for said ‘mistake’ by being forced to bear a child? Your son? Mistake=child? Gross. Get over yourself already. Mistakes happen all the time in every facet of life. Don’t like abortion? Then get yourself educated about contraception, condoms, and Plan B, and start spreading the word about how folks young and old can obtain and use these. And then, keep your judgments of others’ behaviors to yourself. Can we agree on that?

      Oh, and let’s not forget that non-consensual sex occurs quite often and can also lead to an unintended pregnancy.

    • Nope! Not your decision to make. Hers!

  123. PDXSerric says:

    Okay, as a father of a now 21 year old daughter, I can appreciate this as I have had similar conversations with her. I would add, however, and he may have outside of this message, that consensual sex is a two way thing: never “give in” because he is pushy and never – NEVER – have sex without him wearing protection. If he hasn’t any, or says he doesn’t like it without protection, say no. This point was a little difficult to press with my own kin and she was at that age where she thought that getting pregnant was the worst that could happen so if she was on the pill everything was okay. it took a few conversations to get her to realize that getting pregnant wasn’t the worst of her worries, but contracting STDs which could scar her for life – literally – even to the point where she may not ever be able to have children even if she wanted to seemed to stick home.

    The biggest kudos I can give Mr Steinmetz and all fathers who have this conversation with their daughters is at least they had the love and courage to swallow their pride and get over the masculine embarrassment which usually builds walls between a father and a daughter rather than build bridges. With that said, however, the onus is not just on the girl (two way thing, remember?) Fathers of sons need to impress the importance of respecting the opposite sex, having “the talk’ with their sons in genuine, press the importance of condoms and ensure that they never – NEVER – try to force their desire upon others at any point. No really does mean no.

    Only by parents of both sexes talking with their kids can we ensure a safer future for everyone.

    • Mr Jackman says:

      If we can agree on one thing…. That male sexuality is in general not selfish, brutal and ungrateful, and that boys can say no as well, and that a girl who forces herself on a man is just as disqusting as anybody else forces themselves on someone.

      I kind of get a double standard here, that girls are ignorant and boys are selfish, and I don’t like that at all. Both girls and boys wants to have sex, and it’s equally beautiful and nothing to be ashamed of.

      • PDXSerric says:

        Agreed. But I have to say, SO much focus is on the girls as far as education and so little is given to the boys that it seems lopsided to me.

    • YES!

    • We need to teach our children the rules f consent…no isn’t always able to be said…people (men and women) need to realize when it’s implied and just not do it.

    • PDXSerric- Your comments are the perfect supplement to this article and I want to compliment and thank both you and Mr. Steinmetz for voicing them so eloquently.

  124. absolutely love this article. what a beautiful perspective – If I could hug Ferrett Steinmetz right now, I would.
    beautiful.

  125. Yes. Yes. Yes. Wonderful Article!

  126. Michelle K says:

    This made me cry. I wish my parents could feel this way, they are missing a whole really wonderful part of my life.

  127. Absolutely brilliant. I love every word this man said!

  128. Great alternate pov but as a dad of 6 kids (5 girls) Im not sure I agree with Ferrett that my choices are to either a) lock my daughters in a glass room or b) let them experience sex and all the pleasure it brings. There are so many experiences in life that all the sex in the world will come to them when they are ready. Why rush anything.

    I also would say that the tower is there to also keep unwanted out.

    • Trevor, no young woman should be placed in a tower, period. It’s her body and her life, and Mr. Steinmetz is a very wise man to realize that. Sex can be a beautiful and pleasurable thing, and no parent has the right to deny his or her adult daughter (or son) the freedom to experience it. Rather than making sex a taboo topic, Steinmetz is making himself a helpful and supportive resource for his daughter. I think that’s beautiful, and sends a very loving message. He’s saying that he trusts his daughter to make intelligent choices, to know herself and her own desires, and to accept both her desires and the responsibility that accompanies them.

      My own father did much the same thing back in the 1980s when I was a young woman. While my mother was busy having histrionics over the idea that I might lose my virginity before I married and that this would be a Horrible Thing… my father simply took me aside and reminded me that he had not in fact been virgin when he met my mother and that in his eyes, sex was something worthwhile for both men and women… that I shouldn’t feel ashamed for doing it or wanting it, but that I should simply exercise caution and good sense in my choice of partners.

      I had sex for the first time when I was 19, when I decided I was ready. I chose the time, place and circumstances… and can report that it was very empowering to control that aspect of my life rather than having it be controlled by others.

      I’m 49 now and completely comfortable with myself as a sexual being. I *still* choose the time, place and circumstances of my sex life, and am thankful for having been taught that early on.

      • I think that no one should be locked in a tower under duress in any way shape or form. I am not sure when protecting our young was contorted into holding against their will. I would also say that whether you grew up with strict parents, protective parents or liberal parents we seem to be all walking around ok these days. We have an innate way in dealing with our situations. It is what makes us who we are.

        In the end whether I agree or disagree with the topic this is a great article from the authors point of view that has created conversations with everyone. Which is what i am sure he intended to do.

    • Lenora Rose says:

      Actually, I was taught (by my mother) that sex was a positive thing and a thing to look forward to, and to do safely, and that she’d support me up to and including helping me get the pill when it was that time. (Which she did.) She cared a great deal that I did the right thing at the right time with the right person. She didn’t try to stop me doing anything with the people I dated by locking me up. She did it by giving me knowledge.

      The result of that security? Well, without going into specifics, I lost my virginity most likely two years LATER than I would have if sex had been something I had to be clandestine about being curious about. And in a much safer way. I’d already broken up with two boys because I wasn’t ready to lose my virginity to them. because I knew enough to know my mind. I knew my mind because if I had questions I had someone and somewhere to turn that could give me good advice.

      I always wonder why people assume that telling your daughter not to be ashamed of having sexual desire or curiosity is going to mean they have sex sooner. It seems to me that most of the people I know had sex earlier either had parents who didn’t care what their kids did, or couldn’t talk to them about being safe, or worst of all, tried to smother any hint of information about sex because it’s dirty and wrong.

    • PDXSerric says:

      As a father I see your point pretty clearly. We want to give our kids options to express themselves and seek out their potential and protect them from harm at the same time. The problem is, that’s an insurmountable feat most of the time!

      How one raises their own child doesn’t matter as long as it is done with love and a genuine intent to protect. However, we can only protect them so much and know that we have to let them stumble and fall a few times just so they can learn to pick themselves back up. There will come a time when our little girls are interested in other things besides daddy and ponies and we must be prepared to give them the lessons and education they need to safely explore these things.

      Yes,a tower is there to protect. But as with any princess, they will want to escape that tower sooner or later. That is when we have to make the decision:: are we their protectors or their jailors?

  129. Daniele C. says:

    You sound like you’re not only her safe space, but also a parent with whom it is worth sharing the positive discoveries and people. Like a dad a daughter would WANT to share good things with, in fact.

    Bravo! And thanks for speaking up so that maybe those other misguided moms and dads will “get” it…

  130. Given that a humans brain is not fully developed until at least 23, meaning that a young person is not ready to make decisions that may have life long consequences, I believe it is my job to guide, direct and advise my children.
    I would hope they learn there is more to life, when young, than sex and relationships. I would hope they travel, explore, see the world, etc as a priority, not jump into bed.

    • Quite honestly, the brain is certainly well-developed enough to make decisions long before the age of 23. In fact, human beings have been making adult decisions and younger ages than that for millennia. Parental guidance and advice is fine, but it looks to me like that is exactly what the father in this article IS providing. Blanket prohibitions “because I say so” =/= advice and guidance.

    • Lenora Rose says:

      Why can’t they do both? Why can’t they travel and see the world and have (safe) sex?

      Also, as the other person said, advice and guidance about a major part of the adult human experience doesn’t actually mean the same thing as encouraging it to happen EARLY. I just said in a prior comment that my experience is the opposite; having advice and guidance probably made me choose to lose my virginity later.

  131. AMEN! AMEN! and AMEN!!! BEAUTIFUL! I believe this is the way God Herself feels about and for us.

  132. Bernard Gui says:

    In a nutshell, this article is all that is wrong with the world.
    We sow the wind, and we are reaping the whirlwind.

  133. Beautiful post. Now, my own daughters are not nearly old enough for this to yet apply, however, I believe this with my whole heart. I one day will no longer have any control over them and what they choose. They will never hear me “joke” that they can’t date until they are 30 or that I won’t “allow” them to have sex until they are married. That’s not up to me. I hope to raise and educate them in such a way that they fumble and hurt as little as possible and have the tools and knowledge needed to make the wisest choices they can, but I do not ever want them to feel that I am judging them or controlling them. They will make their own choices and live their own lives and I am hopeful that I can raise them in such a way that gives them wisdom, confidence and the knowledge that they will always be able to come to me for help and support about absolutely anything. That I view them as individual people, not my property. That I can be trusted. That I am a safe space.

  134. This is exactly the philosophy my wife and I have applied when raising our daughter. She is now in college and has been dating for a few years now. We knew that as she became an adult it was likely that she would experiment and experience sex on her own terms and in her own ways and we considered it foolish not to prepare her as best as possible. This does not mean we encouraged her to become sexually active and our general rule was to answer her questions as completely and fully as she wished without being the ones to necessarily start the conversation (although in some cases we did approach the issue ourselves). This attitude has fostered a trust in us and a confidence in herself that has held her in good stead as she starts to live on her own and is faced with the choices that adults inevitably encounter throughout their lives – sexual and otherwise.

    She has expressed gratitude that we were so open and helpful in her sexual development and this has allowed her to come to us with problems or concerns that she might otherwise have hidden from us out of fear of reproach or reprisal. Our relationship with her is excellent and our confidence in her ability to make good, well-informed choices gives us great peace of mind. Not to mention that we are also confident that if she ever finds herself in a situation where she is scared, hurt or confused she knows she can come to us and find that haven and help that is mentioned in the article.

    Some parents (and other non-parent adults) have expressed confusion or even outrage at our support of her seeking her own sexual happiness. Some of her friends have said it is weird for her to be so open with her parents with her questions and even stranger for us to answer them. But we believe we did the right thing when talking to her about consent, the kinds of issues she will face, what good and supportive sexual relationships are like, what bad ones are like, etc. I don’t know if anyone else who has raised their daughter with a hope that she will be sexually healthy and fulfilled has experienced some of the negative feedback from other parents or their children’s friends that we have. But if so we applaud you for having the courage to write about this subject publicly.

    I have often found the protective attitude that many fathers apply to their daughters sexuality to be disheartening and even creepy. On the purest level it strikes me as a throwback to the days of seeing daughters as property whose purity needed to be maintained to secure the best possible bride price. I’ve never liked it and I’m glad to find other fathers who don’t as well. Thank you again for writing this article.

    • Christina says:

      Saul, that’s awesome!

      My mom was that parent who was open and honest and she would answer all our questions, no matter how off the wall they were…. but what was also cool was that my friends knew my mom was like this, and they would come talk to her too because they couldn’t get these straight answers at their homes!!

  135. There is only one rule regarding consensual sex. If you date your mates brother/sister you have to marry them.

    Thats it.

  136. Valter Viglietti says:

    Awesome article, awesome father! Bravo!!! 😀

  137. Anonymous says:

    To all of those ivory tower believers:

    Sex was always a very taboo topic in my household. I was always taught to wait until I got married. For whatever reason, the topic of oral sex was never broached, so I felt obligated to at 14 when my 16 year old scumbag boyfriend shoved my face down there in a movie theater. Years later (and other boyfriends), I was still a virgin at the age of 20. A boy I was with asked me to have sex one night while we were in bed, and I said no. It wasn’t that my body didn’t want sex – but I wanted it to be with someone special. The next night he asked at a point where he was already taking my clothes off. I was too scared to say no, but I certainll didn’t say yes. I froze out of fear and underpreparedness. After that, he joked and smiled that we weren’t virgins anymore. I went and took a shower and sat on the bathroom floor and cried and cried. The “relationship” continued and it was consensual sometimes but after awhile, I figured out my self-respect and one time, I was clutching my pants on and yelling no but he ripped them off and raped me anyway.

    The point of telling you all of this is that I suffered for 3 years afterward from major depression (the mental abuse extended beyond just sex issues) that culminated in me going to an outpatient mental health program. Only then, I was able to tell my parents what happened to me. They asked why I never told them when it happened. I told them that it was because I was so afraid they would be mad that I actually had sex (whether consensual or not).

    Please don’t do this to your daughters.

  138. man this article tries to take all of the fun out of terrifying my daughters boyfriends! i’m obviously still going to do this to the first few. playfully, but maybe only fun for me. paying for all those extra shopping trips and bras and panties and tampons etc will all be worth it once i intimidate the shit out of these dudes!

  139. Christina says:

    Great article!!!!! Thank you for being an awesome parent! I really wish there were a lot more like you!!
    I was raised by a single mom, and she taught me this lesson. That intercourse is natural and there will come a time when I will want to take part. She also taught my sister and I about the consequences of making decisions, and more importantly how to make decisions wisely for ourselves. We never had “The Talk”, rather we had an ongoing conversation over many, many years. It was easy and natural to talk about intercourse, relationships, diseases, pregnancies, choices, and more….
    With this knowledge and with great confidence in myself I was 17 years old before I said yes to my boyfriend of almost 2 years. We didn’t just “have sex” but actually made love because we were doing it for the right decisions – for us.
    Now I am a single mom raising two girls after my marriage of 10 years ended. My daughters are 8 and 5 and we already take time to talk about girls bodies and boys bodies and how babies are made. This is the conversation that in time blends seamlessly into the discussion about making decisions and standing by those decisions.
    So please parents, do not teach your children to be *obedient*… teach them RESPONSIBILITY!! We should be teaching them HOW to make choices by considering the consequences and being certain that they are willing and capable of taking responsibility for those consequences. There are far too many who believe the myths – “it can’t happen the first time…” or worse “it won’t happen to me….”

  140. I have two daughters. Sex? Not at young ages and not in my house. Our State has the highest teen pregnancy rate in the nation and our welfare is through the roof and many of these children statistically end up in foster homes, shelters, drug addiction or juvenile detention.

    They can have all the sex they want once they’re mature enough to understand the ramifications and responsibilities that comes with making such decisions. Right now they’re far too young, and if folks think 9 – 14 year old’s should be having “healthy” sexual lives they’re either mentally challenged or live in delusion. Boys testosterone is through the roof throughout their younger years and many are not interested in long term relationships. I applaud FERRETT STEINMETZ for this article and for his more honest view on the reality that exists for our children. You allow your children a little rope and you let them make mistakes to learn how to grow up and as a parent, you are not their best friend, you are their parent. It is your job to be that “safe” place. With that said this is how I parent (I have two sons as well):

    We need to teach our daughters to distinguish between:
    A man who flatters her and a man who compliments her.
    A man who spends money on her and a man who invests in her.
    A man who views her as property and a man who views her properly.
    A man who lusts after her and a man who loves her.
    A man who believes he is God’s gift to women and a man who remembers a woman was God’s gift to man.
    And then teach our boys to be that kind of man.

  141. Yes. :)

  142. I have daughters and have spoken with them about sex. I let them know that boys are only after one thing at their age and that is sex. In my opinion, my girls have all their lives to have consensual sex as an adult. Conversely, they only have a limited time to be a kid. I encourage my girls to be girls and to enjoy being a girl. I encourage them to wait until they are adults before they have sex.

    I’ve seen what sex does to girls and boys. It changes their focus and drive. After the positive experience, they will want to experience it as often as they can. My daughters’ bodies are all they have, giving it to just anybody devalues what they have to offer. imo So I totally disagree with this article. and all of you who don’t mind your kids having sex, shame on you…encouraging your kids to have sex…what is the world coming to? smh

    • It doesn’t devalue your daughter’s bodies if they share them with someone, like Ferret said “It doesn’t lessen you to give someone else pleasure. It doesn’t degrade you to have some of your own.” Your daughters will have sex someday, and the point this man is getting across is when they do they should be ready, and not expect to receive guilt from a figure they respect, a figure who has told them that the act they have committed devalues them.

    • I am sure when your daughters do have sex they will be very comforted by the fact that at least one of their parents think that the act they have shared with another “devalues what they have to offer”, essentially devaluing them. What great words of encouragement to seed in growing minds.

      • Sorry I thought that first post got lost to my internet being terrible, didn’t mean to say a similar thing twice.

      • “I am sure when your daughters do have sex they will be very comforted by the fact that at least one of their parents think that the act they have shared with another “devalues what they have to offer””

        … and further comforted to know that the very same parent thinks that their body is “all they have” to offer in the first place! As a woman, that thought is incredibly offensive.

        While I respect the idea wacotx07 brings up of letting kids be kids (however, in no way do I read in this article an encouragement to have sex before one is ready), the fact that there are still a contingent of people who believe a woman is only defined by the sum of her reproductive parts, and that allowing multiple people access to one’s reproductive parts devalues one’s personhood, is pretty upsetting to me. Newsflash: Women are not like cars. Our mileage does not make our trade in value lower by the click of the odometer.

        • Indeed. Seriously people, no body needs to think that they all of a sudden lost market value if they had sex. Is guarding access to her private parts savagely the only thing a woman has to do to be worth hanging out for in your world?

          Who thinks like that anymore? And who says if she has sex with someone she will have sex with everyone in town? That’s silly.

          The only thing that’s not covered in the article, and it’s not really its point anyways, is the fact that often sex is a kind of impulsive thing that may be fun on the spot but can be regretted later for all kinds of reason; and given that teenagers are already impulsive people, it makes it even more potentially regrettable. But the regret shouldn’t come from the feeling that you gave out your marbles and now you’ve got nothing to trade for! Discussing the potential reasons for post-sex regret is what a parent should do. Pregnancy and stds are theo easy ones to prep for guys, and mostparent dont even have those covered properly… the other ones, deception, disappointment, judgement, betrayal, abuse, hurt, etc are much more intangible and there is no pill or condom or Anything to help prevent those.

    • Your daughters’ bodies are “all that they have”? What, you mean they don’t have minds? No intellect, no talents, no interests or goals or personalities? Only their bodies?

      I’m not sure who to feel more sorry for, you for having that awful attitude about girls and women, or your daughters (and your wife, assuming you have one) for having to deal with a man who objectifies women the way you do.

    • PDXSerric says:

      We were all at that age once and we all know that kids are going to have sex. They are going to explore. No, one should not encourage their kids to have sexual intercourse but they shouldn’t try to stop it, either. We all know (all too well) that the easiest way to get a teenager to do something is to tell them they shouldn’t or can’t do it at all.

      What we should be doing is teaching our kids how to have SAFE and CONSENSUAL sex. Both our sons and daughters.

      • seriously says:

        Given the current incidence of sexually transmitted diseases and the near impossibility of achieving 100% protection from them, the only SAFE sex is with one and only one partner who likewise has had no other partners. Just sayin’.

        • 1. That is not a realistic goal. If you’re expecting to spend the rest of your life with this person, you’re probably not going to find “The One” on the first try.
          2. That’s really paranoid. STDs are not some kind of epidemic, & in any case, the diseases that can’t be treated are in the extreme minority. You obviously want to avoid them, but fearing sex to the extent that you want to write off all non-virgins is an overreaction.
          3. “Anything that isn’t perfect is a complete waste of time!” Lolno.
          4. Even ignoring all of this, I don’t know where you get the idea that “one & only one” virgin partner is somehow safer than multiple. If no one has an STD, no one is getting an STD, because there is no one to catch the disease from.
          5. Also, no matter how careful you are, your partner can always lie to you about their sexual history. Best to take reasonable precautions, instead of relying on mere paranoia to protect you, which it can’t.

        • There’s an orthodoxy here which says:
          If you tell your kids to do something, they’ll rebel, so don’t tell them not to have sex.
          If you tell your kids about safe sex, on the other hand, they will certainly listen to that advice, because you are a cool dad who likes to rap about sex.
          If you discourage your kids from having sex at a young age, this will cause them to get pregnant and sick.
          Sex is natural and good and should and a normal part of human existence.
          Pregnancy, on the other hand, is not a normal part of human existence.
          Wasting time on things like love, respect, intimacy, respect yourself, or any message that could impede the message that sex is something you should do at your whim is going to do irreparable damage you your children and the universe.
          Yes, there are complicated, ugly, and abusive patterns that correlate with sex, but most of these would go away if only our children understood consent.

          The dogma isn’t all that sensible. But it’s a new system of thought. So, give it some time, and eventually it will either drive itself into extinction or mutate into some sort mystical wisdom… That all these poor kids will reject, much to their parent’s disappointment.

    • Milena Scekic says:

      “My daughters’ bodies are all they have, giving it to just anybody devalues what they have to offer.” This is one of the most ignorant and harmful things I’ve ever heard. I wonder how it would make your daughters feel to hear you say that all they have to offer are their bodies. Do you feel like your own body is your only instrument of power?

      Further, this article in no way suggests that little girls should be sleeping around. It merely implies that parents shouldn’t endeavour to keep their children in pristine glass cages. Moreover, girls in particular should not be made to feel that their sexuality will be the bane of their existence if they do not deploy it in the most perfectly socially accepted manner.

      Your comment is less outrageously ignorant than many I’ve read, but it always boggles my mind how silly the average person is. I’m sure you care deeply for your daughters, which is lovely. But for the sake of their self-esteem and long-term psycho-sexual health, please don’t tell them that their only worth lies in their bodies and that sex will diminish their value as human beings.

    • I think you’ve misunderstood the intention of this article. The author isn’t encouraging children to have sex but, rather, instilling in his daughter and other young women, the idea that sex isn’t wrong or devaluing.

      Listen, I’m not a mum. I’m just a twenty-something female. My dad still clings to the idea that I’m a virgin and I’ve seen how that “purity is value,” culture can destroy a young girls’ sense of worth.
      I understand why you’d encourage your daughter to have safe sex, monogamous sex and why you’d even encourage your daughter to abstain from sex until she was financially/emotionally mature enough to deal with the ramifications but, at the end of the day, that’s not the world we live in.
      If my mum ever suggested that my worth was based upon my body alone, I’d feel completely devalued. Why? Because a parent is meant to be your support system. I’m proud of myself, and I’d like to think that my parents are too; recognizing my accomplishments (academic and otherwise), my life-experiences (positive or negative; I’ve learnt from them either way), my mind, my good heart and, lastly, my morals and values.

      Sex isn’t a commodity, it’s an experience. It’s not the hokey, beautiful thing that W Network films suggest it is, nor is it the raunchy, STD-filled experience you’ll fear for your daughters.
      Teach them about protection, teach them about choosing a good partner, and breathe. When you raise a strong daughter, she’ll make a strong woman’s choices.

    • Thefuture says:

      You mam, should not reproduce. Kids will have sex, it’s natural. You have the choice to give healthy advice and promote a healthy relationship with her partner, or treat her like your property and push your kid away, force her to be sneaky and secret about her sex life and make her have no one to run to when shit goes bad. And with your mentality, shit will go bad often. Once your generation of stupid fucks dies out, hopefuly we can start having healthy parenting practices.

    • “My daughters’ bodies are all they have, giving it to just anybody devalues what they have to offer.”

      Do your daughters’ not have minds as well? ALL they have to offer is their bodies? Did you raise vegetables or humans?

      “and all of you who don’t mind your kids having sex, shame on you…encouraging your kids to have sex…what is the world coming to? smh”

      You didn’t understand the author’s point at all… Sad, because it is a very simple and straightforward point.

    • WacoTx07, Did you read what you posted? My daughter’s bodies are all they have. ALL they have? What about their minds, their drive, their intelligence, their dreams, and countless other things that they have to offer the world. I feel sorry that you objectify them because how can they believe in themselves when the person that is supposed to love and support them the most has already sold them short? It is one thing to be close minded, but I think maybe you should lay off the Kool-Aid. (I apologize for the Waco reference, it was just too easy, and I couldn’t resist.

      SMH… SRSLY?

    • WacoTx07, Did you read what you posted? My daughter’s bodies are all they have. ALL they have? What about their minds, their drive, their intelligence, their dreams, and countless other things that they have to offer the world. I feel sorry that you objectify them because how can they believe in themselves when the person that is supposed to love and support them the most has already sold them short? It is one thing to be close minded, but I think maybe you should lay off the Kool-Aid. (I apologize for the Waco reference, it was just too easy, and I couldn’t resist.

      SMH… SRSLY?

    • It isn’t encouraging kids to have sex. It is encouraging parents to realize that young adults are going to live life, their own life. It is encouraging girls and woman to know what is consent and to own your own actions.

    • Wow, who considers their daughter’s body to be the only thing they have to offer?

    • I agree with you. The majority of teens are out to experience as much fun as possible, but sex is playing with emotions younger kids are not prepared to handle, and if you are encouraging them to wait and letting them know why, I think they might be able to agree with you as well. There can be emotional damage from the drama surrounding it, as well as emotional desires like love and lust that they have no experience with and no background on how to deal with. Most parents go overboard and overprotective, banning sex with little explanation. In the least, if you explain why you are encouraging them to wait, and what happens if they don’t, even if they decide to have sex sooner then they will have your advice to fall back on, which won’t hurt. I think people underestimate the traumatic emotional damage sex can have on a developing mind, it impacts their view of relationships, friendships, and their own personal views, and should be treated with the same respect you seem to give it.

    • Per Gradin says:

      What’s wrong in your argument is that sex devalues you and phrases like ” you only have one body”. Teaching kids that sex is “wrong” is not right, since sex is not bad. However teaching kids to be careful and not to use sex as a tool is more important. If we try to take away the concept that having sex alot makes you “a slut” and similar things, I think we are on the right track. I have nothing but respect for fathers who can encourage their daughters to have sex. You are a brave bunch.

    • I don’t agree at all! Like many people have pointed out you are defined and have more than just your body to offer. But I’m not going to focus on that point, I’ll try to make a point that hasn’t been repeated as much.

      I think it’s devaluing to men to say that as a teenager all they want from a girl is sex. As I’m toward the end of my teenage years I can say, sure, they really like sex, but nearly everybody does. Men are more complex than that. I’ve had a couple beautiful relationships as a teenager that were far deeper than getting laid, and I at no point felt as if they were dating me for sex, and that’s not uncommon at all. Men want love just as much as women.

      What really matters is education on contraception, STDs, abuse, and consent in my opinion.
      And I don’t know what ‘focus and drive’ you are referring to changes either.
      Their drive changes because they want more sex? I wanted more sex too after I had it, but it didn’t change me as a person it was just another thing in life I could enjoy. My grades didn’t dip lower, I didn’t start partying, I didn’t suddenly think drugs sounded great. The only thing that changed was I could do something new and intimate with somebody I love and share pleasure with them.

      Teenagers are just the same as adults when it comes to love and sex. They want and enjoy both, the only difference is they’re more immature when it comes to both topics and a part of being a teenager is to experience both (if you feel ready) and to grow and mature.
      Your girls are kids anymore. They’re young adults, they will never play Barbies again and you as a parent have to respect that and give them a longer leash to explore the world and life experiences while they’re not completely independent so they have better security system when life hurts them as it hurts everyone. So, like the article points out, they have someone they can go to when it’s too much and learn to walk on two feet by themselves as well.

    • “My daughters’ bodies are all they have”?!!!!!

      Dear Lord. Is this really what you think of them?

      • I took it as more of an existentialist observation. Consciousness, rights, biological life… Are rooted in the body. If you let someone borrow a book and it gets wrecked, oh well, it’s a book and you can get another one. If your body gets wrecked by someone who is playing around with you…. That’s another story.

        If I were telling my kid that eating is a human right (it is), so go out and eat whatever you want, as much as you want, even if it is shocking and horrifying…. People would be right to point out the irresponsibility of such a parent. Eating is fun and eating is good and eating is necessary. But there are sensible limits to everything and positive habits, and a parent who has never bothered with limits and habits, in turn, tells their kids to do likewise….. Is being a selfish parent.

        I’ll teach my kids that they are a divine creation, as are all other people on this planet, as is the very reality they inhabit. And, right, I’m sure this will ruin their lives and ruin the world…. Because, obviously, we aren’t supposed to think about anything.

    • A childhood is a contingent separate from the state of sex and sexual desires and by absent-mindedly lumping the two together, you’ve formed an incoherent argument that treats the body and mind as a whole and not a complex set of social nuances.

      What you’ve missed is that the author of this article is deconstructing that difficult, difficult age where kids become teenagers and they’re lost in a jungle of conflicting messages all of which rage against there innate desires to start reproduction and the joys that come with it. Especially now, where 12 year olds can access images and videos of lifestyles that can become normalised (I refer to detritus ‘Georgie Shore’ etc), it’s more important than ever to attempt to level with our kids, to let them know ‘we get it’. And this man, rather than repeating the cliche ‘it was the same in our day’ has very touchingly reached out to his daughter so she has a hand in the jungle. It’s fucking beautiful. How can you not see that?

  143. This guy is awesome. Dad of the universe. The fact that one like this exists gives me hope for a better future.

  144. Michelle McKinney says:

    This article and your veiws and support of sex for your daughter’s life is amazing. I was licky to grow up like this but society has taught us sex is wrong. We create or own hang ups. If she can go out, know herself, her body and her mind. She will have the most fantastic life. For the other “people” on the comments. This was an article about sex, parental support and installing good self respect. Please read the letter and and make comments pertaining to that subject. You are an incredible father. Please tell her I said she is a VERY lucky girl to have such a supportive and open minded supporter.

  145. From an evolutionary perspective, it’s quite simple; female promiscuity gives cause for men to fear cuckholdry & to suspect, furthermore, that said female will be less likely than a normally adjusted, non-promiscuous female, to maintain long-term relationships (modern social science bears this out). This immediately renders the female less desirable than her counterparts.We can seek to out-liberalize one another all day, but no right thinking man is cool with the idea of their wife or girlfriend having lots of partners. If you deny this, I’m sorry, you’re just lying.
    Given that we know these behaviors will harm our daughters chances at landing the highest quality mate, what reason do we have to encourage them? Does “enjoyment” cover that risk? Oxytocin , the “bonding hormone” floods our brains during (in women, mostly after) sex. It’s a beautiful thing, but it doesn’t ask our permission to make itself present; in casual or otherwise less than committed sex it comes barging in just the same. This means the emotional fall out from relational disarray is felt just as keenly as it otherwise would. I just read a study that found the number one reason cited by females for dropping out of college had to do with these kinds of fall outs. Most of us have been there, I imagine, or at least don’t find it too difficult to imagine.
    But anyhow, “enjoyment”. I’m 34. I slept with a handful of women before settling down in my mid 20s. I recall nothing of the sexual enjoyment I don’t doubt I experienced. I do recall the awkwardness & pain that came with all of those relationships ( even the very casual ones), however. So this “enjoyment” is transitory, totally impermanent & is fraught with various stressors.
    Ultimately, this essay reads more like a backhanded apologia for the Fathers behaviors/desires. It has very little to do with the emotional realities of young people & nothing at all to do with how most well-adjusted & fully committed adults enjoy sex ( & certainly the author is aware of the myriad social science research done on sexual satisfaction, in which committed adults report the most thereof).

    • What you described as being a part of evolution is actually just a part of human made cultures, and is not universal. It has nothing to do with the long history or biology of human evolution. There are in fact many men, and entire societies, where promiscuity for either gender is not condemned and does not stop either from “landing a mate”. There is a strong case to be made biologically that women are more designed for multiple partners than men are, which is likely part of what led patriarchal societies to want to have such rigid control over female sexuality.

      Thankfully you reveal that you view your previous sexual history as being both awkward and painful. I’m truly sorry you had those experiences. But that isn’t universal. Those are your experiences, and they clearly have colored your view on sex and relationships negatively. There are those of us with promiscuous pasts that look back with great fondness and joy on many of our previous sex partners.

      But you also revealed that you aren’t capable of understanding any relationships outside of traditional serial monogamy, and just lump everything else together.

      • Evidence indicates that the first agrarian cultures settled into monogamy very early on. While promiscuity may be practiced in a few remote corners, it certainly mitigates against what we now call civilization ( the promiscuous noble savages are always observed by those who’ve benefitted from civilizations essentially made by monogamy ).
        As for my relationships before settling down, I’d suggest that awkwardness & emotional unease is a much more common experience than yours & is explicable via reams of social research and evolutionary theory, which suggests to me that anyone who’s never experienced these things may have some kind of deficiency, or other issues, that make it either more difficult connect (oxytocin will not inspire emotional response in the most promiscuous , studies show) or a greater emotional avoidance capacity.

  146. I liked this perspective but I can’t help but think that some people need to at least understand that every time you do have sex it will stay with you and take a piece of you.
    You might not realize it then but you will understand later on. There is a reason that parents (who have been wild teens themselves) don’t want their kids having sex until a certain age.
    They realize how much it takes out of you. It shouldn’t be taboo to be conservative these days…

  147. Oh, wait, your Dad is into “polyamory”*. I’m so, so sorry.

    *A word meaning “swinger” that white liberals like.

    • You are a dolt. There is a HUGE difference between ‘swinging’ and ‘polyamory’. I practice neither but I am educated enough to know things like that before I speak.

      Swinging is essentially when a couple will have other partners by agreement and get enjoyment from their partner enjoying someone else. Sometimes people swap partners and sometimes they go to parties but it definitely is not the same as polyamory. Swinging is about the sex; more or less.

      Polyamory is about the relationship dynamic; it is having more than one emotional bond and the people involved all tend to consider themselves to be significant to each other person in the relationship in some form.

      • In practice, they are essentially the same thing. Someone could be “poly amorous” without having the feelings you ascribe to the practice & one could be a “swinger” who does have those feelings about what they are doing. The real difference is that the “poly amorous” have probably been through a graduate program while the “swinger” empties the garbage in their offices.

    • And how does this contribute to anything at all? And polyamory is a word meaning polyamory that people who like using the right word for the right purpose like. Nobody’s trying to hide anything by using the correct term for a specific lifestyle.

      • Tautology much?

        • Well, yes, that was kind of the point.

          • Yup. C-grade post structuralist philosophy. Enhanced interrogation is not torture. Collateral damage is not tragic. And polyamory is beautiful beyond all words. Just slap a new name on things and they turn awesome. It’s funny that ‘deep intellectual stuff’ basically just mimics old marketing tactics. It’s not sludge…. It’s Milorganite.

  148. Being a young woman who was previously raised in a socially conservative household, I am at peace with this article. Fortunately, my family escaped the tradition at the age where I would begin to experiment with my peers. Clearly this did not abide well with a majority of my extended family who currently still have traditional views. This, in no way, is bashing my family. In fact, I love them just as much, if not more than ever before because there is a level of understanding. Does my father get red in the face at the mention of a “boy name”? Obviously he does to a certain extent. However, removing him self from the traditional sense and being surrounded my a diverse amount of beliefs and morals has made it so there is no double standard in the household between my brother and I.

  149. Being a young woman who was previously raised in a socially conservative household, I am at peace with this article. Fortunately, my family escaped the tradition at the age where I would begin to experiment with my peers. Clearly this did not abide well with a majority of my extended family who currently still have traditional views. This, in no way, is bashing my family. In fact, I love them just as much, if not more than ever before because there is a level of understanding. Does my father get red in the face at the mention of a “boy name”? Obviously he does to a certain extent. However, removing him self from the traditional sense and being surrounded my a diverse amount of beliefs and morals has made it so there is no double standard in the household between my brother and I.

  150. How wonderful it would be if we lived in a world where people as enlightened as this weren’t considered abnosome but just plain AWESOME. Thank you for realizing that in order for men like you to enjoy safe sane consensual sex women like you would like your daughter to grow into being (or like she is I’m not sure how old she is/how mature SHE has decided she is) must also enjoy sex.

    Sex is good people are good. Everyone should be empowered to experience both.

  151. Chris Houser says:

    I just came here to post that I absolutely LOVE that last line.

  152. This article didn’t come across to me as an advertisement for casual sex not at all and whilst I agree that sex where heart and soul is given is one hundred times better we are human and humans make mistakes I simply think this dad acknowledges that and is allowing his daughter the right to grow and learn on her own terms but he will step in where and when he’s wanted/needed. There is nothing wrong with waiting either but I wonder how many fathers put that concept to their sons as well as daughters? Some people will wait some wont and I don’t believe either decision is ‘wrong’. Be an educator and someone your children can come to with their problems and you will probably find they will make the right choices regarding sex.

  153. So glad that wasn’t creepy like I expected it to be.

  154. Ah, this is so refreshing because it gives me hope that there are other dads who think like this dad does. And I too am guilty of using that old “shot gun dad” trope/joke with fathers who have daughters. Not any more. Thanks for elevating the discourse.

    To the woman who teaches that sex devalues a woman’s body, I sure hope your daughter never gets raped. Because everything you are teaching would create a huge self esteem problem if it were internalized by anyone who has suffered a sexual assault.

  155. The old cliche of the dad cleaning his gun when suitors come calling isn’t to deny a daughter the right to chose who she has sex with, but to support her in warding off those with ill intentions. It’s saying, “You mess with my daughter, you’ll be answering to me” You want to raise your daughters to have good judgement, but recognize that love is blind and youth can be naive. Not that you should literally be cleaning a gun, but I do think it is a wise and loving thing for a father to want to meet her suitors, and to make it clear to them that if they make UNwanted advances, there WILL be consequences.

    • That’s supposed to be the point, but the attitude is clearly taken too far, & you also have to consider the things that AREN’T being said.

      There is next to nothing said about the daughter making her own decisions, even when she gets older.
      There is next to nothing said about a boy’s parents making sure that he “suits” a girl properly.
      There is next to nothing said about a boy’s parents making sure that a girl is right for HIM.
      There is next to nothing said about trusting the daughter or getting to know the boy. The object is just to scare him, because obviously the only reason he’d get the Hell out of that relationship is because he was secretly a rapist.

      When you boil this all down to the basics, it DOES feed into regressive, controlling notions about gender roles, & most likely comes directly from earlier customs where the father directly decided who his daughter would marry.

      No one’s saying that a father shouldn’t be concerned for his daughter. Notice that this post manages to get that message across, without sounding like a neanderthal:

      “You’re not me. Nor are you an extension of my will. And so you need to make your own damn mistakes, to learn how to pick yourself up when you fall, to learn where the bandages are and to bind up your own cuts. I’ll help. I’ll be your consigliere when I can, the advisor, the person you come to when all seems lost. But I think there’s value in getting lost. I think there’s a strength that only comes from fumbling your own way out of the darkness.”

  156. Pieter Batenburg says:

    The highest child pregnancy rates are in the areas where sex at a young age is the least accepted.
    For instance all those bible belt places.
    They will do it anyway, it is in their nature. It is in our nature. Better prepare them for it and have them enjoy it and have them do it safely.

  157. @seriously, at no point was the author implying that there is value in having multiple partners at one time. The daughter raised by this father will not even consider such shallow encounters as she is way to proud of her sexuality to easily share it with anyone. Women who have a positive image of their body and what they can do with it, don’t easily fall into the trap of having sex for the wrong reasons.

  158. @wacotx. As a woman I find it profoundly depressing that you are under the misapprehension that all your daughters have is their body. Really? What about their own free will and a brain? Or do you not count a womans mind as important? Please don’t tell your daughters all they have is their bodies – if they ever wish to become independant from you they may well start labouring under the false assumption that the only way they can get by in life is by using their bodies (after all it’s the only thing they have…) to make either money or trap a sugar daddy, neither of which, I’m pretty sure, you will approve of :) I’m pretty sure they’d be more likely to make sensible choices if you instil in them a value of self worth and the idea they have a brain and are more than capable of making their own decisions once they are old enough instead of always having to look to you to make their decisions for them. (and for the record, I hung round with lots of teen boys when I was that age and managed not to have sex with any of them but then I also give some teen boys credit that while they may want sex a lot, quite a lot of them are also perfectly capable of not always jumping on the first thing that moves)

  159. Standing ovation!

  160. 16 years later, i’m still married to the first and last man i had sex with. My kids don’t need to be “ready” by experimenting. They have bodies, minds, and souls…all of which are connected. Why give it away to someone who will be in their lives for a fleeting moment? Saddens me to see how sex is devalued. It was created to be awesome…it isn’t a bad thing. But things of huge value should be treated with respect and care. Think higher of your kids. Waiting is hard…but worth it.

  161. Love the article, love the idea, and love the mention of genderqueers 😀

  162. this is awesome, and while I feel this way about my daughter :(at least I will when she is older) I do not feel this way about my sons. I would rather they be kept as far from teen girls as possible as they are horrible horrible little creatures lol (I know I was one)(except of course those related to me, because they aren’t a threat hahahaha)
    And for those without a sense of humor please don’t read my post.

  163. I love this.

  164. “Dear daughter, I hope you have awesome sex, because as your “science fiction writing” dad, I have no morals or idea what it means really to be a dad, and when people tell me things like, point a gun at a boy when he comes to the door for your daughter.. I’M stupid enough to take it literally as if I wrote it. But If I say something stupid like this ..your little friends will think I’M cool and maybe somebody will read my blog, and this will wash away all responsibility away from me when you either get your first round of STD’s or knocked up. Hey wasn’t that awesome how that guy banged you for a couple of weeks 2 months back and now your pregnant, what, you didn’t get his number even after he said he loved you and thats why you didn’t need a condom? ..oh well ..as long as it was AWESOME!! :) I’M soooo proud of you, If it’s a boy ..let’s call him weasel, won’t that be awesome?! Now you can be the town bike full time since nobody is going to want to marry you with your lovely respectable track record, STD’s ..because you went on the pill for a while ..but I forgot to tell you that it doesn’t protect you from STD’s, and because you have a son named Weasel and a dad called Ferrett.” ..Oy vey!

    • Yeah, cause women are stupid, have no own will and will get nocked up and get STD’s if their dad doesn’t scare all the boys away.

      “I’M stupid enough to take it literally as if I wrote it”

      No, but you have a lousy view on female intelligence. Poor fella.

    • Oh, Kenneth. So simple-minded and binary, aren’t you? Guess what” STDs and pregnancy can both be avoided quite effectively through the use of condoms and other birth control methods. Part of being the wonderful father that Ferrett is trying to be is encouraging wise choices — and using protection is one of those choices that his daughter has, no doubt, been encouraged to make.

      Now take your bullshit morality and holier-than-thou attitude and go rub one out or do whatever it is you do to avoid corrupting yourself with awful, unpure, wonderful, sticky sex. There’s only one weasel here, buddy, and it’s you.

      • Actually condoms are poor protection from pregnancy and even worse protection from STD’s especially the rashy kind that hang out in non-condom covered areas. Just so you know.

    • dont you realize that if a father is open enough to share this with his child, he will also share the several ways to keep herself safe? education is where its at. not fear.

    • Wow. Way to completely miss the message here. You must be one of those guys who praise(d) your buddies for their “sexual conquests” but slut-shamed women for the same consensual act. Well guess what? My dad didn’t hold the proverbial gun when a guy came over. Now as an adult, I have a healthy, realistic view of men. I’m married, and not once did I get pregnant or get

      • I agree. I raise my daughter to love life and the sex is part of it. I feel like I am from another planet sometimes because we can show people killing each other and torture gets a big audience but to show people loving each other that is PORN! To show love is criminal??? Violence is porn. Let us love our sisters and daughters and quit trying to hide what must be some kind of sickness.

    • the town bike? what about all the guys having sex with her aren’t they just as slutty and not worth marrying? The article he wrote makes an important point that women should be treated like equals and neither “sluts” nor “marriage worthy”. If my gf had a kid I wouldn’t bat an eye because she is a HUMAN and that’s what happens sometimes… jeez we really are stuck in the past sometimes

    • Cause of course we all know that if she has sex and enjoys it, she will automatically become a Mary goes around and have it with every one in town.

      We also all know that being a ” no sex before you’re 21″ kind of parent prevents children from having sex, or getting STDs or getting pregnant. Right? Cause only kids of parents who openly discuss sex and not banish it have these troubles. Like drugs right? Only parents who allow their kids to take drugs get drug taking kids, correct?

      Furthermore, we also know that every woman’s goal should be to get someone to marry her. And that nobody will marry a non-virgin, or at least a girl who has had more than 1 or two guys, right? Yuk! Cause after all: there are the girls we toy with and the ones we marry. We don’t marry fun people, we marry guard dogs cause they are more trustable? Or something?

      You’re the one who lives in a fictional world dude!

    • Chainsawhandz says:

      Encouraging a positive attitude about sex doesn’t automatically lead to disease and pregnancy, just like encouraging a child to play outside doesn’t lead to them automatically getting kidnapped. Spreading these paranoid fantasies only results in gap in communication and trust with your children and puts them further out of touch with reality.

    • Thank you. Teenaged girls are no more qualified to determine consensual sex than are boys of that age. Just because they do it is no reason to encourage it. The implication that if I protect me daughter from predators I’m being controlling or abusive is incredibly offensive. I raised a great daughter who married a great man with whom she had intercourse with on her wedding night for the first time. They now have 3 great kids and a really well balanced family. I think the author has issues.

      • I don’t think he implied that protecting your kids is bad. He meant that there’s a huge difference between protecting and being weirdly overprotective. The latter does nothing but scare your child out of being honest with you or confiding in you. Children are to be protected, not locked in glass towers. The point of the article went soaring right over your head.

      • Chainsawhandz says:

        Not sure if you got my point–the paranoid fantasy I was talking about was your incredibly detailed slippery slope argument, Kenneth.

        I agree that there is nothing inherently wrong with wanting to protect your daughter from predators, but if you were to tell them “Don’t ever go outside–it’s evil and you probably will be kidnapped,” it would be irresponsible and damaging. Everyone outside is not a kidnapper, and every sexual partner is not a disaster waiting to happen.

        Congratulations on raising a great daughter, but if that plan came together because you intimated feeling shame with any other outcome, then it’s a bit of an empty victory.

      • that’s great for your daughter and all, but really, no one cares.

        • That’s just a stupid comment all around. I don’t agree with the guy, but he has just as much a right to share his point of view, which includes his life experiences, as anybody else.

          Just because he doesn’t agree with *you* doesn’t mean he has to keep his mouth shut.

          I’m getting sick of this “being snarky is a great debate tactic” bullshit.

      • Father of 3 says:

        Statistically speaking that wonderful daughter that married that wonderful man who had intercourse (I call it SEX) for the first time on her wedding night, has a very good chance of a) cheating on her husband, or b) divorcing (eventually) … why? Because she did not experience ANYTHING (sexually) while she was growing up, but, my guess is that you are most likely clueless and the reality is more probable that she had wild sex before getting married but lied to you to protect your feelings, or because she didn’t want you to call your own daughter a slut for enjoying sex before marriage…

        Mate you’re clueless. I would much rather be the dad that has a daughter that is honest with me and can come to me and tell me everything knowing I wont judge her, rather help her and teach her, I have morals and I have values, but I’m a realist, kids will be kids, and today, kids have alcohol and have sex and most try pot and cigarettes before they even reach the age of 18. If you think your kids didn’t try at least 2 of those things before 18, you’d very likely be wrong, or your kids just simply were to sheltered in life and now probably have issues, a skewed view on life, and when their own kids try at least 2 of those things, they will have no idea how to handle it.

        It’s sad, I imagine your daughter had a facade relationship with you because deep down she probably never felt she could “really” talk to you. Sad sad sad.

        • 18 year old Demi says:

          Not necessarily. I’m eighteen, have never had drugs, smoked a cigarette, been drunk, or kissed a guy. My parents have always been open about all of these things, and I believe that’s actually why I’ve never done any of these things. They’ve never been forbidden. I’d be free to talk to my parents about any of this stuff. They’ve offered me more alcohol than anyone else; that’s how I learned (though sips and glasses of wine and champagne at holidays) that I really hated the taste of alcohol, and I’ve always hated the smell of beer. I hate the smell of cigarettes, so no need to do that. I wouldn’t know who to go to for drugs if I wanted them, but I don’t, so it doesn’t matter. And I’m demisexual and have never been close enough to anyone to want to kiss them. Doesn’t mean I’ve been ignored. I’ve actually been felt up once, but he then realized my body language said no when he asked if he could take my first kiss from me. I didn’t consciously say no to a kiss, but he read my body language. As for the actual “feeling up” – it didn’t bother me. I didn’t care one way or the other. Didn’t get any enjoyment out of it, but I didn’t feel uncomfortable, so I just let him, even though he kept asking if I was okay with what was happening. My parents have always been open about sex. I was always free to ask them whatever questions I had, and they would answer me honestly. My mother once told me she didn’t want me to sleep around, because that could be unsafe, but that she didn’t want me to be a prude either. She wanted me to be happy and comfortable with myself. And that’s what I am.

      • Kenneth, your idea of a good marriage is that she’s married, has kids and there are no obvious issues at home ? you didn’t say she’s happy, only “well balanced family”
        you’ve spent your life protecting your daughter from harm from predators, … when did she learn about protection ?, when did she get comfortable using protection & being safe ? she’s got 3 kids, how many children does she want ?, when she & her husband have enough kids what are they going to do to prevent more children, … or are they going to be too uncomfortable to talk about it ?
        why is it that a parent letting their children learn and experience things in life to find what they want is given such negative connotations, and someone who is sheltered (not protected, but sheltered from life) someone who doesn’t know what they want, who has no idea what to compare anything with is praised ?
        why is it so hard to consider that a parent can protect their kids and allow their kids to have the freedom to experience and learn is actually beneficial to their growth and development as they get to understand the difference between a good situation and a situation that sounds good but is very dangerous?
        why is it hard to consider that a child who knows that no matter how scary the world around her is, no matter the mistakes she’s made can always come home and know she’s safe, that she can talk about whatever is on her mind and know her dad will be there for her ?
        there is a difference between informing your children about the world and letting them learn what works for them so they can make educated choices about how to protect themselves and treating your children as if they’re better off knowing nothing and thinking just because they haven’t done anything before they are the most prepaired to handle the world around them.

    • I have to agree with Kenneth to some extent. I hope this guy is also willing to take care of her AWESOME baby. Yes, she should enjoy herself, but first and foremost, above pleasure should be RESPONSIBILITY. I don’t see him mention that anywhere in his letter.

    • Awesome reply! Thanks so much. I was beginning to bleed out of my eyes until I read your comment.

  165. As a mom of 2 little boys I can only hope I am this comfortable talking to my kids about sex when the time comes. Kids will do what they want behind your back or openly. At least if you are open with them they will confide their problems to you or come to you for help. The one thing the article doesn’t mention is that even safe sex can have unwanted results condoms don’t 100 percent guarantee anything. If you are having sex you have to mature enough to accept the consequences as even with precaution they can happen. As an adult I became pregnant unexpectedly so if it can happen to me it can happen to a 16 yr old.

    • There can always be consequences when having sex, yes. Like you said, condoms breaking and contracting diseases and/or becoming pregnant. But no matter how young or old a person is, if you are smart you will use protection, as it lowers the risks. And no matter how young or old you are, you can treat the sexually transimtted diseases, and if you are not ready to have a child you can have an abortion or birth the child and give it up for adoption.

  166. This is complicated because this man obviously—not being a woman—does not know what sex is for women and girls. Sex is more than just physical pleasure. It is spiritual for women because most women want to feel loved and protected when we give our bodies to a man. Young men just want to feel sex.

    There is nothing wrong with women having hot and raunchy sex but it should be an intelligent decision. Parents need not be wardens of their daughter’s sex life. But they need to educate her why it is important to wait. It’s not to protect their parental sanity but to preserve their daughter’s dignity. There is nothing worse than a girl letting a boy in and then immediately after having him turn on his heals and walk away.

    • Wow, sexist much? Sex is not only spiritual for women, and it’s not only pleasure for men. It can be both of those things for either gender. Stop perpetuating this idea that men are base animals with every decision being made by instinct. I’ve had sex that was FAR from spiritual and it didn’t kill me. And I know that there have been moments where it has been beautiful and soul-wrenching for both the man AND myself. You are just furthering exactly what this author is fighting against – the idea that our daughters are some precious little pearl and yet our sons are sex-crazed heartless bastards waiting to take advantage of them. Seriously? Give your head a shake.

    • “It is spiritual for women because most women want to feel loved and protected when we give our bodies to a man. Young men just want to feel sex.”

      What the fuck? I seriously hope you don’t actually believe this. Why are you any more of an authority on how humans of whatever gender view sex than the author?

    • FlyingKal says:

      Anne,
      It’s rather comical that in the same paragraph where you say that a man can not know what sex is for women and girls, you yourself claim to know what sex is for young men…

    • I’m sorry, but this is a pretty sexist representation of women, Anne. And of men. I think that ultimately, we all would like to feel loved, men no less than women. But young women are also allowed to experiment and experience casual sex in the same way that men do. As a teenager, I remember sex being awkward and clumsy, not spiritual in any sense of the word. As a developing adult, I just wanted to “feel sex” too.

      I also think that you do our gender no favors by perpetuating the “virginity equals dignity” myth. Putting women’s sexuality on a pedestal is objectification, plain and simple.

    • You have to be kidding me. This is the exact opposite ESPECIALLY in this day and age. Empowerment (although necessary) made women think they could do whatever they wanted with their bodies with however many, and then settle down at their discretion…I’ve been told time and time again love and sex is completely separated and they just wanted to get their proverbial rocks off.

    • As a woman, I can definitely say that I and many other women have sex for just physical pleasure. I do not have sex to find love and protection. I also feel that your comment about girls dignity creates a double standard. Love, protection, and dignity are things that should be found outside of sex . A person’s character should be judged on other aspects of their life and not based on their decision to engage in sex or not.

    • I understand why you — not being a man — do not know what sex is for men and boys. Sex is more than just physical pleasure. Young men do not just want to feel sex.

    • Vincent Toups says:

      May I suggest that what you are saying here is just so much malarky, and is part and parcel with the system which oppresses both men and women by mystifying, rather than facing directly and therefore clarifying, our basic urges as human beings.

      I am a man. I like to have sex. Sex has been a purely physical but utterly wonderful pleasure for me, and it has also been a deeply important one. I am a human being and I am capable of a wide range of interpretations of my sexuality and sexual life.

      And guess what, I have known women who have exactly the same broad range of feelings about sex. I’ve known women who are honest and secure enough, despite the prevailing cultural forces telling them that sex is magic, to admit it. And I’ve known a lot more women who make a pretense of thinking that sex should always be this magical spiritual act and who secretly enjoy a roll in the hay as much as the next guy or girl.

      Frankly, I’m insulted by the implication that sex is “just a physical pleasure” to me because I am a man, and on behalf of women, I’m insulted by the implication that it must be more to them.

    • Anne, it’s like you didn’t even read the article….? Your assumptions about women’s spiritual connection to sex and the generalisation of men’s motivations are a bit insular. And just why is it important for women to wait? For how long and for whom? Does that benefit women or just a society that is threaten by women’s sexuality? Enjoyable consensual sex between two adults who respect each other is about as good as it gets… Where’s the bad here?

    • Not quite so simple, Anne; and it goes to show that you’ve fallen for all the propaganda out there about us guys that a lot of us have also unfortunately fallen for…fallen for to the point where we can’t or won’t admit that sex means a lot more to us than a fun roll in the hay too.

      But the simple fact is that aside from the loud bozos we hear about way too often, who just want to carve another notch in their bedpost, for a lot of guys sex is every bit as much about emotion as it is for women…even teenaged boys. Maybe even more especially teenaged boys.

      And to be sure, there are girls who will have sex with a guy and then just walk away, leaving him to wonder what just happened while “not being allowed” to be upset over what just happened.

    • Yeah, you’re wrong, and just making sweeping generalizations based on…I don’t even know what.

      Sex can be spiritual for women, it can be for men, it can hold no spiritual meaning (what does that even mean?!) for some people at all.

      Also, someone’s state of virginity has no bearing on dignity.

  167. I’m kind of shaking my head at some of the comments right now. Who says acceptance of sexuality is the same as casual or irresponsible sexual activity? If anything, people with healthy attitudes towards sex are far more likely to be informed and to ask for help when needed, IMO. I mean, I’m too lazy to go find some studies to cite properly, but I’m pretty sure that a whole bunch of them show that teen pregnancy and STD transmission are far higher in regions where abstinence and purity (whatever THAT is) get preached.

  168. “This is complicated because this man obviously—not being a woman—does not know what sex is for women and girls. Sex is more than just physical pleasure. It is spiritual for women because most women want to feel loved and protected when we give our bodies to a man. Young men just want to feel sex.”

    That was posted by Anne, I’m not sure where my other reply went to but I’ll say it again: STOP PERPETUATING THE IDEA THAT OUR DAUGHTERS ARE PRECIOUS FLOWERS WHO WILL FALL APART THE FIRST TIME THEIR PETALS ARE TOUCHED. Jeez louise, and to say that all men want is to feel sex is a horrible thing to say. Men are JUST as emotional as women, and yes some women can be cold hearted about sex – we are ALL humans and we all have those capabilities regardless of our gender. Attitudes like yours, Anne, are why sexism and misogyny still run rampant in our society.

  169. Hi Ferrett, that’s a lovely article. I admit I’ve got a little issue with the one line “sex is something you give”. I’m guessing (and hoping) you mean we’re all giving to our partners and ourselves &c, but as it’s written I feel it can play into the old “women are the gatekeepers of sex and it’s on them to ‘put out’ or withhold.”

    Those stereotypes are so entrenched and powerful I think they poison good insights like these if not watched carefully.

  170. Growing up I always wished my dad had been more ‘threatening’ with boyfriends, but I’m pretty sure his thought process was pretty similar to the one expressed in this article.

    And for that I am thankful. I strongly feel that if I hadn’t dated people my parents probably thought were terrible for me, I would have never found out the type of person who really compliments me, I would have never had a journey to finding what true love meant for me.

    I think this also set the tone for the big step that dating is, that at the end of the day I needed to be the one being responsible and thoughtful for who I gave my heart too, daddy and mommy couldn’t swoop in and save me from heartbreak, and when it came to love they weren’t supposed to. Women need to be just as responsible and thoughtful in their choices, and realize they aren’t a prize they are a partner to whoever they are going to love.

    Thank you for writing this article, and articulating how non shotgun baring parents care for their daughters happiness and finding love. :)

  171. Like EVERYTHING in life the truth is probably somewhere in the middle. There are joys and dangers a plenty “out there…”

  172. I am not a liberal says:

    All these libertine posters’ self-righteous indignation over Kenneth’s harmless little fun piece is so funny. I guess in addition to not having any morals you people also lack sense of humor :)

    (Okay there’s no need for the insults. – GMP MODERATOR)

  173. Tornuggleman says:

    I have allways told my daughter different to the sons.
    Off course she should be able to enjoy sex, as well as boys.
    But I allways imprinted since she was small, that ALL boys allways wants inside the nickers !
    Never give in of any other reason then personal “needs”
    A one night stand is not a privelidge we men are allowed.
    A girl have the same right !
    The main thing is that there are feelings. Even if it is only for limited time.
    Girls are not whores or sick cous they enjoy sex.

    Her sexuality is not my buisness. And I only know what she want´s to tell.
    I wish my daughter a lovely life just like mine.
    Thank goodness we are not muslims !

  174. Candace C says:

    This was excellently put. This wasn’t a way to educate children on the matters of sex, but instead to educate parents that their children will have sex (I’m sure all of us can remember being younger and thinking you knew better than your parents or doing what you wanted because you wanted to). Sex is a part of life and it’s only right to be accepting of that – because most of us will have sex, and whether or not we can be open about life to our parents or bottle it up and sneak around them, is based on how the parent will react. Personally, I would like to know that when I have children, that they are being safe and happy. It is a testament to your role as a parent to whether or not you trust your child’s decisions – if you did your job, then you really shouldn’t worry. And yes everyone will get their heart broken, but that’s a part of life, and you won’t be able to protect your children from it forever, but you can be the shoulder they cry on if you’re willing to not judge them and talk to them. Great article :)

  175. I’m one of the ladies who had the traditional, scary dad. Let me tell you, I wanted nothing of the life he wanted for me and rebelled. Today we still have a strained relationship in my 30’s. I feel like I missed out on a lot because of his perspective of me as his perfect doll whose every action must be controlled. I even learned in sociology that being an authoritarian parent can cause a child to have difficulty developing a conscience; not good for society or the child and future adult!

  176. I appreciate the general idea of this post, but (as a woman) I disagree. Parents are their children’s protectors – this is regardless of gender. Children and teens need boundaries that are lovingly and consistently enforced. Saying “no sex until you’re older” doesn’t mean you’re putting your child in a glass cage any more than if you were setting a curfew, enforcing a bedtime, or limiting soda consumption. This goes for boys and girls. I agree completely that the idea of the father sitting on the front stoop with a shotgun is inherently sexist, but setting boundaries for your children does not have to be.

  177. This almost made me tear up. This is one of the best articles I’ve ever read on parenting. As a woman, it really annoys me when people post pics of their baby girls and people leave comments like “gotta lock this one in the house” and “get your guns ready”. Thank you so much for showing that there are fathers out there who have raised their daughters to think for themselves and not live in fear.

  178. Erica Christina says:

    You sound like a great dad. Your daughter is lucky for having a father who thinks this way. Women in glass cages is not the look.

  179. anonymous says:

    I posted a comment yesterday, but I can’t find it now.

    I find that the author makes a respectable point, but does it all wrong. It’s great that our youth will make their own decisions and live their own lives, make their own mistakes and learn from it. It’s great that when your child makes a mistake or gets hurt, that you will be there to help them.. Great!

    Just not sex. I had sex at a very young age, and in the past 20 years, have seen effects of my immaturity (I mean, physical, my brain development, how it affected me – not mentally – I thought I was very mature for my age). I married the boy I lost my virginity to, and our having sex too young stunted him, too.

    My husband had multiple affairs in our marriage, and in learning about affairs and sexual dysfunction, a lot of it stems from exposure to sex at too young an age (or pornography or sexual abuse, etc.). His last affair ended our marriage – 19 years after our first sexual encounter. Our having sex at 13 ruined my life 19 years later. Pregnancy and STDs aren’t the only possible repercussions.

    Those who say that they wish their parents had talked with them like this: is it because you rebelled against them and had sex anyway? If so, your regret is with your own actions, and not your parents. If they tried to teach you to wait, and tried to teach you that casual sex is cheap, and that saving yourself for true love was the right way to do it – they did their job.

    To those who say that casual sex for pleasure isn’t cheap – yes, it is. I have had both. I have had sex with people I really care about, and people I just wanted to get laid from. I can tell you, that consensual and casual sex, is cheap. Some of my partners are great friends, but when we part ways, I feel as if I was used. I enjoyed it, orgasmed, and still feel cheap.

    And, to the feminists – I am a feminist myself – and yes, the message is empowerment. But the one thing that the feminists need to accept is that men and women are different. Yes, we can be equal, but we can’t be the same. It is a fact, that when the sex is over, the man will never be the one pregnant. Also, no matter how equal we are, due to our biological and physical differences, it will always be easier for men to rape women than vice versa. There will always be differences. The feminist message should be to embrace those differences and find empowerment that way. If you know, that you will be the one with child, you can choose not to have sex. (Yes, you can choose to abort, but I am Catholic, and don’t believe in that as an option for myself). If you know that you are more vulnerable to physical attacks, take the best precautions you can to prevent it (yes, I know you can’t prevent it or it wouldn’t be called rape – but there are some basic safety precautions you can take, though not fool proof).

    I have two daughters. I will teach them that sex is special, and should be shared between two people who love each other. I will teach them that they can’t “undo” sex, and that there are consequences. I will teach them that they can always talk to me, and that I love them no matter what. I will teach them, that my love is unconditional, and that I will always be here to help them. But I will also teach them that they need to make decisions based on more than just hormones. If they need a physical fix, they can do that themselves, without some boy. I will also tell them my stories, and the horrible things that I went through, and show them that they deserve a lot better than my past.

    • Anonymous says:

      Couldn’t agree more. Sex is meant for the confines of marriage, because it will damage you emotionally. My husband and I waited to have sex until our wedding night – both of us virgins at that time. I know that is a rare thing now, but I’m in my 20’s and I’ve seen my friends give it away to guys they don’t even talk to now. I’m sorry for my friends because they won’t get to experience the complete love, acceptance and pleasure with one man who will stand by you forever. I’m sorry, my daughter will be getting the abstinence talk. And by the way, so will my son – because I care about their future marriage more than I care about their momentary pleasure. You can grow, learn and love someone without sex. Save it. Can you tell that I disagree completely with this article? Thank you for this post about the effects of sex on a marriage. My marriage isn’t perfect. My husband struggles with some sexual addiction and is getting counseling for it because if he’s finding sexual pleasure somewhere other than me, we have an issue. That’s what marriage is for.

      I believe that a reason so many marriages fail in this time is because of fathers like this. The author is missing the point of sex, and so his daughter will as well. They will use sex for pleasure or momentary gratification, and in turn damage themselves emotionally, and carry that into a marriage bound to break and fail. My 2 cents.

    • Wow, that’s too bad. Sex before marriage ‘stunted’ you and your husband?

      I would say it wasn’t the sex, it was how you both viewed it and yourselves. Your experiences are not all experiences, and my sex-before-marriage experiences were pleasant and fun and exciting. No ‘stunting’ here.

      • Anonymous says:

        I didn’t say our sex before marriage. I said sex too young. We were 13 when we first had sex. You say you weren’t stunted, great. How old were you when you lost your virginity?

        No, my experience isn’t all experiences. I didn’t get STDs or have baby during my teen years. Just because it doesn’t happen. To everyone doesn’t negate it as a possible consequence.

        And, had i not started doing research into affairs and sexual dysfunction this past year, i wouldnt have realized that the root of our problems likely came from our sex at a young age. Maybe lots of people have other blissful ignorance, too.

        Lastly, I have a great view of sex and my body.I think that people who haven’t had sex while in love might not understand how cheap casual sex can feel in comparison. My view of sex comes from a lifetime of experiences, including passionate married sex, casual fwb sex, young awkward teen sex, sex to conceive, sex after giving birth, etc. I’m a well rounded individual with more wisdom and perspective.

    • It sounds like what caused you so much pain was not having sex too early, but being forced by a long-held societal puritanism into the idea that you absolutely must bond completely and forever with the first person you have sex with, or else it is somehow sinful. Sex at 13 may be a mistake, but it can only be terribly compounded by being made to believe you must marry that person. No one, at 13, is ready for THAT level of commitment. Certainly, it sounds like your partner and husband was not mature enough to handle that kind of pressure. Both of you likely would have worked through things and turned out fine if you’d felt free to go your separate ways – and been allowed to learn your own lessons from it in your own time.

      I first had sex at 18, much later and arguably when I should have been more mature. Still, though at the time it was within the context of a monogamous, long-term relationship (I waited a few months into the relationship to take that next step, and we were together four years) I would have had a miserable life if I had married that young man. Not because I was traumatized by having sex outside of marriage – I was very happy at the time and I feel that that relationship in all its aspects taught me a lot about myself and how to treat others. I have no regrets there.

      No, because the experiences we had helped both me and my boyfriend grow as individuals, and we both grew in different directions. I’m not at all the same person I was then, and if I had felt obligated to stay with my very first boyfriend for life just because we’d had sex, I would be very unhappy now. That would have been much, much more true if I’d had sex at 13, but again, not because of the sex itself.

      At that age, while depending on our personality we may be capable of having sex, working through the accompanying emotions and learning from it, we are not ready to commit to a person – or anything at all – for the rest of our lives. Especially not because we are forced to believe sex is shameful and wrong outside that narrow context.

    • Anonymous:

      Once again, as I said to Anne earlier, your experience is not everyone’s experience. OK, so I didn’t have sex at 13. Heck, I couldn’t get a girl to look at me at 13. However, when I *did* finally have it at 19, it didn’t ruin my life forever.

      I’ve had sex with exactly three women. One that I was in a relationship with in my late teens/early 20s, one that was a one night stand that I didn’t see coming, and one was the woman that I married. I also had a great deal of “almost sex” with someone I was in a long-term relationship with in my mid to late 20s.

      Oh yeah…and my wife knows about *all* of them.

      None of these experiences ruined my life. None of these experiences have been an issue in my 20+ year marriage. It might be for some people, who are raised with different expectations, or whose emotions run a little differently. But it hasn’t ruined mine.

      In fact, far from lamenting about the women I’d slept with before (well, except for the accidental one night stand), there are actually a few women who I lament *not* having slept with. Not as the proverbial “notches in my bedpost,” but rather, as *emotional* notches…people that I missed the chance to be with in that way just once, and now can’t because in our culture that would be considered cheating.

      My way may not work for you and yours doesn’t work for me, but we’re all different.

  180. Katie Ball says:

    By encouraging your daughter to live and learn, you’re most likely setting her on a path to experience more pain than those who toe the line. Plus society doesn’t know how to handle individual thinkers, and this too might add to the stresses in her life.

    And for that I say thank you.

    Hoping the popularity of this article means there are more parents out there encouraging their children to really embrace life–no matter how messy and painful it can sometimes be. Would love to see what a whole generation of these humans could do!

  181. You are the dad every daughter deserves.

  182. I am crying as I read this.

    I have been having horrible issues with my father lately, namely that he thinks I can “do better’ than my current boyfriend. This issue has been tearing us apart, and I just wish he could look at it this way for a while. Uplifting article

    • I also cried when I read it.

      I have similar issues with my father. He thinks I can do better and tells me he knows my boyfriend isn’t the ‘one’. The problem isn’t destroying my fathers and my relationship as much as it is my relationship with my boyfriend. I have other problems that tear my father and I apart.

  183. Maybe his liberal views and actions will have the opposite effect on his daughter. I know someone has been equally callous about his daughter’s sex life and since she was young he has openly encouraged her to have sex. Because of his lackadaisical and unprotective attitude and her witnessing her fathers constant sexual crusades with women not much older than herself, she remains a virgin at the age of 26, and has a negative attitude about men in general. Her fathers “free love” attitude produce as frigid, woman who is frightened of men. Having reasonable protective, limits for our daughters AND sons is healthy. Anything too extreme on either side, either too few limits or two many, produces unhealthy people.

    • That may be, but that’s not the tone I got from this article; it was less about the father encouraging his daughter to have sex, but just saying to do so IF SHE WANTED TO. the key idea being that he can’t and shouldn’t be able to control whether his daughter has sex, or NOT, if that is what she wants.

      • ” he can’t and shouldn’t be able to control whether his daughter has sex, or NOT”
        THIS. So much THIS.
        Children, daughters included, are not property or objects. They are people with their own desires and cravings, and nobody should stand in their way. Not even their parents.

        As the great poet and philosopher Kahlil Gibran wrote in his poem “On Children”:

        Your children are not your children.
        They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
        They come through you but not from you,
        And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

        You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
        For they have their own thoughts.
        You may house their bodies but not their souls,
        For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow,
        which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams.
        You may strive to be like them,
        but seek not to make them like you.
        For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.

        You are the bows from which your children
        as living arrows are sent forth.
        The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite,
        and He bends you with His might
        that His arrows may go swift and far.
        Let your bending in the archer’s hand be for gladness;
        For even as He loves the arrow that flies,
        so He loves also the bow that is stable.

    • Nowhere in this article is an active provocation to procreate. You’ve taken what is essentially an observation that a father’s authority shouldn’t cover mandates on how daughters use their genitalia to be justification of a rough anecdote about a man who didn’t respect women alienated his daughter.

      Just because you aren’t forbidden from doing something, it doesn’t obligate one to do it. Having an open attitude towards sex won’t result in everyone fucking in trees, it will result in those teenagers who want to have sex not feeling bad about doing so, and encourage them to be more intelligent about the choices they make.

    • That may be the case in this particular situation and with these particular people, but we’re not little computer chips that all respond the same way to the same stimuli. Some other daughter may well respond quite differently.

      And perhaps you are projecting the “callousness” you see in that relationship on what the author was really trying to say, which I really didn’t see as callousness at all.

    • ann, first off, in no way should the authors lack of puritanical, nonsensical attitude towards his daughter (or women in general) be considered “liberal”. and its sad that you see it as such. furthermore, he is not telling her to go out and open her legs to anyone that asks, he is simply telling her that she shouldnt let other peoples sense of (in my opinion, misguided) morals dictate whether she does or not. Last, he is also just simply saying that he will not take part in the hypocrisy that seems to be so fashionable amongst fathers, and instead, is going for honesty and talking to his daughter like an individual, not a piece of property.

    • How did you get “Callous”, “lackadaisical and unprotective attitude”, “constant sexual crusades with women not much older than herself” ““free love” attitude” from the article? May be your own fearful interpretations and assumptions?

    • You can’t serve only a “permission” without doing all the other things parents do (or should do) : encouraging critical thinking, developing self-esteem, teaching how to stay away from disrespectful people, choose your moment, go for what you really want instead of instant gratification…

      This text doesn’t mention those, but it’s pretty obvious that his daughter’s education is made of them…..

      He helps her making decision without guilt… Simply put.

      You cannot possibly think that only one element drove the girl to be like that… education is a truckload of important factors.

    • Pan T. Free says:

      I’m not with you on this one. I belief you are projecting an image onto this essay that doesn’t exist except in your personal history. This is a father who cares deeply but isn’t holding her to a moral code that isn’t her own.

  184. this article saddens me…where is God in all of this? i am praying for your daughter right now, that she does NOT listen to your “fatherly” advice of “go out and play honey”, that she realizes she is worth SO much more and that although it is her choice to do what she wants with her body, that body was created so that she can enjoy the intamacy and love that only comes with a truly committed relationship. i wish i had a father that was strong and confident enough to impart these words of wisdom on me. instead my father was less than. fortunately i was adopted by a man who tried to teach me these things – to love and honor myself and my Creator, no matter what, but it was too late – i had already been taught that sex was “cool” and for everyone, whenever the mood struck you. such a sad and regretful way to live this precious life…if you don’t believe in God and want to take Him out of the equation, that’s your decision, but the fact is, something created your daughter’s soul, along with her physical body, and if you do not love her enough to protect as much as you possibly can from the dirt out there, then shame on your for helping to create damage on the most precious gift you’ve ever been afforded.

    • Circuit Ben says:

      God is where he’s always been, in your head,.

    • And there you have it… how spirituality lost its way and became a method for controlling others instead of yourself.

    • there is no god

    • Not everyone believes in God, Katie. Therefore, we don’t all subscribe to what God says is right or wrong. This is called freedom of religion and it extends to parenting. You don’t need to be sad about something just because its different than you.

      • Brooke, couldn’t of said it any better. I hate when religion is used to make a girl/women feel less of herself ! Sex is sex!!! We all do it! It’s natural!

    • Jared Ouimette of Midland, TX says:

      What does God have to do with raising children? Seriously, the second God works 40 hours a week and puts food on my table, THEN he gets to have a say in my life. Until then, he can fuck right off.

      • Hahahaha

      • This was so well put. Thank you! Sometimes my (raised Catholic) mother laments that she didn’t bring me up inside of a religion to teach me morality and right from wrong. When I ask her if I lack either she says “of course not,” and praises my judgement. I have to remind her that she did all that, while working 50+ hours a week, and supporting our entire family. Nothing God could have possibly offered would have given me a better roll model.

      • Well said, Jared!

    • You’re completely missing the point. He’s not telling her to run out and whore around and get herself into trouble with dirty, evil people. He’s telling her that he’s not going to deny her something that can bring joy and pleasure, just as it does him. He’s saying that naturally, almost everyone wants sex, and not every boy who wants sex from a girl is “dirt”. What if this girl is in a loving, committed relationship – putting God aside, why shouldn’t they have sex? That’s what he’s saying. Who is he to tell her what to do with her body when she is a woman in her own right? Now obviously, there are issues with younger kids having sex for all of the wrong reasons and of course he is going to protect her and warn her of the emotional and physical consequences, but he’s also not going to stop her from enjoying a very special, intimate event just for the sake of upholding a social standard.

      What is wrong with a parent saying “sex is ok” if they believe it to be so? He’s not saying that he doesn’t want to protect her. He is saying that at some point, she needs to learn how to protect herself. If a duck never learns to swim because it’s mother was too scared to let it try, then the duck will drown as an adult.

      Life IS precious, whether you believe in God or not. So why would he want to hold his daughter back from one of life’s most intimate pleasures? It’s about balance. Sex is powerful, not just in a bad way but good as well. It CAN be a really positive experience, and this man doesnt feel the need to “protect” his daughter from such a good thing. Obviously, sex can have negatives. Making sure that your child is aware of BOTH will help determine what is right for THEM, not anyone else.

    • True damage to a daughter is teaching her to be ashamed of the wonderful gift that is sexual intimacy. Having an open dialogue with your children about have safe, consensual and responsible sex is the best gift you can give them. How wonderful that this man’s daughter doesn’t need to hide her sexuality and sexual choices from her father in a way that could prove dangerous to her health. Protect her from STI’s, shame, and gender oppression by giving her the agency to make her own decisions that are well informed and not made alone, in secret.

    • Sex is powerful. Sometimes in a bad way, but often in a positive way. This man is saying that he doesn’t want to deny his daughter of the good power of sex – a beautiful, intimate, fun experience that often helps people grow and evolve emotionally. I don’t really think he’s telling her to go out and whore around; he’s saying that she should have the freedom to choose for herself, just the way he has.
      Sex is not dirty or wrong, it is natural. This man is realistic when he acknowledges that it’s enjoyable and most everyone wants it. He is also realistic in saying that not every boy out there is trying to rape his daughter or hurt her by taking her innocence and running away with it. Consider the fact that maybe now, or one day in the future, this girl is in a loving relationship with another person and they want to share sex with each other. What is stopping her? If they don’t follow any religious rule then there’s no reason, and this father doesn’t want to be the one holding her back from experiencing one of the most powerful acts between two humans. If it is a positive experience then what is there to “protect” her from?
      It’s about balance. Knowing the consequences of sex –both good and bad – is key. You can’t just act like all sex is dirty and evil.

    • The concept of that sex is dirty and sinful unless done in a certain way is much newer than Christianity, all of the religions that founded Christianity worshipped sex to the point of having temples for sacred prostitutes. Every women was expected to give herself away for ‘God’ at one point in her life.

      Sex can be a very religious or spiritual experience. Its great if religion works out for you but I think this form of parenting is far more accepting and loving than control methods, worshipped religions that condone child brides, child abuse, slavery etc

      Free choice. In my opinion its only a problem anybody having sex if they are forcing themselves to do it because they feel that they have to do.

    • Did you not read the article? He did not say “go out and play” he said that if she chooses to have sex and it is a consensual act and she gets hurt that it is ok life does not end and that he will be there to support her when she feels things are just a little to hard. It also sounds like you need some therapy if you still feel like “it was too late – i had already been taught that sex was “cool” and for everyone, whenever the mood struck you. ” You are right that her body is precious but it is hers not yours so don’t put your own self hatered onto this family as you have NO idea what it is like.

    • No body asked for you or for your “God’s” judgement. What you are proposing is exactly what the author does not wish for his daughter. If she she wants to explore sex then that is her decision, if she wants to discover God then that is her decision, the key part of the equation is that it is HER decision.

      A little less judging and interjection of your will onto other people would be good.

    • Ohh..GOD…Praying for your daughter….Our Creator…Oh your daughter’s soul…
      Are you kidding me? You’re hilarious. I don’t take you seriously, and I doubt many others will either. You can have your faith, but don’t be a troll about it! I doubt he’s telling her–“I think you should go against God’s will and have sex whenever you feel like it all the time with no concern for your mental well-being or safety.”

      I think it’s more like, “I respect you as an individual, and know that I’ve taught you how to make good life choices. With everything I’ve taught you, there will still be times where you will be challenged by life and need to make tough decisions. They are not my decisions to make, they are yours. Make the best decisions you can, but enjoy your life! Sexuality is a big part of life and there are a myriad of ways for you to experience that. I will not try to control what your life experience is. Your body is yours and does not belong to anyone else, including me. I am not going to place MY values and judgments on YOUR sexuality. Don’t be afraid of being judged by me or anyone else. It is all part of growing up and being human. Please be safe, but know I be here for you anytime you need me.”

    • philip wayne says:

      Katie – you are reading and commenting on the wrong blog. Freedom of religion includes freedom FROM religion, so call someone who cares and leave the readers of this blog alone. If you had been born in a Muslim country you would be a hardcore Muslim, (or fill in another religion based on the country, it’s all the same) which suggests that your religious faith is a product of your environment, not the result of some universal truth that only you and your church buddies have figured out. Travel a bit, learn a foreign language, dare to experiment, and stop bugging people who did not ask for your one-sided 2000 year old opinion. You are boring us to tears. Dare to have an original thought, I implore you.

      • Freedom of religion also protects those of us that believe that raising children, in fact all aspects of life, go hand in hand with our faith in God. If you are free to express your lack of religion, we are free to express our religion, regardless of what religion it is.

      • Your point is self refuting on a couple points. First of all, if our worldviews are a product of our environment, then your worldview is a product of your environment. So you are in the same boat as Katie. Secondly, your perspective that someone’s worldview is a product of their environment is an assertion of a universal truth, the thing you are critiquing her for.

      • Your point is self refuting on a couple points. First of all, if our worldviews are a product of our environment, then your worldview is a product of your environment. So you are in the same boat as Katie. Secondly, your perspective that someone’s worldview is a product of their environment is an assertion of a universal truth, the thing you are critiquing her for.

    • Free Soul says:

      Believing in God and being a bible-thumping brainwashed christian are two very different things.

    • Religion has zero bearing on this conversation. It is a father expressing his want for his daughter to live a rich and full life. Any argument with the predisposition that God must be involved is nonsense. You are free to view the world as you want, but you shouldn’t project your views on others. For all we know this is an extremely pious man who has the ability to think in conjunction with the teachings of the Bible and extrapolate his own meaning. It’s a touching story with a great and empowering view for women. Take it at face value.

      • Chris, I’m a little confused. You wrote, “You are free to view the world as you want, but you shouldn’t project your views on others.” In saying that, you are actually projecting your view (don’t project views) onto me. Your statement seems self refuting to me. Does that make sense?

    • Bahl Sanchin says:

      Not everyone cares about your fairy tales. If you chose to live your life by Bronze Age myths, that’s your business. But don’t go around whining when you find others who are not doing the same.

    • “i had already been taught that sex was “cool” and for everyone, whenever the mood struck you”

      But…but…it is cool! D:

    • Seriously? God? lol….

    • I hate people who assume everyone is a fucking christian

    • Isn’t the guy writing this voicing his opinion on what he thinks daughters need from there father? Why have people make comments on the post just to attack what they have to say?

    • Well said!

    • Oh my dear, delusional, overly religious woman….I was raised to believe that sex was a gift that I gave to my husband on our wedding night, treasured to behold until I found the one man that I was going to love for eternity in God’s eyes.
      I lost my virginity at 14 and I had sex….lots of it. The only thing I didn’t do was tell my parents about it. I was sexually active for two years, unprotected most of the time until my mother talked to me about contraception. I admitted to having been active and already needed to have cryo surgery for stage four dysplasia. Damage can be just as equally wrought in a God fearing, religious household. I had those friends who were out partying all weekend long too and being the perfect kid on Sunday in their parent’s eyes. Be careful how you wield God in your arguments and if you have children of your own, think about whether or not you’ve made them fearful of discussing their sexual activity in the name of God.

  185. ShinyAvarice says:

    I agree with this. It’s very close to how I was brought up. I was encouraged to to enjoy life, to drink, have sex and experiment with drugs (being male might have had a lot to do with that) and I never did any of those during my teenage years. Now at 22 I still haven’t had sex or done drugs because I was the social outcast during high school no girl would have considered touching me. As for the drugs I know they are stupid, the best advice for drugs I got was from a former near addicted user, they told me don’t bother there are better ways to have fun. I believed them and have never done them.

    As for sex now that I’m an adult, I want to have it but not the relationship that is expected to go with it is not possible in my life right now. I don’t go ‘clubbing’ or out to meet people and hook up because those scenes aren’t for me.

  186. My father had this same “laissez faire” attitude, and I never learned to say “no.” I somehow soaked up the idea that no boy (they weren’t men) would “like” me unless I was putting out, and my father’s “encouragement” (coming before I was ready to know whether I wanted sex or not) wasn’t helpful. There is no one right way, and different kinds of support are called for at a different times in a young girl’s life. It’s taken me years to get over all that casual sex–actually unwanted, as years of therapy helped me to realize, but I didn’t know it at the time because I wanted my father’s acceptance even more. These things are not simple. Tune in to your daughter. Find out what she needs right now.

    • I agree, I don;t think it’s as black and white as “yes! go out and have sex with anyone, any place, any time!” and “NO! SEX IS EVIL AND YOU ARE A SINNER”. It’s all about the individual person, and I think that warning a child of the good and bad consequences of sex to give them a well-rounded view is important.

      I went through a period where I gave myself up a little too freely, like you. Now I see more value in myself and have a different attitude about sex. But I still don’t believe that people should necessarily abstain from sex JUST because someone else tells them to. Maybe if parents aim to do a better job informing their children about the realities of sex and relationships, children will have a better idea of what its all about going into it, and will then make more informed decisions about their own sexual experiences.

    • Did you even read the article in full. Nowhere, NOWHERE, does he suggest that men would only like his daughter if she gave them sex. If anything, this encourages her to think more about who she decides to sleep with more than those who make it verboten and assume she’ll comply.

    • He has tuned into his daughter’s needs, as every parent should. This sexual attitude might not be the best idea for all young men and women, especially if it’s not explained in the correct way, using sexual education in the RIGHT way. This man is not encouraging his daughter to have lots of sex, nor is he having a “laissez faire” attitude, he’s letting her know that if she wants to have sex (consensual), then she shouldn’t follow the thoughts that society currently places on sex, that it’s a bad and terrible thing. It’s something you should be able to enjoy and get pleasure from. From reading your comment, your story is not the same as this father’s story, and for that, I’m sorry.

    • This is really not what he is saying..

    • My dad also had the same “laissez-faire” attitude, and I never felt pressure to have sex with boys, and I waited until I was in love, and I have a very healthy sexual life. Don’t blame your own mistakes on your father. While parenting has a lot of influence, your choices are ultimately yours.

      • Agreed. My father also had a “laissez-faire”attitude and I waited to have sex until I was in my twenties so that I knew I was ready to become sexually active. And I have a great sex life that I wouldn’t change if I could. It all depends on the choices we make and I love that in this article that he makes it clear that his daughter can come to him when things are wrong or if she feels like she screwed up.

  187. Wow, this basically amounts to “do whatever you want, life is hard, and you’ll learn by doing.” I think more reasonable fathers who don’t enjoy red neck humor will probably care less about the quality of sex their daughter is having, and more about who she is having sex with (i.e. not a d-bag). I suppose a parent shouldn’t be able to voice their opinions on whether or not they like or don’t like who their kids date? How about what college they attend? My attitude is simple, do what you think is best, but I’m going to give you my honest opinon, and you take it, knowing that I have your best interest in mind and make your own choice. “Do whatever the hell you want” with no guidance or opinion from the father is horrible parenting, just as horrible as being an asshole restrictive parent is. Middle of the road and thoughtful isn’t “cool,” its just far more difficult to do since it requires work and doesn’t give you an out to say “well I did my best” since you basically just painted out parenting as black and white. Anybody who reads this who thinks this great parenting is an absolute idiot.

  188. Yes, it’s important not to vilify sex or make it a “no no,” but this article swings too far in the opposite direction, for my taste. Kids are ignorant to too many things in life, to be told, “Go ahead and have sex.” They don’t fully understand action=consequence yet, they don’t think long term and are still too impulse-driven. Parents have to protect their kids from themselves, because if left to their own devices…they will behave in some pretty incredibly self-destructive ways.

    What the author is preparing his daughter for is teenage pregnancy and possibly STDs, or both. It’s irresponsible parenting. Sex should be taught as something that is the most valuable gift someone can give of themselves to their partner. Whether you choose to instill the traditional values of waiting until marriage, or waiting until you are in a committed relationship that looks like it has legs. But to tell them that sex is great and encourage them as teenagers to do it, “But just be safe about it,” is just completely irresponsible parenting. Which is par for the course, these days…there’s a lot of irresponsible parenting going on.

  189. I’m not sure if the reply posters on here know much about the differences in neurology for males and females. Pretty much everything in life is different for males and females for this reason, we have differences in neurochemistry and physiology, have different amounts of chemicals and receptors etc. Some evidence has shown that females release more oxytocin (cuddle hormone) during sex than males, males release more testosterone which tends to suppress oxytocin, this tends to tie women more quickly to the person they are having sex with. From an evolutionary perspective this could make sense as it ensures the male produces a lot of offspring and females will stay to nurture the offspring. Some have reported that oxytocin release in males does happen, but over a greater length of time and a greater quantity of exposure to a person. Under this perspective, women ‘waiting’ is not unwise as it allows a fair amount of time for the male to release oxytocin without sex, thus would allow a greater balance between the release of oxytocin and testosterone when the males has sex with a female.

    • Hi ….Says

      You have a good point here when you write:
      ✺”Under this perspective, women ‘waiting’ is not unwise as it allows a fair amount of time for the
      male to release oxytocin without sex,”✺

      Can you give us good links with more info about this ?

  190. I wish you were my father-in-law… I’m with my gf since 2008 and he is still a pain…

  191. Kevin Coulombe says:

    I think it was Paul Graham who wrote that parents are over-protective because they share the pain of the mistakes but they don’t share the joy of the successes to the same extent. It takes a big man to be glad your child is taking risks when they reap the rewards mostly on their own and come back home when things go wrong.

  192. I can’t decide if this saddens me or angers me more… Ok “Father”, the role you’ve taken on is that of any loyal and trusting friend. You’re someone who is meant to protect and guide your daughter, and that’s something that not anyone, but an authoritative parent can offer. Encourage your daughter to live-free, and find herself in this world, sure…nothing is ever wrong with that, but believe it or not, EVERYTHING has limits. How can you claim to protect your daughter while you’re allowing her to run around and sleep around with anyone at anytime? How can you protect your daughter when she becomes pregnant? How can you protect your daughter when she picks up an easily avoided STD had she not been casually sleeping around? How can you insure her safety? What I love even more is that you are fully aware that she will be getting herself lost, and in trouble…as you suggest she comes home to you in those times of need. So you are basically enouraging a child/girl/lady to get herself in any trouble, and run home for help. Can I ask you why? Oh right.. to learn from her mistakes, because according to this article, the only way to learn to to make the mistake first. Okay, that is entirely a whole new topic at hand. Yes you learn from your mistakes IF they do happen, No it is not the only way to learn. And a second MAJOR problem with this mentality: To have Sex is to understand it, to know its purpose and to be both physically and mentally prepared for it. Sex and Love go hand in hand, hense it produces compassion and pleasure. Where are the values in teacching your children/teens/young adults that to sleep with someone means you are in love or committing to this individual in some sort of relationship? Call me old fashioned, but I do believe that is the very essense of Sex….to love, to share, to produce, to become. No one said everyone has to follow that traditional way, but everyone knows it at the back of their mind. However, you “father” are straight up and directly just leading this daughter of yours in the wrong direction. I pray she does not corrupt. Society today is taking a nice leep downwards.

  193. Hi CG

    You write:
    “✺ Because Planned Parenthood makes it’s money off of killing
    children. That’s not to include all the practical jokers in drug stores who like to poke holes in condoms
    on the shelves. So much for that protection against STDs”✺

    May I ask where you live?
    Where in on this earth is this happening?
    Other places on earth many use contraceptives, and where you live people poke hole in condoms and kill children to make money .
    Tell me where you live CG.

  194. Chainsawhandz says:

    Many people are commenting on this article with an obvious misinterpretation of the (admittedly abstract) line, “Go out and play.” Nowhere in the article is the author saying “Hey kid, you’re on your own, now don’t come back until you’ve had lots of sex whether you like it or not.” He’s clearly just trying to foster an open line of communication and understanding with his daughter, while instilling a positive attitude about sex , which is the opposite of what someone who says “Premarital sex will kill you so I’ll beat up all of your boyfriends just in case” will achieve.

    • Yep, apparently there is something seriously wrong with reading all around since no matter what the whole thing says that’s all they can take from it. And not only that, but actually MISinterpret it in their own way :S

    • The dad did say this ” Now get out there and find all the things you fucking love, and vice versa.” Vice versa means “the other way around”. So he is saying “Now get out there and find all the things you fucking love, and get out there and find all the things you love fucking” So yeah he is telling his daughter to go out there and get to fucking something.

      Creating an atmosphere that says “do whatever you want I’ll be here for you to make you feel better when it hurts” is honestly just lazy parenting.

      It’s ok to say no you can’t do this or that. It’s ok to keep them from some types of mistakes or teach them that just because you want to do something doesn’t mean it’s a good idea or that you are ready yet..etc.. it’s ok to have rules. It’s ok to instruct your child because after all you have been given the responsibility to be their guide preparing them for life the best you can.

      You don’t have to be a despot in parenting, but there is nothing wrong with teaching them there is a time and place for being ready to have sex and in turn that a desire for something doesn’t mean its ok or the right time to act on it.

      To say good luck and get out there and starting trying to find your own way get to fucking people and act on your desires whatever they are and when it hurts or if you have questions I’ll just be sitting over here for you is a pretty lame way to parent in my opinion.

      • Chainsawhandz says:

        I interpret that last line as the father encouraging his daughter to find someone that she will both love and be sexually compatible with, as opposed to ending up half of a virgin couple that gets married with her fingers crossed in hopes they will actually be right for each other.

        What makes you think this father is going to throw his hands up and turn his back on his daughter at the conclusion of this article? Do you really think he isn’t also talking to her about consequences of sex? Do you really think he isn’t telling her about the differences between love and lust? Do you honestly believe that this open-minded, progressive, involved father is giving advice that boils down to “Go have sex, even if you’re not ready?”

        Give me a break.

  195. Interested in the potential long-term effect of these beliefs? Read “Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters” by Meg Meeker, M.D.

  196. The way I see it, this article is refreshin because it is saying a woman should not feel ashamed over her sexuality. Too many times women are told to tone it down or you can be “just this” without going over borderline. Or that it’s wrong or bad to want sex with someone. I find this viewpoint liberating in the sense that it doesn’t take the women’s movement back 50 years. I don’t think the author is advocating sleeping around or going balls-to-the-wall crazy having sex with everyone in sight. He is simply stating that she should not feel ashamed for being a human with real feelings/sexual thoughts/wants/desires. There is nothing wrong with that at all.

  197. 3munchkins says:

    Why the attack on Katie? Just as there is “freedom FROM religion,” there is also freedom to express it. And while this is not a religious article, for a Christian, you cannot remove your faith from your fundamental beliefs. Katie didn’t attack anyone, she simply, respectfully, offered a viewpoint that differs from the author’s. Good for you, Katie. And if you don’t agree with her opinion, simply move on to the next one. :)

  198. Thank you. Excellent article.

    I always tell my son, girls want sex too:

    http://emptynestdiary.com/2010/06/12/feminist-or-whore/

    I hadn’t realized how deprived I had been of my sexuality as a young woman until after the birth of my son, when it came ranting out after a particularly pleasurable sexual experience with my husband:

    http://themarriagejourney.wordpress.com/2010/08/24/the-penis-a-poem/

  199. I’m glad my Dad loved me enough to be honest with me about sex. Not just that it is fun, but that it comes with risks and responsibilities. And mostly I’m thankful that he taught me that waiting for a man willing to commit to me in marriage was the only way to have the fun of sex without the risk. I am 35 and happily married with 3 beautiful children. I have never once had to deal with the fear of possibly being pregnant or having a sexually transmitted disease. I have never experienced the heartbreak of realizing that my boyfriend was only after me for sex and was gone once he got what he wanted. Waiting didn’t diminish the pleasure, I think it probably made it even better.

  200. They are meant to be funny. ha ha ha….whatever happened to just laughing and moving on with your day. (Or roling yoru eyes and moving on)

    When did everything we say and do become scrutinized to the nth degree? Geez. Every word doesn’t need to carry a social and emotional impact that will radically affect everything for all eternity. Some things are just silly and cheesy and most of us know to take them that way. I believe the saying is quit making mountains out of mole hills.

  201. sirina little says:

    Wow ur such an inspiration to all girls and dads everywhere thats the best thinking there is and I wish more parents cared as much as u and my father love knows no bounds and this is proof that life and parents don’t have to be all bad thank u for sharing ur thoughts with the world keep up the good work

    • I’ve raised 3 children to adulthood, one a daughter. He can raise his daughter the way he see’s fit. All I can say is report back in 5 years and let us know how it turned out. Oh, your daughter doesn’t need an old best friend, she needs a father and life is not a screw-a-thon.

      • But the point is, her joy and her grief should be of her making not her father’s. If she isn’t free to make those choices now, how will she know how to do so without you.
        I can report, that my now 24 year old daughter is doing fine, quite well in fact.

      • I don’t particularly think he was encouraging promiscuity. Rather, I think that this individual was actually humorously communicating to us what good parenting is. Which all good parenting is, is good training. We train our kids to do the expected behaviors we desire.
        However, any psychologist, dog trainer or therapist will tell you immediately that training is completely ineffective when it’s done through force; i.e. putting a little girl in the glass box you intend for her. What force breeds is resentment and often times the inability to think about things in a logical linear manner. Furthermore, it often creates a host of other psychological issues such as the colloquial “daddy issues”.
        I would also posit that individuals that have “daddy issues” tend to disproportionately enter into relationships that are abusive (sexually, physically or psychologically) and tend to have harder times maintaining healthy, well balanced relationships.

        So, why don’t you please step out of the glass box your parents obviously constructed for you and try to be an individual. Please. Because your little girl won’t always have you. She has to learn to live on her own.

      • Agreed.

      • My father was very similar to this man. My sister has only had sex with one man and I have only had sex with 3. We are both married and I even have a daughter of my own now. I think my Dad’s attitude toward relationships and sex helped my sister and I to not rebel against him using sex. We were more careful about who our partners were and we certainly didn’t engage in unprotected sex. There is just something that takes the cool factor out of sex when your Dad says it’s okay… Thanks Dad!

      • Joe Mind,

        I’m 32 years old and I had a father just like this one. My father spoke with me when I was 12yrs old about sex (info session and being open to the idea that one day, I would have sex), and said that if I do decide to have sex, just to be sure to use a condom. I was 18yrs old when I first had sex with my long-time boyfriend. I’m now 32, and I don’t have any children. I didn’t turn into a promiscuous teenage girl because my father spoke openly with me about sex in the same manner as this article. My father was there for me and I was/am completely open with my father about all issues in my life.

        I plan on raising my (future) children this way. I firmly believe I was less likely to have sex at an earlier age because sex wasn’t a “BAD” “WRONG” “FORBIDDEN” thing as a child. Think like a teenager for a moment, if someone tells a teenage not to do something, they’ll likely do it just out of spite and rebellion.

        Bottom line, the article is pointing out communication and openness instead of shelter and an inability to speak with your children about sex. Because like it or not, your daughter will one day have sex. Are you prepared for her to come to you when she’s hurt, upset, heartbroken, possibly pregnant or infected with a STD? Is she prepared to come to YOU when she is hurt, upset, heartbroken, possibly pregnant or infected with a STD?

        If you cannot even THINK about “letting” your daughter have sex before YOU’RE ready, don’t think for one moment that she is ready to talk with you about what happens when she does.

      • Joe Mind, you are exactly right!

    • “Look I love sex. It’s fun”

      Wow, if my father/mother had ever given me a talk like that I can’t imagine how many messed up decisions I would have made.

      My dad told me the importance of waiting to have sex until I was married. He sat me down and had a heart to heart with me and stressed how absolutely important that decision was. I believed him. My mom and dad were married 40+ years, and were each other’s only partners. I waited to have sex until I was married, as did my now wife of 3 years to me. There is no doubt in my mind, or hers, that we will be married forever. It’s called morals, values… things that go by the wayside now. I’m under 30 and will pass these same morals on to my future children and teach them how to love and value the most important person in my life, my wife. And have the same heart to heart with my children as my father did to me.

  202. BGAM (Big Green Amphibious Monster) says:

    Sorry, Darling Daughter… While I hope that you someday enter into a Relationship that is rewarding, fulfilling, full of growth, fun, passionate, strong, and ever-lasting, I reserve the Right to place you on a pedestal, because you, my Darling Daughter, are, hands down, the most precious gift God has ever granted unto me, and I defend what is mine. That’s what happens when your Dad is a warrior, a Marine, a Soldier.
    Sure, there are those enlightened souls who, were you their daughter, would wish you “good sex” and use a little shock value to try to shame the rest of us Neanderthals into somehow relenting to back away from our “bellicose threats” against any and all suitors.
    Here’s my question: Knowing that you will forge ahead, make your own choices, be responsible for your own actions, and take charge of your own life, be strengthened by that which does not kill you, who gives you more confidence to make the daring decisions that might cause you to fail greatly, or win gloriously, you must ask yourself who you’d rather have in your corner? Who has you covered? Who has your back? Some groovy middle aged dude who wants to be your friend…
    …or Godzilla?

    • Oohrah. I am not a father, but I am a Marine. I can not agree more. I think the real idea is that most fathers do not want their daughters to be used or taken advantage of. Sex is not exactly the same for both boys and girls Call it society or call it self perception. I think there is room for both sides. You cant lock your daughter in a cage for her whole life, but that doesnt mean you should encourage her to go sleep with as many guys as she can.

      • Uhm Hello says:

        Did you read the article? That’s EXACTLY what he told his daughter to do. Don’t get used for sex, but enjoy it as you see fit. Read, please. If you did in fact read, then please understand that you have misunderstood the whole article.

    • maribelle1963 says:

      “you, my Darling Daughter, are, hands down, the most precious gift God has ever granted unto me, and I defend what is mine.”

      Totally creepy. Our children are not “given” to us, they are entrusted to our care. She is not yours, she is life’s own, God’s own if you prefer. NOT YOURS.

      “I defend what is mine” is that kind of weird, boundary-less father complex that implies your daughter is some kind of creepy conquest. Men like that truly do dislike women, as the author states. They get so consumed with the love of their own daughter, which is so much more than they have ever cared for another woman, that they get all mixed up in the head, and think they have to defend her against the dangerous men out there, of which they know they are one.

      Yuck times 10.

      • Agreed. Yuck times 1000. Most soldiers I know are fairly gross and self-aggrandizing. And can we knock it off with the god crap already? Sorry, that last bit was personal editorial.

    • Get it through your helmet. Your daughter is NOT your property. She is not “YOURS”. She is her own person, and she is going to have sex whether you like it or not. The only thing you are doing by putting her up on a pedestal is making her wait until you are sleeping to slip down and screw the first person she sees. Godzilla is a metaphor for nuclear weapons. Destroying everything in it’s path-including the person it intended to protect.

    • snuggle_butt says:

      And would you still have her back if she “slept with someone gasp?!?!” If your answer is “well of course,” just make sure she knows that, or she’ll never tell you anything and you’ll never get a chance to defend her when she needs you. Keep on, marine dad.

    • The author is correct. You do not have to just be your child’s friend to have that kind of attitude. You can still be a great parent who teaches your daughter to be a strong, independent woman who knows her worth without enforcing your values and putting her in a glass box. teach her who she should want to give herself to and when to do it and still wish her good sex. Letting someone make their own mistakes and being their for them teaches them to grow and learn on their own but knowing they are safe to do so. Women are not property no matter how old they are…They are not god’s property either. They are the same human beings that men proclaim themselves to be. So treat your daughter as you would your son. Teach them what they need to know but wish for them all the things you enjoy and want for yourself.

    • matt marion says:

      And your daughter will have 10 times the sex and with less protection, especially once she gets out from under your rule. Idiot. She’s not yours, she’s hers. You can teach her and let her enjoy the world or repress her and force her to figure it out on her own, which she very much will whether you like it or not.

    • captainhappening says:

      But you aren’t Godzilla, are you? You will never make your daughter’s life better with anger and violence. Godzilla knocked over buildings and killed people and he was a barely sentient animal. I would much rather have Woody Harrelson on my side than Mel Gibson. How do you like that metaphor?

    • throwaway says:

      “you must ask yourself who you’d rather have in your corner? Who has you covered? Who has your back? Some groovy middle aged dude who wants to be your friend…
      …or Godzilla?”

      Yes, poor, defenseless, weak womenfolk can’t defend themselves. Thank goodness strong marine men like you are there to kill spiders for them and swat boys away.
      Seriously, what the fuck?

  203. Katie – is God really the one we want to look to as the authority on this? I mean, he knocked up a married virgin…a little hypocritical, dontcha think? If the Bible is God’s word, then God advocates all kinds of unfair, vengeful, frightening things that are often quite brutal towards women. I really think we can come up with a better source for our morality.

    • Actually, when compared with the ancient near-eastern environment from which they sprung up, Jewish and Christian views on female equality turn out to be incredibly progressive and in fact are probably the historical basis for the good views you hold on gender equality today. I dont want to be unneccesarily rude, but what you’re saying reeks of the Bill Maher sort of pop-anti-religion much more than it reeks of an intellectual, carefully researched contribution.

      • Sure – if you cherry pick from the Bible you can find some good stuff. But there’s also a lot of nasty stuff. And to say that the good views on gender equality has their base in the Bible is giving it too much credit I think.

        • Yes, I mean look at all those progressive non Judeo-Christian countries for proof that the bible hasn’t played a role in gender equality. Oh wait, you mean there are none? Hmm, maybe white western men aren’t the demons you thought they were…

          • Gender equality has arisen despite the Bible, not because of it. There wasn’t any, until societies started becoming more secular and realizing that holding a religion as the highest law of a nation was not the best idea. Where are the most actively progressive countries in terms of gender equality? Scandinavia, largely. Plenty of good Christians who know better than to run their countries off of the Bible. They are also the most tolerant of alternative sexual orientations, and progressive in terms of taxation and social services. You probably don’t like the countries that are the most gender-equal.

      • I seriously call into question that modern day feminism arose from the ideals put forward by the Judeo-Christian culture. If anything, once Christianity become a dominant force in the Western world, human rights, and especially female rights kind of went south. It was called the Dark Age for a reason. Furthermore, I can’t particularly see how Western theisms fostered feminist ideals when they themselves foster the antithesis of feminist ideals (no female priests…?).

        I will definitively say that the culture in the East did not work to foster feminism, but that does not mean in any regard that Western culture did either. If anything, there’s probably a stronger link between feminism and anti-theism (reformation, separation of church and state, the egalitarian ideals put forward by Marx), or most likely, Greco-Roman culture. Honestly, I feel that feminism sprang from the oppression brought on by The Church and represents a return to those Greco-Roman ideals (at least in part).

        • which greco roman ideals are those? the ones where women and children are property that fathers and husbands are free to kill or let live? i mean i’ll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you mean something like the teeny roots of democracy (that women were never allowed to take part in), which would eventually (millenia later) blossom into a concept of human rights that would finally, much later, be grudgingly extended to women, sort of. but honestly the only women that had it good in greco roman times were the prostitutes, at least they could leave the house unaccompanied. still legal to kill them of course, though.

    • MarkTrail says:

      That God became man through the “Yes” of the Immaculate Virgin Mary should be a source of great inspiration for all of us sinful human beings.

      God did not “knock up” the Virgin Mary. She remained a virgin during the conception of Christ and kept her virginity during and after the birth of Our Savoir. It should be remembered that it was Mary’s choice that gave us all Our Savior, and God rewarded her, and us, with her constant and Perpetual Virginity throughout time, so she may intercede for all of us from heaven.

      The Holy Spirit entered Mary to bring us to Life through Christ; all souls are female to God.

      Mary chose life for us. Everything God does, He does in the most perfect way; if it were not done in the most perfect way, God would not be God. God chose Mary because she is , was and always will be The Woman, the Perfect Woman, the Perfect Daughter of God, the Perfect Mother of the Son of God, and the Perfect Spouse of the Holy Spirit.

      It is shameful that you would besmirch Mary’s life with crude remarks; it is always wrong to seek the lowest common denominator for ourselves and others; Love wills the highest and best good for the sake of the beloved.
      ~To Jesus through Mary~

      • “It should be remembered that it was Mary’s choice that gave us all Our Savior, and God rewarded her, and us, with her constant and Perpetual Virginity throughout time, so she may intercede for all of us from heaven.”

        You lost me at “Rewarded us with her perpetual virginity.” That is implying that a woman is only valuable to society as a virgin, which is not only sick but backward. Even if you believe that women are only valuable as baby-factories, it would still be backward to think that their only worth was in virginity. Your worship of the pedestal-placed idol of this woman who got pregnant without ever having sex is counterproductive and harmful.

        Getting pregnant without sex is a fairy tale. Just like Zeus harboring Athena in his skull and having her bust her way out. Fairy tale.

  204. You do realize that those stories about Dads with shotguns are jokes? Throwing them to the wolves to learn everything the hard way isn’t loving either. It is loving to protect your children and give them guidance. Somewhere in the middle there is a perfect balance that Is often hard to hit.

  205. I also cried when I read this. Thank you, sir, for recognizing your daughter’s competence and equality. Too often we are “protected” because of the assumption that we cannot, or should not, do it ourselves. Our sexuality, our minds, our abilities are all things we and we alone controle. A father who will always be there to provide support and love as we develop our own strength and independence is a truly special man, indeed.

  206. Christine says:

    Thank you so much! I wish I had this wise guidance as a teen. Instead I something more along the lines of the type of “protection” you are critiquing – that is, “daughter, men are evil, they all just want to get in your pants. You WILL NOT be alone with them.” Let me tell you, it was daunting to think of ways to explain that I may have wanted this sort of ‘in the pants’ intervention. Not a conversation I felt comfortable trying to start at that age. I understand that fathers trying to protect in this way mean well, but their protection is based on a very stilted and sexist idea of female desires!

  207. I’ve seen Katie told that she is on the wrong blog, that her beliefs have no bearing on this topic, and that she has no right to inject her 2000 year old beliefs. I’ve heard the argument, albeit on another topic that one person’s beliefs should not infringe on another’s rights and I bought into it. It goes both ways. If so many people are “correct” in their views of the world because they are so open minded and witty, why are they soblind that simple, honest fairness. Katie’s beliefs are in fact relevant as many people are deists with dogmas that they try to live by. Not everyone is fortunate to be as learn-ed as the charlatans who can’t cope with different beliefs and I personally thank God for that. Cretins. If the world were as you wished, you would be disappointed in the tyranny you’ve longed for.

  208. Bridget W says:

    -“I refuse to perpetuate, even through the plausible deniability of humor, the idea that the people my daughter is attracted to are my enemy.” Awesome :) I have never been a fan of the “I will threaten and intimidate anyone who might be interested in my daughter” type of jokes, so I love this post. :)

  209. I don’t think being a parent is about letting your kids do whatever the hell they want, but more so your duty to guide them to make the right decisions! Locking your child in a tower, so to speak, is a bad idea, as my parents did this and I had a two year craze of drinking and boys. But letting them know you support their stupid, sporadic, and irrational behavior is like telling them all their poor decisions are acceptable. This is false, misleading, and could lead them down the wrong path. Letting them make their own mistakes SOMETIMES is good, but teaching them to not make some mistakes in the first place is way more honorable. I know my children at some point in their life will try drugs, alcohol, and sex, but that doesn’t mean I can’t try and stop them before I think they are ready. A 14 year old girl thinking about sex? Not ready. Can I stop her from doing so? Absolutely not. But will I teach her from a young age that sex is good, but only when you are ready? Absolutely. That that is what being a parent is all about.

  210. Thank you for this. I am at work but still broke down in tears reading your last few lines. I grew up with my parents telling me that all guys want is sex and that it will hurt and be terrible and that you’ll get pregnant and they’ll leave you and you’ll get an STD etc. etc. etc. It took me YEARS to get over that and I still have reservations about displaying sexuality. If there were more Dads like you in the world, it would be a much better place :) *hugs*

  211. I love this. Every bit of it. Women should not be objectified by anyone, especially their fathers. If you treat your daughter like an object, what do you expect others will do? She’ll seek out men who treat her that way because it’s what she’s grown up believing should happen. Ferrett, you don’t treat yours like one. She’s a person apart from her gender and the imagined roles that places on her and that you deal with her so frankly about relationships and sex… she’s going to have a healthy outlook on both. :)

  212. This is an interesting piece, and in general I don’t disagree with the concept. However, I find the premise of the thing (that all fathers trying to protect their girls* from aggressive boys are treating them like chattel) insulting.

    I put an asterisk by girls to highlight a key distinction. The author grounds his premise in the first sentence of paragraph four: “Because consensual sex isn’t something that men take from you; it’s something you give.” All well and good. But the key word in that sentence is “consensual”.

    One of the recent trends in protecting women’s rights (which I wholly endorse) has been expanding the traditional definition of rape to include any hint of sex being anything but 100% consensual. If she’s had a few drinks, you can’t trust her consent. If she works with you and you can provide any favorable work treatment, you can’t trust her consent. And, of course, if she’s a minor, you are a scumbag paedophile because minors are not mentally capable of giving their consent, no matter how much you tell the court you two love each other.

    Which is where I must, as a responsible parent, draw the line. If society and the law agrees that until she is 18, my daughter is unable of giving her consent to sex, then it is my parental duty… not my “slave master’s” or “property owner’s” duty to protect her from anyone who would abuse her lack of consent and, to use the parlance of today’s society, rape her. How protecting a young woman from being raped can be put in any sort of a bad light is astonishing to me.

    When my daughter is 18, she can do whatever she wants, and I only hope that I have given her enough information and knowledge to make her own wise consensual decisions. But until then, you can’t have it both ways. Either she can consent, or she can not.

    If she can not consent, then while I seek to protect a woman from being raped, do not call me ” a man who probably thinks very poorly of women underneath the surface.”

    • Actually, the legal age of consent (for sex) in most states is 16.

    • chickenandbiscuits says:

      It’s amazing to me that number of comments here that demonstrate the inability of people to read critically, for the purpose of understanding. The author wasn’t suggesting that he hoped his daughter had lots of sex, but that she had meaningful, enjoyable sex…which would obviously be consensual. You don’t need to protect anyone from an act that is rooted in mutual trust and basic respect.

      Please. Read.

  213. Someone daughter says:

    Here is some shocking news for all you daddies out there: We fuck boys. We “use” them just as much as they “use” us. We sometimes brag about it to our friends, just as boys sometimes do. And we do it with or without your permission. Because sex is not a bad thing, it’s not shameful or harmful. It’s fun. For both sexes.

  214. As someone with an over-protective-yet-somehow-silent dad (the only thing he EVER said to me about sex was that “the worst thing I could ever do is get pregnant and drop out of school”) and a mother who was sexually abused as a child (and therefore had an extremely unhealthy idea of everything sex-related and basically hated sex)— This open letter is AMAZING. I had no idea that sex was a good thing that happened to people who love each other, and I certainly never thought sex was for me. So, I let a boyfriend sexually abuse me for a while, and I thought it was normal to be horrified and scared, because I thought sex was supposed to be scary. I didn’t know it was a good thing until I met my fiance (whose parents love sex and still have it) but it still is difficult for me to admit that I like sex, or to allow myself to enjoy it, because my gut instinct still says “sex is for bad people and causes bad things.”
    What if I had a healthier idea of sex? I probably would have kicked that ex-boyfriend to the curb the first time he violated my lack of consent. Would I have slept around? Probably not, but if I had… I probably would have enjoyed it!

  215. Proud Teen Parent says:

    This article desperately confuses me. If she is an adult, then I can see why he would want her to enjoy sex. Why have it otherwise, really. However, I have no idea why anyone would endorse, let alone basically cheer on anyone younger than adulthood having sex. I am proud of the fact that I was 19 when I first had sex, and it was with the man I was married to for 15 years.I have also ever only had sex with 3 people, one being the man I am married to now. I don’t grasp this condoning teenage sex. If you don’t have sex, you can’t get pregnant, and you don’t catch STD’s. I tell the doctor that everytime they try to push Guardasil on my children. Um, no thanks. Abstinence has the same results as a shot that has many bad (sometimes fatal) side affects. My daughters and sons have plenty of time to enjoy sex. I say let them be kids (and yes I have teens) while they can and leave the stress of relationships to later in life. BTW I certainly wouldn’t be condoning sex that wasn’t in a relationship!

    • Concerned Nurse says:

      As a nurse I am concerned about some of these comments. Thinking purely from a health perspective I often offer teen condoms, information on birth control , and even Gardasil. Parents are often angry and confrontational about this and I find it hard to communicate that I am offering because I want to protect their children. Just because a teen has condoms doesn’t mean they are going to use them. But if they were ever in a situation where they were to have sex wouldn’t you like your teen to be protected? In my experience providing condoms to teens is less embarrassing than having them come in for the morning after pill or for counseling and care for an unplanned pregnancy. Teens in my experience also don’t know what to look for if they have contracted an STI and can let things progress far longer than needed and cause permanent damage to their body.
      Let me be clear. I do not think that most teens are ready to have sex from an emotional or maturational standpoint. But since I live in an area where the fasting growing HIV population is girls ages 16-24, I am going to continue to do everything in my power to prevent any long term negative effects from happening.
      For all the parents out their who are outraged because health care workers or other adults talked to their teens about sex, don’t consider it a judgment, or insult, consider that we are trying to protect your teen and make them aware of options and things they need to consider if they do decide to have sex. I would never advise a teen that they should have sex, but I would always help them to keep themselves safe. You wear a seatbelt in a car “just in case” so teens should be prepared “just in case”.

    • For the love of God says:

      ” If you don’t have sex, you can’t get pregnant, and you don’t catch STD’s. I tell the doctor that everytime they try to push Guardasil on my children. ”

      I wonder if one of the doctors you feel so comfortable dismissing has explained to you that HPV is transmitted by skin-to-skin contact, which means that you can get it from plain old fooling-around without ever engaging in sex, which means that even abstinent people can easily contract it. I also wonder if you realize that your most fervent hopes, prayers, and instructions to your children to save sex for later will offer them no protection whatsoever if they decide to do it anyway, which they probably will, and that you’re leaving them at risk, not to mention all their future partners. Get them vaccinated, for Christ’s sake.

  216. None of Your Business says:

    The jokes about guns aside, the implication that fathers who attempt to protect and teach their daughters as they are maturing are a) treating their daughters like property, and b) are saying the sex is bad or dirty or whatever is laughably simplistic and superficial. These are straw man arguments.

    Secondly, that notion that the only other option (the only one the author presents or seems to be aware of) is to wish them the best and go completely hands-off is ridiculous (and dangerous.)

    There is another option that is better, more correct, more responsible and more loving for your daughter: Explain to your daughter that sex is a lovely, beautiful and wonderful thing. A gift from God in fact. But it is a gift to be enjoyed within the boundaries of a monogamous, committed, life-long relationship (we call this marriage) where God gives enormous freedom to sexual expression and joy.

    This other option does not seem to even be a consideration for the author. For him it is as black and white as: a) treat my daughter as property and make her think sex is bad, or b) wish her well in her sex life whatever her age or maturity or relational situation.

    This is a false choice.

    Many of us love our daughters deeply and want the very best for them. We also realize that what is best is not simply going out and having sex but, rather, waiting to have the sex in the boundaries of marriage and also helping them to realize that sex is not simply about the physical act, but also about the mental, emotional and relational aspects…all of which are weak at best when not experienced within a marriage relationship.

    That was all a fairly long-winded way of saying this blog post was stupid, irresponsible and dangerous advice to any father (or daughter.)

    • There is another option that is better, more correct, more responsible and more loving for your daughter: Explain to your daughter that sex is a lovely, beautiful and wonderful thing. And it is to be experienced on her terms, using the same discretion, respect, caution, and self-reliance that she has been taught, carefully and wisely by her parent or parents, all her life and in all areas of her life. That gift is between her and her partner, and God if she so wishes – that good judgement is hers to command independently of any legal contract, is infinitely more valuable than any legal contract, and does not exist solely by the graces of any legal contract. However, it is immensely useful in entering into such a legal contract with wisdom, certainty and enthusiasm.

      Many of us love our daughters deeply and want the very best for them. We also realize that what is best is not simply going out and having sex but, rather, treating that important decision with the very same good judgement that we have taught them to exercise, on their own, with any other important decision they come to in life.

      That was all a fairly long-winded way of saying that creating a false dichotomy of either A) sex within the legal contract of marriage or B) wanton, thoughtless, and harmful sex is stupid, irresponsible and dangerous advice to give any father (or daughter.)