What You Learn Raising Daughters
I think it’s time I step out from the protective shieId of MadeMan and admit my deep dark secret. I have three daughters. Three young daughters that will one day all be enrolled in the same high school at the same time. And while I am not too deep a believer in karma, I am starting to fear what I will reap from all these stories I pen about ways to hook up with chicks and how to lie your way through life. Clearly, I am screwed to the tenth power and should have thought this through a little more.
And as my ladies grow up, I’m sure I’ll learn many more things from them along the way — like knock before ever entering a door in my own house, or how to purchase tampons while still keeping a shred of my dignity (clue: drive to another city and wear a disguise) — but for now, I feel like it’s time to share what I have learned from raising my daughters so far. Here’s hoping karma will cut me a little slack.
Everything About Disney Princesses
Anyone out there know the definition of osmosis? I do. A subtle or gradual absorption or mingling. And if you need a definition for that definition, it also means a person can learn and pick up new things by absorption or being around someone un-Forrest Gump-esque. This is what has happened to me. I know way to much about Mulan and her quest to save her dad. I know all the words to “A Whole New World” and I hate myself for it. I can name the love interest in Sleeping Beauty. It’s Prince Phillip. Yeah, as someone who claims to be a man, I admit that’s just wrong. And I could go on-and-on about my wealth of Disney Princess knowledge I’ve gained from osmosis. I actually don’t think I’ve ever watched one of these movies in its entirety. All this knowledge has seeped into me over the years from continuous play in the DVD player while I am forced to keep track of the football scores on the computer. A computer that has a Beauty and the Beast screen saver. Well, used to. Now it’s Ariel. She’s from The Little Mermaid, by the way and fell in love with Eric…[sigh].
Boys Have Weird Front Butts
We all know kid’s can say the darnest things, but girls seem to be more inquisitive than boys. I say this because I also grew up with brothers much younger than myself and well, they’re idiots, so that doesn’t make me an authority on the subject, I guess. But I have been put in many an awkward position — as if trying to be a good parent isn’t awkward enough — when one of my girls somehow sees an infant boy getting his diaper changed and proceeds to yell out questions about his odd “front butt.” Luckily, this has only happened in public places like the mall or Outback Steakhouse. For my part, I have held it together, covered their mouths and explained that it wasn’t what the thought they saw, but an optical illusion. Then I distracted them by by pulling the fire alarm. And now that I think about it, boys do have weird front butts.
How to Fix Pony Tails and Hair Bows
You know how a scene from an action movie will have Bruce Willis or Sly Stallone rigging something out of gun strap or his shirt with all those fancy knots and look all badass while doing it? Yeah. Nothing like how I look while I am wrestling one of my girls’ hair through a tiny rubber band thingy in order to create the manliest of hair styles: the pony tail…a pony tail that will likely come apart the first time they tug on it and I will have to repeat the same five minute process again. And don’t even get started on hair bows. Sure, they appear like they are designed to just clip in their hair and stay. Well, let me correct you immediately. They are not. In fact, they are designed to piss men off and drive them to a life of drug use. Don’t be fooled. Just when you think it’s secure, a bee will fly by and blow it from your daughter’s head. I am still trying to convince them that the best look for a girl is the straight, no frills look.
You Will Always Be Blamed For Letting One Fly
Men have a bad rap when it comes to…let’s call it flatulence. Admittedly, many dudes find ripping one off the funniest thing since “Seinfeld” — and even some chicks like a good fart fest. But when you have girls you have fathered, no matter who dealt it, you will automatically be the culprit. This might be because I am a man. It may be because I’ve had a gassy moment or two that they’ve been nose witnesses to. Or maybe it’s their mom’s diabolical plot against me. I may never know. By far the worst aspect to being the John Dillinger of dropping bombs, is the public decrees from the mouths of my babes in front of the world. I get blamed for the smells coming from taco trucks. I even get blamed for the stenches of landfills. This is my plight. And I will suffer through it with dignity.
I Have the Capacity to Consider Drugging a Child
Settle down, Child Services, I said ‘consider.’ And I’m not talking about chloroform (it’s hard to purchase that without being flagged by the authorities). I’m talking a little Benadryl or a horse tranquilizer in order for my little ones to finally sleep through the night. When you first become a parent to a daughter, you’d never consider such a thing and even turn your nose up at the stories of our parents’ generation that would give their kids a little booze when they were sick to make them go to sleep. By the time your second child arrives, you start to think maybe they weren’t so crazy. And when number three is keeping you up all night, you call the CVS down the street to see if they are open 24 hours. Alas, I never did the deed, but might reconsider again when they are teenagers.
The TV Still Can’t Drown Out a Girl’s Scream
There are few things on earth that can reach the decibel level of a little girl’s scream. Jet engines, sirens, the hearing aid of an old dude when it makes that high pitched noise. These are some things scientists have identified as having the type of power girls have when they belt out a scream. These screams can be from joy, fright, or just to get under your skin, but they are all deafeningly loud and cause permanent hearing loss. These screams will usually come when you are watching something on TV at the loudest it will go. Trust me, they don’t make a volume for televisions to outlast these screams. In fact, my ears are still ringing from a scream I received in 2003. I think it was from my oldest daughter’s reaction to something Dora the Explorer said.
Be Prepared to Explain Mommy’s Cycle
I don’t know much about women’s cycles and to be honest, I don’t care to know much about them. It makes me feel icky. But when you have daughters in the house, they are going to notice these things pretty early on. And guess who they come to for an explanation of Mother Nature’s trickery? That’s right. Dad. I have danced my way around this question in many ways — from feigning a sudden sneeze attack, to answering the phone that didn’t even ring — but the question still comes up. They are still not at the age to get the talk from their mom and I’m running out of ideas on how to avoid these questions. I need suggestions. Because I am starting to freak out.
The Most Popular Words Ever
This is one that came as a pleasant surprise. I use the words ‘boobs’ and ‘poop’ at least eight times per day. My daughters learned what boobs were at an early age — and no, I do not have man boobs, so they noticed them on the lady of the house. I suppose they use the term ‘boobies’ since it’s more cute and socially accepted for children to say this in public rather than ‘boobs’. ‘Poopies’ on the other hand isn’t cute, it’s just funny. And they will drop the poop talk anywhere and everywhere. When your two-year-old belts out “I got poopies!” in a crowded restaurant, I beam with pride. She’s the son I never had.
Having a Penis Takes Away All My Rights
Whoever said it’s a man’s world obviously didn’t live in a house full of women. I make no decisions other than deciding how quickly I can do whatever it is they tell me I am going to do. They decide when and where we will eat, when I am allowed to watch TV, when and how long I am given to go to the bathroom. My veto power is as worthless as our country’s government whenever they want to do something. And I fully admit this fact. Maybe one day I will be the Susan B. Anthony of dads with daughters and we will win our voting rights. Then our voices will be heard. That’s the wonderful world I want to live in.
I Now Hate Boys
Perhaps the most important thing I have learned from raising my girls is how I despise boys. Because those slimy little bastards will one day grow into a teenager or drunken college kid who is looking for nothing else than a female companion for the evening. Sure, these boys now think girls are gross, but I know what they’ll be thinking in a few short years. And what they’ll be trying. I was one of them and my friends were those guys, too. The thought that my daughters will be navigating through these horny wolfpacks has me shopping around for weapons. Beware, perverts. You’ve been warned.
So there are a few of the things I have learned while raising my daughters so far. There’s plenty more to learn, so maybe I’ll give you some updates down the road. Until then, I’ll continue drinking heavily and enjoying my girls.