Chapter 7: Girls and Their Mothers
He opens by telling a story of a 7 yr. old strong-willed girl Hannah. Her and her mom were having a bad day when Hannah said "You know, Mom, this just isn't working out. I want a new mother."
Her mom told her that she could arrange that and that she of someone who would love to have another child. She went to the phone pretended to dial and talk and ask this fake person if they would like another child. Hannah's bluff backfired as she immediately ran to her mom and said "No no,no, Mom! Let's give it another shot."
As moms we need to stay in touch with our daughters emotionally. You have to hang in there until the upheaval passes. Your child's successes or failures in many life's endeavors will depend on the quality of the relationships you share during their childhood years.
The attachment theory: He talks about neurology stuff similar to Chapter 4 and then adds more on to it. Then he goes on saying how your baby needs you to look at her, and talking to her. If this doesn't happen in the early years children will have problems later on in life. It has been demonstrated that the failure of mothers and babies to attach is linked directly to physical and mental illness of all types.
So the opposite happens when the mother is nurturing, loving and a part of her babies life. She will talk to the baby , comfort them, nurse them, sing to them etc. From this the bond begins to form. It will establish a foundation for all that lies ahead.
Moms, you provide the cornerstone of healthy child development.
The establishment of attachment between generations is made much more difficult for boys and girls because of dramatic changes in our culture. Before the Industrial revolution, father and mothers worked side by side on farms or in family-owned businesses. They raised their children together, and except for men in the military or those who sailed the seas, most dads lived and worked close to home. Just as Joseph was a carpenter so was Jesus (Mark 6:3 & Matt. 13:55). We assume that Mary was a full time homemaker living nearby. That family home structure is now rarely seen. Only in the last 100 years have fathers left home all day to make a living. Now approximately 51% of mothers are also employed full-time in the workforce. Plus most children now a days are taught for 8 hours by men/women other then their parents. Unless you choose to homeschool you are not able to spend all day everyday with your children as it once was.
For women there is enormous pressure to "go back to work". Only about 42% of mothers take off 3 months after giving birth. Many return within a month or six weeks. I would recommend that mothers take at least a year off birth to heal, bond and establish a family routine.
He goes on to talk more about the working outside the home and your heart wanting to be at home internal conflict that many women go through.
Chapter 8: Young Women Talk About Their Fathers
This Chapter and next have to deal with fathers. It was very interesting and it made me cry in different places. It will be hard to say everything these young ladies said but I will try to give highlights of both positive and negatives.
Dr. Dobson held a get together with young ladies at college age to help him with writing this book. He told them that he had heard this comment given many times by young ladies "My father is a good man. He worked hard to earn a living for our family, and he's been faithful to my mother (others said just the opposite). Still, I never that he really admired or wanted to be close to me. He was very, very, very busy doing what he did, but he didn't have time for me. I felt like I was just there around the house, but he often didn't even seem to notice me."
Then Dr. Dobson asked the young ladies in the group....Was this something that others of you have also experienced?
Girl #1 What you just said, Dr. Dobson, describes exactly what I feel. And I've heard it from so many of my friends. In fact, our greatest uneasiness about getting married is the fear that our future husbands will not be affirming and caring.
Girl #2 It is essential that girls get affirmation from their dads. I didn't receive that and it is the foundation of all my insecurities.
Girl #3 My dad was a good father but he compared me to girls in the media and complained that I didn't look like them. He told me that I didn't work out enough, he would also call attention to what I would eat. So I was not a full-fledged anorexic, I guess, but I worked out all the time, and sometime wouldn't eat anything.
Then other girls told of struggles they have because of their relationships with their fathers.
Girl #6 My father was not like that. He told my sister and me that it was inner beauty that mattered. He would also tell us how beautiful we were on the outside. That's what got me through junior high and high school.
Girl #7 I've had such a different experience, and I realize that much of who I am is because of the affirmation I received growing up. One of the things that I love to hear is when my family says, "Oh you look cute." My dad told me that all the time, and it has just meant so much coming from my own father.
Girl #10 Just recently I received a valentine's e-mail from my father. It was the first card or e-mail he has sent me since I was 7 years old, and it meant the world to me.
It goes on for a few more pages with young ladies sharing the good and not so good relationships that they had with their fathers.
So I guess it makes you think to what kind of relationship did your dad have with you and what kind of relationship does your husband have with your daughter.
I told Darryl that I wanted him to read this chapter and the next one which is Why Daddies Matter. Because I was a daughter and I am a women I can help him out in anything I see with ways he is building his relationship with our daughter. Just as he can feel free to make suggestions to me as a mother to our son and what he may need from me if I'm missing giving him something. Think and pray about it and act on what God is showing you to do to make you and your husband have a wonderful relationship with your daughter.