Wednesday, April 11, 2007

The Long Anticipated Father-Daughter Dance

There are a few moments, discussions and events in the life of our kids that I anticipate will bring up some conversations and possibly issues around the fact that they do not have a "Dad."

Sometimes they can be anticipated by us while other times they cannot.

One recently unanticipated occurance happened on a Wendesday morning while I was driving Seven to school. I have, unfortunately, been sucked into watching American Idol with Seven and BioMom. They love it. They look forward to it and then spend long whiles discussing the show and its likely winners and losers with eachother, as well as with many of their friends. On this particular morning, I was humming the tune "Time of the Seasons" that Blake Lewis had performed the night before.

Me: What's your name? Who's your daddy? Is he rich like me? Da Da Dum? Da Da Doody. Da Da Dee Da Dum! It's the ti-hime of the See-ee-sun of luuuvvvin!

Seven: So, what if you don't have a daddy?

Me: ?

Me (automated response): You mean like you? Yeah. You have two moms instead. There are all kinds of families in the world and what matters is lo-....

Seven (interrupting): No. I mean, the song. . . What if you don't HAVE a daddy?

The upcoming anticipated event is Seven's girl scout troop's annual "Father Daughter Dance."

To be fair, the troop leader, our friend, went out of her way to call it something different on the invitations. I think it said something like "Bring along a special Man in your life" or something like that. We invited MRM#1 and Seven is thrilled.

But the other day we were leaving school and she saw the flyer for the "Father-Daughter Dance" and she, being the sweetest girl on the planet (98% of the time) turned to me and said:

Do you want to go to the father daughter dance with me?

My heart melted.

I clarified that that was the dance MRM#1 was taking her to this coming Saturday and that it was designed for girls to bring some man that is special to them to the dance, that other girls might bring their dads or grandpas or godfathers or uncles or friends. That there would be a whole host of combinations.

I have spent some time in this forum discussing the possible losses involved with growing up with two moms (emotional, spiritual, intellectual or otherwise). I expect that she may have some feelings around this event that she will hopefully share with us. In all honesty, I think that all of us are fairly okay with the event (other than the seemingly innertness of the institution itself with regard to the changing American family structure). I like the idea of her having strong ties with MRM#1 and being able to share special events with him. What I'm concerned about more is that my Republican brother and his wife will be in town over the weekend and he has on more than one occasion discussed what he perceives are the negatives of family structures like ours and how important it is for kids to have 'strong men in their lives.' His antiquated yet persistent visions of gender and family have remained untempered by his own twin's coming out of the closet as well as my own. I'll let you know how it goes.

I open up this discussion to my readers. How would you (or do you plan to) address such events?


Anonymous said...

I don't understand why a Girl Scout Troop is sponsoring a Father/daughter dance for 7 year olds.


giddings said...

Hi Auntie!
It is actually a "Ho-Down" for all of the Girl Scouts at the school so I'm not sure it has the same connotations as a "dance" in the strict sense of the word.

P.S. Loved the ending of Double-Bind! Thanks for the recommendation. Now on to more Harry Potter. Cousin tried to get me to stop but I realized that even after reading the first four, that page-wise I'm only a little over 1/2 way through to re-reading all six. Whoa.