I’m sure you’ve heard about the Miley Cyrus “performance” on MTVs VMAs last week. It set off a firestorm of articles and comments and very few of them were positive.
I don’t watch MTV, so I didn’t watch it live, but I saw so many people discussing it online I found it and watched myself. My reaction…I can’t even put into words. I had so many emotions I couldn’t describe them. Disgust, embarrassment, sadness, confusion, and flat out OMGosh!
Has modesty in our daughter’s been lost?
One post I came across was from one of my favorite bloggers, Michael Hyatt. The post was titled, “Whatever Happened to Modesty?” The post shared four guidelines he gave his five daughters about modesty. He used the performances at the MTV VMAs to show the contrasting complete lack of modesty today. A lack of modesty which is accepted and promoted in today’s media. The ironic thing about it is after I read the post, I left a comment, and noticed the published date. It was published in 2008, after the 2008 VMAs! And it was as applicable back then as it is today.
What struck me the most was this quote…
“Where are these girls’ fathers? Has anyone ever taught them the concept of modesty? Or have all the men in their lives simply exploited them as sex objects.”
Is your success or failure as a father shown through your kids?
As a father of a daughter who just turned 13 last month, my thoughts were similar to Michael’s. I wondered, where is dad, and what is going through his mind right now? I don’t know much about Billy Ray Cyrus, Miley’s dad. I don’t know if he taught her about modesty. I don’t know how much time he invested in their father-daughter relationship. But I do know if that was my daughter doing what she was doing, being talked about like she was, that it would challenge me as a father, and how well I’ve done.
Getting better as the dad of a daughter
I am not the perfect father. I do the best I can. Maybe the girl’s father performing at the VMAs felt the same. What this whole experience has taught me is the role of a father is very important in a young girl’s life. We have to be more intentional in our daddy-daughter relationship.
Here are some insights to help us with raising our daughters.
1. Be present…and not just physically. Our physical presence in our homes is important. But many times dads check out with their daughters in the areas they need us most. Emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. Being physically present is easy for some of us. The other areas may take some work.
2. Provide safeguards for what they see. We are bombarded with images and influences on a daily basis. These images subtly shape the way we see and interpret the world around us. These influences just aren’t on MTV, HBO, or Showtime. They are now on Disney, Nick, and regular television. What is intended for kids, isn’t necessarily good for kids.
3. Be the type of man you would trust with her. The way you treat your daughter, her mother, and other women, is what she will accept and desire from all other men. Miley grew up in the entertainment industry. Girls grinding on men may have been the norm. I am not sure. Perhaps this is a phase, and one day she will see it differently.
4. Love her unconditionally. Billy Ray Cyrus said Miley’s performance didn’t change how he felt about her. He still loved her. One of us may experience our daughter having a “Miley moment.” If she does, our love should not change. We also need to be patient through it, and trust all we have taught her is not lost. The following scripture says it best,
“Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it.” Proverbs 22:6 (NIV)
The four points above can help you be more intentional in the role you play in your daughter’s life and hopefully it can prevent your daughter from going through a Miley moment, or at least help you make it through the experience.
What was your reaction when you watched or heard about this event? You can leave your comment below.