Friday, March 5, 2010

What's Your Daughter Going to Do Now?

Sometimes, we Christian moms are criticized or questioned for the way we want to raise our daughters. Family members, friends, other Christians and total strangers love to give their input when we don't follow the traditional path of having our daughters move out at 18 and incur a huge debt to get a college degree.

 We want to teach our daughters Titus 2, to love their husbands, children, be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, and to seek the Lord in all things.  We think higher education is to be sought if/when directed  by the Lord, not mandatory for every woman to "have something to fall back on."  I loved college and I love learning, but I do not think it mandatory, nor do I think it wise to bring debt into a marriage.

From birth we raise our daughters  to be nurturing, daring to say, teach and believe that motherhood is a honorable career. Until that time, or if the Lord desires them to be single,  we encourage them to pursue their interests that will compliment  desirable and godly qualities in a woman. We are not always supported in this mindset.

Ironically, when secular women come to these conclusions on their own, they are praised.

Scenario #1 -On the internet I found a corporate lawyer who quit to become a creative, green seamstress. Her website quotes she was, "disenchanted with life as a corporate attorney, she yearned to get back in touch with her artistic side and use the right side of her brain again." Her work is beautiful, her creations unique and she has truly created a niche in the market that is very successful. We all applaud her -she is truly amazing.

But, imagine how that would be accepted from our end, as homeschooling mothers raising daughters.

"What's your daughter going to do now that she is graduated?"

"She's starting a home sewing business. She's just going to make purses."

"Oh. That's all?  She's not going to college?"

"No, we would love her to embrace her creativity, live in a home environment and be able to work without the stress of the work force."

"Oh, so she's NOT going to college? She has to get out into the world sometime! Won't she need something to fall back on?"

Most of us older moms have had these conversations. Most of us have stopped offering complete information about what our daughters are doing, because we don't want to hear the  scorn of the world when they find out we aren't "letting" our daughters venture out to live on their own when they turn 18.

Scenario #2 - In a toy store the other day, the clerk was more than delighted to help me find a toy I was looking for. She also freely offered that she had left corporate America for the peace of selling toys. She boasted that she never brings work home anymore. She is happier and healthier.

Imagine that from our lips.

"Is your daughter looking forward to having a corporate career?"

"No, my daughter just wants to bypass corporate America and  work for a toy store."

"OH."  Big sigh of disappointment.

Scenario #3 - Feminists have been disappointed in how many highly educated women are not in the work force. When women have children they want to be with them. It's that simple. Not all of these highly educated women plan to return to work after their children are in school. They like being home.

So, what is wrong with just teaching our daughters to stay at home from the beginning?  Why do women need to take the college/debt/disenchanted corporate road before taking the road to  fulfillment?
Instead of saying, "I am teaching my daughters to be Titus 2 women" I wonder if it would be more acceptable if I said, "I am teaching my daughters how to avoid the disenchantment of the corporate world and stay in touch with their artistic sides."

It doesn't really matter, I have learned long ago that when I was pregnant with my third child  -

(But you have the perfect family, a boy and a girl, why do you want more children?) -

I would not be winning any popularity contests with my convictions.

No praise about the wise financial decision of teaching them not to start their future in debt for more than we paid price of our first home.

No praise for allowing them to learn to save to buy their first car, learning how to develope a good credit rating or maintaining a successful financial budget.

No praise for supporting them as they pursue their interests and ambitions.

No praise for keeping them safe.

No praise for building closer relationships as they mature into an adults.

No praise for teaching them relationships are more important than careers, status or wealth.

But, I am not setting out to be popular or to trying to please people with my life.

I am aiming to be the kind of mother who raises her kids according to the Bible and pleases the Lord.

I am setting out to be faithful.

(This is not meant to be a discourse against college or working women.  This is merely a comparison of the scorn I have experienced for teaching a conviction and learning forward,  verses the admiration for gaining a conviction and learning backwards. )


  1. "The peace of selling toys" Hmm, that's some perspective isn't it?

    Your post reminds me of ladies "coming out into society" in the 1800's. Unless you go to college, these days, people consider you "not out".

    I love to learn too but not at the expense of my kids.

    I hope to teach my kids to have balance in whatever they do. I'm working on that one :)


    I totally understand it all...being raised quite similar as to how you are raising your children. It's sad how they are blind to our reasons.

    I love area Technical Colleges that are cheap compared to 4 year universities. They teach you a trade in quick time, allow you to work while in school so you have no debt - which leaves you to be debt free if you get married young. Also, they ALLOW YOU TO LIVE AT HOME. 18 is still so young to be out already. So, I feel if a girl wants to get a degree she could prayerfully consider that route with her parents.

  3. I am learning more and more each day about my role as a wife and mother and plan to teach all of my children what the Bible says.

    And I often wish I had some sort of talent I could use from home to make a small income to support our family while taking care of my family.
    My college degree isn't super helpful. :)

  4. It's a strange society we live in. It seems like we are criticized one way or another about what we do with our daughters, don't you think? I would really like my daughter to go to college, but it is not so that she can "fall back on something". I just know that she has so many talents and so much energy for learning. When I tell conservative Christians my view, they will often view it as worldly. So, there's flack from both sides, if you know what I mean.

    And I think it is great what your daughter is pursuing.

  5. OM - I agree about the flack from each side. That is why I feel our real goal for our children is to seek the Lord's will, not to say one way or the other is totally right. It could be different for each people. We just ultimately need to obey what is written in the Bible, and let the Spirit guide in other areas.

    Jessie - love the comparison of "coming out into society!" Hadn't thought of that one.

    Tandis- loved your point about techn. colleges, that is actually what my two daughters desired to do and are SO excited!

  6. I think there is less emphasis on college here in Australia. Not so much pressure to go there. Strangely, no wonderfully, it seems to be becoming more and more acceptable to raise daughters who will pursue motherhood and wifely duties, in our more rural situation at least. Women discovered the big bad world wasn't all it was cracked up to be!
    My two daughters are already stay at home mums, raising my little grandsons!

  7. Oh, this is SO true! Thank you for putting it so justly. Sometime it's just hard to explain. I have wondered at that too- why it is women who've had all the hardships of an "out-in-the-workplace" job can say, "You know, I realized that real worth is spending time with those you love" etc, and be praised for it. Why can't we start there?
    Oh well. We will anyway. :)

  8. well said.

    College is great if that is what God is asking of you, if not it is a sucker of MUCH money and valuable time that could be better spent doing Kingdom business.

    As for me and my house, we will seek God for each child and then walk ONLY where He sends us (them- is include in *us*)

    very wise words my friend.

    Too many *do* college because it is what you are supposed to *do.*

    mama to 8
    one homemade and 6 1/2 adopted

  9. I found your blog, and was reading through your older entries, and God has used a lot of what you wrote to show me that he has been telling me to do or not do certain things, and this post was one of the ones that was especially helpful. Thank thank you so much! and may God bless you and your family greatly!


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