To my daughter’s boyfriend,
I’m about to say the thing that I’m not supposed to say. You see, as a parent who dearly loves her children, I’m expected to say that I don’t think you’re good enough for my daughter. I’m supposed peer down my nose at you and postulate that you only have bad intentions for her. I’m supposed to make you feel that you’ve somehow won the lottery because you have her favor. Society encourages me to put my hands on my hips and wag my finger, saying how much of a privilege dating my daughter is. However, I’m not going to tell you those things. Instead, I’m going to say the thing that I’m not supposed to say: you are good enough for my daughter; in fact, I don’t just believe it – I know it.
I say this because you are created in God’s own image. You, sir, have inherent worth.
I’m not saying that the path you choose will be the right way for her too. I’m not going to pretend that your actions will always be honorable; you are, after all, human. There might even be a time that I come to dislike you. But, please know, my dislike will not be because of your lack of worth; it will because I know your worth and I know that you can be more.
I hope that when you come to our home, you feel welcomed and invited. I hope that we make you feel like you belong. When you approach our door and raise your hand to knock, I pray that you feel like you’re knocking on your own family’s door; the crazy side for sure, but family all the same.
As I say these things to you – I need for you to understand a few things about her. Yes, she’s gorgeous! Yes, she’s talented! Yes, she’s amazing! However, she is not perfect – please do not tell her that she is. If you do, you will add so much pressure for her to stay a certain way; disallow growth as a person, and stifling lessons that come from making mistakes. Please know that she will let you down. There will be times when she may act selfish or moody…and maybe even a bit bratty. As her mother, I can guarantee those times will happen, but I ask you to remember: in as many ways as you are human – so she will be as well.
I hope that you keep in mind that we, her parents, are just as human; mistakes will be made along the way. While I’m not sure where your relationship with her will lead – I hope that no matter the outcome, no matter where your journey leads, when you think back to this time, you smile.