My oldest will be sixteen in a little more than two weeks, at which point we allow her to begin dating. Preferably with large groups, in well-lighted areas, during hours we are all agreed upon prior to any such excursions.

Don’t snicker. It’s all reasonable.

So… we’re driving to the city in order to buy something, anything that the local Wal-mart does not carry. (Which is pretty much everything a real person might ever need.) And I bring up the topic of boys. “What are you going to look for in the boys you date?” I ask. Reasonable question. I know that somebody asked me that once; we had to write an actual list and hand it in to our Sunday School teacher, I think. And yes, I had a list. I’m wordy like that.

My daughter thinks about this for a moment. She is driving, so she can take as long as she wants to answer. There are, after all, large Semi’s and obnoxious, slow moving non-licensed entities on this thoroughfare to watch out for.

“Someone that’s honest,” she finally says.

And for some reason that surprises me, and touches me.

Because whether or not she consciously realizes it, she has distilled her father’s character into one word: Honest.

What you see is what you get. Literally. Even the things that drive me mad are in fact a result of this honesty. Where you or I might make nice to a disagreeable someone’s face and sigh a breath of relief when they are gone, he will not even begin the conversation. Not to please you or me or anyone else; he is incapable of pretense.  Where you or I might think out loud, using conversation as a way to come to understanding, he will not utter a word until he has come to a final understanding; any other utterance has the potential of untruth.

It can be maddening–but at the same time, you know that he is sincere when he does speak.


I can live with that.

You go girl. You find a truly honest man, and together you can get through anything.

I happen to know.

4 responses to “Honestly

  • ladywise

    That is very sweet. I like that answer. A lack of honesty is what ultimately broke up my marriage. I couldn’t stand to hear him lie anymore to me or anyone else. You are right. If she finds a truly honest man she will be able to get through anything.

  • Freedom Smith

    That is an impressive answer. Most girls her age would refer to looks or something of that sort. I hope the dating goes well. Group events are a good way to go!

  • Emmi

    Kudos to your daughter for recognizing the value of honesty. Hopefully she can date guys she has known for a while and knows to be honest. That’s one of the few advantages people in school have, getting to know someone for a few years before dating them.

  • ginger

    Dating is a rather interesting state of mind. It has actually made my daughter easier to deal with. She is in a better mood when dating!

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